UFC 215 Recap: Nunes retains title over Shevchenko

Despite losing the co-main event of Demetrious Johnson and Ray Borg, the UFC 215 card was full of surprises, upsets, and finishes and it ended with another close title fight between the women’s bantamweight challenger and champion. Let’s take a looks at the results.

Main Card Results:

The main event saw the long-awaited bantamweight rematch between challenger Valentina Shevchenko and champion Amanda Nunes. This fight was delayed controversially as Nunes was hospitalized the morning of UFC 213 with chronic sinusitis and forced a cancellation.

Both fighters started the first round relatively tentative, seeming to want to conserve energy. Nunes seemed to be the more active fighter landing multiple leg kicks and landing a couple of nice jabs. Shevchenko opened the second the much busier fighter mixing it up with superman punches and misses with a spinning heel kick. Nunes was taking a break towards the end of the round. The third round continued with the action with both fighters landing in the exchanges. Nunes landed a spinning elbow and Shevchenko connected with a couple of nice left hands. The referee warned Nunes multiple times about her extending her fingers to avoid eye pokes.

Nunes started round 4 landing front kicks but eats a combo from Shevchenko. Shevchenko follows that up with a couple more lefts that land. Shevchenko finally getting comfortable and finding a groove in the fight now. Superman punch finally lands but Nunes takes it well.

Going into round 5 it was anyone’s fight. Very close. Aside from round 4, which Shevchenko clearly won, the other three rounds were a toss-up. Both fighters come out with combos. Nunes shoves Shevchenko against the cage and makes a huge mistake by giving up her back after unsuccessfully going for a head and arm throw. She gets to her feet but gets taken down instantly. Nunes finishes the round on top. Nunes clearly won the last round. It was close with the only clear rounds (4 & 5) won were split between them… “and still”…..  needless to say, Shevchenko is not happy with the decision and she makes it known post-fight. Amanda Nunes def. Valentina Shevchenko via split decision.

The co-main event saw Ex-lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos against Neil Magny. I hope you didn’t blink watching this one. A leg kick by dos Anjos swept Magny off his feet and dos Anjos was on top. He passed from side control to the mount and after some elbows he passed back to side control and sank in an arm-triangle choke. dos Anjos now 2-0 since going to 170 and looking better than ever. Rafael dos Anjos def. Neil Magny via 1st round submission (arm-triangle choke). 

In a big fight for the flyweight division, ex-title challenger Henry Cejudo faced off with Wilson Reis. All Cejudo in this one. He came in with a wide stance and landed some big shots early. He was able to avoid a takedown attempt by Reis and countered with a head kick which hurt Reis and ended the first round with a takedown.

In the second round Reis came out pressuring but a straight right drops him and Cejudo follows it up with some ground and pound. Game over.  Henry Cejudo def. Wilson Reis via 2nd round TKO (strikes). 

Light Heavyweight Ilir Latifi was out of the game for over a year, but didn’t show much rust against undefeated prospect Tyson Pedro. Latifi was able to use his wrestling to get the taller Pedro to the ground multiple times. Both fighters had their moments on the feet and both had cuts over their left eyes from powerful exchanges. In the end, Latifi got the better of them and his takedowns were just too much for Pedro to handle. Ilir Latifi def. Talita Bernardo via unanimous decision.

Featherweights Jeremy Stephens and Gilbert Melendez opened up the main card this evening, but it was all Stephens from the start. Melendez got dropped by leg kicks multiple times in the opening round and did little more than eat shots. The doctor checked on Melendez’s leg prior to the second round but the fight continued. It was more of the same for the remaining of the fight with Stephens connecting on the leg of Melendez and Melendez dropping. Melendez was able to survive, but it wasn’t close. Melendez now on a four-fight losing streak while Stephens ends his losing streak at two. Jeremy Stephens def. Gilbert Melendez via unanimous decision

Prelim Results:

  • Ketlen Vieira def. Sara McMann via 2nd round submission (arm triangle)
  • Sarah Moras def. Ashlee Evans-Smith via 1st round submission (armbar)
  • Rick Glenn def. Gavin Tucker via unanimous decision
  • Alex White def. Mitch Clarke via  2nd round TKO (punches)
  • Arjan Bhullar def. Luis Henrique via unanimous decision
  • Kajan Johnson def. Adriano Martins via 3rd round KO (punches)

 

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