The Ultimate Fighting Championship made its way to Staples Center in Los Angeles, California tonight for UFC on FOX 4: “Shogun vs Vera.” The card was headlined by a potential title contender’s bout between 205-pound strikers Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Brandon “The Truth” Vera.
Tonight’s light heavyweight co-main event may also produce a future title challenger, as former champion Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida took on Ryan “Darth” Bader. Joe “J-Lau” Lauzon faced Jamie “C-4″ Varner at 155 pounds. MMARising.com has live play-by-play for tonight’s UFC on FOX 4 card.
Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs Brandon “The Truth” Vera
Vera opened the fight with two body kicks and followed with a third. Rua caught it and took Vera down near the cage. Rua tried to work from the top in half-guard, but Vera held on and prevented him from doing anything. Rua eventually managed to pass to side control and Vera tried to scramble to his feet. Rua landed short punches and a knee to the body as Vera stood up.
The fighters traded knees and Rua attempted a takedown. Vera countered with a guillotine choke and pulled butterfly guard. Rua pulled his neck out and landed an elbow from the top. He passed to half-guard and landed some solid punches and elbows. Rua got back to side control and took Vera’s back. He landed punches and hammerfists in the final 20 seconds. 10-9 Rua.
Vera landed more kicks in round two, but Rua rocked him with punches. He poured it on with more big shots, but Vera managed to stay on his feet. Rua continued to throw punches and Vera stopped his momentum with a standing elbow and a left cross. Rua slowed way down and Vera threw kicks to the body. An elbow scored for Vera, but Rua hurt him again with punches and knees. Rua dragged Vera to the mat and took his back.
A bloodied Vera tried to counter with a back elbow and he stood up as Rua landed uppercuts. Vera backed away and both fighters landed right hooks. Vera scored with another standing elbow and a right hand that prompted Rua to clinch against the fence. Vera tripped Rua to the canvas and landed short strikes from the top. Vera did little but land occasional knees to the body before the bell. 10-9 Rua, despite the takedown.
Vera closed in with a front kick to the body and a knee in round three. He clinched and Rua reversed against the fence. Vera avoided a takedown and landed a knee. Rua responded with a one-two and an elbow. After an exchange of punches, the fighters clinched and Rua landed a knee. Vera dropped down to his knees and Rua landed a right hook and a knee to the body.
Vera stood and threw kicks and punches to the body. He followed with a head kick that was blocked. Vera landed knees to the body and Rua took him down in the middle of the cage. Rua tried to pass from half-guard to mount. He could not get there, but postured up with punches and elbows. Rua trapped Vera’s arm and landed short strikes to close out the round. 10-9 Rua.
Vera landed knees in round four and Rua countered with punches and a takedown attempt. The fighters clinched against the cage and Rua landed a nice knee to the body. Vera tried to sweep his leg out and landed a knee. Rua replied with an elbow over the top and backed away. Vera scored with standing elbows, but Rua drilled him with an uppercut.
Another clinch ensued against the fence and Rua threw occasional knees to the thigh. He backed away and avoided an elbow attempt from Vera. Big punches were exchanged and Rua landed an uppercut. He hurt Vera with a left hook and a one-two and Vera collapsed to the mat. Rua landed two punches on the ground and the fight was stopped.
Winner: Mauricio Rua by TKO (Punches) at 4:09 of round four. He improves to 21-6-0.
Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida vs Ryan “Darth” Bader
Machida landed front kicks to the leg and body in the opening minute and Bader closed in with a quick combination to the body. Machida scored with a vicious body kick and he avoided Bader’s lunging counterpunches. A front kick landed to the chest of Bader and Machida sent him off-balance with a lead right hook. Machida countered a left hand with a body kick and Bader clinched. Machida broke away and just missed with a head kick. He landed a body kick before the bell. 10-9 Machida.
Machida kept his distance again in the second round, but Bader managed to sneak in a lunging right hook. Bader rushed in and Machida dropped him with a counter right hand. Bader fell to the mat and Machida landed two more punches for good measure.
Winner: Lyoto Machida by KO (Punches) at 1:32 of round two. He improves to 18-3-0.
Joe “J-Lau” Lauzon vs Jamie “C-4″ Varner
Quick punches were exchanged in the opening minute and Varner fired off a nice combination to the body and head. He rocked Lauzon with a right hook soon after, but Lauzon recovered. Lauzon flurried and landed a knee that backed Varner up. Varner just missed with a jumping knee and two standing elbows.
A body kick scored for Varner and he followed with a combination. Lauzon covered up and landed a left hook to the body and a quick flurry. Varner scored with a left to the liver and Lauzon answered with a right. Varner floored Lauzon with a right hook, but Lauzon regained his composure and worked for an inverted armbar. 10-9 Varner.
Varner landed a leg kick and followed with a four-punch combination in the second round. Lauzon blocked the punches, but he was unable to land anything in return. Varner threw more leg kicks and a standing elbow. He landed a knee and another standing elbow and Lauzon countered with punches. Varner tried to pull guard with a guillotine choke, but Lauzon escaped and took his back.
Varner stood up against the cage and escaped Lauzon’s grip. Varner punched to the body repeatedly and the fighters unloaded with big shots. Lauzon tripped Varner and landed elbows from side control. Varner managed to stand and Lauzon took his back. Lauzon dragged Varner down and worked for a rear-naked choke. He transitioned to mount and then to an armbar, but Varner closed out the round on top with elbows. 10-9 Lauzon.
Time was called early in round three after Varner forgot his mouthpiece, but action resumed and Lauzon looked for a takedown. Varner took Lauzon down and moved to half-guard. Lauzon swept and the fighters returned to their feet. Varner flurried to the body and followed with standing elbows. Lauzon countered a takedown by transitioning to a triangle choke. He locked it on and landed elbows until Varner was forced to submit. Fantastic fight.
Winner: Joe Lauzon by Submission (Triangle Choke) at 2:44 of round three. He improves to 22-7-0.
Mike “Quick” Swick vs DaMarques “Darkness” Johnson
Swick landed two big right hands early in the fight. The second one hurt Johnson, but he recovered and clinched. Swick broke away and landed another right hook. Johnson replied with a combination and a nice right of his own. After a right hook and a knee from Swick, Johnson tripped him to the mat against the cage and landed an elbow from the top.
Johnson landed strikes from Swick’s guard, but Swick battled back to his feet and the fighters absolutely teed off with punches. Swick landed a big knee, but Johnson countered with two hooks and took Swick down. Johnson worked his way to mount and rained down punches. Swick scrambled as Johnson landed elbows. Johnson secured a Brabo Choke and Swick fought to escape. 10-9 Johnson.
Right hands landed for both fighters early in round two and Swick caught a body kick. He tripped Johnson to the mat and landed one diving right hand that immediately put Johnson out. Swick landed two more punches before the fight was stopped. Big victory for Swick in his long-awaited comeback.
Winner: Mike Swick by KO (Punches) at 1:20 of round two. He improves to 15-4-0.
Nam Phan vs Cole “Magrinho” Miller
Miller landed a front kick to the face seconds into the fight and followed with jabs. Phan put together a combination to the head and body and followed with another one. Punches were exchanged and Miller threw a kick to the chest. A three-punch flurry and two jabs scored for Miller.
Phan put him on the defensive with four hard left hooks. He followed with an overhand right and a big combination to the head and body. Phan continued to mix up his strikes in the final minute and Miller responded with a body kick and stiff jabs. Phan flurried before the bell. 10-9 Phan.
An exchange of leg kicks and jabs opened round two and Miller threw head kicks. The pace remained high as the fighters traded punches and Miller began to target the body as well. A nice right hook and a series of jabs landed for Miller and Phan answered with a combination. Big punches scored for both fighters and Miller got the better of the exchange.
Miller stuck to his jab from a distance as Phan looked to close in with punches. Miller landed a front kick and Phan countered with a left hook to the liver. Phan unloaded with a three-punch combo and Miller circled away. A trio of straight rights snapped Phan’s head back, but he returned fire with a lunging left. Another left landed for Phan late in the close round. 10-9 Miller.
Phan was aggressive with punches in the final round and he wobbled Miller with a left hook. Miller recovered as Phan closed in with more punches. Phan just missed with a head kick and continued to score with punches. Miller looked for a takedown and Phan stuffed it. A left-right combo to the body and head landed for Phan and the fighters exchanged jabs.
Miller avoided a one-two from Phan and landed four punches in succession. Phan punched to the head and body and landed two nice left hooks. Miller used his jab to keep Phan at a distance whenever possible and he connected with two right hands. In the final minute, Miller landed a solid combination and just missed with a flying knee. Punches were exchanged until the bell. 10-9 Phan, just barely, despite Miller’s late rally.
Winner: Nam Phan by Split Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) after three rounds. He improves to 18-10-0.
Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis vs Wagner “Caldeirao” Prado
The fighters circled early on and Davis kept his distance as Prado pushed forward with punches and landed a right hook. He closed in and looked to set up more punches, but Davis inadvertently poked him in the right eye. Time was called and Prado was deemed unfit to continue due to double vision and bleeding from the eye.
Result: No Decision (Accidental Eye Poke) at 1:28 of round one. Davis is now 9-1-0, 1 ND, while Prado moves to 8-0-0, 1 ND.
Rani Yahya defeated Josh “The Fluke” Grispi by Submission (North-South Choke) at 3:15 of round one. He improves to 17-7-0 with the win.
Philip De Fries defeated Oli Thompson by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) at 4:16 of round two. He improves to 9-1-0, 1 NC with the win.
Manny “The Anvil” Gamburyan defeated Michihiro Omigawa by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) after three rounds. He improves to 12-7-0 with the win.
John Moraga defeated “Useless” Ulysses Gomez by KO (Elbow & Punches) at 3:46 of round one. He improves to 11-1-0 with the win.