On Saturday, June 11, the UFC made its return to Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada with “Dos Santos vs. Carwin.”  The event was originally slated to feature the coaches from the most recent season of The Ultimate Fighter, Junior Dos Santos and Brock Lesnar, however Lesnar was forced out due to illness.  Carwin, already on the card, moved into the main event to face the dangerous Brazilian.

The night featured a number of surprising judging decisions and UFC President Dana White voiced his frustrations via his personal Twitter account following the event.

Dos Santos puts on striking clinic; can’t finish Carwin

Junior Dos Santos earned a title shot for the second time by battering former interim heavyweight champion Shane Carwin for three rounds.

The majority of the damage was inflicted near the end of the first round, as Dos Santos landed a stiff jab and followed with a barrage that left Carwin with a broken nose and visible cuts across his nose and under both eyes.  Despite the damage, Carwin survived and continued to look to end the fight with his one-punch knockout power.  Unfortunately for Carwin, the opportunity never came as Dos Santos cruised to unanimous decision victory.

Dos Santos will now meet current champ Cain Velasquez, likely at UFC 136 in Houston, for a chance at heavyweight gold.

Florian survives war with Nunes

In his featherweight debut, two-time lightweight challenger Kenny Florian got all that he could ask for and then some against Brazilian Diego Nunes.

Nunes pushed the pace, and despite giving up seven inches in reach, connected frequently in the opening round.  Florian looked more comfortable in the second round, bringing the fight to the ground.  In the final round, Florian edged out the tough Brazilian, although Nunes clearly rocked the Boston native with less than ten seconds left in the fight.

After the fight, Florian described the drop to the 145 lb division as “the toughest thing I’ve ever done in my life.”

Munoz takes decision from Maia

In a closely contested middleweight battle, Mark Munoz got the nod from the judges over Brazilian Demain Maia.

Maia opened the fight by showing off an improved striking attack, even rocking the former Oklahoma State wrestler during the opening round.  Munoz recovered and was able to control the pace and positioning as the fight continued.  Munoz brought the fight to the mat on two occasions in the final round, but nearly paid for it as Maia’s jiu-jitsu nearly resulted in a fight-ending choke before Munoz escaped.

Herman and Einemo entertain; earn Fight of the Night

 

Although both were making their UFC debut, Dave Herman and Jon Olav Einemo showed no jitters in their two round war.

Einemo pushed the action in the opening frame, showing off a dangerous striking attack to compliment his world class submission skills.

Herman showed his resiliency, surviving a vicious knee that clearly rocked him and forced him to loss his mouthpiece.

In the second round, both fighters were winded, but neither slowed down.  After a knee and left hook combo dropped Einemo, the referee stepped in and awarded Herman the TKO victory.

Cerrone batters Rocha

Donald Cerrone continued his rise up the lightweight ranks by outclassing late replacement Vagner Rocha for three rounds.

Using an arsenal of devastating leg kicks, Cerrone had Rocha limping within minutes of the opening bell.  Rocha was unable to mount any offense in the fight, as he could not bring Cerrone to the ground.

Despite taking all three rounds on the judges’ scorecards, Cerrone was upset with himself for “fighting safe.”

Spike TV Prelims – Bonuses galore

In the night’s free, televised preliminary card, fans were treated to two, exciting first round finishes.

Canadian striker Sam Stout showed off the power in his hands, as well as the resolve of his chin in dispatching of fellow lightweight Yves Edwards.  The pair exchanged on the feet and Edwards connected flush to Stout’s temple with a right hook, but ensuing counter left hook from Stout sent Edwards crashing to the mat.  The knockout earned Stout the night’s knockout of the night bonus.

In the other televised bout, wrestler Chris Weidman took on Canadian Jesse Bongfeldt.  Weidman injured his knee during a grappling exchange mid way through the opening round, but pressed through the pain and locked in a fight ending guillotine choke with only seconds left in the round.  The submission earned the rising middleweight the night’s submission of the night bonus.

Facebook/YouTube Prelims

The night’s online streaming undercard included a little bit of everything.

Returning from a long layoff, Krzysztof Soszynski manhandled late replacement Mike Massenzio (who normally competes at middleweight) for three rounds in their light heavyweight affair.

Nick Ring remained undefeated, despite a brief scare in the opening round against James Head.  Ring showed superior grappling ability and ended the fight in the third stanza with a rear-naked choke.

Featherweights Dustin Poirer and Jason Young battled hard for three rounds, with Poirier taking a unanimous decision over the Brit.

Heavyweights Joey Beltran and Aaron Rosa threw caution to the wind and engaged in an all-out slugfest.  The two traded shot after shot and the pace took its toll on Rosa.  Beltran finished off an exhausted Rosa early in the third round.

In the most questionable judgment of the night, wrestler Darren Elkins took a unanimous decision over Japanese featherweight Michihiro Omigawa.  Omigawa appeared to land at will and avoid the strikes of the American, but the judges did not see it.  Following the decision, UFC President Dana White announced that Omigawa would receive his win bonus for the performance regardless of the scoring.

FULL RESULTS

Pay-Per-View Card

Junior Dos Santos def. Shane Carwin by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)

Kenny Florian def. Diego Nunes by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

Mark Munoz def. Demian Maia by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

Dave Herman def. Jon Olav Einemo by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 3:19

Donald Cerrone def. Vagner Rocha by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)

Spike TV Card

Sam Stout def. Yves Edwards by KO (punch). Round 1, 3:52

Chris Weidman def. Jesse Bongfeldt by submission (guillotine choke). Round 1, 4:54

Facebook/YouTube Card

Krzysztof Soszynski def. Mike Massenzio by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-27)

Nick Ring def. James Head by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 3, 3:33

Dustin Poirier def. Jason Young by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Joey Beltran def. Aaron Rosa by TKO (punches). Round 3, 1:26

Darren Elkins def. Michihiro Omigawa by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)