Rashad Evans cruised to victory against Phil Davis tonight at UFC On FOX 2, and while it wasn’t his most exciting performance ever in the Octagon it will earn him his long-awaited title shot against Jon Jones.
The opening round started out tentatively as both men tried to work their way into the fight.
Surprisingly it was Davis who was perhaps edging the striking thanks, using his range advantage well and landing some solid kicks.
The big moments in the round belonged to Evans however as in the final minutes he managed to catch one of Davis’ kicks and used it to take him down.
Eventually he worked his way to side control and then caught Davis in the crucifix position and began to rain down blows on his exposed head as his opponent desperately tried to break free.
Finally he managed to do so, but those moments won Evans the round and left Davis with a bloodied lip.
Heading into round two a little of the wind appeared to have been taken out of Davis sails and Evans began to take a grip of the fight.
Davis was throwing less offense now while Evans was upping his own striking output.
His best moment of the round however was again due to a takedown in the final minute, swiftly moving to side control and landing some blows to his head.
Davis tried to get his own ground game going in the third, but he must have been down-hearted when his initial takedown attempt was stuffed by Evans and then after some scrambles ensued Evans managed to get him on his back momentarily, but Davis did eventually get back up on his feet.
Up against the cage Evans landed one of his best punches of the fight so far, a big uppercut that snapped Davis head upwards.
Davis would end the latter part of the round on a more positive note though as he landed a solid takedown, though Evans didn’t take long to bet back up from underneath him.
The fourth was fairly uneventful and relatively even with Davis best moment being a solid kick to the ribs that reverberated around the arena, while Evans appeared to stagger him slightly with a counter in the last 10 seconds.
The final round was big for Evans. Again he was able to catch one of Davis kicks, but this time he didn’t use it to take him down, but instead just held it and fired off a rapid-fire series of powerful uppercuts that dropped him to the canvas.
Evans follows him down and slickly moves to side control and then almost immediately to the mounted crucifix and begins his ground and pound assault.
To his credit Davis manages to spin out of this dangerous spot and also defends his back from being taken as he gets on his feet again.
Davis is tired though and isn’t offering any real threat to Evans on the feet. That allows Evans to coast to the final bell, landing a couple of hard right hands along the way.
Onto the scorecards and it’s no surprise that Evans picks up a clean sweep (50-45 x5).
This was pretty much one way traffic, though it was by no means a dominating or impressive performance by the former champion.
He will get his chance to fight Jones for the 205lb title though, and that should be a far more exciting fight.