UFC Fight Night 103 took place in Phoenix, Arizona, Sunday night, and for those who missed it, or those who just enjoy reading recaps and commentary, here are the results.
As MMA Junkie reports, 11,589 fans filed in to the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix for what Bloody Elbow writer Victor Rodriguez called a “workmanlike card” featuring a handful of undercard bouts and a main bout featuring an aging legend facing off against a hot up-and-comer. UFC Fight Night 103 may not have been the event of the year, but it was enough to give the fans something to talk about Sunday night.
UFC Fight Night 103 began, as almost all UFC cards do, with a series of undercard matches leading up to the main event. In what Rodriguez describes as “unranked opponents squaring off to separate themselves from the pack and ranked opponents looking to climb further,” the undercard bouts provided plenty of talking points.
Heavyweight: Cyril Asker vs. Dmitrii Smoliakov — Asker made short work of Smoliakov, winning via TKO in the first round. Rodriguez calls Asker’s post-fight press conference the highlight of the bout.
Light Heavyweight: Bojan Mihajlovic vs. Joachim Christensen — Christensen won by TKO in Round 3.
Heavyweight: Walt Harris vs. Chase Sherman — Harris won by TKO in Round 2. Rodriguez praised Harris’ performance in this bout, calling it something of a comeback after a disappointing first entry into UFC Fighting.
“Thing is, he’s looked really, really good when finishing his two UFC wins. Now 2-2 in his current UFC run, he’s demonstrating a degree of patience and finishing instinct that could be essential for him in the heavyweight division. Not to say that he’s going to be the next champion or anything, but this win showed some solid improvements in his approach to fighting and he knocked out a very tough foe.”
Women’s Strawweight: Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger vs. Nina Asaroff — Ansaroff by Submission via Rear-Naked Choke in Round 3
Lightweight: Tony Martin vs. Alex White — Martin by Unanimous Decision (30-27 x 3)
Heavyweight: Aleksei Oleinik vs. Viktor Pesta — Oleinik by Submission via Ezekiel Choke in Round 1
Men’s Bantamweight: Frankie Saenz vs. Augusto Mendes — Mendes by Split Decision (29-28×2, 28-29)
Lightweight: Devin Powell vs. Drakkar Klose — Klose by Unanimous Decision (30-27×3)
Flyweight: John Moraga vs. Sergio Pettis — Pettis by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28 x 2)
Welterweight: Court McGee vs. Ben Saunders — Saunders by Unanimous Decision (29-28 x 3)
Lightweight: Joe Lauzon vs. Marcin Held — Lauzon by Split Decision (29-28 x 2, 27-30)
The Main Event: Featherweight — BJ Penn vs. Yair Rodriguez
What fans turned in to see, of course, was the Penn vs. Rodriguez bout. At 38, Penn is past his prime, hasn’t won a bout in seven years, and got thoroughly destroyed in his last outing. Rodriguez, on the other hand, came out of Mexico and may very well be UFC’s next best hope for an ambassador to carry interest in the sport to Latino fans.
Not unexpectedly, Rodriguez demolished Penn, although Penn tried valiantly to put up a good fight, at least in the first round. By the second round, the younger, hungrier Rodriguez had gotten the jump on his opponent and pounded so hard that the ref had to put a stop to it.
Commentator Victor Rodriguez suspects that the fight may have been a setup to solidify Rodriguez as a contender.
“An amazing fighter moving up in the ranks beating a legend is a great thing. In this instance, it’s overshadowed by the fact that Penn probably shouldn’t have been fighting someone on this level – or maybe at all.”
What are your thoughts on UFC Fight Night 103 in Phoenix?
[Featured Image by Christian Petersen/Getty Images]