Matthew Riddle showcased dominant grappling skills against Chris Clements tonight at UFC 149 before finishing with an impressive submission in the final round.
Riddle secured his first takedown with a nice trip early in the first round, but despite appearing to have secured top position he then appeared to let Clements back to his feet.
Soon after he was able to clinch up with Clements and pressed him up against the cage, but again after a moment he let him go and returned to the center of the Octagon.
Weird, but there was stranger to come as Riddle went to the body with a kick and hurt Clements who winced in pain and backed up. As Riddle looked to capitalize the referee Josh Rosenthal suddenly stepped in and shouted for a timeout after mistakingly assuming that Clements had been struck with an illegal strike to the groin.
He quickly realized his mistake and let them fight on, but it gave Clements just enough time to recover.
Riddle secures another trip takedown, but Clements is able to get back upright quickly. Riddle goes for another attempt, but this time Clements sprawls and after failing to take his back Riddle ends up on his back. He stands and is met by an uppercut from Clements as the round draws to a close.
Clements fires off some dangerous offense in the opening of round two, but before he can really capitalize with it he’s dumped down to the mat again. Riddle appears to be in complete control when the fight is on the ground, taking his back, moving to side control and then back again over the course of several minutes of dominance.
Finally Clements gets up though and has his best spell of the fight, first landing a hard kick to Riddle’s body and then stuffing a takedown attempt which leaves him in top control.
He drops some bombs on Riddle’s head, but to be fair Riddle was working very hard from his back and landed multiple elbows which prevented Clements from really teeing off on him.
Again Clements starts well in the third round with some good punches and kicks, but the problem is while he’s got the edge here he’s not got an answer for Riddle’s grappling superiority and before long he’s flat on his back again.
To his credit Clements finds a way back to his feet, but Riddle’s all over him and impressively manages to work his way into a standing arm triangle choke and then sweeps his legs out from under him and drops to the mat with it.
It’s locked in tight and Clements taps, handing Riddle what may well prove to be the ‘Submission Of The Night’ at 2.02mins of the final round.