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UFC on FOX 27 results from last night: Andre Fili vs Dennis Bermudez fight recap

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Bermudez vs Fili Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Featherweight bruisers Dennis Bermudez and Andre Fili collided last night (Jan. 27, 2018) at UFC on FOX 27 inside Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Bermudez rose into the Top 10 on the strength of a seven-fight win streak, but since then has struggled against the division’s best. “The Menace” is still ranked, but has slowly slipped down that ladder; however, a victory here could reverse Bermudez’s direction. Meanwhile, Fili has shown a lot of potential inside the Octagon and established himself as an action fighter, but he struggled putting together a win streak. Nevertheless, Fili had a chance here to jump in on short-notice and potentially score a second Top 15 victory.

Bermudez came out aggressive working behind the jab, while Fili moved well and stuffed the first shot of the fight. Fili stuck his foe with long jabs of his own, and Bermudez answered with strong inside low kicks.

Fili scored the first takedown of the fight in the second half of the round, but he was unable to keep his foe down. Back on his feet, Bermudez upped the aggression, which saw both men land heavy shots. It was a rather close round, but Fili may have stole it with a second takedown in the final seconds of the round.

Things were still very much up in the air with 10 minutes remaining.

Bermudez returned to the low kick to start the second, which allowed Fili to land a third takedown. However, when Fili went take the back, Bermudez was able to scramble out and attempt a pair of his own takedowns to no avail. Back in the open, Bermduez continued to land low kicks while eating jabs.

Fili landed a few good counters as well before Bermudez closed the distance into the clinch. When Fili broke away, “Touchy” changed levels and landed yet another double leg takedown. This time, he was able control his foe for a bit, but Bermudez was still able to get back up fairly quickly.

Once more, it was a close round, leaving the final five minutes as the deciding factor.

With both men a bit fatigued, the two traded in longer exchanges to start the third round. Continuing with the pattern set by the previous two rounds, Bermudez had trouble finding a home for punches but continued to land the low kick well. Meanwhile, Fili landed some big counters and kept up an active jab.

Bermudez pressured heavy in the third but did a better job of avoiding the reactionary takedown. He ate counters in the process, but Bermudez land some good shots as well and finished the fight with a nice takedown.

After 15 minutes of back-and-forth fighting, the bout was in the hands of the judges. Based on the night’s earlier controversial decisions, few had any faith in them, but it was such a close fight that either man could be argued as the victor.

Two of the three judges gave the decision to Andre Fili, awarding him the split-decision victory.

This was a strong showing from Fili, made even more impressive by the fact that Fili only had half of a fight camp to prepare. That showed in the third round, where the combination of a broken nose, bruised leg, and shortened camp slowed him down.

While fresh, however, Fili was sharper than ever. He did a great job of keeping Bermudez out of the boxing range, forcing Bermudez to wrestle from a long distance. Over and over, Fili was able to deny those takedowns, and whenever Bermudez showed frustration about being unable to connect with his punches, Fili changed levels and landed takedowns of his own.

That aspect of his game seemed to surprise “The Menace.”

Aside from the wrestling match up, Fili did strong work with straight shots at distance, angling off and landing hard counters when his foe advanced. It was technical work from the kickboxer, who has now won three of his previous four.

It’s a rough night for Bermudez, who has now lost his last two bouts via split-decision. He had an argument in both fights, but his habit of stepping deep into punches and getting countered by takedowns seems to have cost him both decisions.

On the plus side, Bermudez did a better job of not ducking into the uppercut. Fili was obviously looking for it, but an extra helping of feints kept Bermudez a bit safer. In addition, Bermudez can still keep a hell of pace, which he showed by storming back to take the third round.

Bermudez may have lost his previous three bouts, but he’s still a top Featherweight.

Last night, Andre Fili’s rangy kickboxing and counter boxing earned him a very competitive decision win. Who should Fili face next?

For complete UFC on FOX 27: “Souza vs. Brunson” results and play-by-play, click HERE!

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