The UFC made its way to the Mile High City of Denver for “UFC 135: Jones vs. Rampage.” Jon Jones would be put up against Quinton “Rampage” Jackson in his first-ever title defense since winning the light heavyweight championship. Also on the card was a welterweight fight years in the making, as UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes took on Josh Koscheck. The main card aired live on pay-per-view, while both Spike TV and Facebook televised the undercard bouts.

 ‘Bones’ Jones submits Rampage

In what many believed was the light-heavyweight champ’s most-pressured fight, Jones rose to the occasion by using a smart game plan to keep his distance from Jackson and eventually get the tapout in the fourth round.

Jones (l) looks for a takedown early against Rampage (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Jones came out after the opening bell very odd, with both knees bent, looking to get a quick takedown. He did stand after he was unsuccessful, and used his overwelming reach to his advantage during the entire first round.

Round two was a bit like the first. Rampage struggled to close the distance as Jones circled the outside of the cage. Even when he did get inside, Jones would convert to a Muay Thai game and use the clinch to effectivly avoid the shots of Jackson, and at the same time, push him away and continue with his striking.

Jackson’s corner screamed for him to take the fight to his opponent, but he was unsuccessful due to the elusiveness of the champion. Jones was able to take Rampage to the ground in the third, and even get to full mount at one point in time. As the two stood up, Jones was able to land a sharp elbow, cutting the right eyebrow of Rampage.

The champion now had to face the championship rounds for the first time in his young career. He didn’t slow down one bit, however, and was able to get Jackson back to the ground, take his back and force the tapout with a tight rear-naked choke.

Jones will now take on yet another former light-heavyweight champion in Rashad Evans, whom he has had bad blood with in the past.

Koscheck knocks out Hughes

Koscheck had been asking to get in the cage with Matt Hughes for a long time. On Saturday, he finally got the chance to take on the Hall of Famer and better yet, defeated Hughes with one second remaining in the first round.

The beginning looked as if it would be like Koscheck’s title fight with Georges St-Pierre. Hughes landed jab after jab on The Ultimate

Kosheck (r) battles Hughes (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)

Fighter Season One competitor, just as GSP did in his dominating performance against him at UFC 129. You could tell that Hughes had done his homework and prepared for this fight when watching him control the opening three mintues of the fight.

But Koscheck knew that he couldn’t let that happen again.

While Hughes was throwing more punches, it was Koscheck’s fists that were more punishing. As the first neared the one-minute mark, Koscheck was able to get a rhythm going by landing solid punches to the jaw of Hughes.

After a perfectly placed shot, Hughes hit the mat with Koscheck on top. It appeared as if Hughes would be able to survive the onslaught, but went out with just one second remaining on the clock.

The future of the legend remains in question, but Hughes says he’s not retiring just yet. Meanwhile, Koscheck gets a big win after being out for a long while.

 Hunt outlasts Rothwell in exhausting battle

These two men gave it all they had for fifteen mintues, as both Mark Hunt and Ben Rothwell fought their hearts out to go to the judges’ decision.

Knowing how talented of a striker Hunt is, Rothwell looked to take the fight to the ground early by looking to shoot numerous times. “Big Ben” does more damage and uses Octagon control to take round one in many eyes.

Round two was all Hunt’s as he was able to impose his will on Rothwell. From standing strikes, a trip, shots from on top and even an armbar attempt, Hunt easily earns the round, leaving Rothwell completly exhausted.

In the third, Rothwell resembled a zombie and was barely able to keep his balance. Hunt, also very tired, keeps the pressure on, but is unable to finish the tough-as-nails Rothwell.

Two judges scored the fight 29-28, while the other saw it 30-27 with the winner by unanimous decision, Mark Hunt.

 Browne decisions Broughton

In the first heavyweight bout of the night, Travis Browne defeated Rob Broughton, but was unable to knock out “The Bear,” and was forced to settle for a decision.

Round one was solely based on number of strikes landed. That was given to Browne, who was able to control Broughton throughout the round, and outpoint him on the feet.

The second was more slow-paced than the first, with the same result. Both men struggled to get momentum, but Browne was still able to apply more pressure to make it two rounds in the book.

By this point, the two heavyweights were feeling fatigued. As boos from the Denver crowd erupted, calling for a finish, it was Browne who was awarded a unaimous decision.

 Diaz gets back on track with submission victory over Gomi

In one of the most anticipated fights on the card, Nate Diaz put on the most impressive performance of his career by submitting Japanese superstar Takanori Gomi.

The area that stood out early in the contest was the boxing ability of Diaz. His punches weren’t thrown all that hard, but were smooth and crisp. After many punches landed, Gomi was forced into the guard of Diaz, which wasn’t such a good idea.

Diaz was able to first wrap his legs around Gomi to go for a triangle, but instead swiched it to an armbar to force “The Fireball Kid” to tap.

Main Card Results

Jon Jones def. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 4, 1:14 (to retain light-heavyweight title)

Josh Koscheck def. Matt Hughes by KO (punches). Round 1, 4:59

Mark Hunt def. Ben Rothwell by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 30-27)

Travis Browne def. Rob Broughton by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Nate Diaz def. Takanori Gomi by submission (armbar). Round 1, 4:27

 Preliminary Card Results

Tony Ferguson def. Aaron Riley by TKO (doctor’s stoppage). Round 1, 5:00

Tim Boetsch def. Nick Ring by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

Undercard Results

Junior Assuncao def. Eddie Yagin by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27)

Takeya Mizugaki def. Cole Escovedo by TKO (punches). Round 2, 4:30

James Te Huna def. Ricardo Romero by KO (punches). Round 1, 0:47

Photo: Jon Jones (R) delivers a kick (Phil Lambert/The MMA Corner)