In the opening bout on the main card of tonight’s Strikeforce: Diaz Vs Noons event Tryron Woodley put in an impressive display against Andre Galvao.
From the off it was clear that Galvao was struggling to cope with Woodley’s power punches straight down the middle, and found himself momentarily dazed on the floor early after being caught cleanly.
Aside from some sloppy telegraphed takedowns Galvao was unable to offer anything in return. After one failed attempt Woodley rained down some blows on his opponent and when the Brazilian tried to stand again it was evident that he was still rocked as he struggled to maintain his balance.
Sensing the end was near Woodley swooped in and had a chance to land just one more blow before the referee stepped in to bring an end to the punishment. Some will argue it was premature but Galvao looked completely out of it and was only going to suffer needlessly if the action had continued.
A little later Josh Thomson and JZ Cavalcante stepped into the cage for their lightweight bout and the first round alone was worth the admission fee.
Thomson got clipped with a right hand that sent him to the mat early in the first, but he recovered and moved immediately for a takedown. JZ then pounced on a very deep guillotine choke, but somehow Thomson stayed conscious despite being in danger for well over a minute.
Eventually he slipped out and began to gain some retribution via ground and pound as the crowd cheered. Then as the round ended he sunk in an arm triangle but the bell sounded to save JZ.
In the second round Thomson continued his momentum by getting JZ down and controlling him their for much of the round.
In the final round JZ needed to pick things up and he did just that, pushing the pace and getting Thomson to the mat and securing mount. He wasn’t able to make much of an impact from their though and Thomson does a good job getting back to full guard.
Towards the closing stages of the round JZ scores another takedown and stifles his opponent against the cage and count down the clock.
It looks to be a tough fight to score for the judges with much appearing to hinge on how you see the first round, but I felt Cavalcante had done enough to win. Surprisingly though Thomson scored a unanimous decision victory with one judge even scoring all three rounds in his favor. That’s puzzling given JZ’s dominance in the final round.
Still it was a good fight and both men can feel happy that they put on a show. Thomson now looks set for a rubber match with current 155lb champion Gilbert Melendez while on this showing JZ will also remain a threat in the weight class.