Mike Ricci and Colin Fletcher kicked off the PPV card at UFC 158 tonight and truth be told it wasn’t a particularly exciting fight, but Ricci did enough to earn a unanimous decision victory.
Both men throwing low kicks to start this fight off. They are keeping a fair distance apart so not much is landing.
Ricci steps forward and lands a nice punch that sends Fletcher bouncing off the cage.
Fletcher’s ok though and continues with his cautious approach to the early part of the fight. Ricci finds success again with a couple of left hands that connect to the face.
Not a whole lot happening, the occasional light kick landing and a few punches from Ricci, but nothing particularly hurtful yet – though a illegal low blow from Fletcher does and causes a brief stoppage.
In the final 10 seconds Fletcher catches a kick from Ricci and bundles him up against the cage, but the bell sounds before he can really make use of the situation.
Nice couple of kicks from Fletcher start the second round. They exchange again and Ricci lands a kick of his own and then gets Fletcher to the mat.
Ricci lands a few punches while Fletcher throws up his legs looking for a submission. He reaches for a leg hoping for a leg lock, but there’s nothing doing. He does get back up to his feet though and is immediately looking for a takedown of his own which doesn’t pay off.
They break apart and get back to the striking battle. At this stage it becomes apparent that Fletcher has a cut on his face, presumably from the early punches he absorbed at the start of the round.
They are fighting from range again and trading a few leg kicks, but it’s really only a few straight punches from Ricci that land with any real power.
Fletcher goes for a spinning backfist towards the end of the round, but it only grazes Ricci.
Onto the third round and Fletcher looks for a takedown, but Ricci shows good takedown defense and fends it off against the cage.
They continue to clinch and spin around trying to gain an advantage over each other, but it’s a bit of a stalemate and they finally break apart with three minutes remaining.
They exchange a few punches and kicks and it’s fairly even stuff. Fletcher tries a spinning attack that doesn’t quite connect fully.
With 90 seconds remaining Ricci gets a takedown and works some ground and pound from inside Fletcher’s guard.
Ricci takes his back and starts looking for the rear-naked choke. Fletcher defends, but then Ricci goes for an armbar attempt that doesn’t pay off and Fletcher’s able to spin out and ends the round on top throwing a few punches.
So, not a particularly thrilling encounter, but nonetheless Ricci does enough to win all three rounds in the judges eyes (30-27 x3) and he’s declared the winner.