Belal Muhammad was able to grind out a dominant decision win over Stephen Thompson tonight at UFC Fight Night 199 with his takedowns and long periods of control on top.
Side kick to the body from Thompson doesn’t land cleanly. He lands a left hand on the outside. Now a head kick attempt that just misses.
Muhammad in on an early takedown attempt and Thompson manages to stuff it. Thompson working more kicks now. He steps forward with a one-two.
Muhammad drives into another takedown and gets Thompson down to one knee and grapevines a leg and they both start trading punches from close quarters like this.
Thompson does well to turn into Muhammad and stand up, but Muhammad switches to press him up against the cage again. They jockey for position against the cage as Thompson turns into him. Muhammad trying for a guillotine, but doesn’t get it.
Thompson with a nice knee in close, but then Muhammad starts working hard for another takedown and another single gets Thompson back to one knee again.
Thompson able to stand, but Muhammad has back control. Now he goes for another takedown and is able to get onto Thompson’s back.
Muhammad landing heavy punches as Thompson is on his knees and just covering up. Constant blows from Muhammad but Thompson is defending most of it and the ref isn’t telling him to fight out from the position. Hammerfists from Muhammad in the final few seconds of the round.
left hand for Thompson. Now a side kick to the body and attempts to go upstairs too. Now another head kick attempt. He lands a punch to the body.
Nice stepping one-two from Thompson. left hand for him. Another clean one-two, but then Muhammad drives in for his latest takedown attempt. Thompson down only momentarily and then back up. Muhammad still clinched up and then works an ankle pick takedown this time.
Half-guard for Muhammad with lots of time to work here. Muhammad starting to work for a kimura here and softens up his opponent with knees to the thigh.
Muhammad still working on the submission, but Thompson gets his arm free. Muhammad still fancies the kimura though and starts to work for it again.
Muhammad in side control and now gives up on the kimura. Thompson gets him back to half-guard, but Muhammad starts to drop down some solid elbows.
Final 10 seconds and Muhammad postures up and lands some more nice elbows to the head and Thompson has a cut to the edge of his right eye.
One-two for Thompson, but Muhammad immediately bullies his way into the clinch. He’s working for a takedown now against the cage. He gets ‘Wonderboy’ to his knees and then gets him fully to the mat.
Muhammad almost in full mount here and landing a few punches. Thompson to his knees again and eating a few more punches.
Thompson back to his feet, but Muhammad remains in the clinch. Muhammad trying for a double leg and Thompson threatens with a guillotine and gets on top of him for a moment.
Muhammad back up and it looks as if Thompson might be able to get back to striking range, but then Muhammad transitions into another takedown and this time lands it in the center of the Octagon.
Muhammad in half-guard now and continuing to implement his grinding gameplan. Light punches from Muhammad. Now he passes to side control, then knee-on-belly and lands a couple of elbows.
Muhammad traps an arm and lands elbows, but then Thompson gets his arm free. Final 10 seconds and Muhammad lands a few more elbows.
So, no doubt about the winner here with Muhammad being in control on the mat for much of the fight to earn a unanimous decision victory (30-25, 30-26 x2).