Mark Bocek showed superior ground skills tonight as he outpointed John Alessio over three rounds at UFC 145 in Atlanta.

Round one was all Bocek as he displayed his superior grappling skills against Alessio.

Bocek looked for an early takedown and while he didn’t get it straight away he was able to keep Alessio pressed up against the cage until he smartly used a leg sweep to take his man down to the mat.

From their Bocek looked very much in control from top position as he landed some elbows and attempted to improve his position. Alessio did manage to escape from half-guard to full guard briefly, but it wasn’t long before Bocek was passing that guard again and towards the end managed to take his back, though the rear-naked choke he was looking for wasn’t forthcoming.

After starting out exchanging strikes in relatively uneventful fashion in the early part of the second round Bocek again pressed in for a takedown against the fence and was successful in doing so. Then the pattern of the first round continued with Bocek methodically looking to improve his position from half-guard, but as the final minute approached Alessio finally managed to get out from under him and back to his feet.

Alessio attempted to get back into the fight with a flurry of strikes, but Bocek backed off momentarily before rushing forward and pressing Alessio up against the cage until the bell sounded.

In the third Alessio started with a sense of urgency and caught Bocek with a nice punch as he attempted to come in for another takedown. That brief moment of success was short-lived however as it wasn’t long before Bocek was again swooping in and as Alessio fell awkwardly he was immediately able to take his back.

Bocek was staying patient as he laid down a few punches and attempt to soften him up for a rear-naked choke, but with a couple of minutes to go Alessio was again able to get his feet back under him and escape.

Not letting him off the hook Bocek continued his grappling dominance by pressing his opponent up against the cage. They broke apart in the last 15 seconds with Bocek’s face bloodied from a cut, but Alessio was uinable to find a stoppage in the time that remained.

No surprises on the judges scorecards here, they all saw it in Bocek’s favor (30-27 x2, 29-28).

In all honesty this wasn’t the most thrilling of fights and certainly nothing to write home about, but it was a decent display of technical ground work from Bocek.