After several consecutive UFC events with generally lackluster preliminary cards, the UFC's debut trip to Glasgow has been the exact opposite. Four of the first five prelims ended in 1st round knockouts, including one that the Scottish faithful enjoyed immensely. Here are the results of the first half of the UFC Fight Night: Bisping vs. Leites event.
Daniel Omielanczuk (17-5-1, 1 NC) def. Chris De La Rocha (3-1) via TKO (punches) at :48 of round 1 - Heavyweights
Short-notice replacement Chris De La Rocha had no chance from the opening second. Stopped in his tracks by a straight left, then ate a right hook and a high kick to send him reeling. Poland's Omielanczuk waited patiently, picked him apart some more, and then eliminated his opponent with one more big right hook and a couple of hammerfists. Omielanczuk snaps his two-fight losing streak.
While one short-notice replacement got destroyed, the other one on the Fight Pass prelims made the most of his debut. The 26-year-old Rivera and Brimage were throwing with bad intentions early and often, but it was Rivera who landed with big right hand over Brimage's half-hearted jab. Brimage staggered backwards and then got clipped with another right hand and more punches before he went down and out.
In an entertaining battle, "The Flyin' Judoka" didn't need any judo to get his second UFC win. A well-timed counter left hand by Whiteford floored Ireland's Redmond and then multiple punches on the ground put him out cold. The "TKO" ruling doesn't do the result justice. After the stoppage, Whiteford exited the cage and celebrated with raucous Scottish support in a truly fantastic moment. Redmond drops to 0-2 in the UFC.
This fight had a bit of everything. Packalen came in looking to grapple with France's Lebout, but Mickael did a very good job of getting out of the early bad patches where Packalen had him mounted or in side control. Lebout actually spent a good chunk of round 1 trying to work something on top, but the spacing was there for Packalen to reverse him late in the round. Lebout and Packalen weren't noticeably better than one another in the stand-up, but as Packalen started to tire, Lebout was able to stuff the telegraphed takedowns and kick away at his legs. There was a bad moment for Lebout where he pulled guard and had to defend a heel hook in a round he was otherwise dominating. Packalen did score a takedown late in the 3rd but was reversed and lost his chance at getting the victory. Finland's Packalen accepted the fight on 9 days notice and loses for the first time in his career.
Holland's Stringer got sledgehammered by "The Sledgehammer". A leg kick was caught and then the Swede capitalized with a big right hand that sent him to the ground. Another humongous right hand put Stringer out cold in yet another 1st round KO. Latifi bounces back from his 1st round TKO loss to Jan Blachowicz, while Stringer loses his 2nd straight.
Most of the 1st round was spent largely with Holohan working on a triangle choke on the Englishman. Ireland's Holohan didn't get it and Lee actually was able to punch him from a wacky angle on multiple occasions. Lee brilliantly slipped out the back door and took Holohan's back and went for a rear-naked choke. There wasn't enough time to adjust it, however. Lee had mount on Holohan in the 2nd but Holohan swept him and went for a heel hook, then scrambled into top position and outgrappled him for much of the round. He threatened with an armbar but Lee's submission defense was on point. After an early groin kick by Holohan, the bulk of the round was spent standing, with Lee quite frankly not showing any sense of urgency. Single strikes were landing but Holohan was more active and a late takedown with ground-and-pound sealed another win inside the Octagon for Patrick Holohan.