Carlos Condit evened the score at UFC Fight Night 27. | Ed Mulholland/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images
It was worth the wait for Carlos Condit.
The former World Extreme Cagefighting welterweight champion avenged an April 2009 split decision loss to Martin Kampmann, as he stopped the Dane on fourth-round strikes in the UFC Fight Night 27 headliner on Wednesday at the Bakers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Condit (29-7, 6-3 UFC) closed it out 54 seconds into round four, halting a two-fight losing streak in the process.
Kampmann (20-7, 11-6) was in charge early, as he secured multiple takedowns and kept the “Natural Born Killer” bottled up through the first five minutes. However, his work came with a price. Kampmann’s pace slowed as the fight deepened, and Condit took over once fatigue took hold. He tore into Kampmann with combinations -- punches, kicks, knees and elbows -- in the second round, permanently altering the complexion of the bout.
Condit found another gear in the third round, where he opened up the onetime Cage Warriors Fighting Championship titleholder with a standing elbow and threatened Kampmann with two chokes, first with a modified guillotine and later with a rear-naked choke. The bloodied Dane had nothing left for round four. Condit let loose with all his firepower, wobbling Kampmann with a left hook to the head, backing him into the cage with a left hook to the body and finishing him with knees along the fence.
“I’m excited,” Condit said. “Martin is a really well-rounded fighter. He can take the fight wherever he wants. When we saw he was going to try to take me down and make it a grappling match, we tried to avoid that, and I ended up being able to pick him apart with the strikes.”
Afterward, Condit savored his first win in more than a year.
“I come from a great camp,” he said. “I couldn’t do this without my coaches and training partners. This victory is a team effort.”
Surging Dos Anjos Outduels Cerrone
In the co-main event, surging Brazilian lightweight Rafael dos Anjos registered the most significant victory of his career with a unanimous decision over Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts export Donald Cerrone. All three cageside judges scored it the same: 29-28 for dos Anjos (20-6, 9-4 UFC), who has won five consecutive bouts.
Dos Anjos set the tone early, as he floored “Cowboy” with a stiff overhand right late in the first round. He settled in guard and tore into Cerrone with heavy ground-and-pound, including a handful of thudding elbows. The lightweights traded takedowns in round two, but dos Anjos again exacted more damage from top position.
Cerrone (20-6, 7-3 UFC) came on strong over the final five minutes, utilizing kicks and excellent takedown defense in attempt to sway the judges. In the end, he fell short.
Gastelum Choke Submits Melancon
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 17 winner Kelvin Gastelum kept his perfect professional record intact, as he submitted Brian Melancon with a first-round rear-naked choke in a featured welterweight matchup. Melancon (7-3, 1-1 UFC), who replaced Paulo Thiago on short notice, conceded defeat
Gastelum (7-0, 2-0 UFC) wasted no time in getting down to business. The fearless 21-year-old stayed in Melancon’s face, pressed him against the cage and punctuated a multi-punch volley with a ringing uppercut that dropped the Texan where he stood. Gastelum immediately moved to his fallen foe’s back, sank the choke and accepted the tapout.
“I knew he had heavy hands coming in, and I just wanted to get the finish and take advantage of him being rocked,” Gastelum said. “I just took his back and secured the lock.”
McGee Outpoints Whittaker, Grabs Split Verdict
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 11 winner Court McGee utilized relentless pressure and high-volume punching combinations to procure a split verdict over talented Australian Robert Whittaker in a featured welterweight duel. Two of the three cageside judges scored it for McGee by 30-27 and 29-28 counts; a third cast a dissenting 30-27 nod for Whittaker.
McGee (16-3, 5-2) landed the most decisive blow of the bout in the first minute of round two, where he dropped “The Ultimate Fighter: The Smashes” winner to a knee with a short right hand. Whittaker (11-3, 2-1 UFC) recovered, stayed composed and answered with striking combinations of his own. Standing elbows were the 22-year-old’s most effective weapons, opening cuts above McGee’s ear and below his right eye. A sharp left jab was also part of Whittaker’s repertoire.
Still, it seemed as if it was anyone’s fight as it hit the home stretch. McGee closed with a flourish, as he turned up the heat in the closing seconds with multiple right hands.
Mizugaki Decision Slows Perez
Timely takedowns, grueling clinches and efficient counterpunching carried Takeya Mizugaki to a split decision over Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts prospect Erik Perez in a bantamweight showcase. All three judges scored it 29-28, two of them siding with Mizugaki (18-7-2, 5-2 UFC).
The bout was marked by wild exchanges between the two 135-pound standouts. Perez stormed out of the gate in round one, smacking his adversary with a head kick and tallying three takedowns in the first five minutes. However, his pace slowed ever so slightly, leaving the door open for the experienced and rugged Mizugaki.
A former WEC title contender, Mizugaki countered his opponent’s aggression with crisp punches in rounds two and three, mixing in takedowns along the way. The 29-year-old Japanese star nearly finished it in a decisive third round, where he delivered another takedown, moved to Perez’s back and threatened him with a rear-naked choke. The defeat snapped an eight-fight winning streak for Perez (13-5, 3-1 UFC).
Kicks Spur Tavares Past McDaniel
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 11 alum Brad Tavares recorded his fourth consecutive victory, as he posted a unanimous decision over Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts export Bubba McDaniel in a featured middleweight scrap. All three cageside judges scored it the same: 29-28 for Tavares (11-1, 6-1 UFC).
Tavares controlled much of the bout with his kicks, firing at the lead leg, body and head of his opponent. He also wobbled McDaniel (21-7, 1-1 UFC) with a few left hands. In the third round, McDaniel, sensing he was down on the scorecards, made his move. He struck for a takedown a little less than two min