Here’s everything that happened at UFC Vegas 26 last night
Last night (Saturday May 8, 2021), the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) stayed inside the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, for UFC Vegas 26. While the main event and co- main collapses within days of the event, it’s actually impressive that there were still a handful of high-quality fights left. It might not have been an unforgettable night, but UFC Vegas 26 was still worth watching.
Let’s take a closer look at the best performances and techniques:
A good bit of fun
Look, no one has asked for a Michelle Waterson main event against Marina Rodriguez. The card took a lot of hits, and these two ladies stepped up and scrapped for the majority of the five rounds. It was fun!
In the end, Rodriguez was just too tall and strong. Waterson found some success with her side kicks and hook (probably a bit too much, as she relied on them so often), but whenever Rodriguez continued his combination or punched in the clinch, Waterson was in trouble. . “Karate Hottie” could not scare his opponent, and it is difficult to win a fight in this scenario.
To Waterson’s credit however, she found some success late in the fight to keep things interesting. She may not be a candidate, but Waterson is a top notch keeper of the Strawweight elite.
Rodriguez, meanwhile, is a nasty kickboxer, and I’d love to see her throw in with another top striker afterwards.
Donald Cerrone was taken down by short-notice replacement Alex Morono, and I wrote a bit more about it in detail HERE!
Magny the spoiler
Neil Magny knows how to frustrate fighters.
How many younger enemies have been favored to deal with Magny? Much less than what it actually exceeded! Geoff Neal was the last to suffer the indignity of being grabbed and stung by the skinny, awkward man, and he’s one of the best to endure that fate as well.
Neal’s biggest mistake was chasing his head. The Southpaw has fierce power, to be sure, but Magny knew enough to avoid the Left. If Neal had instead worked to break the body and legs with his kicks first, he might have landed the knockout blow. Instead, he often swung too much, which only made him more often in the clinch.
Magny played the distance – and his opponent – very well to earn the decision.
A war worth the wait
Gregor Gillespie vs. Diego Ferreira was always going to be the best fight on the card.
Gillespie pushes an insane pace, but he’s an imperfect fighter defensively. Meanwhile, Ferreira really specializes in battling his opponent’s takedown attempts, and he’s really become quite a puncher. Barring an early arrival, the only potential outcome was a bloody battle.
In the first round, Ferreira’s trade was enough to overcome Gillespie’s struggle and pace. He countered the takedown attempts with his jiu-jitsu, finishing the round on his back while throwing heavy elbows. He also rocked Gillespie at one point with punches.
By the end of the first five minutes, Gillespie looked completely exhausted. However, the four-time All-American and National Champion wrestlers have a different level of “digging deep”. Gillespie stormed the door in the second anyway, putting Ferreira on his back early and showing excellent header control. He hovered over the Brazilian’s attempts to scramble and reject bids, advancing his position in the process.
Towards the end of the inning, Gillespie put on both hooks and started dropping unanswered punches, stopping the huge contest and returning to the winning column in style.
• Phil Hawed defeats Kyle Daukas by unanimous decision: UFC Vegas 26 featured the debut of Hawes 2.0. Before last night, Hawes was sort of a glass cannon, a huge physical talent held back by his durability and gas tank. Daukas – a well-rounded player – seemed well equipped to capitalize on these issues, and he smartly pushed a very hectic pace. However, Hawes was prepared for this battle, using his foe’s forward pressure to lay hard knees and work the body. In the third, it was Hawes who really got the upper hand, scoring a 10-8 third round and the biggest win of his young career.
• Carlston Harris defeats Christian Aguilera via the first round anaconda choke: Two rookie fighters met to open last night’s preliminary card, and Harris really impressed! In between, Aguilera was known as the attacker, but he chose to shoot for an out in the second half of the first round. Harris defended and capitalized, pulling his arm deep around the neck and cleverly using his knee to momentarily block his opponent’s elbow. As a result of this clever maneuver, he was able to sink completely into the anaconda choke, lulling his foe to sleep.
For the full UFC Vegas 26 results: “Waterson vs. Rodriguez” and play by game, click HERE!