On Saturday night, the UFC touched down in Dallas to bring fight fans everywhere UFC 184 live from the American Airlines Arena.

In the night’s headlining act UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis put his 155-pound belt on the line against UFC veteran Rafael dos Anjos.

Pettis (18-2), also a former WEC lightweight champion,  had most recently defeneded his 155-pound title with a second round submission over former Strikeforce, WEC & Dream champion Gilbert Melendez in the co-main event of UFC 181 in December, earning a Performance of the Night bonus in the process.  Dos Anjos (23-7), a Kings MMA product, entered this fight having picked up wins in eight of his last nine bouts, including three straight. In his most recent outing, the Brazilian walked away with a dominant unanimous decision over Nate Diaz in the co-main event of UFC on FOX 13. 

Appearing in the co-main event newly crowned UFC strawweight chapmion Carla Esparza put her 155-pound title on the line against Polish import Joanna Jedrzejczyk.

Esparza (10-2), also the former Invicta FC champion, was last seen earning her belt with a very imperssive third round submission over Rose Namajunes at The Ultimate Fighter 20 Finale in December. She earned her title shot with three straight victories over Angela Hill, Tecia Torres and Jessica Penne in the TUF 20 strawweight tournament. Jedrzejczyk (8-0) entered this bout having picked up back-to-back wins to start her UFC career. In her most recent effort Jedrzejczyk earned a controversial split decision over then undefeated Cláudia Gadelha at UFC on FOX 13, earning here title shot in the process. 

All that plus a welterweight contest between former champion Johny Hendricks and the ever durable Matt Brown, a heavyweight clash between the monstrous Alistair Overeem and fan favorite Roy Nelson and a flyweight bout between Olympic gold medalist Henry Cejudo and former title contender Chris Cariaso.

Complete results and full recaps from the epic night of fighting can be found below.

MAIN CARD SUMMARY

Rafael Dos Anjos told the entire story of the UFC 185 main event through a thorough five-round domination of Anthony Pettis. Combinations, consistent pressure, and a more serious takedown game than what fans were previously used to seeing from Dos Anjos carried him on, with Pettis having little to no resistance against the onslaught. By the third round, the result seemed academic, but Pettis hung on and fought for as long as he could. Still, by the end of the fifth round, there was no doubt that while Dos Anjos did exactly what he needed to do to dethrone Pettis, he did shock the world by taking the sweep on all three of the judge’s scorecards as effortlessly as he did in order to take the lightweight title home.

Joanna Jedrzejczyk’s performance against Carla Esparza may stand as one of the more impressive performances in the recent history of MMA title fights, let alone women’s MMA or the UFC’s history. Outside of one takedown that Esparza completed, Jedrzejczyk stuffed every single attempt, sprawling beautifully to stay off her back, resetting to the feet without much of a struggle, and dissecting Esparza with strikes. Jedrzejczyk changed the fight completely by landing one shot in the second round that led to an insane flurry of strikes, and with Esparza clearly unable to defend herself properly, the referee intervened to halt the bout, thus leading Jedrzejczyk to becoming the UFC’s first Polish-born champion.

UFC 185’s non-title undercard featured three unanimous-decision wins that ended in 30-27 sweeps across the board, and when we add in the fact that the event took place in Texas, it comes as no surprise that Johny Hendricks took home one of those three sweeps. As expected, Matt Brown made Hendricks work hard to earn the decision, but with a nearly-packed house in the American Airlines Center, Hendricks took it back to his wrestling roots and took the always-game “Immortal” down everywhere, with a couple of moments where Hendricks hoisted Brown up and almost executed takedowns that were shades of UFC Hall-of-Famer and welterweight legend Matt Hughes. Brown nearly shocked everyone with an attempt to through an inverted triangle choke of sorts, but ultimately, he could not put Hendricks down inside the distance.

On paper, Alistair Overeem presented a mean clinch game, brutal knees, and some of the best kickboxing that fans could find at this level of MMA competition, so this naturally meant that Roy Nelson could have had a field day with Overeem. Unfortunately, this was far from the actual case, as Nelson would lay strikes in to hurt Overeem, but would let his foot off the gas for a moment, which allowed Overeem to execute knees and work the body. Overeem would work the body so viciously through the first two rounds that by the time the third rolled around, Nelson’s frame looked noticeably damaged. Though the crowd had its qualms with some of how it happened, nobody could take away the fact that Overeem outworked Nelson and took home another decision in Dallas.

Former Olympian and Legacy FC standout Henry Cejudo knew people were doubting his ability to make weight against Chris Cariaso, let alone his chances against the former UFC flyweight title contender, but from the onset of the bout, it became evident that Cejudo didn’t feel any negative effects from his successful cut to 125. Though he ate kicks and found himself countered at times by a left hook from Cariaso, Cejudo still closed the distance very well, tripping Cariaso at times and showing vast improvements in his striking. It came as no surprise that Cejudo, shortly after claiming the three-round sweep on all three cards, felt he was finally ready to face a top flyweight and make a bid for the UFC flyweight title.

PRELIMINARY CARD SUMMARY

People knew what to expect when Ross Pearson signed to face Sam Stout, and the bout did not disappoint. Stout established himself as the aggressor early on in the bout, taking advantage of a noticeably tense Pearson, who was forced to play defense for a few moments. Once Pearson found his rhythm and his timing later in the round, though, it set the stage for the head movement that would pay dividends in round two, as Pearson ducked under Stout’s right hand and stuck his left on the Canadian-bred striker before Stout could find a home for his own right hand.

Roger Narvaez fought a tremendous first round, in terms of intelligent striking, but Elias Theodorou would not be denied. Theodorou always kept moving forward, even despite Narvaez’s best efforts, and though his second-round TKO win came via punches, Theodorou set it up with a kick that broke Narvaez’s arm. Betweem the broken arm and the punches being landed on him, Narvaez just could not respond appropriately.

Though Beneil Dariush and Daron Cruickshank fought hard for the length of their affair, Dariush scored the only submission of the preliminary card. The story of the bout surrounded the wrestling of Dariush, who seemed to take Cruickshank down and control him at will. Once Dariush got in a position to take Cruickshank’s back, he locked up the rear naked choke and almost immediately forced the quick tap.

For the first two rounds of Jared Rosholt’s bout with former RFA champion Josh Copeland, the story of the bout surrounded tentativeness of the two former training partners. Things picked up in the second round, when Rosholt began to dump Copeland onto the canvas and make him feel significantly uncomfortable. That game plan led Rosholt to take the top position and rain down on Copeland with left elbows and punches to force the stoppage.

The Fight Pass prelims saw three finishes that ended before the third round, but Ryan Benoit’s finish of Sergio Pettis stood out for a number of reasons. For one, Benoit spent the majority of round one getting outclassed in just about every realm, with Pettis even sweeping Benoit at one point. One left hand changed the entire bout and led Benoit to eventually get the TKO win, but in the heat of the battle, Benoit would land a kick to Pettis’ backside as the referee intervened.

“Irish” Joseph Duffy was best known as “the last man to defeat Conor McGregor” before annihilating Jake Lindsey in just under two minutes of the first round, and he showed exactly why he has had people talking about him ever since that 38-second win against McGregor. From the moment the bout started, Duffy made use of his boxing, which was only slightly hindered by one big leg kick. The only kick that would prove the most significant, however, was the head kick Duffy used to stifle Lindsey before causing him to crumple with a vicious body shot.

Germaine de Randamie provided a nightmare matchup for Larissa Pacheco from start to finish. The Dutch striker took clear control of the first round, despite not finishing Pacheco in the first frame. Pacheco’s corner implored their fighter to attack more with takedowns and employ more head movement, but de Randamie thwarted Pacheco’s attempts at getting takedowns, and capitalized on opportunities when Pacheco did not move her head as advised. “The Iron Lady” would lock down her victory by sticking right hands in succession after an uppercut connected, which eventually forced the stoppage.

FULL RESULTS
 

Main Card- PPV, 10 p.m. ET

Rafael dos Anjos def. Anthony Pettis by unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-45) – For UFC lightweight title
Joanna Jedrzejczyk def. Carla Esparza by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 4:17 – For UFC strawweight title
Johny Hendricks def. Matt Brown by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Alistair Overeem def. Roy Nelson by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Henry Cejudo def. Chris Cariaso by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Prelim Card – FX, 8 p.m. ET

Ross Pearson def. Sam Stout by knockout. Round 2, 1:33
Elias Theodorou def. Roger Narvaez by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 4:07
Beneil Dariush def. Daron Cruickshank by submission (rear naked choke). Round 2,  2:48
Jared Rosholt def. Josh Copeland by TKO (strikes). Round 3, 3:12

Prelim Card – UFC Fight Pass, 6:30 p.m. ET

Ryan Benoit def. Sergio Pettis by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 1: 34
Joseph Duffey def. Jake Lindsey by TKO (strikes). Round 1, 1:47
Germaine de Randamie def. Larissa Pacheco by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 2:02