The UFC Fight Island 2 preliminary card was a bit heavy on the decisions, with only three bouts ending early. Be that as it may, this portion of the event just closed out with promotional newcomer Roman Dolidze landing a sinister knee to knockout Khadis Ibragimov in the opening round. New blood at 205-pounds is always good news, especially when they’re winning in this fashion. Dolidze keeps his perfect record intact and advances to 7-0.
Before that, Grant Dawson dominating Nad Narimani for three-rounds.Dawson showcased some dominant ground work, complete with strong control, strikes, and sub attempts alike. The 15-1 prospect has now won all-four of his UFC fights. One of the preliminary finishes happened when Joel Alvarez scored a first-round submission on Joe Duffy. He jumped a guillotine off of a Duffy takedown attempt and then it wasn’t long before the tap was realized. This makes back-to-back finishes for Alvarez, and three-straight losses for Duffy.
In the bantamweight division, Brett Johns and Montel Jackson found themselves in a grinding scrap that went the distance. The significant strikes were all on the side on Jackson, but the grinding control of Johns is what won out on the scorecards. This now makes two-in-a-row for Johns is one becoming one tough grinder to deal with. Making good on his UFC debut, Amir Albazi hit a sweet transitional triangle on Malcolm Gordon in the first round. Albazi was all aces here. He looked composed and comfy on the feet, and then controlled and advanced his position on the ground until finding the sub. What a way to make a splash under the bright lights!
Earlier on the card, the 23-year-old Arman Tsarukyan out-classed Davi Ramos on the feet to take a unanimous decision. The Tiger Muay Thai product delivered a variety of strikes while using his footwork to stay out of harms way. He really looked great in all areas, and actually became the first man in UFC history to takedown Ramos. He might be someone to keep an eye on at 155-pounds.
**See complete results below
Roman Dolidze def. Khadis Ibragimov by KO at 4:15 of round 1: Light Heavyweight
A bit of a staring contest took place to start this one. Neither man really wanted to go first, which resulted a lot of feints and measuring. Dolidze slipped while throwing a head kick, allowing Ibragimov to land some light leg kicks while towering over Dolidze. The referee stood them up and then Dolidze threw a kick but his knee is what landed flush, sending Ibragimov falling to the canvas dazed and confused. Some academic ground strikes came flying in until the referee had seen enough.
Grant Dawson def. Nad Narimani by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 29-28): 150-pounds
Narimani pressured right away, but had to walk through some calf kicks. Narimani got wise to the kicks and was able to check one and actually hurt Dawson. Narimani ran in for the kill but Dawson landed a flying knee that began a sequence that led to Dawson on top. Some punishing ground and pound was delivered as well as a ton of control time being racked up.
Dawson threw a flying knee off of a calf kick to start the second round, which is a pretty incredible combo. Narimani landed a strong combo of his own after cutting some angles, but that’s Dawson decided to get a takedown. Narimani was stuck on the bottom, getting mugged and roughed up with no answers. Dawson stayed with his calf kick in the final round. He was content to stay on the feet and exchange strikes, without any real desire to get the fight to the floor. Narimani hung tough, but Dawson was out there having a field day.
Joel Alvarez def. Joe Duffy by submission (Guillotine) at 2:25 of round 1: Lightweight
The lightweights got right to work, swapping leg kicks trying to take over the center of the cage. Just when it looked like this one was going to be a banger, Duffy opted to shoot in for a takedown. Alvarez reacted well and jumped a super-tight guillotine. Duffy was caught without an escape and respectfully tapped out.
Brett Johns def. Montel Jackson by unanimous decision (29-28 x3): Bantamweight
Johns looked to close the distance right away, but had to cover some real estate to get on the inside. It was Jackson who came up with he takedown, but it wasn’t long before Johns was back up and back to hunting for a takedown. Jackson was rendered defensive in the grind, but was able to find enough space to land a stiff straight that dropped Johns. Jackson took top position and landed a few elbows for good measure. Johns survived the barrage and even attacked with an armbar before the bell.
Johns went right back to the grind in the second act. He shoved Jackson against the fence, but wasn’t able to convert anything into a takedown. Jackson would escape into open space at times, and that’s where he was bale to land some quality blows. Johns was determined though, and was able to get a takedown and take the back. As Jackson tried to spin around, Johns attacked with a triangle but nothing came of it before the round ended.
Johns quickly closed the distance in the final frame, and worked until he got a takedown. Jackson sprung right back up though, and blasted Johns with a slick knee up the middle. Johns went back to the clinch and ultimately the takedown. Jackson again got back to his feet and landed the better strikes in open space. Johns attacked with a guillotine late in the round, but Jackson fended it off with relative ease.
Amir Albazi def. Malcolm Gordon by submission (Triangle) at 4:42 of round 1: Flyweight
Albazi looked comfortable on his fight right away. He was able to score with fluid combinations before changing levels and putting Gordon on his back. Albazi controlled from the top and strategically worked his way into the full mount. He allowed Gordon to roll over just so he could lock up a triangle. He made a couple of adjustments and then BOOM… he got the tap.
Arman Tsarukyan def. Davi Ramos by unanimous decision (30-27 x2, 29-28): Lightweight
Tsarukyan played to outside to get things going, moving in to strike and then getting out of the way before Ramos could connect. Ramos tried to get the fight to the ground but a botched takedown gave Tsarukyan top position. Tsarukyan stayed inside the full guard for quite some time, dropping punches and staying safe.
The action heated up right away in the second frame. Both men stood in the pocket and exchanged heavy combos. As the fight went on, Tsarukyan was the one getting the better of the exchanges. He was throwing more combos while Ramos usually threw one at a time. Ramos was a lot more aggressive in this round, which allowed him to rack up a lot volume than he did in the previous one.
The final was briefly halted as soon as it started due to Tsarukyan needing to adjust his cup. The bout resumed and Ramos tried to press forward behind looping punches. Tsarukyan found his groove, and began to take over on the feet. He was picking apart Ramos, firing at will with a variety of techniques. The referee paused the about again, this time to bring in the doctor to check out a cut on Ramos’s forehead. The fight was allowed to continue
Sergey Spivac def. Carlos Felipe by majority decision (29-27 x2, 28-28): Heavyweight
Felipe sprinted to the center of the Octagon, launching punches both to the body and head. Spivak stood his ground and began to fire back with solo shots. The jab of Spivac was particularly stinging, with Felipe throwing a lot of looping punches.
The big men slugged it out in the second out. They went blow for blow, but neither man was really able to really hurt the other man. Spivac switched things up by shooting for a takedown, but Felipe was able to fight it off and stay on his feet. The brawl continued on as both men were willing to exchange, but again neither man was bale to take over.
Spivac went to the takedown early in the final round and was able to force Felipe to carry his weight. Felipe worked to get back up, but Spivac was in grind mode. Felipe struggled to find separation and ate quite a few ground strikes. Then, he ate a whole lot more after Spivac locked down top position. This round was a total blowout for Spivac.