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Bryan Caraway takes away Aljamain Sterling’s undefeated record with Split Decision

Peyton Wesner

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Specifically looking at the rankings, tonight’s UFC Fight Pass headliner between #4 Aljamain “Funk Master” Sterling and #8 Bryan “Kid Lightning” Caraway is hands down the best fight on the card. In fact, this bout could very well produce the succeeding title challenger for the winner of next weekend’s UFC 199 bantamweight showdown between champion Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber.
Sterling, the younger of five years, entered with a 12-0 professional record (4-0 in UFC), in which he has finished each of his last three. The past two hand raises, Johnny Eduardo, and Takeya Mizugaki, resulted from submissions in the 2nd and 3rd round respectively.
For Caraway, the experienced 31-year has had blemishes and defeats inside the octagon. However, he is 3-1 since April 2013 with his only loss coming at the hands of 5th ranked bantamweight Raphael Assuncao via a 30-27 unanimous decision.
Much trash talk ensued back and forth before fight night between the two well rounded mixed martial artists; though, it was the underdog Bryan Caraway who weathered Aljamain Sterling’s first round ground domination and took home a 29-28 split decision victory.
Round 1
After an expected no glove touch start, Sterling aggressively took the center of the octagon while firing off leg kick after leg kick. Funk Master persisted to use free and quick movement to begin the segment. Soon, however, Caraway was able to cut off the octagon from his 26-year old opponent and experience success in the clinch. Yet, it was Sterling that landed a takedown with a single leg grab, allowing him to get back position. On the ground, the Long Island native controlled Kid Lightning while trying his luck at a neck crank around the halfway mark. Despite looking to be very tight, the submission attempt proved futile, permitting Caraway to escape. But, Sterling swiftly regained position and started a very hard ground and pound session. The northerner from Washington state desired a back door escape, but Funk Master denied the attempt and ensued to smother his adversary like a blanket. Moreover, he trapped both of Caraway’s arms in full-Nelson.  Kid Lightning displayed weakness while his movement was inhibited, but he survived thanks to the bell.
Round 2
Caraway, comprehending he lost the preceding round, showed more aggressiveness at the 2nd round’s commencement. Sterling countered with a takedown attempt that played right into Kid Lightning’s hands, for the latter found a favorable sprawl position, in which he had a loose guillotine choke in place. Considering the non-tight nature of the submission attempt, the 4th ranked bantamweight slipped out and landed a hard right straight prior to sweeping kicks. Caraway landed a few formidable strikes, yet no combinations were put together.  The two proceeded to clinch for the majority, if not all, of the third minute. Both traded upward knees and short jabs. At this point, momentum seemed to be residing with Sterling, or that was until another cut off of the octagon led to a willed Caraway takedown. The Washington native, similar to what happened to him the round before, covered his opponent as he dropped short right bombs. The action transitioned to Kid Lightning flattening Sterling out and taking the back as the latter was standing up. The five minutes would come to a close with Caraway persisting to hold on while hunting for the choke.
Round 3
The deciding round had much intensity from the clap. Sterling displayed a re-found freshness and was by far the more spry fighter, while both Caraway and Sterling had their respective stand-up success early on. However, it was a return to his 2nd round game plan by Kid Lightning that resulted in his 2nd takedown of the night. Funk Master, knowing another smothering by his opponent could produce his first loss, threw a sharp right body punch in an escape attempt. The unblemished then ground passed Caraway’s full guard and was back to his feet just moments before the 2:30 mark. Yet, the experienced 31-year old took the fight back to the ground in top position. He quickly made his way past Sterling’s half guard and unleashed hammer fists in side control. Next, Caraway was able to get two hooks in with just 60 seconds remaining. On Sterling’s back, Bryan Caraway sealed the deal with landed punches to the head from both sides.
He Said It:
I’m a different fighter than I used to be. This is my bantamweight division and I am coming for that belt. I am the underdog in every single fight and I keep winning,” said Bryan Caraway on his performance. “So all you haters, you can keep doubting me. But, eventually, you are going to have to deal with me and recognize my talent.
Result
Bryan Caraway defeats Aljamain Sterling via Split Decision – (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
How did the media score it? MMA Decisions gives you the media’s take, a fair amount of which scored the first round a 10-8 in favor of Sterling, resulting in a draw:
mediascores

For the latest MMA news, live event coverage and more follow @mmalatestnws on Twitter.

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EXCLUSIVE: Jack Shore talks Cage Warriors 87 Opponent Change, Pressure and Being Ready for A Big Opportunity

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Jack Shore, a promising up and coming Welsh Featherweight who will be fighting on his fourth main Cage Warriors card in only his sixth professional fight. Despite his opponent, Federico Mini, dropping out days prior to the event, Shore isn’t concerned ahead of the opponent change. “Just another fight, I’m ready for anything come fight night and I’m looking forward to the challenge”. Cage Warriors have confirmed that Shore will now be fighting Italian, Mattia Galbiati.

Shore last fought at the Newport Centre, Wales at Cage Warriors 83, defeating his opponent Konmon Deh convincingly with a first-round submission. The crowd was electric for both his entrance and when his opponent tapped due to armbar, “I have a massive following and they like to make themselves heard on fight night, it’s getting bigger and bigger every time!”

Whilst using his extensive grappling to win the fight, the Tillery Combat MMA Academy fighter was very aggressive with his strikes on the ground, “I believe my grappling style is very different to what people are used to seeing and that’s why it’s entertaining to watch. I’m always looking to advance and put the pressure on, but I also try to use punches and elbows to set up my transitions.”

Being undefeated throughout his amateur career (including winning the IMMAF European Championships), to then continue being undefeated throughout his early professional career, Shore has a mature mindset for such a young fighter to how the sport works, “Obviously no one wants to lose but you have to be aware that it’s a possibility because anything can happen in this sport. But by being aware it allows me to train and prepare correctly to do everything I can (do) to prevent that from happening.”

Whilst growing up, Shore states that he wasn’t the most confident of people, “As a kid growing up I was never the world’s most confident person.” Cage Warriors being on BT Sport within the UK, being the biggest European MMA promotion, and having the following Shore has, he feels no pressure of fighting, “But as far as MMA is concerned I don’t feel any pressure at all. There’s obviously the fight day nerves but anyone will tell you I deal with them very well and am more than comfortable in that environment.”

With the current revolution of MMA in Wales occurring, former Cage Warriors fighters Brett Johns, Jack Marshman and John Philips all in the UFC, Josh Reed who has just come off a title shot with Cage Warriors Bantamweight champion Nathaniel Wood, Lewis Long being the best Welterweight in the UK. It brings a realistic opportunity of making the UFC, “Definitely. Since the first bunch of Welsh guys have been signed to the UFC it’s shown for guys like me, Lewis Long and Josh Reed that what we are pushing for is no doubt achievable. I believe that if we keep doing what we are doing then that dream won’t be too far away.”

Whilst having such a successful start to his professional career, and with the attention, this young Welshman is bringing, Shore is in no rush for the Cage Warriors belt, but is prepared if the opportunity arises. “I’m just taking one fight at a time. I’m aware that I’m still young in terms of my pro career so I will continue to fight whoever Cage Warriors put in front of me. Should a big opportunity like that present itself I’ll make sure I’m ready.”

Shore seems to be mature for someone of the age of just 22, the future seems bright for the young Welshman. Jack Shore fights on the up and coming Cage Warriors 87 card Saturday, 14th October at the Newport Centre, Newport, Wales. The event will be free-to-air on UK sports channels FreeSports, as well as be on UFC FightPass and via the red button on BT Sport.

Check the main card out for Cage Warriors 87 below:

Lewis Long vs Roberto Soldic (Welterweight)
Craig White vs Matt Inman (Welterweight)
Jack Shore vs Mattia Galbiati (Featherweight)
Aiden Lee vs Ludovit Klein (Featherweight)
Aaron Khalid vs Ross Houston (Welterweight)

By Ieuan Thomas.

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Announcement

Gokhan Saki vs Khalil Rountree JR Added to UFC 219

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Kickboxing superstar Gokhan Saki will make his return to the octagon just three months after his UFC debut, as he faces Khalil Rountree at UFC 219.

Saki (1-1 ) made a big statement at UFC Japan in September, knocking out Henrique de Silva with a devastating, statement making left hook.

Rountree (6-2) is a TUF-23 alumni. His UFC run started unsuccessfully losing two in a row including his TUF 23 contract fight. However, Rountree is now on a two-fight winning streak after picking up consecutive first round knockout victories against Paul Craig and Daniel Jolly.

After making his MMA debut in 2004, Saki signed a multi-fight deal with the UFC in May and was succesful in his return to the cage. Saki’s first round KO of de Silva earned him a Performance of the Night bonus.

Neither Saki or Rountree are currently ranked in the UFC’s light heavyweight division, so a win at UFC 219 could most certainly push either of the two in the top fifteen at 205-pounds.

With the addition of Saki vs. Rountree, your current line-up for the UFC 219 card on December 30th is as follows:

Dominick Cruz vs. Jimmie Rivera – Bantamweight bout
Cynthia Calvillo vs. Carla Esparza – Women’s strawweight bout
Carlos Condit vs. Neil Magny – Welterweight bout
Louis Smolka vs. Matheus Nicolau – Flyweight bout
* Gokhan Saki vs. Khalil Rountree – Light heavyweight bout

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*Live Updates* UFC 216 Official Results

Harry Davies

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Live from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, the UFC hosted their eighth PPV card of this year as fans were treated to UFC 216.

The card was headlined by a Interim Lightweight title fight between Tony Ferguson (23-3) and Kevin Lee (16-2). Ferguson entered the octagon holding the record for the longest winning streak in UFC lightweight division history (9). Beating top names such as Rafael Dos Anjos and Edson Barboza in the process.

#7 ranked Lee last fought in June of this year, earning the biggest victory of his career when he defeated Michael Cheisa by first round submission (rear-naked choke).

In the co-main event, UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson (26-2-1) was hoping to break the record for most consecutive title defenses as he faced Ray Borg (11-2). The record (10) was held by both Johnson and former middlweight champion, Anderson Silva.

Johnson and Borg were originally scheduled to fight in the main event of UFC 215 last month, but the title fight was cancelled a day before the event was supposed to take place, as Borg pulled out of the fight due to illness.


UFC 216 Official Results:

MAIN CARD – PAY PER VIEW – 10PM/7PM ETPT

  • #2 Tony Ferguson (24-3) vs. #7 Kevin Lee (16-3) – For UFC Interim Lightweight Championship
    • Result: Tony Ferguson def. Kevin Lee via SUB (triangle choke) Round 3 – 4:02
  • (C) Demetrious Johnson (27-2-1) vs. #3 Ray Borg (11-3) – For UFC Flyweight Championship 
    • Result: Demetrious Johnson def. Ray Borg via SUB (armbar) Round 5 – 3:15 
  • #2 Fabricio Werdum (22-7-1) vs. Walt Harris (10-6)
    • Result: Fabricio Werdum def. Walt Harris via SUB (armbar) Round 1 – 1:05
  • Mara Romero Borella (12-4) vs. Kalinda Faria (16-6-1)
    • Result: Mara Romero Barella def. Kalindra Faria via SUB (rear-naked choke) Round 1 – 2:54
  • #12 Beneil Dariush (14-3-1) vs. #14 Evan Dunham (17-6-1)
    • Result: Beneil Dariush vs. Evan Dunham declared a Majority Draw (29-29, 28-28, 28-28)

PRELIMINARY CARD – FS1 – 8PM/5PM ETPT

  • Tom Duquesnoy (15-2) vs Cody Stamman (15-1)
    • Result: Cody Stamann def. Tom Duquesnoy via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 30-27)
  • Bobby Green (23-8-1) vs. Lando Vannata (9-2-1)
    • Result: Bobby Green vs. Lando Vannata declared a Draw (split) (29-27, 27-29, 28-28)
  • Marco Beltran (8-6) vs. Matt Schnell (10-4)
    • Result:  Matt Schnell def. Marco Beltrán via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)

EARLY PRELIMINARY CARD – UFC FIGHT PASS – 7PM/4PM ETPT

  • #15 Magomed Bibulatov (14-1) vs. #11 John Moraga (18-6)
    • Result:  John Moraga def. Magomed Bibulatov via KO (punch) – Round 1 – 1:38
  • #13 Thales Leites (27-8) vs. Brad Tavares (16-4)
    • Result: Brad Tavares def. Thales Leites via Unanimous (30-27, 30-26, 30-26)
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