With a future Bantamweight title shot likely on the line, former division champion T.J. Dillashaw collided with the brick-fisted John Lineker tonight (Dec. 30, 2016) on the pay-per-view (PPV) main card of UFC 207, which took place inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
It was speed versus power, and, it was speed that once again killed, as Dillashaw avoided Lineker’s bombs and dominated him like no other fighter ever before en route to a near-flawless unanimous decision victory.
Dillashaw was fired up to start the 135-pound match, whiffing on a head kick as he tried to trap Lineker along the cage. Lineker was cool, calm and collected, catching another head kick and using it to drag Dillashaw down to the canvas momentarily. Two minutes into the match, Dillashaw scored a lighting-fast takedown and worked over Lineker’s mid-section. He continued with ground-and-pound as Lineker struggled to avoid damage and get back to his feet. Lineker was able to break free with about one minute remaining in the opening round, ripping a left hook into Dillashaw’s ribs. It was clear that Dillashaw was using his legs to control the distance, but Lineker was finally able to close it with about 15 seconds remaining, landing a hard left hook along the cage, and then a few others, that clearly stung the former champion.
It was clear to start the second that Dillashaw wanted no part of striking battle, scoring a takedown 20 seconds in. Lineker, though, was able to scramble and get back to his feet after Dillashaw couldn’t lock up a rear-naked choke. Not even one minute later, Dillashaw scored another takedown and this one stuck. He pounded on Lineker and when he tried to sit up, drilled him with short, hard elbows. Lineker eventually rolled for a leg, but Dillashaw continued his assault. Lineker tried to kick him off several times, but Dillashaw kept pounding his face with short shots. Lineker offered some elbows off his back, but Dillashaw continued to cream him until the Brazilian was mercifully saved by the bell.
It was clear to start the third and final round that Lineker needed to land a homerun shot to take home a come-from-behind victory. But, Lineker simply could not get his hands on him — Dillashaw was just too fast, too tricky for Lineker to catch. Lineker missed on a huge, looping right hand, which Dillashaw seemingly saw coming from a mile away, and slipped under for a terrific takedown. He lumped up Lineker some more, who was able to get back to his feet near the end of the fight and land a thumping body shot, but it was not enough.
Dillashaw delivered a brilliant performance against the No. 2-ranked fighter on UFC’s Bantamweight roster. That’s now back-to-back wins over the best the division has to offer, which should be enough to warrant a title shot sometime early next year despite his differences with the promotion outside the Octagon.
For complete results from UFC 207: “Nunes vs. Rousey,” including play-by-play updates, click here and here.
Source:: mma mania