Lyoto Machida is 2-0 at 185 pounds. | Photo: Gleidson Venga/Sherdog.com
Gegard Mousasi failed to solve the riddle.
Lyoto Machida utilized his quick hands and educated feet in capturing a unanimous verdict over the former Dream and Strikeforce champion in the UFC Fight Night 36 headliner on Saturday at the Arena Jaragua in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil. Machida (21-4, 13-4 UFC) swept the scorecards with 49-46, 50-45 and 50-45 marks from the judges.
Mousasi (34-4-2, 1-1 UFC) had no answer for the relentless lateral movement of “The Dragon.” Machida landed a majority of the meaningful strikes between the two top-tier middleweights, including a nice counter left hand in the first round and a ringing head kick in the second. Knees, leg kicks and sneaky jabs were also effective weapons for the Brazilian.
Machida did some of his best work in round five, where he settled in top position after a failed Mousasi takedown and transitioned to his back with a little more than a minute to go. “The Dragon” put the finishing touches on his second consecutive victory at 185 pounds in the closing seconds, as he tagged a grounded Mousasi with a leaping right hand to the face.
“He’s a great fighter, a real champ,” Machida said. “I wanted to finish it in a different way. I couldn’t, but I was able to get the points.
Afterward, the karateka affirmed his interest in challenging for the middleweight crown currently held by the unbeaten Chris Weidman.
“I obviously would like to get the champ, but it’s up to the UFC,” Machida said. “The president of the UFC has to decide who I’m going to get.”
‘Jacare’ Snaps Carmont Streak
In the co-main event, former Strikeforce champion Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza moved one step closer to a middleweight title shot with a unanimous decision over Tristar Gym’s Francis Carmont. All three cageside judges scored it for Souza (20-3, 3-0 UFC): 29-28, 29-28 and 30-27.
The 2005 Abu Dhabi Combat Club Submission Wrestling World Championships gold medalist controlled rounds one and three with timely takedowns and an oppressive top game. Souza moved to the Frenchman’s back in both frames, softening him with punches and threatening with chokes.
Carmont (22-8, 6-1 UFC) never gave in to the Brazilian’s advances, but frustration built as the match and his career-best 11-fight winning streak slipped from his grasp.
“It was a very tough fight,” Souza said. “He’s a very good fighter. I was trying to take him down, but he defended my takedowns very well. I really wanted to end it before [time expired], but I didn’t manage. There were three times when I thought I was very close to finishing him, but he is a very tough fighter, and it was difficult for me.”
The 34-year-old Souza has rattled off six straight wins since his September 2011 loss to the American Kickboxing Academy’s Luke Rockhold, establishing himself as one of the world’s premier middleweights.
“I want the champ. I want whoever has the belt,” he said. “If the UFC doesn’t think I’m ready for that, just put anyone in front of me, and I’ll get over them.”
Silva Mauls Overmatched Sato
Former Jungle Fight champion Erick Silva needed less than a minute to dispatch Takenori Sato with first-round punches in a one-sided welterweight showcase.
A replacement for the injured Nate Loughran, Sato (17-9-7, 0-1 UFC) succumbed to the blows 52 seconds into round one, his 10-fight unbeaten streak a thing of the past.
Silva (16-4, 4-3 UFC) ripped into the onetime King of Pancrase with a body kick, forcing him to dive on a single-leg takedown attempt in desperation.
Sato found no refuge there, as Silva met him with a series of unorthodox reverse heel strikes to the face and then pounded him out with unanswered punches and hammerfists.
“I was working out very hard for three months,” said Silva, who bounced back from his knockout loss to Dong Hyun Kim at UFC Fight Night 29 in October. “I knew I needed to put on a very good show today for everyone to believe in me again.”
Musoke Weathers Knockdown, Downs Andrade
Takedowns, ground-and-pound and airtight grappling carried Swedish import Nicholas Musoke to a unanimous decision over “The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil” Season 2 semifinalist Viscardi Andrade in a featured welterweight clash. All three judges scored it the same: 29-28 for Musoke (12-2, 2-0 UFC).
Andrade (17-6, 1-1 UFC) saw his best shot at victory come and go in the first round, where he floored the Swede with an overhand right. Instead of following up immediately, Andrade elected to celebrate, his arms raised in false triumph. However, Musoke was far from finished.
The 27-year-old regained his wits and extended the match.
In the second round, Musoke staggered the Brazilian with a head kick, scored with a takedown and went to work with his ground-and-pound. Elbows, hammerfists and standing-to-ground punches all found their mark. Musoke put the finishing touches on his third straight win in round three, as he delivered another takedown, moved to Andrade’s back and neutralized him with a body triangle.
Oliveira Triangle Submits Ogle
Macaco Gold Team representative Charles Oliveira submitted “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 15 quarterfinalist Andy Ogle with a third-round triangle choke in a featherweight showcase. Ogle (9-4, 1-3 UFC) conceded defeat 2:40 into round three, as he tapped out for the first time in more than for years.
Oliveira (17-4, 5-4 UFC) controlled the Englishman with well-timed takedowns and a superior ground game. The 24-year-old Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt transitioned to Ogle’s back in each of the first two rounds, fishing for chokes and giving him little room to breathe.
In the third round, Ogle scored with a takedown of his own, only to see Oliveira thread the choke from his back for the finish.
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