Alistair Overeem outpointed Roy Nelson tonight at UFC 185 with a good performance punctuated by good work to the body with knees and kicks.
Kick to the thigh from Overeem amidst a tentative start. Nelson looks more eager to exchange, but they are both easing into this one slowly. Overeem jumps into a knee to the midsection.
Nelson tries an overhand right, but it’s blocked. A leg kick from Overeem knocks Nelson slightly off-balance.
Another low kick for Overeem. Left hook now. Nelson lands a left and Overeem one in return.
Nelson steps forward with a left and a right. Knee to the body from Nelson. He lands another one and then a leg kick. Big knee again.
Nelson closes the distance and Overeem covers up as Nelson unloads a bunch of punches. Is Overeem in trouble? No, he suddenly moves away comfortably and seems fine. Rope-a-dope?
Overeem blasts a big knee to the body. He unleashes a flurry of strikes as he steps up the pace a little.
The pace slows a bit again with Overeem maintaining distance. Back to that knee to the body and then blasts a big kick to the same spot. That had to hurt. Nelson keeps pldding forward though and eats one last knee before the end of a good round for Overeem.
Push kick from Overeem. Low kick for Nelson. Nelson moving forward with intent, but Overeem catches him and then is back to his leg kicks and knee.
Right hand from Overeem and a kick. Overeem steps in and eats a hard punch from Nelson. That was big and almost took Overeem’s mouthpiece out, but the Dutchman took it and is back on the offense again.
Kick to the knee from Overeem. Front kick to the body. Nelson moving forward with intent again and Overeem decides to hit reverse gear and literally runs away which gets him booed by the crowd.
Overeem back to offensive work now. He initiates a takedown attempt, but Nelson is straight back up. Knee to the body and now a kick to it. Low kick to the knee and then Overeem has to move away again to avoid getting countered while slightly off-balance.
Minute to go in the round and Nelson is trying to stalk Overeem. He closes the distance and digs hard to the body while Overeem covers his head and then pushes him away.
Overeem leaps into another powerful knee. Final 10 seconds and Nelson backs Overeem up against the cage again. Overeem covering his head and Nelson seems unsure what punch to land and just ducks for a takedown as the bell sounds.
Overeem switching stances and then lands a kick to the body. He thinks about a takedown, but doesn’t go for it. He sneaks in a right hand and then a knee.
Knee lands for Overeem as Nelson is off-balance and it drops him to the ground. That was to the groin though and Nelson needs a timeout to recover.
Nelson recovers and they’re back at it. Front kick to the body for Overeem. Right hand and tries a spinning elbow that doesn’t work out and he has to run away.
Right hand lands and a body kick. Nelson misses with an uppercut but lands a punch that almost stops Overeem in his tracks. They clinch up and that give Overeem a breather before they break.
In close again they exchange and a punch from Nelson grazes Overeem. Nelson trying to stalk him down, but Overeem suddenly goes upstairs with a head kick and Nelson looks a little wobbled. Another head kick, but not as good a connection this time.
Nelson still standing, but he takes a deep breath. Hard body kick from Overeem. Side kick to the body. Another knee – Nelson’s mid-section is taking an absolute beating.
Hard right hand from Nelson is blocked. Jumping knee to the body from Overeem. Low kick from Nelson.
30 seconds to go and Nelson fakes an uppercut and lands a left hook that drops Overeem. His eyes still look clear though and he manages to get back up again. Nelson doesn’t go all out for the finish and Overeem manages to survive to the end of the fight.
A little scare at the end their, but overall this was a smart, assured performance from Overeem who rightly earns a unanimous decision victory (30-27 x3).