Tyron Woodley used his wrestling to control Jordan Mein for three rounds at Strikeforce: Rockhold Vs Jardine to earn a split decision victory, but it wasn’t fun to watch.
Mein attempted to press the action on the feet from the opening bell, with Woodley frequently being back up against the cage, but the younger man wasn’t going all out on the attack, rather looking to pick his shots carefully.
Unsurprisingly it wasn’t long before Woodley looked for a takedown attempt, but he failed on the first attempt. Not to be put off, he briefly began to indulge him in the stand-up again before again looking to take the fight to the mat, and this time his tenacity paid off.
Immediately Woodley began looking for an arm triangle, but it was up against the cage and Mein defended smartly.
Woodley then began to just establish a dominant top control position and rode out much of the round in that manner before Mein finally worked his way back up to his feet in the final forty seconds.
Round two featured more of the same with Mein being placed on his back and controlled for much of the five minutes that followed.
Woodley’s focus appeared to be more on position rather than offense so it wasn’t the most thrilling of rounds, with perhaps the best offensive work coming from Mein with elbows to the head from the bottom, though some looked to be landing to the back of Woodley’s head.
The wrestler had a clear blueprint for victory now and continued to follow it in the third round, again getting an early takedown attempt and stifling Mein from inside his guard.
Disappointingly Woodley didn’t even look remotely interested in attempting to get a finish and was simply attempting to safely ride out the remaining minutes of the fight on top.
He was almost successful in that regard until the final minute when the referee opted to stand them up.
Mein wasn’t able to muster up anything significant in the stand-up in that final 60 seconds however and so it went to the judges scorecards.
The result seemed in little doubt, but Woodley’s lack of action in the fight almost cost him dearly as it turned out to be only a split decision victory with one judge somehow seeing the fight in favor of Mein (28-29, 29-28, 30-27).
While Woodley remains undefeated (10-9) and on course for a shot at the Strikeforce welterweight interim title, the promotion are currently in a transitional peroid and looking for new breakout stars and this isn’t the kind of performance that’s going to have won him many fans.