Daniel Cormier claimed a win in his UFC debut tonight at UFC On FOX 7 against Frank Mir, but his clinch-heavy strategy wasn’t a crowd-pleaser.
Mir fllicks off a few high kicks to start the fight, but none find their mark. Cormier presses forward with a strike and Mir lands a nicely timed knee strike to the midsection.
Cormier presses Mir up against the cage and lands a couple of uppercuts. He grabs him in a head lock and fires in a knee before the break apart.
There’s an exchange of punches in close which Cormier gets the better of and he then presses Mir back up against the cage.
Cormier steps back just for a second and fires off body shots before getting right back into the clinch. Again a couple of punches to the midsection and then a knee to follow. Mir unable to get out. He lands a knee to Cormier’s stomach, but the much harder offense is clearly coming from Cormier.
They shift apart for a few seconds, but Cormier goes back to the clinch and again presses him up against the cage. He steps back and throws a few punches and Mir responds with a high kick that misses the mark.
Cormier tries a kick of his own, but slips and Mir tries to keep him down, but is unsuccessful. Then the round comes to an end with the two back in striking range but neither committing with a strike.
Onto round two then and Mir’s back to using kicks to keep distance, landing with one to the leg. Cormier springs up with a flying head kick, but it’s well wide of the mark.
Cormier manages to close of the angles and get Mir back against the cage. A couple of knees to the side and to the legs from DC and then they separate.
Cormier back up, but then charges forward with a couple of strikes and pushes Mir back to the cage. Mid-way through the fight now and the former Strikeforce fighter has certainly dictated the action so far.
Again they are apart and Mir’s trying to work his striking, but Cormier’s not looking to budge from his gameplan as he yet again clinches and pushes Mir to the mat.
Some nice shots start to land in close from Cormier and Mir throws a couple of straight punches that back him up.
Cormier lands a punishing blow to the body as he clinches up again, but the referee’s getting impatient now and quickly breaks them apart as the round comes to a close.
The final round is upon us and Mir tries a couple of head kicks that miss, then a hard leg kick that lands. Cormier catches one of his kicks and looks for the takedown, but Mir scrambles and is up instantly.
A brief clinch and then a punching exchange as they move away. Mir lands another solid kick to the body and a knee as Cormier appears to wince and clinches.
Breaking free Mir again looks to strike and even looks briefly to grab a hold of Cormier’s arm, but DC breaks free and fires off some hard punches.
Another clinch ensues, but the ref breaks them quickly. Mir with another good kick, but then strangely it’s he who opts to clinch and Cormier immediately reverses him.
Cormier bundles Mir to the mat, but doesn’t follow him to the ground, and as soon as he gets back to his feet Cormier’s got him back where he wants him agaisnt the fence.
The ref urges Cormier to work from the position and he throws a few punches before they are separated.
Cormier lands a body kick and Mir a punch in return as the final seconds of the fight slip away amid boo’s from the crowd.
So it’s on to the judges to decide the winner and they award Daniel Cormier the unanimous decision victory (30-27 x3).
So DC gets a win in his first UFC fight, but this wasn’t the exciting performance that would help him on his way to either a heavyweight title shot or a move down to light-heavyweight to face Jon Jones.