The UFC Rio Rancho card is underway and the preliminary portion just wrapped up with promotional newcomer, Daniel Rodriguez, upsetting longtime veteran, Tim Means, with a second round submission. Although the outcome came by way of sub, it was the hands of Rodriguez that did all the damage. Rodriguez has now won seven seven fights in a row. Before that, John Dodson pulled out a third round TKO of Nathaniel Wood. Early in the final frame, Wood came out blitzing, but Dodson was ready with a heavy left hand to score the knockdown. The speedy ground and pound of Dodson finished it off to snap a two-fight losing skid. This also breaks up an eight-fight winning streak for Wood.
Lightweights Scott Holtzman and Jim Miller went to war on the undercard, with Holtzman walking away with the unanimous decision. Both men landed some solid blows, but it was Holtzman who was dictating the pace and landing his powerful right hand, especially in the second and third frames. This is the biggest win of “Hot Sauce’s” career, and he has now won five of his last six outings.
Merab Dvalishvili had a strong showing at UFC Rio Rancho by scoring all the takedowns on the #15 ranked bantamweight, Casey Kenney, to secure a unanimous decision. The dominant win for Dvalishvili makes it three-straight for him, and will likely get him a number next to his name come Monday. Opening up the event, the UFC’s #14 ranked flyweight, Raulian Paiva, picked up a huge second-round knockout win over the #13 ranked, Mark De La Rosa. Paiva was clearly the harder puncher here, and DLR was just unable to get the fight to the floor. This was a spectacular way for him to achieve his first UFC victory!
**See complete results below
Daniel Rodriguez def. Tim Means by submission (Guillotine) at 3:37 of round 2: Welterweight
Means got right to work. He landed a variety of strikes before snagging a short-lived takedown. Rodriguez was willing to throw down, landing some kicks and punches of his own. Means was the one coming forward, forcing Rodriguez to play the outside. Just as the bell sounded, Rodriguez landed a heavy left hand that dropped Means. The strike appeared to be on time.
Rodriguez began to let his hands go in the second round. His confidence was high after scoring that knockdown in the first act. Rodriguez caught Means again with his left, halfway dropping him. Means showed of tremendous toughness and kept throwing. Rodriguez hurt means again with a flurry, causing Means to shoot in. The UFC newcomer locked up a standing guillotine and Means was forced to tap.
John Dodson def. Nathaniel Wood by TKO at :16 of round 3: Bantamweight
The opening round began with a hesitant pace, mostly due to the elusive nature of Dodson. When Dodson did close the distance, he was able to drop Wood with some dirty boxing. Wood stood right back up, seeming unfazed. Wood used his straight punches to catch Dodson a couple times as he was trying to get out of range.
An accidental cup kick from Wood caused a halt to the bout early in the second round. Then, as soon as they started again, Wood landed another one to the cup. Upon the restart Wood landed some clean punches, but Dodson responded with a blitzing flurry that backed up Wood to the other side of the cage. Wood suffered a cut around his left eye. The fight stalled out against the fence, until the referee finally broke them apart. The ref then brought in the doctor to look at the cut of Wood, and the deemed the fighter fit to continue.
Wood flurried to start the final frame, but Dodson clocked him with a huge left hand that dropped the advancing fighter. Dodson went in for the kill right away, landing a ton of ground strikes until the referee had seen enough.
Scott Holtzman def. Jim Miller by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2): Lightweight
A bit of feeling out went on between the lightweights to open the bout. Holtzman was leading the dance, backing up his opponent. Miller sat back and looked to counter. Holtzman was throwing a lot of feints to begin with, and as the round went on he began to land counter right hands.
Miller was landing some inside leg kicks early in the second act. Holtzman was sticking with his right hand. Holtzman threw a spinning elbow, but Miller ducked and scored a short-lived takedown. Back on the feet, the fighters exchanged in the pocket, with both men connecting with their power hands. Holtzman scored himself a takedown and Miller instantly locked up the rubber guard. Hot Sauce stood up and dropped a big punch before he started to control Miller on the ground.
Holtzman continued to push the pace in the final round, and kept landing his right hand. Miller kept throwing back, but was still allowing Holtzman to lead the dance. Miller was bleeding from multiple places on his face, and Holtzman was showing some signs of wear as well.
Devin Clark def. Dequan Townsend by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26 x2): Light Heavyweight
Townsend used his boxing to establish his range to start the fight. Clark closed the distance up against the cage and kind of stalled out the fight there. The referee separated them and Clark blasted a takedown into half guard. He moved into full mount and scored with a big elbow before the bell.
Clark avoided the big bombs of Townsend to score himself a big takedown in the second frame. He landed in side control where he began to control his foe. Clark landed some nice body knees and elbows while Townsend had few answers to address the position. Townsend tried to mount some offense in the final round, but was unable to do so before Clark went back to the takedown. Clark chipped away from the top for the entire round, and Townsend didn’t threaten with any submission attempts or escapes.
Merab Dvalishvili def. Casey Kenney by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-25, 29-28): Bantamweight
The bantamweights went right at it going strike for strike, with kenney pressing the fight. Dvalishvili switched gears and got himself a takedown, but Kenney wouldn’t concede the position. Dvalishvili hit a pretty sweet lifting slam followed by some mean ground strikes, but Kenney quickly got to his feet again. The pace of this opening act was bananas.
Both fighters launched spinning attacks to start the second round, with Kenney hitting the floor, likely from a slip. Kenney started to slip in some clean punches to the face, but wasn’t able to build off of them. Dvalishvili went back to his takedown, but again Kenney stood back to his feet. Dvalishvili stayed attached, grinding on his adversary until the bell.
The fighters exchanged in the pocket to open the final act, with both men landing. Dvalishvili seemed to have more spring in his step and went right back to his takedown. Although Kenney was able to get up, it wasn’t very long before Dvalishvili took him right back down.
Macy Chiasson def. Shanna Young by unanimous decision (30-27 x3): (W) Bantamweight
Young came out launching mean head kicks and was connecting. Chiasson responded with some savage knees from the Thai clinch. Chiasson found success with some dirty boxing from the clinch before going back to landing vicious knees. Young really struggled to get out of the Thai plum. Chiasson got the fight tot he ground and landed some volume in the ground and pound department.
Young landed some early punches to kick off the second round. Chiasson tried to take the fight to the floor, but young is the one who came up with the takedown. Chiasson quickly scrambled back to her feet, and took top position herself. She mostly controlled from the top, until she started to land strikes towards the end of the round. Chiasson caught an axe kick right away in the final frame to take the fight tot he floor. A lot of clock clicked away with Chiasson on top, as Young was unable to make it back to her feet.
** It should be noted that Shanna Young took this fight on five-days notice
Raulian Paiva def. Mark De La Rosa by TKO at 4:42 of round 2: Flyweight
A bit of feeling out took place to open the match. DLR shot in for a takedown, but Paiva managed to remain to achieve double unders to remain standing. Paiva started to land big punches with DLR wearing them quite well. DLR went back to trying for a takedown but again Paiva was having none of it.
The second round saw Paiva shove his foe up against with cage with a body lock. Back in open space, Paiva kept getting the better of the punching exchanges. DLR started to bleed from his mouth as a result. Then, Paiva landed a big right hand that floored DLR. Paiva pounced with a solo ground punch and the referee stepped in to wave off the bout.