Heavy-handed UFC bantamweight contender John Lineker was unable to get his dangerous offensive attack going against T.J. Dillashaw, as the former champion turned in a dominant performance and won a unanimous decision at UFC 207 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Two judges scored the fight 30-26, with both of them awarding 10-8s for the 2nd round.
While round 2 was the most lopsided part of the bout, as Dillashaw battered Lineker with an onslaught of ground strikes, it was actually a Dillashaw head kick in round 1 that injured the Brazilian. MMA Fighting’s Guilherme Cruz has the story from Lineker himself:
“I felt a pop right away,” said Lineker, who won’t be able to eat anything but soft food for two weeks. “I wasn’t dizzy or anything like that, but I felt a pop. I thought ‘it was just the kick, no problem,’ but it start to hurt a lot in the second round. I truly felt it in the third, when I took all of his punches."
During his post-fight medical exams, Lineker didn’t feel any pain at all, but that changed when he tried to eat.
“I left the Octagon and talked to the doctors, everything was normal,” he said. “I could move my jaw, all normal, so they cleared me and said to let them know if I felt anything. When I went to another room to eat something and watch the fights, I felt the pain and it didn’t stop.
The Nevada Athletic Commission has since handed Lineker a medical suspension of up to six months. It was Lineker’s first defeat since Ali Bagautinov bested him at UFC 169, and it marked his first loss in the UFC’s bantamweight division.