Chris Weidman ended his three-fight losing streak with a fantastic submission of Kelvin Gastelum in the UFC on FOX 25 main event.
The crowd at the Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, New York was hopeful that hometown hero and former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman would snap his three-fight losing streak in the UFC on FOX 25 main event. While Kelvin Gastelum came close to spoiling the show, Weidman rallied back, turned to his grappling, and became the first man to finish the TUF 17 winner.
“Let’s go Weidman!” rang around the arena at the beginning of the fight. Weidman started proceedings with a leg kick. A head kick from the former champ was blocked. Weidman took his time and was measuring more than actually throwing. Weidman connected with a straight right and then took Gastelum down. Gastelum attacked with an armbar, lost it immediately, and the much bigger Weidman had Gastelum’s back. Gastelum returned to his feet but with Weidman draped over him. Weidman advanced to side control and then went for a kimura. Gastelum did extraordinarily well to escape to his feet. He caught Weidman with a straight left from his natural southpaw stance. A massive left for Gastelum dropped Weidman and he was badly hurt, but Gastelum didn’t have enough time to get the finish.
Weidman landed a right in round 2, and Gastelum wasn’t quite able to prevent a takedown in the bodylock. It looked like Weidman was searching for a rear-naked choke, but he couldn’t get it. Weidman was outwrestling Gastelum and he went to work from Gastleum’s closed guard, throwing hard elbows. Gastelum tried to throw his legs up to either submit Weidman or at least get to his feet again, but the BJJ black belt was able to get extended top control and secure the round. Gastelum tried to scramble and gave up his back with time ticking away. Weidman didn’t have enough time to mount anything from there.
Gastelum came out aggressively and both got tagged in a wild striking exchange, but Gastelum was the one who briefly fell. It was either a slip or he was dropped by a punch. Weidman lost the front headlock position in this sequence. Chris caught Kelvin with several solid punches but Gastelum showed off a terrific chin and effective head movement to avoid even more hooks. After a failed single-leg, Weidman secured a takedown against the fence, only for Gastelum to pop back up. The undersized Gastelum was unable to cope with Weidman’s grappling, and he eventually succumbed to a fight-ending arm-triangle choke.
Official result: Chris Weidman def. Kelvin Gastelum by submission (arm-triangle choke) at 3:45 of round 2
The crowd erupted into cheers for Weidman, who is back on track in a big way. Gastelum suffers just the third defeat of his career and his first at middleweight.