Music City turned out to be the right place for a lullaby.

With two knockouts, a TKO and five submissions, there was no shortage of fighters put to sleep, or at least on the brink of unconsciousness, during the course of UFC on FX 1 in Nashville, Tenn.

The ten-fight lineup, with prelims airing on Fuel TV and the main card on FX, saw only two fights require the input of the ringside judges.

Among the fighters who did not require the involvement of the judges, Jim Miller likely put himself back into the lightweight title picture with a decisive win over Melvin Guillard, Jorge Rivera shed a tear as he bid the UFC farewell while exiting with a TKO victory over Eric Schafer and Josh Neer cinched a guillotine choke that separated Duane Ludwig from consciousness.

Miller survives flying knees, scores submission win over Guillard

From the onset of his main event fight with Melvin Guillard, longtime lightweight contender Jim Miller was met with numerous flying knees and an aggressive striking attack.  It wasn’t enough, though, as Miller survived the onslaught to eventually coax a tapout from the newest member of the Blackzilians.

While Guillard did not cleanly land a flying knee, he did hurt Miller early with a punch.  Miller relied on his instincts and shot for takedowns while regaining his senses.  When Guillard continued to throw flying knees, Miller capitalized by using one such attempt to score a takedown.

Guillard’s weakness has long been his ground game, or lack there of, and Miller was quick to expose this hole in Guillard’s skill-set once again.  Miller transitioned to Guillard’s back and sank in a rear-naked choke to submit “The Young Assassin” at the 2:04 mark of the opening round.

Miller earned “Submission of the Night” honors, including a $45,000 bonus, for his performance.

“The Dentist” puts Ludwig to sleep

Josh Neer was looking to post his first back-to-back Octagon wins since 2006 as he stepped into the cage to meet Duane Ludwig.  While Ludwig would punish Neer early, “The Dentist” would emerge successful in posting two straight in the UFC.

Neer absorbed a lot of strikes early in the first round from Ludwig before taking “Bang” down.  The two scrambled for position, with Ludwig attempting to stand up.  In doing so, Ludwig left his neck exposed and Neer took advantage by locking in a guillotine choke.  Before Ludwig could manage a tapout, he was out cold.  Neer told referee Josh Rosenthal that Ludwig was unconscious and, after confirming, Rosenthal brought a halt to the contest, awarding Neer with the submission victory at 3:04 of the first round.

Easton slips past Papazian via majority decision

The closest fight on the card was easily the bantamweight match-up between Mike Easton and Jared Papazian.  Easton would overcome Papazian via majority decision, with one judge scoring the bout a draw.

The two men kept an even pace throughout three rounds of action, mixing short bursts of crowd-pleasing exchanges with more calculated striking and battling in the clinch against the cage. The third stanza was the most entertaining, as the two became more aggressive with their striking in an effort to gain the upper hand in the contest.

In the end, Easton did just enough, between his striking and two successful takedowns in the second frame, to convince one judge to give him all three rounds, while another saw him winning two rounds.  That was enough to earn him the majority verdict.

Barry displays striking, improved submission defense in win over Morecraft

Everyone knew that Pat Barry could kick hard, but now he wants to prove that he won’t be submitted the minute his fights hit the mat.  In his fight with Christian Morecraft, Barry took the first step in doing just that.

Barry was taken down twice early in the first stanza by Morecraft.  At one point mounted, Barry also found himself fending off an armbar submission attempt from Morecraft.  Barry maintained his composure and stepped over Morecraft, properly countering and escaping the threat of the armbar.

Once the two were standing again, Barry connected with a left hook that sent Morecraft to the canvas.  “HD” followed up with a few more punches to the downed Morecraft, including a right hand that knocked Morecraft out at 3:38 of the first round.

Both fighters earned $45,000 “Fight of the Night” bonuses for their efforts.

Rivera retires with a win

Just hours before entering the Octagon on Friday night, Jorge Rivera told MMA Junkie Radio that he would retire, win or lose, following his fight with Eric Schafer.  “El Conquistador” not only left on a high note, but an emotional one, as the crowd showed their appreciation for his efforts inside the Octagon and Rivera expressed his gratitude to Zuffa and the people who have supported him during his career.

After being kept on his back for the majority of the first round, Rivera began to turn the tide just seconds before the round came to a conclusion, reversing Schafer and ending up in top position.

In the second frame, Rivera’s takedown defense improved.  He avoided the takedown and scored the TKO at the 1:31 mark.

Prelim Card Round-up

Highly-touted Russian lightweight prospect Khabib Nurmagomedov remained undefeated through 17 professional fights by out-striking and out-wrestling Kamal Shalorus.  Nurmagomedov secured a rear-naked choke on Shalorus in the third round for the victory.

Charlie Brenneman moved back into the win column, using his wrestling to dominate Daniel Roberts en route to a unanimous decision verdict.  While Brenneman controlled from top position for the majority of the bout, he did have to survive late submission attempts from Roberts in both the second and third rounds.

Fabricio Camoes put his grappling skills on display against Tom Hayden, submitting the UFC newcomer via rear-naked choke in the first round.

Daniel Pineda scored a takedown and transitioned to Pat Schilling’s back, where he sank in a rear-naked choke for a first-round submission win.

Nick Denis needed only 22 seconds and a set of thudding standing elbows to score a TKO of Joseph Sandoval. Denis’ performance earned him the $45,000 bonus for Knockout of the Night.

Full Results

Main Card

  • Jim Miller def. Melvin Guillard (Rear-naked choke, 2:04 of Rd 1)
  • Josh Neer def. Duane Ludwig (Guillotine choke, 3:04 of Rd 1)
  • Mike Easton def. Jared Papazian (Majority decision – 29-28, 30-27, 29-29)
  • Pat Barry def. Christian Morecraft (Knockout, 3:38 of Rd 1)

Preliminary Card

  • Jorge Rivera def. Eric Schafer (TKO, 1:31 of Rd 2)
  • Khabib Nurmagomedov def. Kamal Shalorus (Rear-naked choke, 2:08 of Rd 3)
  • Charlie Brenneman def. Daniel Roberts (Unanimous decision – 30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
  • Fabricio Camoes def. Tommy Hayden (Rear-naked choke, 4:03 of Rd 1)
  • Daniel Pineda def. Pat Schilling (Rear-naked choke, 1:37 of Rd 1)
  • Nick Denis def. Joseph Sandoval (Knockout, 0:22 of Rd 1)

Photo: Jim Miller (Dave Mandel/Sherdog)