On the FX portion of the UFC 227 prelims. Pedro Munhoz hurt Brett Johns multiple times on his way to a unanimous decision.
Closing out the televised portion on the UFC 227 prelims, the promotion’s #9 bantamweight Pedro Munhoz hurt the #14 Brett Johns multiple times throughout the fight, and to multiple locations, to secure the unanimous decision victory. Ricky Simon put on a grinding performance tonight, leaning on his takedowns to win the unanimous decision over the previously undefeated Montel Jackson. Before that, Ricardo Ramos earned a hard-fought split decision over Kyung Ho Kang, picking up two scores of 29-28 from the judges. To open up the FS1 prelims, Sheymon Moraes did enough across the first-two rounds to pick up a unanimous decision over Matt Sayles.
Pedro Munhoz def. Brett Johns by unanimous decision (30-26, 29-28, 29-27): Bantamweight
The bantamweights went toe to toe right off the bat, swinging leather at one another with zero feeling out process. Munhoz attacked the calf of his opponent, and Johns began to respond with a heavy right hand to counter. The combinations of Munhoz were landing on the guard of Johns, with a few of them actually slipping through.
The brawling leaked into the second round, until Munhoz went back to battering the calf of Johns. Johns was visibly feeling the effects of the leg kicks, and then Munhoz dropped him with a front kick to the body. Munhoz went in for the kill, attacking with multiple guillotine attempts, but Johns hung tough and made it back to his feet. Munhoz dropped his opponent with another calf kick, followed by more abuse to the calf. Johns started to battle back, swinging and connecting with tight combinations, but Munhoz dropped him again and finished the round on top.
Munhoz hurt Johns to the body again in the final round and jumped a guillotine, but Johns was able to escape again. Even though Johns escaped, he spent a large chunk of time on his back not doing much of anything. The fight ended back on the feet, but nothing significant was exchanged.
Ricky Simon def. Montel Jackson by unanimous decision (30-27 x2, 29-28): Bantamweight
Simon closed the distance right away here, trying to muscle a takedown but Jackson was able to fend him off and stay standing. Simon stayed after it, giving his foe no space to work with. A takedown manifested with about 90 seconds remaining in the first round, but Simon was quick to return to his feet. Jackson landed a stinging cross towards the end of the round that made Simon do a little wobble step.
Simon returned to his wrestling in the second frame, but Jackson was ready for it and scored a short-lived takedown of his own. Jackson spent a lot more time in open space than he did in the first round, scoring some more with his southpaw left hand. Simon found a takedown and took the back inside the final minute of the round, but couldn’t do much with it before time ran out.
Simon found an early takedown to open the final frame, but Jackson reversed it and took top for a second. Jackson started to land, cracking his opponent with punches and knees, but then Simon blasted a takedown right into full mount. Jackson gave up the back, but somehow kind of just like grabbed the wrist of Simon and stood straight up. The broadcasters were amazed at the grip and hand size of Jackson. Simon went back to the grind, scoring rinse and repeat takedowns as the clock trickled down.
Ricardo Ramos def. Kyung Ho Kang by split decision (29-28 x2, 28-29): Bantamweight
The bantamweights did their feeling out right in each other’s face. Steadily, Ramos began picking up the tempo, upping his output and backing up Kang. Kang stayed calm in the pocket and looked to throw counter punches. Ramos went back to his pressure to start the second round, but after connecting a bit he gave up a takedown. Kang worked from the top, until Ramos smoothly rolled for a kneebar. The hold looked was pretty tight but Kang wisely pulled his leg out just at the right moment to bring the bout back to the feet. Ramos even scored a last second takedown of his own just as the round ended. Kang kept up his volume in the final round, mixing in some leg kicks with his punches as Ramos began to fade a bit, but nothing too substantial was landed.
Sheymon Moraes def. Matt Sayles by unanimous decision (29-28 x3): Featherweight
The Thai boxing of Moraes was on display early in the fight. He landed all sorts of crafty knees and kicks which made his superior polish on the feet evident. Sayles tried to close the distance and look for the takedown, but Moraes wasn’t having any of it, and kept the bout on its feet for the remainder of the round.
Sayles was slipping punches and returning combos in the second round, not with a ton of power but he was hitting his target. Moraes began hunting for the elbow, but couldn’t quite find a home for it. Sayles landed a flush punch to the eye of Moraes, but the referee believed that Moraes was poked in the eye and caused a pause in the action. Moraes was able to get in a few good licks before the end of the round.
An accidental eye poke to Sayles caused a break before the final round could really begin. Moraes seemed to be fading as Sayles looked to be turning it up. Moraes kept throwing, but his strikes were labored and weren’t connecting like they were earlier in the fight. Sayles brought the pressure down the stretch but wasn’t able to hurt Moraes before time ran out.