The Ultimate Fighting Championship came to the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri tonight for UFC on FOX 24: “Johnson vs Reis.” The event was headlined by a UFC Flyweight Championship bout between champion Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson and top contender Wilson Reis.
In tonight’s strawweight co-main event, former UFC title challenger “Thug” Rose Namajunas faced Michelle “The Karate Hottie” Waterson. Grappling ace Ronaldo “Jacaré” Souza battled Robert “The Reaper” Whittaker in middleweight action. MMARising.com has live play-by-play for the card.
UFC Flyweight Championship
Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson vs Wilson Reis
Johnson darted in and out with left and right hands in the opening two minutes. Reis kept the pressure on and he secured a brief takedown after catching a kick. Johnson returned to his feet and the fighters traded one-twos. Reis landed a lead right hook to the temple, but Johnson fired back with two hooks and a leg kick. He stuffed a takedown and landed a knee as Reis rose to his feet. Both men landed combinations late in the competitive round. 10-9 Johnson.
Johnson landed more quick combinations in the second round and he looked for a takedown after taking Reis’s back on the feet. Reis defended well and broke free from the clinch. A hard right hand landed for Johnson and he followed with rapid-fire rights that allowed him to briefly take Reis’s back again. Reis connected with a nice left cross, but Johnson fired right back with punching flurries and a body kick. He snapped Reis’s head back with a straight left hand and followed with a left hook, leg kick combo. Johnson dropped Reis with a knee to the body and he absolutely unloaded with punches and elbows on the ground. 10-8 Johnson.
Reis’s left eye swelled up as round three began and Johnson continued to get the better of the striking exchanges. He easily stuffed a Reis takedown attempt and cracked him with a kick to the body seconds later. Another body kick landed for Johnson and he went high with his next kick. Johnson punched his way into a clinch and took Reis down, then blasted him with hammerfists from the top. He secured a top-side crucifix and dropped elbows to Reis’s face, which opened a cut on Reis’s forehead. Johnson mounted him and landed more punches, then spun into a fight-ending armbar that forced Reis to submit.
Winner: Demetrious Johnson by Submission (Armbar) at 4:49 of round three. He improves to 26-2-1 and remains the UFC Flyweight Champion.
“Thug” Rose Namajunas vs Michelle “The Karate Hottie” Waterson
Waterson threw leg kicks from a southpaw stance in the opening minute and Namajunas countered with a right hand. Waterson secured a headlock and took Namajunas down into the scarf hold position. Namajunas took Waterson’s back in a scramble and used a full nelson to set up a move into top position. Waterson used a high guard to limit Namajunas’s offence, but Namajunas dropped three hard elbows and avoided an armbar attempt. Waterson stood and ate a knee on the way up. She landed a series of side kicks to Namajunas’s lead leg and body, but Namajunas countered with a right hand and a takedown. 10-9 Namajunas.
Waterson was wild with her kicks in round two, but she settled down and resumed throwing side kicks to Namajunas’s thigh. Namajunas used a one-two to set up a vicious head kick that sent Waterson crashing to the mat. Namajunas teed off with punches and elbows from the top as Waterson tried to hold on and set up an armbar. Namajunas landed more punches from the top and Waterson scrambled up to her feet. Namajunas hopped on her back and locked on a tight rear-naked choke. She dragged Waterson back down to the mat and Waterson was forced to submit.
Winner: Rose Namajunas by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) at 2:47 of round two. She improves to 6-3-0.
Robert “The Reaper” Whittaker vs Ronaldo “Jacaré” Souza
Souza closed the distance and landed a right hook in the opening minute, but he was unable to secure a clinch. Whittaker answered with a lead left hook and he blocked a spinning back kick. Souza clinched and dragged Whittaker down to the mat, but Whittaker scrambled and stood up. Souza took him down again and hopped on his back, but Whittaker managed to shake him off. Back on the feet, Whittaker knocked an off-balance Souza down with three quick hooks. Souza fired back with a trio of overhand rights and the fighters traded punches in close. Whittaker lunged in with left and right hands before the bell. 10-9 Whittaker.
Whittaker floored Souza with a right hook early in round two and he followed with more shots on the ground that appeared to briefly knock Souza out. The fight continued and Souza recovered, so Whittaker allowed him to stand and cracked him with an uppercut. He followed with a head kick and a wobbly Souza circled to the side. Lead left hooks scored for Whittaker, who mixed in front kicks to the body. Big punches landed for Whittaker and he badly rocked Souza with a head kick. Souza fell to the mat and Whittaker unloaded with elbows and punches until the fight was stopped.
Winner: Robert Whittaker by TKO (Elbows & Punches) at 3:28 of round two. He improves to 18-4-0.
Renato “Moicano” Carneiro vs Jeremy “Lil’ Heathen” Stephens
Carneiro opened the action with kicks to Stephens’s lead leg and body, and he followed with right hands while circling on the outside. Stephens finally connected with a hard right hook and he began to score with leg kicks of his own. Carneiro took him down and worked from the top in Stephens’s half-guard. Stephens countered with a prolonged kimura attempt until the bell. 10-9 Carneiro.
Carneiro fought off a takedown attempt early in round two and scored with a hard right hand, but Stephens answered back with three punches and a leg kick. An exchange of kicks ensued and Carneiro picked his shots from a distance. Stephens closed in and landed a combination that prompted Carneiro to run away. Power punches were exchanged and both men landed stiff jabs before backing away. Carneiro caught a body kick and missed with a spinning back kick. Stephens landed a punch-kick combo late in the close round. 10-9 Stephens.
The final round began with Carneiro taking Stephens down near the base of the cage. Stephens battled back to his feet and ate a right hand to the temple on the way up. He walked Carneiro down with punches, which led to a brief clinch. Carneiro broke free and he wobbled Stephens with two leg kicks. A right hook and an uppercut also landed for Carneiro, but Stephens fired back with a right hand. Carneiro clipped him behind the ear with a left hook and the fighters traded hard punches. Stephens stuffed a takedown and landed a one-two, but he ate a right hook to the jaw at the bell. 10-9 Carneiro.
Winner: Renato Carneiro by Split Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) after three rounds. He improves to 11-0-1.