Neil Magny delivered an assured, well-rounded performance tonight against Robbie Lawler in the co-main event of UFC On ESPN+ 33 to claim a unanimous decision victory.
Leg kick for Magny and then a body kick. Magny lands another body kick. Good body punch from Lawler.
Into clinch territory and Lawler lands a couple of punches and then trying to work a takedown against the cage. He goes to his knees without successfully completing this though. Magny doing well to defend and now threatening to set up a potential d’arce choke.
Lawler on his knees and proceeding with caution. Magny with body punches and then looks for his neck again. Lawler gets to his feet, but Magny staying on his back with one hook in.
There’s a bit of a jockey for position, but Magny stays on him and then pulls him down on top of him. Lawler able to reverse and get on top though with the best part of two minutes to go.
Magny able to stand back up and turns Lawler into the cage. Good knee to the body from Magny and now trying for a double leg and lands it.
Lawler scrambles to his knees and Magny is working on his neck again. Magny has Lawler’s head between his legs and landing big body punches as the round ends.
Low leg kick from Lawler as he presses forward eagerly to start the second round. Low leg kick for Magny as they settle down again.
Lawler misses with a left hgand. Magny with a kick and then presses into range looking for a takedown against the cage. He lands it and is now on top in half-guard.
Magny looking to get full mount and Lawler gives up his back in response. Magny starting to look for the rear-naked choke.
There’s a scramble, but Magny stays put. Now Magny trying to set up the rarely seen twister submission, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen. Lawler landing a backwards elbow to the head in the mean time.
Lawler trying to scramble again. Magny staying on top for now. Lawler gets to the cage and wants to stand, but Magny is stifling him and briefly threatens with a choke. Now punches to the head from him.
Lawler stands at last with a minute to go. Elbow strike from Magny and then from the clinch lands a big elbow, then separates.
Magny with a punch from range. Glancing jab for him. Lawler looking threatening, but not actually letting his hands go as the round ends. Reminiscent of his fight against Colby Covington where he couldn’t get his offense going the way he has done in the past.
Front kick to the body from Magny. Right hook and a left hand from Lawler. Magny pulls guard. Lawler trying to work from inside Magny’s guard now.
Magny locking Lawler up from his back here and that forces a quick stand-up from the referee.
Leg kick from Lawler that’s checked. Lawler presses forward aggressively now and lands a punch and a knee.
Magny starts to move forward himself with two right hands. Now he works for a takedown and almost gets it, then readjusts and drags him to the mat.
Lawler back up, but Magny has him pressed up against the cage. Knees from Magny.
Back to striking range and Lawler with a punch. Magny with a push kick to the body. A few light punches from Magny and then a hard knee upstairs.
Another right hand for Magny. Jabs from Magny. Lawler tries for an uppercut, but Magny gets him into the clinch and marches him over to the cage.
Right hand and an elbow from Magny. He moves out of the clinch and starts to throw some hands, but then Lawler throws a head kick upstairs that gives him pause for thought.
Lawler into the clinch on the opposite side of the cage now. Magny gets out of that. Left and a right from Magny. Head kick attempt from Lawler is blocked. He tries again and misses, then once more and hits fresh air again.
Good work from Magny there, mixing things up with striking, clinch work and takedowns to earn a unanimous decision victory (30-27 x3), while unfortunately Lawler still appears to be struggling to find his old killer instinct at this late stage in his career.