Tim Elliott and Ryan Benoit faced off in a Flyweight bout tonight (Sat., July 15, 2020) at UFC on ESPN 13 from inside “Fight Island” in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Following some fun scrambles and big shots, Elliott earned the victory.
Elliott opened the fight with his usual strange movement and an eventual calf kick. Elliott landed a couple more left kicks to the body and thigh. Benoit was looking to counter, but he hadn’t found any openings two minutes in. Benoit dug a low kick then a glancing high kick. Benoit scored with a right hand soon afterward. Benoit landed another right and stuffed a takedown, but Elliott did land a solid knee and elbow on the break. Elliott continued to throw kicks at a high volume. Elliott scored a couple good jabs. With 30 seconds remaining, Elliott landed a takedown, but Benoit reversed it with a leg lock attempt. Elliott put him back down with another single leg before the bell.
Elliott went back to work with the early low kicks, but Benoit countered with a right. Benoit landed another glancing high kick and an uppercut. Elliott ate a couple more punches while advancing. Elliott landed a couple jabs as his foe backed into the fence. Benoit started to feel the pressure and shot in for a takedown, but Elliott countered with a guillotine! He nearly landed the choke, and it allowed him to land in mount. Benoit recovered guard. Benoit went for a kneebar and put Elliott in danger! Despite some grimacing, Elliott survived, though Benoit returned to his feet. Benoit landed a good left, and Elliott scored another takedown. The two landed in a really strange position, which Elliott used to throw some elbows before the bell.
Neither strategy changed into the third, as Elliott attacked the legs while Benoit hunted for counters. Elliott landed a slick combination of elbows after a failed takedown. Then he did it again! Elliott landed a solid knee in the clinch. Elliott seemingly hurt his finger, taking a moment to jam it back into place?!? Either way, Benoit went on the offensive, landing some hard hooks. Elliott stuck his foe with some jabs. Elliott’s right hand was clearly injured in some way, but Elliott continued to jab well. Elliott landed a left from Southpaw. Benoit dug into the leg. Benoit swung for the fences and just missed, but he was able to land some follow up punches in the clinch. Elliott jammed his foe into the fence and moved to the back clinch briefly. Benoit landed a solid knee just before the bell while denying a takedown attempt.
This was a strange fight. Elliott was the more active striker, but he threw with less power. He was never able to fully get his wrestling game going, as Benoit’s leg lock game — who knew? — kept him on the defensive while on the mat. Ultimately, the judges unanimously awarded Elliott the close decision.
Result: Tim Elliott defeats Ryan Benoit via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
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