Elias Theodorou stayed on the outside and utilized his kicking techniques and movement tonight at UFC Fight Night 121 in Australia to get the better of the veteran Daniel Kelly via a judges decision.
Theodorou immediately goes for several kicks to Kelly’s heavily strapped up legs. Working from range he continues to work a variety of kicks, occassionally working working to the body and upstairs too.
Kelly struggling to get into range to land something meaningful of his own. He seems to land a clipping punch that seemed to give Theodorou pause for thought for a moment, but then he gets right back to his kicking game.
Some solid body kicks from Theodorou. Kelly continues plodding forward. Theodorou oddly jumps into the air just as Kelly pegs him with a punch.
Two body kicks in quick succession from Theodorou. Kelly manages to close the gap and land a few uppercuts. Theodorou isn’t so comfortable when he’s not working from distance, but Kelly is struggling to keep him close for extended periods of time.
Theodorou not working as many leg kicks as he did at the start of the round, which is a little surprising as that seemed like a sound strategy given that Kelly’s lower limbs are vulnerable.
A leg kick and then one of the body from Theodorou. Clinch from Kelly, but Theodorou is soon back out, throwing kicks as he does so. He has some awkward ones that connect, but not with much impact.
Kelly tries for a judo throw, but it’s blocked. Kelly back into clinch range. He works from there and then executes a nice throw to get Theodorou down, but he can’t keep him there for long.
Back on the feet Theodorou lands an accidental groin strike which forces a brief stoppage. Back to it they go and a solid leg kick from Theodorou knocks Kelly slightly off-balance.
Kelly continuing to try to push the pace and manges to close the distance. He lands a nice punch that sends Theodorou backwards, but he then counters with a head kick.
Getting back to a safer range, Theodorou gets back to that leg kick. Kelly into the clinch, eating a knee as he does so. He presses Theodorou to the cage, but only for a brief moment before he breaks free.
Body kick for Theodorou. Clinch work for Kelly again and a judo throw from him fails. Body kick for Theodorou. Front leg head kick lands upstairs, but not with another power to trouble Kelly.
Leg kicks from Theodorou and the body. Kelly stumbles to the mat for a split-second, with his leg perhaps having given way there. Soon after Kelly does again look like his leg might be bothering him.
Hower, then he lands a nice kick of his own. Kelly continuing to march forward through kicks. He closes the distance and manages to get Theodorou down.
Kelly follows him down and sinks in a rear-naked choke. The crowd loudly cheer him on, but Theodorou stays calm and gardually manages to work his way free. He stays clinched up with Theodorou, pressing Kelly to the cage.
Kelly gets away and Theodorou is straight back to his kicking game. Kelly marches forward, but Theodorou utilizes the lateral movement thats served him well so far in the fight.
Kelly into the clinch in the final minute. Theodorou landing strikes from there though and then backs out. Kelly won’t stop hunting him down, but he’s eating more kicks to the body as he does so and doesn’t seem to have the striking offense to really make Theodorou pay, so we’re headed to the judges scorecards here.
Theodorou was the more active, mobile and effective fighter here, so it’s no surprise to see him claiming the unanimous decision victory (30-28, 30-27, 30-26).