The UFC heads back to Newark, NJ tonight for UFC 169 where Renan Barao will finally have a chance to defend the official bantamweight championship against Urijah Faber. Barao was scheduled for a unification bout against now former champion Dominick Cruz, but "The Dominator" was forced from the bout with a hamstring injury. On a four-fight win streak, Faber stepped in on short notice for another chance at UFC gold.
The co-main event features a featherweight title fight between long-standing champion Jose Aldo and challenger Ricardo Lamas. Aldo's one of the most dominant champions in the UFC boasting an impressive five consecutive title defenses. Lamas scored a four-fight win streak to earn his chance at the strap.
Former heavyweight champion Frank Mir will take on Alistair Overeem on the main card as well. Before that flyweight John Lineker will take on Ali Bagautinov and lightweight Jamie Varner will face Abel Trujillo.
We'll cover all the main card action in this post.
Round 1 - Not much happening early. Varner with a front kick and right hook. Trujillo responds with two solid shots of his own. They're both throwing bombs. Trujillo looked for a takedown but Varner ended up on top, then on his back. Varner looking for a north-south choke. He stayed thre for a while but Trujillo looked to be okay. He finally gave it up and Trujillo got up. Three left hooks from Varner, and Trujillo's firing right back! Finally some action! Good knee up the middle by Trujillo. 10-9 Varner.
Round 2 - Varner was circling a lot. He tagged Trujillo with a big left hook. Varner gets tagged right back! Now Varner's all over him. Trujillo turtles, but gets back up enough to go for a takedown. Varner spins around to his back and opens up with more punches. They both just thew more bombs back on the feet. Huge lefts from Varner! Then out of nowhere, Trujillo straight KO'D HIM! With a right hook! That was effin amazing!
Abel Trujillo defeats Jame Varner by knockout (massive punch), 2:32 of round two
Round 1 - Lineker closed the distance and whiffed on a big shot, which allowed Bagautinov to take him down. Ali landed a few punches and kept Lineker in place. Lineker went for a leg lock that didn't work, and that allowed Bagautinov to go for his own. Lineker spun out and got back to his feet. Leg kick from Lineker. Lineker went for a body kick and got taken down. Lineker looked for a kimura but there was nothing doing. A few big punches from Ali before the horn. 10-9 Bagautinov.
Round 2 - Lineker went for a kick and almost got taken down. Two kicks from Bagautinov. Lineker tried to close the distance but Bagautinov was circle. Bagautinov with a couple of hard punches against the cage. Big right from Lineker. Left hook from Bagautinov. Lineker just wasn't throwing any strikes. Body shot from Lineker, and two more. Combo from Ali. Big right from Lineker. Another body shot. Bagautinov went in for a takedown but got stuffed. Left hook from Bagautinov, and two kicks. Lineker stuffed another shot. Hed kick from Bagautinov. Right hook and a big knee from Ali. They traded a bit at the horn. Close round, but I'm leaning Lineker 10-9.
Round 3 - No strikes at all for the first 45 seconds, just stalking and circling. Bagautinov with a body shot and a brief takedown. Bagautinov tripped him back down again. Lineker went for a kimura again, and got his back against the cage, then up. Bagautinov blasted him with a left hook and took him down again. Ali controlled position against the cage for minute or so. Lineker got up, but Bagautinov held him in the clinch and landed a few knees. Left hook from Ali. Bagautinov got another takedown. Lineker ate some punches while he went for a leg lock. Ali totally mocked the leg lock, playing to the crowd for the last 10 seconds of the fight. That was amusing. Clearly 10-9 Bagautinov and 29-28 for the Dagestani fighter.
Ali Bagautinov defeats John Lineker by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Round 1 - Overeem with a body shot to lead. Mir with a straight right. Overeem clinched up against the cage, but Mir pushed him off. Left for Overeem connects.Overeem landed a body shot and a knee that dropped Mir. Overeem grabbed his arm behind his head and pummeled Mir with huge punches. Knee to the body. Mir managed to get back up but ate another knee to the body. Mir missed wit ha big left hook. Overeem pressed in and Mir pulled guard to look for a leg lock. Hammerfist and punches from Overeem. Mir tried to lock him down. 10-9 Overeem.
Round 2 - Jab from Reem. Leg kick from Mir that was checked. Overeem just threw Mir to the ground like a bag of garbage. Knee to the body from Overeem in the clinch. Mirgliotta separated them quickly. Three punch combo from Overeem. Mir shot in for a takeodnw and got it. Mir looking for a guillotine. He's going for it again, but Overeem popped out in top position. Reem throwing short punches but not doing much. Overeem postured up and landed a big elbow. Mir's bleeding. Mir rolled over for an arm attack but Overeem immediately backed out. They both threw kicks at the bell. 10-9 Overeem.
Round 3 - Nothing happened for 45 seconds until Overeem ended up in top position. After 30 seconds of nothing, the ref stood them up. Mir went for a takedown but whiffed and ended up on his back again. Overeem landed a few punches. Big left from Overeem. Elbow. Reem's not doing a ton, but it's working. Elbow to the body from Overeem. They're back to the feet with a minute to go. Mir is pretty bloody. Big right from Overeem hurt Mir. Just missed with a left. 10-9 Overeem and 30-27 overall.
Alistair Overeem defeats Frank Mir by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Round 1 - Lams threwa few kicks that didn't land. Both feinted a few times. Combo from Aldo. Leg kick checked by Aldo. Pretty slow start overall. Lamas with a side kick. Beautiful combo from Aldo ended with a leg kick. Spinning back kick to the body from Aldo. Big body kick from Lamas but Aldo caught the leg and charged forward with punches. Straight counter right from Aldo. Head/body combo from the champ. Lamas spun a couple of times. Aldo with some sort of flying attack at the horn. 10-9 Aldo.
Round 2 - High kick blocked by Aldo. Jab to the body from the champ. Punch/kick combo. Aldo kicks like a damn donkey. Lamas with a leg kick. Aldo rips to the body three times. Leg kicks from Lamas continued to be checked by Aldo. Aldo countered with a hard right leg kicks. Aldo with a counter left hook, but Lamas responds with a jab. Another Aldo donkey kick. And another. And two more that spun Lamas around. Lamas with a high kick. His leg appears to be damaged though. Aldo continued his assault with the kicks. Spinning wheel kick lands partially for Lamas. 10-9 Aldo.
Round 3 - Aldo back to the chopping kicks ands just missed with a hard straight left. Straight left/leg kick combo again. Huge combo from Aldo made Lamas nod. Lamas went in for a takedown but there was nothing there. Head kick from Lamas. Another leg kick from Aldo. Lamas. Aldo back to the body shots. Lamas with a leg kick and a straight right. Lamas starting to land a few punches here and there, but Aldo is responding. 10-9 Aldo.
Round 4 - Aldo with a leg kick. Lams looked for a takedown. Lamas lifted him up but Aldo just leaned against the cage to avoid the takedown. Aldo reversed against the cage and they engaged in the clinch for a while. Aldo with a trip takedown. He missed with an elbow. The champ moved to mount and looked for a choke as soon as Lamas rolled over. Lamas escaped through the bad door and went for his own takedown. Big elbows from Jose to the side of the head. 10-9 Aldo.
Round 5 - Hard kick to the body from Lamas. Aldo tied him up against the fence and got a takedown. He worked for a little while then deftly moved to mount. Lamas used the cage to buck off and ended up on top. Lamas was throwing punches but Aldo had him locked down. Lamas stacked him up and scored with a few punches. Two big elbows from Lamas. Aldo held on until the bell, but he wasn't in any serious trouble. Tough round to score since each man controlled half, but it doesn't really matter. I'll give it to Lamas 10-9 but 49-46 Aldo overall.
Jose Aldo defeated Ricardo Lamas by unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
Round 1 - Faber with a leg kick. Returned from Barao. Faber caught the kick though and scored with a punch. Both of them kicked at the same time and Faber slipped. Barao boxed his ears a bit from behind. Faber blocked a head kick. Leg kick from Barao. Barao dropped him with a straight shot! Wow! Faber got back up but Barao staggered him again! Faber recovered again. And yet again, Barao dropped him. Faber went down face-first and Barao jumped on him. He battered him with punches to the side of the head. Faber looked like he was okay but he wasn't moving and it was enough for Herb Dean to step in and call it off. Faber was pissed.
Renan Barao defeats Urijah Faber by TKO (strikes), 3:42 of round 1