Mark Hunt was winning, until he wasn’t. The Super Samoan was lighting up Alexei Oleinik in the main event of UFC Moscow with leg kicks and had him hurting early in the fight. It was only a matter of time before he chopped down the Ezekiel tree. But Hunt gave up a takedown to a grappling machine, and that was the beginning of the end.
Once Oleinik got Hunt to the ground, he immediately secured back mount and hunted for a choke. Hunt seemed to panic, not fighting hands at all and generally doing a bad job of defending himself. Unsurprisingly, Oleinik secured the rear naked choke, and Hunt tapped. It was strange, considering all the work Hunt has done over the years to improve his submission defense. But it is what it is, and the Russian fans went home happy.
Overall though, the main card was pretty irrelevant.
- Nikita Krylov took the fight to Jan Blachowicz in the first round, getting a takedown and working from the top for most of the stanza (but not really threatening). Blachowicz turned it around in the second though, getting his own takedown and adeptly setting up an arm-triangle choke. He secured it before popping out, and Krylov was dead to rights. Great finish.
- Andrei Arlovski didn’t land a clean punch the entire fight, and got taken down a few times. That’s very un-Pitbull like. Shamil Abdurakhimov didn’t bring anything special in the fight except for some durability, but it was enough to win a decision. The fight was pretty dull, other than the multiple fouls that made Arlovski mad.
- Thiago Alves and Alexey Kunchenko was pretty uneventful. It’s plainly obvious that Alves isn’t the fighter he once was, which isn’t surprising after 13 years of Octagon wars. He didn’t make any major mistakes, which is good, but he didn’t do anything outstanding either. The first round was a staring contest, and I thought Alves clearly took the second while Kunchenko clearly took the third. Kunchenko won a decision, which I have no issue with despite thinking Alves won the fight. But the 30-27 scorecard for Kunchenko is laughable.
- I didn’t watch the undercard. That started really early. But apparently C.B. Dollaway was done with like 20 seconds left in the second round and took a sustained beating until the horn, where it was mercifully stopped. Magomed Ankaleev won via head kick KO. Jordan Johnson submitted Adam Yandiev. Mairbek Taisumov and Rustam Khabilov picked up decision wins over Des Green and Kajan Johnson respectively. Ramazan Emeev and Merab Dvalishvili dominated on the scorecards. The Fight of the Night was Petr Yan vs. Jin Soo Son in what was a crazy war, which you can read about here.