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Michael Bisping defeats Thales Leites (Split DEC)

In twenty-five minutes of great action Michael Bisping squeaks out a split decision victory over Thales Leites. Honestly, the fight could have gone either way, Bisping was hitting more but Leites was hitting harder. From the get go Leites landed some leg kicks that really threw a wrench into Bisping’s usually great footwork. This allowed Leites to cut off the cage and corner Bisping. Once in the corner Leites hit “The Count” with some powerful hooks and uppercuts, but Bisping was able to weather the attack. When on the offensive Bisping displayed his usual arsenal of boxing, sticking and moving was the bread and butter of his offense. In this fight, technique and quantity outmatched power. Leites finds his stock staying steady, with many arguing he was robbed. He displayed a good chin, and nice power but didn’t capitalize on some of the openings he created with his powerful hits. Bisping’s stock is up. After a long layoff from fighting due to an eye injury he finds himself in the winner’s column as a perennial title contender. Bisping is still behind the top 4 in the division but he can find himself in the title hunt none the less.

Evan Dunham defeats Ross Pearson (DEC)

This fight could have gone either way. Dunham is a bit more versatile, and Pearson is a better brawler. From the get go Dunham wanted to eliminate Pearson’s strong-suite and take the fight to the ground. The majority of the first round was spent on the mat, with Dunham locking in a body triangle and not letting Pearson free. At one point in the first round, Dunham secured a deep arm bar and Pearson somehow found the strength and resilience to get out of the submission. Pearson’s arm looked like it was on the verge of snapping as he writhed in pain. The second and third rounds looked like a repeat of the first, Dunham taking down Pearson and grinding out the fight. Both fighters stock stay steady, in this fight they didn’t deliver anything outside of the expectations. Both of these fighters have been trying to crack the upper echelons of the division for a while and after this performance.

Joe Duffy defeats Ivan Jorge (SUB 1st 1:53)

Joe Duffy displays amazing submission skills by submitting Ivan Jorge with a triangle choke. Duffy showed great stand up, he kept his head moving and landed a good flurry on Jorge. Jorge is already 34 years old, his stock pretty much stays steady, and he was placed in front of Duffy as a test of the 27 year old’s skill. Duffy wins his second UFC fight, and does so in solid fashion, allowing his stock to jump up a bit. He has to face stronger competition before its decision where his ceiling is.

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Joanne Calderwood defeats Cortney Casey (DEC)

Casey came into the fight like she had a flight to catch. She landed some heavy shots on the hometown Calderwood and rocked her early, somehow Calderwood was able to gather herself through a barrage of punches and gather herself. Calderwood took down Casey and had top control for the remainder of the first round, but Casey remained active off the ground and managed to land some shots from her back. The second round was all Calderwood as she landed heavy elbows and knees from the clinch. Shen the fight went to the ground she did some damage then stood up, she fed off of the deafening home crowd. In the third Joanne Calderwood continued her assault on the tough as nails Cortney Casey. Calderwood landed a big spinning back kick to the body that stumbled Casey, but could not finish her. The fight went the distance in an exciting bout. Despite her loss Cortney Casey’s stock has risen. She took the fight on very short notice, and displayed great hands and an unquestionable toughness. Joanne Calderwood’s stock goes up, she weathered an early storm that almost lead to an upsetting loss. She displayed a great diversity in her attack and made her hometown fans proud.

Leon Edwards defeats Pawel Pawlak (DEC)

In a battle of Welterweight up-and-comers Leon Edwards controls much of the fight and lands some big shots on his way to a unanimous decision win. Throughout the fight, Edwards was able to use his speed to slip in and out of the pocket while Pawlak tried to use his range to dictate the pace. In this fight, speed won out. Pawlak shot off good combos but wasn’t able to land on a consistent basis in order to establish himself. Pawlak takes a hit to his stock, he lost the fight but wasn’t dominated and remained competitive throughout. Edwards almost finished the fight when he landed a thunderous left head kick in the third round. He needs to work on firing off combos instead of just single power shots. He should an improved ground game and clinch which are good signs for a young fighter who aims to continue to grow. Leon Edwards’ stock climbs at a steady pace.

Stevie Ray Defeats Leonardo Mafra (KO/TKO 1st 2:30)

Stevie Ray looks great and displays his awesome power with a monstrous left hook that stifles Mafra, leaving him stumbling to gather his legs. Ray pounced on his opponent and delivered two quick pops on Mafra before the referee stepped in to stop the fight. Mafra’s stock takes a hit, not only did he lose at his only game but he should expect to see this knockout on every highlight reel that comes his way. Stevie Ray’s stock takes a jump as he displays a power that can take him far in the lightweight division. Stevie Ray looks to climb the ladder in the stacked lightweight division, and his balanced skill will carry him. Hopefully he isn’t thrown to the wolves after this performance so he can keep developing his skills and confidence before facing the killers at the top of the division.

Michael Gomez covers MMA and the NBA for MyFantasySportsTalk, you can follow him on Twitter @MichaelGom3 GomezAnalysisMMARecent Postsjoanne calderwood,michael bisping,UFC,ufc fight night 72,ufc irelandMichael Bisping defeats Thales Leites (Split DEC) In twenty-five minutes of great action Michael Bisping squeaks out a split decision victory over Thales Leites. Honestly, the fight could have gone either way, Bisping was hitting more but Leites was hitting harder. From the get go Leites landed some leg kicks...