Published on 17 Oct 2021 6:14 pm (UK Time)
If I were to close my eyes and listen to Nate Lundwehr talk, I’d swear he was a member of Young Buck’s entourage. However, Lundwehr is not a member of G-Unit who grew up in Nashville. He’s a fighter from Clarksville, Tennessee, about an hour away. Sorry, I know that was an unsolicited observation but everyone I was watching the fight with had the same reaction during his post fight interview. Anyways, on to more relevant topics…
Middleweight fighter, Julian Marquez, pulled out of tonight’s fight with a “non-covid related” health issue. No replacement opponent could be found to face Jordan Wright on such short notice so the fight was cancelled altogether. Hence, Lundwehr and Klein were moved from the undercard to the main card. There’s a lot to unpack here. Without further ado, let’s get into it!
Ladd vs. Dumont
Aspen Ladd’s long layoff was visible during her fight against Norma Dumont. After becoming one of the most respected fighter’s among the UFC’s stable of women competitors, Ladd tore both her ACL and MCL while preparing for her next match. Due to the long recovery process, tonight marked the first time she’d performed in front of fans since December of 2019. After almost a two year layoff, it’s almost impossible for an athlete to pick up where they left off.
Through the first three rounds, Ladd relied on feints and head movement, while Dumont hit her with a barrage of jabs. Dumont was well aware that Ladd has always been at her best when she takes opponents to the mat; she wisely avoided any lazy kicks that would provide Ladd with an opening for a takedown if she were to miss. After round three, Ladd’s corner could be heard imploring her to be more aggressive. They were blunt about the circumstances; she was down three rounds to none and needed a knockout to win.
In rounds four and five, Ladd seemed to shake off some of the rust and even scored a nice takedown on one occasion. It was not enough to prevent her from losing a unanimous decision to Dumont, but tonight was about shaking off the cobwebs. Congratulations to Dumont on a victory against a respected opponent. Ladd, on the other hand, has work to do to in order to return to form, but she put up a valiant effort.Embed from Getty Images
Arlovski vs. Felipe
Andrei Arlovski had his first professional fight in 1999. Carlos Felipe was just four years old. Arlovski is sixteen years older than Felipe, but tonight, the two men themselves facing off against one another in the octagon.
Round one was dominated by Arlovski, as he took full advantage of his height and reach advantage. Not only did he land more strikes than Felipe, he also utilized well-timed kicks that hit his opponent in the side of his head. In round two, Felipe realized that a tactical approach was not going to get it done so he decided to swing for the fences. He had moments of success, and clearly affected Arlovski when he landed. The most impressive moment of the fight, however, went to Arlovski when he put together a right jab, left hook, right cross, right side head kick, which he immediately followed up with a dip down to avoid a wild swing by Felipe. Only a seasoned veteran could pull that off.
Round three was tilted in Felipe’s favor; Arlovski was showing clear signs of fatigue. Felipe began swinging wildly, and some of his strikes were connecting and causing his opponent to slow down. If this were a five round fight instead of a three round fight, Felipe might have won. However, Arlovski’s first two rounds were good enough to earn him a unanimous decision on the judges’ scorecards.Embed from Getty Images
Miller vs. Gonzalez
When Erick Gonzalez began training to be a mixed martial artists, he stated that he wanted to make it to the UFC before he turned 30 years old. Tonight, he made his UFC debut at the age of 29. Mission accomplished.
In round one, Gonzalez scored an early takedown and it looked as if he had the 38-year-old Jim Miller in a compromised state. However, Miller is a seasoned veteran and has weathered this type of storm before. He was able to fight back to his feet and managed to hit Gonzalez with an overhand left before the end of the round that clearly left him dazed.
The left hand strike that Miller ended round one with, is the same maneuver he used to start round two and end the fight for good. Just seconds into the round, Miller unleashed his viscous left hand and knock Gonzalez out cold immediately. It was undoubtedly the most spectacular moment of the night.
Fiorot vs. Silva
Mayra Silva gets my nomination for the most annoying fighter of the night. As someone who has followed combat sports my entire life, it always irks me when a fighter is more style than substance. It’s normally the one who’s doing all the taunting who does the least fighting and inflicts the least damage. Mayra Silva could be Exhibit A.
Manon Fiorot wasted no time in getting right to work and striking early and often. Meanwhile Silva often had her hands down and could be seen shaking her head “no” when she got popped with a well timed strike by Fiorot. This was to indicate that the shot was merely a glancing blow and she was not hurt. The problem is, the blows were not glancing; by the beginning of round two, Silva was visibly bleeding from the nose.
In round three, Silva finally stopped pretending that Fiorot was not hurting her. However, it was too little too late. All three judges awarded Manon Fiorot a clean sweep, scoring the bout 30 to 27 in her favor. Maybe the next time Mayra Silva gets selected to fight on a main card she will take the opportunity more serious.
Lundwehr vs. Klein
Nate Lundwehr was more active than Ľudovít Klein in both rounds one and two. Klein had a couple of well-timed strikes and some success with calf kicks, but Lundwehr was clearly in control the entire fight. Going into round three, it was clear Klein needed a stoppage if he was going to win.
Unfortunately for Klein, it was Lundwehr who was able to get the stoppage. With a winding rear naked chokehold, nicknamed the “anaconda submission,” Lundwehr was able to get Klein to tap out within seconds. It was an impressive victory for the man who calls himself “Nate the Train” and has no shortage of personality.
I’m starting to sound like a school principal lecturing repeat offenders who just got caught smoking cigarettes in the bathroom again. However, I can’t stress enough how much Mayra Silva upset me tonight. Her approach reminded me of the antics of Ryan Spann a few weeks ago. If you disrespect your opponent, you deserve to lose.
On a side note, I thought the third installment of Fury vs. Wilder was very entertaining and good for the sport of boxing. However, I was very disappointed in Deontay Wilder for not shaking Tyson Fury’s hand after the fight. After the two of you shared the ring together three times, you can’t show some sportsmanship? C’mon, Deontay. You’re better than that!
UFC Fight Night returns next week with a main card headlined by middleweights, Paulo Costa and Marvin Vettori. As always, we’ll have all the latest updates about the outcomes of the fights as well as in depth analysis available right here at World In Sport!