On Saturday, September 27th the UFC held UFC 178: Johnson vs. Cariaso from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

In the main event of the evening flyweight kingpin, Demetrious Johnson, defended his title against unlikely challenger, Chris Cariaso. Johnson is the first and only flyweight champion in UFC history and made the fifth successful defense of the gold. Johnson was one of the top contenders for fighter of year last year and followed that great year up with a dominating performance over Ali Bagautinov in June. Cariaso wasn’t the obvious choice for this shot, but with John Dodson injured, Cariaso got a golden opportunity. Cariaso had won three straight bouts over the past year. The forever underrated Cariaso has been in the cage with the best in the world with his only four losses under the Zuffa banner coming to Renan Barao, John Moraga, Jussier da Silva, and Michael McDonald.

In the night’s co-main event Bellator lightweight champion, Eddie Alvarez finally made his UFC debut against Donald Cerrone. Alvarez came over to the UFC after vacating the Bellator title. After years of contract litigation and wars with Michael Chandler, the Philadelphia native finally made his first octagon appearance. Cerrone could finally be on the verge of a UFC title shot. “Cowboy” had won four straight and has finished every last one of those opponents.

This is a rare event where there really is a second co-main event worthy fight as Dustin Porier faced Conor McGregor in a featherweight grudge match. The trash talk has been heavy between the Louisiana native, Porier, and the Irishman, McGregor. The outspoken McGregor is undefeated in his first three octagon showings and has quickly vaulted up the rankings due to his brash personality. Porier is certainly McGregor’s toughest test to date and could certainly be the perfect foil. Porier had won three straight since dropping a decision to Cub Swanson in February of 2013. “The Diamond” came into this one with two straight knockouts over Diego Brandao and Akira Corassani.

From top to bottom this card is was stacked. Under those top three bouts we saw a middleweight contender’s matchup between Tim Kennedy and Yoel Romero and the return of Cat Zingano against Amanda Nunes. If that all wasn’t enough, the preliminary portion of the card was headlined by former bantamweight champion, Dominick Cruz, returning from a three-year layoff to face Takeya Mizugaki.

The action kicked off with two preliminary bouts on UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. ET. Those were followed up by four more preliminary bouts on Fox Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET. The main card finally got going at the traditional starting time of 10 p.m. ET live on pay-per-view.

Above is video of the night’s post fight press conference featuring Dana White and all of the night’s big winners. (video is courtesy of the UFC)

Main Card Summary

Demetrious Johnson vs. Chris Cariaso – for flyweight title

There’s nothing more to say than a master of his craft did what he was expected to do. Johnson hurt Cariaso with some body shots in the first round, then took Cariaso down in the second and secured the fight ending kimura.

Donald Cerrone  vs. Eddie Alvarez

The first round started off a little slow, until Alvarez landed at least 2 dozen uppercuts from the clinch. The rest of the round saw the two trading some punches and Alvarez attempting a takedown just before the round came to an end. Cerrone decided it was time to quit playing around in the second round as he blasted Alvarez with knees to the body and leg kicks. By the end of the second frame, Alvarez was switching stances to avoid taking any more damage to his lead leg. The third round saw Cerrone get hurt early, but turned it around and kicked the lead leg of Alvarez to the point where he could not stand on it any longer. Cerrone worked from half guard for the last 1:30 of the fight and cruised on to a decision victory.

Dustin Porier vs. Connor McGregor

To be perfectly honest, this wasn’t much of a fight. McGregor toyed with Porier with a few spinning kicks, but then landed a left hand that floored Porier. A few hammerfists later, Herb Dean stepped in to stop the fight.

Tim Kennedy vs. Yoel Romero

While the opening round started off slowly, Romero found a home for his left hand a couple of times, which left Kennedy with a bloody nose. The rest of the round was mostly forgettable, save a few punches from Romero. The second round saw Romero landing some good punches while Kennedy struggled to find his range. As the round wore on, Romero seemed to tire a bit and Kennedy started to land a few punches of his own. Kennedy came on late in the round and nearly had Romero finished, but got saved by the bell. Between the 2nd and 3rd rounds, Romero sat on his stool for a good 20 seconds after the referee told his corner to get everything out of the cage and continue the fight. When the fight finally resumed, a more well-rested Romero landed a punch that floored Kennedy. Romero followed up with punches and elbows until the referee stopped the fight.

Cat Zingano vs. Amanda Nunes

The first round saw Zingano take an absolute beating from Nunes. After Cat went for the initial takedown, Nunes pounded away on Cat for more than half the round. There were a few times during the first the fight could have been stopped and nobody would have complained. Zingano came out in the second round with a takedown that put Nunes on her back. The rest of the round saw Zingano landing ground and pound on her foe. The third started with Zingano landing three hard knees, securing another takedown, and getting the mount. From there, she rained down elbows and punches until the referee stepped in to stop the fight.

FULL RESULTS

Demetrious Johnson def. Chris Cariaso via submission (kimura)  Round 2, 2:29

Donald Cerrone def. Eddie Alvarez via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)

Connor McGregor def. Dustin Porier via TKO (strikes) Round 1, 1:46

Yoel Romero def. Tim Kennedy via TKO (strikes) Round 3, :58

Cat Zingano def. Amanda Nunes via TKO (strikes) Round 3, 1:21

Dominick Cruz def. Takeya Mizugaki via TKO (punches) Round 1, 1:01

Jorge Masvidal def. James Krause via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Stephen Thompson def. Patrick Cote via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Brian Ebersole def. John Howard via split decision (28-29, 29-28 x 2)

Kevin Lee def. John Tuck via unanimous decision (30-26 x 3)

Manny Gamburyan def. Cody Gibson via submission (guillotine choke) Round 2, 4:56

About The Author

Trey Downey
Staff Writer

A Central Florida native, Trey Downey's interest in MMA came after a trip to Blockbuster and the rental of UFC 47 on VHS. He has been blogging about the sport since 2011 and hosted a podcast called The TD Experience focusing on football and MMA (touchdowns and takedowns). Trey studied radio and television at the University of Central Florida and will soon be attending the Connecticut School of Broadcasting. Trey enjoys watching sports, pro wrestling and is an avid runner.