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UFC Fight Night 135 results from last night: Justin Gaethje vs James Vick fight recap

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Lincoln-Gaethje vs Vick Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight hitters Justin Gaethje and James Vick clashed last night (Aug. 25, 2018) at UFC Fight Night 135 inside Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, Nebraska.

By this point, everyone knows Gaethje’s story leading up to the contest: a whirlwind of violence saw him climb the ranks as an undefeated brawler, but two very close fights saw him end up on the wrong side of the knockout and halted his momentum. While all eyes were on Gaethje — whether in the UFC or World Series of Fighting (WSOF) — Vick was grinding on the undercard. He’s developed from raw prospect to dangerous contender in that time, as well as put together a hell of a win streak leading up to this battle.

The result was a high-action fight between two very different fighters.

Vick looked to maintain distance with early front kicks and a long jab, an approach that Gaethje looked to counter with a body jab and his own low kicks. Nevertheless, Gaethje punched his way into the clinch, but his opponent threw him off and punted the body. Everything was going perfectly for the Texan, who continually slammed his opponent with kicks as Gaethje advanced, and frankly “The Highlight” looked a touch frustrated.

Then, it was all over.

Despite the damage, Gaethje was able to back Vick into the fence. Moving forward behind a wide left hook, Gaethje dropped the hammer with a hellacious overhand. It was a perfect right hand of nearly Hendo-Bisping levels, one that sent Vick to the campus with little doubt that he would be waking up any time soon.

This was a relatively short fight for Gaethje, which means it doesn’t fully answer most of the questions posed by this match up. Could Gaethje close the distance on Vick? Not really, but the first clean punch he landed shut the Texan down. On the plus side, Gaethje did show some smarts in trying to use the body jab and low kick to close the distance, and driving forward into the clinch was a good decision as well.

That right hand though... Ouch.

I don’t know who Gaethje should face next — any top Lightweight will do — but the world is quite simply a much more interesting place with Justin Gaethje back in the win column.

Vick got knocked out in 90ish seconds, and that’s perhaps the worst possible result for a first main event opportunity. At the same time, Vick looked dangerous prior to the right hand from hell. He was sticking Gaethje with hard shots and denying him his range repeatedly — I’m pretty firmly convinced that Gaethje did not at all like the body kicks or how the fight was going up until the overhand.

Unfortunately, Vick has definitely been guilty of being tall in the pocket before, and that mistake cost him here. Backing into the fence is already a major no for tall fighters, but back straight up, head high to avoid left hand? Vick should’ve known that a right hand rocket was coming next, but he was in no position to absorb it.

All his good work — both his win streak and damage done in the fight itself — were erased in an instant.

Last night, Justin Gaethje flattened his opponent to get back into the mix. What’s next for ‘The Highlight?’

For complete UFC Fight Night 135 “Gaethje vs. Vick” results and play-by-play, click HERE!

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