The UFC Vegas 23 main card is underway and almost over and we got an exciting one this time! In the co-main event, the UFC’s #10 ranked featherweight, Arnold Allen, rocked the #11 ranked, Sodiq Yusuff, in the first and second act to help lockdown a unanimous decision. Allen showed off some power in his hands and legs, and also showcased solid defensive skills against a powerful striker like Sodiq. Allen is now 8-0 in the UFC, which is quite a hard thing to accomplish!
Before that, Julian Marquez hurt Sam Alvey several times on the feet before putting him to sleep with a no-hooks RNC. Marquez fought smart, dishing out damage and finishing the fight when the opportunity presented itself rather than trying to force it. That’s back to back submission wins for “The Cuban Missile Crisis” who on top of heavy hands is proving to have quite the squeeze.
In the UFC’s strawweight division, the #11 ranked, Mackenzie Dern, snagged a gorgeous armbar on the returning #5 ranked, Nina Nunes. Dern was uncorking big right hands to close the distance, and once Dern achieved the full mount, it seemed to only be a matter of time before it was over. Dern just catapulted herself to the top-5 of the division, and her four-fight winning streak officially enters her into title contention.
Opening up the main card, Daniel Rodriguez put on a stellar performance against Mike Perry, skillfully out-boxing him to a unanimous decision. Rodriguez did damage early in the opening act, rocking his foe with a fundamental one-two, and then continued to out-strike the heavy handed Perry for the rest of the contest. This squeaky-clean win gets Rodriguez back into the win column and extends his UFC record to 4-1.
**See complete results below
Arnold Allen def. Sodiq Yusuff by unanimous decision (29-28 x3): Featherweight
Allen changed level to score an early takedown to get things going here. Yusuff threatened with a tight guillotine attempt that prompted Allen to spin to his back, bring the match back to its feet. Allen blasted Yusuff with heavy left hands, one of which dropped Sodiq. Allen then switched gears and hit another short-lived takedown, but stayed attached in the clinch where he controlled his adversary.
Yusuff went after Allen with big punches to start the second act, but the defense of Arnold held up. Just when Yusuff started to find some rhythm, Allen landed a head kick that wobbled Sodiq. Somehow Yusuff recovered, but he spent a bunch of time with his back to the fence.
Allen looked to wrestle in the final round, but Yusuff was ready for it and shut it down to stay vertical. Allen was not discouraged, though, so with two rounds seemingly in the bag, Allen looked to stay in close. Yusuff finally broke free and started storming the castle of his opponent, but Allen managed to tie up in the clinch.
Julian Marquez def. Sam Alvey by technical submission (RNC) at 2:07 of round 2: Middleweight
Alvey took his classic counter posture as he backed himself up to the cage. Marquez cautiously pressed forward, looking to land big single punches. When Marquez did string together a combination, he actually hurt Alvey. It didn’t take very long for Sam to recover and return counter punches. Just before the bell, Alvey seemed to rock Marquez with a short check hook.
The boxing match continued in the seocnd frame. Marquez kept pressing forward while Alvey wanted to counter. Marquez hurt his foe again, but this time he wasn’t going to let him off the hook. Marquez jumped on a rear-naked choke, and put Sam to sleep without ever needing to sink the hooks.
Mackenzie Dern def. Nina Nunes by submission (armbar) at 4:48 of round 1: Strawweight
Dern pressed forward right away, swinging big overhand rights to close the distance. She clinched up with Nunes against the cage, and was able to plant her on her back. Dern worked her way into the full mount and began punching away. Nunes then found herself fighting off an armbar attempt from a world class BJJ black belt. Dern made all of the right adjustments and Nunes respectfully tapped.
Daniel Rodriguez def. Mike Perry by unanimous decision (30-27 x2, 30-26): Welterweight
Both guys are known for striking and this match was no different. Rodriguez was building off of his jab while Perry was opening up with kicks. Rodriguez drew first blood, rocking Perry with a stiff one-two. Perry recovered quickly and returned fire, but Rodriguez was dialed in. Rodriguez was winning with his straight punches. They were beating the looping punches of Perry. With less than 30-seconds to go in the round, Perry hit a takedown to finish up the round on top.
Rodriguez continued to probe with his effective jab, snapping back the head of Perry almost every time. Perry was getting out-struck, so he switched to the takedown and put Rodriguez on his back. Rodriguez didn’t stay down for long at all, quickly scrambling back into open space. Perry started to get tuned up as Rodriguez was letting his hands go. Some pretty bad swelling started to occur around the left eye of Perry.
Perry looked for the takedown again in the final round, but Rodriguez wan’t having it. He stayed on his feet and forced Perry to strike. Perry kept struggling with the jab and was eating a steady diet of crosses.