Chris Curtis did well to keep his fight with Rodolfo Vieira standing tonight at UFC On ESPN 38 and battled his way to a win on the scorecards.
Curtis takes the center of the Octagon. Vieira with a calf kick. Punch from Vieira and then straight into a takedown attempt, but Curtis ends up on top.
They head back up to the feet with Vieira clinching Curtis up against the cage. Knee strike from Vieira strays to the groin and forces a stoppage to give Curtis time to recover.
They get back to it fairly quickly. Calf kick for Vieira. He throws a punch and then tries for a takedown, but it fails.
Vieira in again on a takedown and this time moves over to the cage as he works to get a pay off from this. Curtis able to battle his way out of that spot.
Now Curtis lets his hands go, working to the body and head. Leg kick from Vieira. He lands another, this time to the thigh instead of the calf.
left hand for Vieira and a body punch from Curtis. Exchange of punches and Vieira landed a clean strike there.
Front kick from Vieira strays close to the groin and forces another stoppage. However, a replay shows that it was above that illegal area and so the fight resumes.
Vieira continuing to have some success on the feet here. He lands a body punch. Now Curtis works to the body too. Heavy punch to the midsection from Vieira again.
Leg kick for Vieira. Another hard kick, this time to the inside of the calf. He lands another to the outside.
Body punch from Curtis. Vieira in on a single-leg takedown attempt against the cage. Curtis defending solidly for now though. Suddenly Vieira lets go of the leg and lands a good uppercut.
They go back to striking range. Kick from Vieira might have gone to the groin and Curtis complains to the ref, who tells them to continue.
Curtis obliges and soon after has to defend a takedown from Vieira and does so well. Body punch from Curtis. Leg kick from Vieira and a nice punch too.
They trade solid right hands. Leg kick for Vieira. One-two from Curtis and one to the body. Jab from Curtis. Now a left gets through.
Right hand from Vieira. One-two for him off the guard. leg kick. left hand from Curtis and then just whiffs the target with a head kick attempt.
Curtis starting to get busier with his punches and goes upstairs then lands a hard one to the body.
Another couple of clean punches score for Curtis. Now going back to the body. Vieira looking tired and eats another punch, but then throws back as the round is coming to a close.
Left hand for Curtis. Now a kick. More punches from Curtis who looks to be the fresher fighter by far now.
Vieira with a punch and Curtis counters with a couple of harder punches of his own. Body work from Curtis.
Body punch again from Curtis. Vieira attempts a takedown that doesn’t pay off. Soon after Curtis shrugs off another takedown. Vieira soon on the single-leg again and Curtis steps out of it.
Jab for Vieira. Punch in return from Curtis and then one to the body. Jab from Vieira as Curtis lands to the body.
Vieira comes off empty-handed from another takedown. Punch from Vieira. Again a failed takedown. Solid strike from Curtis. Head and body punch.
Straight left from Curtis. Jab and then a left hand from Curtis. They exchange a jab apiece. Vieira with two takedown attempts without success.
Punches landing now for Vieira. Curtis lands a solid straight left. Takedown from Vieira not working again, but credit to him for having the energy to still try these.
Body punch from Curtis. Vieira takedown stuffed and he rolls onto his back afterwards this time. Back up they go and almost immediately Vieira goes down again, fails and goes to his back. This time Curtis dives down and lands a punch, just moments before the final horn sounds.
Curtis showed rock-solid takedown defense tonight and while Vieira did actually offer up some solid striking on the feet, it was Curtis who gradually began to gain the upper-hand and worked well to the body on his way to a unanimous decision victory (29-28 x3).