Best of UFC Fight Night 151
1. Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone vs. ‘Ragin’ Al Iaquinta
If I broke down every high point of this match-up, it would undoubtedly take up more than one spot on our list of top moments.
This fight was a meeting of two exciting fighting styles, and two of the most beloved characters in the sport of mixed martial arts. Al Iaquinta landed heavy punches that would rattle Donald Cerrone early on in the fight. If you hadn’t witnessed any of the shots that briefly wobbled Cerrone in the moment, you probably wouldn’t even notice that he had been dazed.
Throughout the fight, Cerrone maintained his composure, continued to put on pressure, and was able to get his distance and timing on point. After five entertaining rounds it was obvious who had won. Cerrone became the first person to drop Iaquinta (although Jorge Masvidal had him hurt more than once) and mercilessly walked him down and attacked in the final rounds. Neither man would back down, but Cerrone’s striking game was more diverse and unquestionably more effective.
After the fight, Cerrone’s son, whose first birthday will be next month, was brought into the octagon. Cerrone held his son proudly with one arm as his other arm was raised to announce the winner. In his post-fight interview, he made his intentions clear. He called for another shot at the lightweight title. He also expressed interest in fighting Conor McGregor this July. There aren’t many fight fans who wouldn’t share his interest in that match-up.
2. Walt Harris TKO over Serghei Spivac
In what was easily the most brutal finish of the night, Walt Harris defeated Serghei Spivac via TKO less than one minute into the first round. For as long as it lasted, Harris looked noticeably comfortable on the feet. As Harris moved forward throwing knees and furious combinations, Spivac fell to the ground. Harris followed his opponent down and began reigning down heavy punches in rapid succession. The referee had no choice but to step in between the fighters and wave off the contest. Walt Harris was declared the victor via TKO. In his post-fight speech, Harris called out Justin Willis and Alexey Oleinik.
3. Aiemann Zahabi Walkout
Though Aiemann Zahabi would go on to lose via unanimous decision against Vince Morales, his walkout to the cage stood out as memorable. It was an earlier prelim fight, so the venue had many empty seats. The crowd wasn’t particularly noisy, as many of the fans had not yet arrived. What stood out, and what will always stand out at international events, is a fighter competing in or in front of their home country. Even more special is when the fighter has deep ties to his nation’s top MMA gym. Aiemann Zahabi is the younger brother of renowned Tristar gym trainer, Firas Zahabi. Seeing the Zahabi brothers making the walk out to the octagon together, in their native Canada, just feels right. I don’t think that scene will ever get old.
4. Macy Chiasson TKO over Sarah Moras
In yet another blitz of devastating ground and pound, Macy Chiasson TKO’d Sarah Moras at 2:22 of the second round. Chiasson absorbed some ground and pound in the first, but she was able to reverse positions and deliver some of her own damage before the end of the round. In the second stanza, Moras went in for her own takedown, but ended up mounted on the bottom. Chiasson unleashed a flurry of ground and pound, until the referee was forced to wave off the contest. Macy Chiasson remains undefeated at 6-0.
5. Brad Katona vs. Merab Dvalishvili
Brad Katona vs. Merab Dvalishvili was a fascinating match-up. For those who watched Katona on The Ultimate Fighter, it was obvious that he was quite intelligent. Nicknamed ‘Superman’, Katona was somewhat of a Canadian Clark Kent. Coming off of the show, he became recognized as a bright prospect with an innate ability to solve problems in combat.
But Merab Dvalishvili is a complicated problem himself. When he fights, he’s a human tornado of forward movement, and unwavering takedown attempts. In fact, Dvalishvili would give flyweights a run for their money in terms of pace. These traits make him extremely difficult to contain. This fight further solidified that fact. The problem-solver known as Brad Katona was unable to figure out the Dvalishvili puzzle. Merab Dvalishvili defeated Brad Katona via unanimous decision. This would mark Katona’s first professional defeat.
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