Johnny Walker and Thiago Santos clashed tonight (Sat., Oct. 2, 2021) in a main event clash from inside UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, at UFC Vegas 38. This main event scrap carried a pair of appealing angles. On one hand, these two Light Heavyweights were ranked inside the Top 10, so there were definitely title implications on the line for the victor. However, the far more significant draw of this battle is that neither man is fond of caution! Both typically chase the knockout with occasionally reckless zeal, setting up a striking battle unlikely to last the full five rounds.
Naturally, the pair of strikers defied expectations by displaying extreme patience, resulting in a very competitive fight with a slower pace. Follow along below for live updates and highlight clips:
The pair open with feints, and Walker lands a powerful low kick to start. After dozens more feints, Walker lands a front kick and takes a low kick. Zero punches have been throwing in the first half of the round. Walker is landing to the inside thigh with decent consistency. Otherwise, not much landed for either man. 10-9 Walker
Santos comes out a bit more aggressive to start the second, then he tries a takedown. The two exchange big right after the failed shot. Santos lets a hard kick fly to the body. Walker digs into the thigh again. Another nice body kick scored for Santos, and another, LOUD! Counter punches scores for “Marreta.” 10-9 Santos
Santos pressuring a bit to start the third as both men trade kicks. Glancing high kick scores for Santos. Clean check hook scores for Walker. Big left hand swing scores for Santos, followed by a low kick. At the halfway point, this fight is lots of feints punctuated by small moments of explosion from either man. Santos counters a kick with another long left, and his own low kicks are starting to land fairly well. Walker hasn’t landed much outside of that check hook yet in this round. Good poke to the belly from Walker, but he takes a much harder low kick in return. Santos seems to have found his range and rhythm in this round. 10-9 Santos
Santos rips the body with a left hook. Counter left kick to the liver from Santos. Walker scoring with smaller digs to the legs, but Santos is landing the big shots. Partial high kick scores for Walker. Walker looking for the knee stomp, but he’s landing and getting countered by low kicks at a fairly even rate. Walker lands a heavy right hand when Santos catches the body kick. Santos scores with a hook. Cross-hook land big for Santos, his best combination of the round. Walker lands a heavy body kick and avoids the counter. Santos scores one more left kick before the bell. Close round! 10-9 Walker
For the final time, the round begins with a trade of low kicks. Big overhand left scores for Santos. A much bigger left scores moments later, but Walker takes it well. Spin kick partially lands for Santos, then a nice body kick. Snap kick from the taller man. 90 seconds remain, and Walker needs to take the momentum back if he’s to win this round. Santos finds another big left hand on the counter. Walker is unable to create any magic before the bell. 10-9 Santos
Result: Thiago Santos defeats Johnny Walker via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-47)
For complete UFC Vegas 38: “Santos vs. Walker” results and play-by-play, click HERE!