Smilin’ Sam Alvey faced off with Suga Rashad Evans tonight (August 5th, 2017) at UFC Fight Night 112 on FOX Sports 1 from inside Arena Ciudad de México in Mexico City, Mexico. Evans, a former UFC light heavyweight champion, had lost three straight fights, including his middleweight debut against Dan Kelly. Sam Alvey, ranked 14th at middleweight, had been on a four-fight win streak until he dropped his most recent fight to Thales Leites.
Rashad came out feinting a lot, but throwing nothing. Forty seconds in he finally threw a low kick. That was the only strike of the first minute. Rashad finally shot in and put Alvey against the cage. Alvey fought off the takedown with underhooks and framed with a single collar tie, landing a sharp elbow. Rashad dropped for a double-leg again but couldn’t get it, even after repeated attempts. He landed a couple short punches on the inside. They exchanged knees, and Rashad finally saw the opportunity to get to Alvey’s legs and put him on his butt. Alvey worked to get back to his feet against the cage. He got to all fours. Rashad tried to use the wrestler’s ride to keep him down, but Alvey worked his way back to his feet and landed a knee. He reversed the clinch, and broke free at last. With a minute left in the round, they went back to the feinting game. Alvey stepped in with a lead uppercut that missed. Rashad threw an overhand right that was blocked. Alvey tried the lead uppercut-rear straight combination again. Rashad threw a high kick off the forearms of Alvey. Alvey stepped inside with ten seconds left and Rashad clinched, reversed him into the cage, and landed an overhand along the way. They stayed tied up until the round ended.
They both came out wary in the second round. Once again, Rashad opened the action with a low kick. Rashad circled and feinted, circled and feinted. Alvey tried a combination but Rashad evaded him. Rashad landed a kick. Alvey was attempting to get Rashad pinned against the fence, and he finally got close enough to pop Evans’ head back with a jab. Evans got back into space and threw up a high kick, then a low kick. Alvey landed a left straight. Alvey raised his hands in a Diaz-style taunt, trying to get Rashad to come forward. Rashad finally did, shooting in after an exchange in the pocket. He got Alvey down momentarily, then with more authority with a slam. Alvey once again worked his way back up, landing a shot in the clinch. Rashad worked for more takedowns in the clinch, but Alvey muscled him up with underhooks each time. Finally Alvey worked to one side and got free of the clinch. Rashad threw an overhand. Alvey backed him into the fence, but couldn’t quite land an authoritative combination before the round ended.
The third round opened with Alvey pressuring with determination. Evans landed a hook, then a low kick. Alvey countered a Rashad jab with a counter left that connected. Evans threw an overhand that Alvey countered again with his left straight. Evans followed his next overhand with a left hook that connected. Alvey stepped in with a combination that let Evans get into the clinch. Alvey pushed Evans’ head down and landed some dirty boxing shots, and Evans broke away. Alvey tried to sit down on a pressuring combination that Evans slipped. They traded rear hands and Evans tried to dive for the takedown but couldn’t get it. Alvey pressured in and landed that jab. Evans got to the middle of the Octagon, but ate an Alvey jab and left straight. They traded again, Evans eating a left hook to land a hard overhand. Evans dove for a single-leg takedown that Alvey fought off while looking for hard knees in the clinch. He landed one to Evans head and Evans backed off. They ended the fight swinging at each other. The fight started at a glacial pace but heated up to the pace of a slow-moving river in the final round.
Two of three judges see it the way of Smilin’ Sam. Rashad Evans nearly picked up his first win in years, but he didn’t look great by any means and his slow pace means it is difficult for him to score a win on judges’ scorecards. Sam Alvey, meanwhile, had trouble cutting off the cage, but eventually made his game work and showed off impressive takedown defense and scrambling to get back to his feet.
Official Decision: Sam Alvey def. Rashad Evans by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
See full results, including play-by-play, here
Source:: mma mania