Nassourdine Imavov TKO’s Jared Cannonier In 4th Round At UFC On ESPN 57

Nassourdine Imavov earned a 4th round TKO victory over Jared Cannonier in the main event of UFC On ESPN 57 tonight that will be seen as premature by many due to the ref intervening while Cannonier was rocked but still on his feet.

Round One:

Cannonier wades forward behind a couple of punches. Low kick from Imavov. Body punch from Cannonier.

Swing and a miss from both men there. Calf kick for Cannonier but gets clocked by a counter punch from Imavov.

calf kick from Cannonier again. Jab for Imavov. One-two from Imavov. Jab for Cannonier now and then clinches up before marching Imavov over to the cage.

Cannonier bundles Imavov to the mat and tries to prevent him standing back up. Imavov does so though and then backs away.

Imavov gets warned by the ref for leading with his fingers. Calf kick for Cannonier. Jab from Imavov. Another calf kick for Cannonier. Body punch from Cannonier. Punch for Imavov as Cannonier kicks low to the calf again.

One-two upstairs from Cannonier. Fast right hand for him. Calf kick for Cannonier but Imavov catches his leg and punches him to the mat with it.

Cannonier back up and drives Imavov into the cage. Light knees to the leg from Cannonier. Cannonier trying to disrupt Imavov’s base to get the fight to the mat, but no luck so he just remains in the clinch until the round ends.

Round Two:

Inside leg kick for Cannonier. Imavov lands his jab. He lands it again. Oblique kick for Imavov. Inside leg kick from Cannonier. Uppercut for Imavov. Cannonier with a couple of punches.

Imavov trying for the muay thai clinch but Cannonier roughly shoves him away and knocks him off-balance for a moment.

Cannonier back to the clinch against the cage. They go back to striking range. calf kick for Imavov. Jab for Cannonier.

Cannonier clinches up against the cage again. Not too much happening from here and eventually they go back to striking range.

Imavov goes on the attack with a flurry of punches. cannonier loses his mouthpiece in that exchange but gets it back soon after. Calf kick for Cannonier.

Series of jabs from Imavov but then Cannonier throws a power punch back at him. Cannonier back into the clinch as he continues to balance out his striking work with grinding work at close quarters.

They break apart again and it’s Imavov who dishes out a few more solid punches to end the round.

Round Three:

Right hand gets through from Cannonier. Body punch from Cannonier as Imavov tries to counter. Cannonier with a one-two but Imavov avoids that and spins around to get the back clinch, then walks him over to the cage.

Imavov drags Cannonier down, but can’t keep him there. Cannonier facing the cage, but manages to turn into Imavov and then reverse the clinch position.

Imavov turns him and then backs off. Cannonier with a low kick and Imavov with a punch in response. Same thing happens again as Imavov starts to get his counter-striking timing down.

Cannonier battles into the clinch again. He’s not doing a whole lot form this position though. Cannonier with a knee to the body and then backs off.

Body kick for Imavov. Cannonier darts forward and lands a punch. One-two from Imavov. Jab for him. Cannonier tries for a kick but gets countered by an Imavov punch.

Cannonier returns to the clinch position against the cage. Final few seconds and they are back to striking range and Imavov just misses with a high kick.

Round Four:

Imavov working his jab to start the fourth round. Calf kick for Cannonier. Spinning back elbow attempt from Cannonier but it doesn’t land and Imavov is able to clinch to his back and walk over the cage.

Cannonier manages to get free. Jab lands for him. Solid right hand for Imavov. Heavy right hook from Imavov has Cannonier hurt and he runs away on unsteady legs.

Imavov pursues him and lands a couple of left hooks and at that point the ref jumps in to end the fight, handing Imavov what appears to be a premature TKO victory at 1.34mins of the 4th round.

Cannonier was clearly rocked by the initial punch there, but he stayed upright and there didn’t appear to be enough blows afterwards to justify the stoppage, though a finish might not have been far away given how things were going.

Ross launched MMA Insight (previously in 2009 as a way to channel his passion for the sport of mixed martial arts. He's since penned countless news stories and live fight reports along with dozens of feature articles as the lead writer for the site, reaching millions of fans in the process.