The Lone Star State breathed new life into the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s most famous cowboy.
Donald Cerrone put a stop to a career-worst three-fight losing streak, as he took out Yancy Medeiros with punches in the first round of their UFC Fight Night 126 headliner on Sunday at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas. Medeiros (15-5, 6-5 UFC) required assistance from referee Herb Dean 4:58 into Round 1.
As expected, neither man was willing to give ground. They exchanged punches and kicks throughout a competitive first round, though Medeiros seemed to land the more jarring shots. In the waning moments, Cerrone (33-10, 20-7 UFC) sent a right hook crashing into the Hawaiian’s jaw. Medeiros retreated on rubbery legs, his equilibrium shot, and collapsed to the canvas. Cerrone trailed him to the ground, dropped punches with both hands and forced Dean to step in.
The win was Cerrone’s 20th in the UFC, tying him with Georges St. Pierre and Michael Bisping for first on the promotion’s all-time list.
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Lewis Rallies to Stop Tybura
Former Legacy Fighting Championship titleholder Derrick Lewis blew away Marcin Tybura with punches in the third round of their heavyweight co-main event. Tybura (16-4, 3-3 UFC) succumbed to blows 2:48 into Round 3, as he was hit with back-to-back defeats for the first time in his 20-fight career.
Lewis (19-5, 10-3 UFC) had the onetime M-1 Global champion teetering on the brink throughout the first round. However, Tybura managed to absorb the punishment and settle into his lane. He executed takedowns and achieved full mount on multiple occasions, but his attempts to finish with submissions and ground-and-pound did not bear fruit. Late in the third round, a fatigued Lewis circled away from a takedown and unleashed a hellacious barrage of power punches. A crushing right hook floored Tybura, who could only cling to a hapless single-leg. Lewis delivered further punishment to the grounded Pole’s exposed head, prompting referee Dan Miragliotta to act.
The 33-year-old Lewis has rattled off seven wins in eight outings.
Surging Vick Bests Trinaldo
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 15 semifinalist James Vick extended his winning streak to four fights with a unanimous decision over Francisco Trinaldo in their three-round lightweight showcase. Vick (13-1, 9-1 UFC) swept the scorecards with 29-28 marks from all three judges.
Trinaldo (22-6, 12-5 UFC) failed to navigate the noticeable height and reach disadvantage with which he was confronted. Vick sat down the former Jungle Fight champion with a straight right in the first round but mostly circled on the outside, slamming kicks into the Brazilian’s head and body. Nothing Trinaldo tried work, and by the time the third around arrived, he was staring at a deficit. Vick spent the final five minutes evading danger, as he uncorked modest combinations while retreating against the aggressive and increasingly desperate 39-year-old.
Vick, 30, still has never lost a decision as a professional, having amassed a 5-0 mark in bouts that go the distance.
Millender Knee KOs Alves
CSW rep Curtis Millender knocked out Thiago Alves with a slicing knee strike in the second round of their featured welterweight battle. Alves (22-12, 14-9 UFC) met his end 4:17 into Round 2, as the former title contender suffered his third defeat in four outings.
Millender (15-3, 1-0 UFC) showed no signs of Octagon jitters. If anything, he thrived in the spotlight. The 30-year-old Bellator MMA alum had Alves reeling in the first round, where he knocked down the Brazilian twice and followed up with purpose. If he had not paused to admire his handiwork after one of the knockdowns, Millender might have finished it sooner. Nevertheless, with Alves climbing back into the fight in the middle stanza, he pierced the American Top Team’s mainstay’s defenses with a diagonal knee strike. Alves hit the deck and looked up at referee Jacob Montalvo with a distant stare, necessitating the stoppage.
Millender has won eight fights in a row.
Davis Spoils Peterson Debut
Kick-punch combinations, superior footwork and effective head movement carried Brandon Davis to a unanimous verdict over former Legacy Fighting Alliance champion Steven Peterson in a three-round featherweight showcase. All three cageside judges scored it for Davis (9-3, 1-1 UFC): 30-27, 29-28 and 30-26.
Peterson (16-7, 0-1 UFC) was a step slow in his UFC debut. A short-notice fill-in for Humberto Bandenay, Davis piled up points in their standup exchanges, his excellent work written all over his opponent’s bruised and bloodied face. Peterson was never out of the fight -- he scrambled to the back and executed a takedown in the second round -- but spent too much time playing catchup in the striking department. Davis sealed it in the third, where he badly wobbled the Texan with a knee strike and flurried in a bid to force a stoppage. Only Peterson’s chin and resolve kept him upright, allowed him to recover and afforded him the opportunity to hear the final bell.
Davis has compiled an 8-1 record across his last nine appearances.
Northcutt Outduels Reeling Gouti
Team Alpha Male’s Sage Northcutt won for the third time in four appearances, as he took a unanimous decision from Thibault Gouti in a three-round lightweight feature. All three cageside judges scored it 29-28 for Northcutt (10-2, 5-2 UFC).
Bookend rounds provided the difference. Northcutt answered the Frenchman’s forward pressure with a takedown inside the first 30 seconds of the fight, backing it up with top control and ground-and-pound. Gouti (12-4, 1-4 UFC) split the air with a left jab-straight right combination in the second before driving into top position to even the score. In the third, the two lightweights traded takedowns, but Northcutt pulled away with kicks to the body, jab-cross combos and a sneaky elbow off the clinch break.
Gouti, 30, has lost four of his past five bouts.
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