Hello and welcome to Inside Fights live coverage of UFC 136 which is coming to us live from Houston, Texas tonight. We will begin match by match coverage with the Spike TV portion of the card which starts at 8pm EST.
Anthony Pettis (13-2) vs. Jeremy Stephens (20-6)
Round 1– Things start off slowly for these two strikers.Stepehns is throwing heavier leather but not really connecting. Stephens moves in and drives his way for a takedown on Pettis. Pettis is working a strong ground game as he gains control of Stephens’ head. They quickly get back to their feet and an inside leg kick from Pettis hits Stephens right on the cup. After a short break Pettis lands a punch. Stephens returns fire. They exchange kicks. A few weak inside leg kicks from Pettis. Stephens wisely closes the distance and grinds Pettis up against the cage. Stephens works hard for a takedown but can’t seem to get it. Finally he does and Pettis is stuck sitting up against the cage. Pettis stands up after sustaining limited damage. Stephens lands a big shot at the end of a very close round. We’ll say 10-9 Stephens in a round that could have gone either way.
Round 2– Stephens come out swinging. Pettis scores a takedown. Stephens lands an elbow from the bottom. Pettis goes for a knee that nearly connects with Stephens head while he was down. Stephens begins to bleed out of the nose. Another bottom elbow from Stephens. Stephens stands up only to be taken down once again. Stephens stands up again stands to throw knees to Pettis’ body. Pettis just takes him down again though. Stephens stands up again in what is undoubtedly turning into an exhausting round for him. They wrestle their way back down to the ground. Pettis take his back and locks on a body triangle. They roll around some more with Pettis looking for the rear naked choke. He doesn’t get it and the round ends. 10-9 Pettis.
Round 3– Pettis likes the high kicks early. Stephens wrestles Pettis to the ground but has trouble getting through the guard. Pettis reverses it and gets a takedown. Stephens stands up but just like in the last round Pettis quickly gets him back down. It goes on for a bit. Near the end of the round Stephens works for a few more takedown but it is not enough to win the round. 10-9 Pettis.
Anthony Pettis def. Jeremy Stephens via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Demain Maia (14-3) vs. Jorge Santiago (23-9)
Round 1– Tie up in the beginning. Maia gets control and they end up along the cage. Inside leg kick from Santiago. Another from Santiago. Maia moves in and shows off his improved boxing skills and then uses that as a set up for a takedown. Santiago has a nice guard and uses it to stand up. Once again Maia ties him up and the fight slows to a crawl. Maia keeps throwing punches and Rogan criticizes him for leaving his chin exposed. Maia gets Santiago and knocks Santiago off balance for a moment. Maian once again wrestles him to the ground and hits him for a few soft elbows to the cranium. He keeps him down on the mat for the remainder of the round. He inflicts limited damage but easily Maia wins the round 10-9.
Round 2– Santiago throws a head kick early and misses. Maia looks to be a little gassed already. Kickboxing from both camps for the next minute or so. Maia ties him up again which is a strategy that has been working out thus far. He gets a single leg takedown and once again ends up on top. He almost passes into full mount but just misses it. Santaigo is working a strong guard game but can mount absolutely no offense. The whole fight has devolved into a test of Maia trying to pass the guard. The round comes to a close with Maia winning 10-9 once again. The crowd begins to show their displeasure and who can blame them after the Facebook prelims they had to sit through.
Round 3– Santiago opens with an inside leg kick. Maia throws him to the ground, Santaigo stands up instantly but Maia grabs him and pushes him into the cage. Inside leg kick from Maia lands. He goes for a takedown but ends up on Santiago’s back. He has his waist but can’t score the takedown. The crowd is even more restless now. Maia still has the waist. Finally they end up on the ground and surprise, surprise Maia is on top. Santiago has a half guard going and Rogan gets out there for Team UFC saying he wants to see Maia go for a finish. You and Dana White both, how coincidental. Maia sort of has side control and lands a few elbows but none of them have any speed behind them. The fight ends there with limited action and a stadium full of pissed of Texans. 10-9 Maia giving him a 30-27 win on the Inside Fights scorecard.
Demain Maia def. Jorge Santiago via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Joe Lauzon (20-6) vs. Melvin Guillard (29-8-2)
Round 1– As usual Guillard comes out heavy. Guillard throws a massive kick. Lauzon returns fire and stuns Guillard with a punch. He moves in for the kill and instantly takes the back and goes for the rear naked choke. Earlier in the night Darren Elkins spent 15 minutes trying to secure one of those but it takes Lauzon less than a minutes to get it on and force Guillard to tap once again muddying the Lightweight title picture.
Joe Lauzon def. Melvin Guillard via Submission (rear naked choke)- Round 1, 0:47
Nam Phan (16-9) vs. Leonard Garcia (15-7-1)
Round 1– They both come out swinging, Garcia lands a massive leg kick. Garcia keeps up the pressure with his kicks. Jab, leg kick combo for Garcia. A series of jabs for Phan. Phan closes the distance and lands a big combo. Then he uses a straight punch to flooor Garcia. Phan gets on top and resides in Garcia’s closed guard. The ref stands them up, probably premature but the action had stalled. They start to box and Phan gets the better of it. Leg kick from Garcia. The action is pretty intense with both fighters swinging hard. Garcia gets a quick takedown but Phan escapes easily. Phan lands a massive body shot. Garcia hits a sharp body kick. Jab from Phan, head kick from Garcia is blocked. Another head kick from Garcia is blocked and Phan comes out with some big shots to the head of Garcia. Garcia catches a finger in the eye which prompts a quick stoppage. Phan gets another takedown near the end of the round. Phan 10-9 easily but who knows what these judges saw.
Round 2– Garcia lands a nice shot in the opening seconds. Garcia continues to throw those head kicks. Another nice combo from Phan. Another big boxing exchange ensues with both fighters landing good shots to their opponent. Garcia starts to slow down but Phan seems to be in good shape. Big straight left from Phan. Phan keeps throwing punches. Garcia is throwing wild, drunken punches and for the most part they all are missing. Phan continues to pour it on. Garcia seems to be gassed and frustrated. Phan is basically chasing him around the cage landing strikes all over his body. Garcia has a cut open up under his right eye. The round comes to an end with Phan landing about 3 straight shots. 10-9 Phan easily again.
Round 3– Garcia isn’t out of it yet as he lands some nice looking shots. Garcia found a second wind between rounds. A big left knocks Phan down. He then moves in and begins to unload like crazy on Phan. Phan withstands but Garcia keeps swining, the crowd is ultra hot right now. Garcia’s eye has begun to swell up. Phan hits a nice counter shot. Garcia keeps up with the trash talk. 2 minutes to go. Phan wisely goes for a takedown and gets it. Phan is basically going for the lay and pray right now and the ref stands them up for the fans. Garcia reverts back to the head kicks. The two fighters continue to give it there own. Garcia almost gets a takedown. Goldberg will not shut up about how much he loves Leonard Garcia. We’ll give it to Garcia 10-9 but Phan remains in control 29-28 on the Inside Fights scorecard.
Nam Phan def. Leonard Garcia via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Chael Sonnen (25-11-1) vs. Brian Stann (11-3)
Round 1– Sonnen goes for a double leg right off the bat. They tie up and exchange positions. Sonnen gets control and pushes up against the cage. Sonnen uses a trip to score a takedown and moves into side control. Stann is having all sorts of problems getting up. Sonnen tries to move into mount but gets caught up in Stann’s guard. Sonnen swings around and takes the back. They are sitting up against the cage with Sonnen on his back. They stand up and Sonnen still has his back. Stann gets slammed back down. He moves on top and begins to ground and pound. Stann gains full guard. Sonnen still gets some nasty looking elbows through. 10-9 Sonnen though a 10-8 is not out of the question.
Round 2– Sonnen grabs the takedown right away. Sonnen is instantly dominant again. He goes for a guillotine which doesn’t work out but he then effortlessly grabs side control. Sonnen moves in to full mount and continues to pummel the UFC’s favorite fighter. Goldberg has already referred to Stann as an “All American Hero” at least 75 times. The ref stands them up very much upsetting Rogan. On the stand up Stann gets a nice shot in but fails to capitalize. Sonnen grabs him in a slam position but uses it to grab a solid position. He goes for the arm triangle and it looks to be tight. Stann defends it for a minute or so but finally is forced to tap. A big win for Sonnen in his return to the UFC.
Chael Sonnen def. Brian Stann via Submission (Arm Triangle)- Round 2, 3:51
Featherweight Title Bout
Jose Aldo [c] (19-1) vs. Kenny Florian (14-5)
Round 1– Soft leg kick for Florian to start. Inside leg kick for Florian. Aldo charges hard with some punches. Aldo swarms again and pounds Florian in the corner. Florian got rocked but survives. Florian gets a takedown for a half second. Aldo pops up, Florian grabs him and drives him into the cage. They stay tied up there for a bit. Florian tosses him for another takedown but again cannot keep him there. Florian takes the back but Aldo escapes without any harm being inflicted. Florian ducks a punch and goes for a takedown which he cannot get. He keeps working the single leg against the cage but Aldo remains upright. Florian throws a big elbow. They exchange blows as the bell sounds. 10-9 Florian as the underdog jumps out to an early lead.
Round 2– Florian misses a takedown. Kick blocked by Aldo. Florian has a cut under his eye which is beginning to bleed. Aldo gets some of his famous shots in on Florian. Leg kick for Florian. Another leg kick from Florian. Aldo responds with 2 of his own. Jab from Florian. Another jab from Kenny. Not sure why Aldo isn’t relying on those leg kicks that were used to decimate Urijah Faber. Big head kick for Aldo kind of gets through. They square off in the center of the cage. Leg kick for Kenny knocks Aldo off balance. Florian goes for a single leg at the end of the round. He doesn’t get it. We’ll give it to Aldo 10-9 though if I could call it a draw I would.
Round 3– Aldo misses a leg kick. Aldo lands a two punch combo. Aldo goes for the Seagal kick but whiffs. Big inside leg kick for Aldo is followed by two big shots to the face. Jab for Aldo. Jab for Florian. Two more shots from Aldo. Florian goes for the takedown but Aldo lands on top. Aldo tries to ground and pound, Florian moves and Aldo takes side control. Aldo is in half guard, he tries to pass but cannot. Aldo slows down on top. Florian’s corner is screaming at him. Aldo’s offense has been pretty well neutralized here. Aldo stands up and Florian tries a few up kicks. Florian stands up and eats one more shot. Florian tries for a single leg but cannot get it. Aldo 10-9 though it could have been a whole lot worse for Florian.
Round 4– Leg kick from Florian. Leg kick from Aldo is checked. Hook from Aldo. Leg kick from Florian. Leg kick from Aldo. Florian ties him up but cannot get a takedown. Florian tries another takedown, it is blocked and Aldo hits a few knees in the tie up. Florian switches to a single leg, Aldo escapes. Florian ties him up again but cannot get Aldo on to the mat. Florian’s luck with the takedown has run out. Aldo lands a few shots and Florian goes for another takedown. Aldo blocks that one as well. Another super close round. Let’s go 10-9 Florian based on Octagon Control.
Round 5– Florian seems to have plenty left in the tank, let’s see if he can use it to his advantage. Florian moves in for a takedown, the crowd does not approve. Florian keeps working Aldo against the cage perhaps seeking an ugly victory. They break and Florian slips to the mat. Aldo hovers over him not allowing Kenny to stand up. Florian almost had a leg lock but lost it and Aldo gets top control. Aldo moves in to mount. Aldo keeps him there despite desperate attempts from Florian. Florian gets back to his feet but Aldo has him tied up. The ref breaks up the tie up on the fence. Aldo instantly has him back up against the cage. Florian reverses with 30 seconds left. The both go for flying knees and miss at the bell. 10-9 Aldo giving him the fight on the Inside Fights scorecard 48-47.
Jose Aldo def. Kenny Florian via Unanimous Decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
Lightweight Title Bout
Frankie Edgar [c] (13-1-1) vs. Gray Maynard (10-0-1)
Round 1– Maynard comes out throwing jabs. Not much contact early on. Edgar strikes with a lightning fast combo. Edgar moves in quickly, grabs the back and gets a semi-takedown though Maynard saves himself by grabbing the fence. Maynard throws an unfortunate head kick. Maynard nails him with an uppercut and Edgar is wobbly. He moves in and starts laying into him with knees and more uppercuts. Maynard goes for a homerun right but misses in a major way. Edgar is trying to recover but Maynard clobbers him and knocks him down. Edgar grabs the leg to hold on for dear life. Edgar’s face is bleeding. Maynard stalks him across the cage. Knee from Maynard . He grabs the back. Edgar has a broken nose and it is bleeding badly. Another right stuns Edgar. Edgar fights back but the round was Maynard’s very very easily. 10-8 Maynard, here we go again.
Round 2– Edgar comes in with a kick that goes wide. Very little action in the first minute of this round. Edgar nails a nice combo. Leg kick from Edgar. They both are throwing punches but they are cautious and neither is really connecting. Big hook from Edgar. Maynard keeps going for those head kicks but one has yet to land. Zero offense for Maynard thus far. Edgar ties him up for a second or so. Body shot from Edgar. Combo from Edgar. Jab from Edgar. This round was all Edgar only he didn’t do all that much damage. 10-9 Edgar.
Round 3– Maynard lands a knee. Both fighters are still tentative here. Leg kick from Edgar. Edgar goes for the single leg but loses it. They both exchange brutal leg kicks. Both fighters seem terrified to move in. Edgar tries for a combo but cannot find the range. Maynard lands an uppercut to little affect. Big right from Edgar. Maynard tries to a looping hook but misses. Another nice combo from Edgar. Edgar tries to grab the waist, misses but is able to land a kick to the liver. The round ends, another dull affair with Edgar winning 10-9 thus tying the fight up.
Round 4– Edgar lands some punches out of the gate. Edgar lands a big shot to the side of Maynard’s face. Leg kick from Edgar. Maynard tries for the takedown but is stuffed. Big right from Edgar followed by an uppercut. Maynard goes back to the headkick, I don’t get it but whatever. Leg kick from Edgar. They come together and exchange blows. Edgar goes for the waist again, fails but gets a nice uppercut in that stuns Maynard badly. Edgar follows up with two more explosive shots to Maynard’s face. Maynard was not defending himself and falls on his face. He lands a few more before Josh Rosenthal steps in and Edgar has successfully defended his title.
Frankie Edgar def. Gray Maynard via TKO (strikes)- Round 4, 3:54
Tags: Anthony Pettis, Brian Stann, Chael Sonnen, Demian Maia, Frankie Edgar, Gray Maynard, Jeremy Stephens, Joe Lauzon, Jorge Santiago, Jose Aldo, Kenny Florian, Leonard Garcia, Melvin Guillard, Mixed Martial Arts, Nam Phan, UFC 136