Welcome to F4WOnline.com's live coverage of UFC Fight Night 121: Werdum vs. Tybura, emanating from the Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, Australia.
The Octagon returns to Sydney for the first time in three years, bringing a five-round heavyweight bout as the headliner.
Former UFC Heavyweight Champion Fabricio Werdum makes the quick turnaround after fighting just six weeks ago as he takes on Marcin Tybura. Werdum is looking to score his second straight win to get back in the title picture, while Tybura puts his three-fight win streak on the line.
Also on the card is a women's flyweight bout as Bec Rawlings takes on Jessica-Rose Clark, welterweights Tim Means and Belal Muhammad square off, and in prelim action, former Bellator Lightweight Champion Will Brooks looks to get back into the win column as he battles Nik Lentz.
Follow along with our live coverage of the event beginning at 6:30 p.m. Eastern time with preliminary action all the way through the main card.
UFC FIGHT PASS PRELIMS | 6:30 PM ET/3:30 PM PT
> Anthony Hamilton (15-8, 3-6 UFC) vs. Adam Wieczorek (8-1, 0-0 UFC)
Hamilton went to a cage clinch early and then got a takedown. He dominated him on the ground for most of the round, doing a fair bit of damage from half guard and even got into side control briefly. Wieczorek got up with about a minute left but wasn't able to do much on the feet before Hamilton got him back into a cage clinch at the end of the round. 10-9 Hamilton
Wieczorek landed a nice kick/punch combo that dropped Hamilton early in the round. Wieczorek did some damage on the ground while working for a head and arm choke from half guard. Hamilton made it to his feet halfway through the round and did slightly better on the feet. Hamilton got a late takedown but didn't do any damage and the round should go to Wieczorek. 10-9 Wieczorek, 19-19 overall after 2
Very close round that was entirely on the feet. Hamilton kept going for takedowns and Wieczorek defended them all. Hamilton had some cage clinch control time but didn't do much damage. Wieczorek did have the nice combinations on the feet and seemed to be pressing the action. Could go either way, I have it 29-28 Wieczorek.
Official result - Adam Wieczorek (9-1) by unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)
Wieczorek said that he had a hard time handling the time change and that explained his poor performance. He was asked to call someone out and didn't, saying he was going to concentrate on training. After all the good promos last week, this was a terrible use of mic time.
> Jenel Lausa (7-3, 1-1 UFC) vs. Eric Shelton (10-4, 0-2 UFC)
Lausa got the first takedown of the fight but didn't do anything from top position. Shelton actually did more damage from his back. After Shelton got to his feet, he immediately got a takedown of his own but he didn't do much either. Lausa got to his feet but Shelton took him down again and this time he did a little damage and stayed on top till the round ended. 10-9 Shelton
Much more dominant round from Shelton. He got an early takedown and was doing damage on the ground the whole time. He briefly got mount but Lausa escaped and got to his feet quickly. He took Shelton down with a guillotine but he quickly escaped and ended up on top. He stayed on top the rest of the round landing a ton of punches and elbows. At one point the strike count was 67-9 for Shelton. 10-8 Shelton, 20-17 after 2
Lausa blocked the first takedown but Shelton managed to get him down at 1:15 and held him down for the majority of the round. He landed a ton of elbows and punches on the ground. Total strike count was 186-11 for Shelton. Another 10-8 round for Shelton and 30-25 overall
Official result - Eric Shelton (11-4) by unanimous decision on scores of 30-27, 30-26 and 30-25
In his post-fight interview, Shelton put over Sydney as a beautiful city. He was very happy to finally get a UFC win and said he'd been waiting forever to do an interview. No call-out but he came off as a very likeable guy.
> Alex Chambers (5-3, 1-2 UFC) vs. Nadia Kassem (4-0, 0-0 UFC)
Women's Strawweights* (Kassem missed weight by 4 pounds)
Chambers got a takedown about 2 minutes and maintained top control for the rest of the round. Kassem did attempt an inverted heel hook and it looked close but once Chambers escaped, she was in control. Chambers did enough damage to avoid a standup and should easily take the round. 10-9 Chambers
Kassem was starting to do damage on the feet early in the round so Chambers was trying to take it to the ground. She got a takedown but Kassem almost immediately secured a triangle and was landing punches and elbows from her back while maintaining the choke. Chambers managed to avoid being finished but Kassem was doing a lot of damage. She eventually secured an armbar and used that to sweep into top position, landing a lot of punches and elbows before the round ended. 10-9 Kassem, 19-19 overall
Fun round. Chambers got a takedown again and Kassem immediately was going for another triangle. She didn't get it but eventually reversed position and did way more damage from top than Chambers was able to do. Chambers got back to her feet and was getting lit up in the last minute on the feet and Kassem likely took the round and the fight. 10-9 Kassem, 29-28 Kassem overall
Official result - Nadia Kassem (5-0) by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27 x 2)
Kassem was really popular with the crowd and did a spirited promo after the fight. She said that she may have to move up to flyweight but will take on anyone, anytime, anywhere. She's very young, very pretty and could be something some day.
FOX SPORTS 1 PRELIMS | 8 PM ET/5 PM PT
> Damien Brown (17-10, 2-2 UFC) vs. Frank Camacho (20-5, 0-1 UFC)
Lightweights* (Camacho missed weight by 4 pounds)
They spent the whole round either in clinches or on the ground with a ton of takedowns and reversals. Camacho landed far more strikes, both on the ground and for the brief times they were on their feet. Brown got two different rear naked chokes in the last minute but Camacho escaped and ended up in top position at the end of the round. Very close but 10-9 Camacho
Round 2 was entirely on the feet and Camacho lit up Brown for the most part, landing about 3 times as many strikes. Brown came on at the end and they were exchanging hard shots to the head at the end of the round. They embraced and shook hands before the end of the round. 10-9 Camacho, 20-18 overall..
Almost a replay of Round 2 but a little closer. Seemed like Camacho was only landing twice as many strikes, rather than 3 times as many. Both guys got great shots in though and both were bloody by the end. The last 30 seconds was both of them just throwing bombs with everything they had and both were smiling and the crowd was on their feet and cheering their lungs out at the end. Strike count was 201-84 for Camacho with 1 minute left and they both probably landed at least 20 more after that. 10-9 Camacho, 30-27 overall
Official result - Frank Camacho (21-5) by split decision (28-29, 30-27 and 29-28)
Camacho put over Sydney as well as Damien Brown as a tough opponent. Brown was very upset about not getting the win but in a standup war where you got outstruck over 2-1, that's gonna happen. Dan Hardy asked for a round of applause for both guys and also interviewed Brown after the fight. He thought he won two rounds but I'm not sure which two. He said the last 30 seconds was what fans pay to see and the crowd exploded for that.
> Rashad Coulter (8-2, 0-1 UFC) vs. Tai Tuivasa (5-0, 0-0 UFC)
Started off as a typical heavyweight battle with two fat guys just throwing punches and then going to the clinch when they got tired. Taivusa started to find his timing late in the round and dropped Coulter to the canvas with a hard leg kick. When he got up. Tuivasa landed a jumping knee to the chin for the highlight reel KO.
Official result - Tai Tuivasa (8-0) by KO (flying knee) at 4:35
Tuivasa was a huge favorite of the crowd and he had just secured his 8th straight first round KO. Dan Hardy asked him if he had a message for the heavyweight division and he said "It's me again". Crowd loved it. Dude is super charismatic and could be Mark Hunt for the next 10 years.
> Nik Lentz (27-8-2 1 NC, 11-5-1 1 NC UFC) vs. Will Brooks (19-3, 1-2 UFC)
Brooks got a takedown a couple minutes in but Lentz grabbed his neck on the way down. Once Brooks escaped from the guillotine, he immediately went back to his feet. Other than that brief stretch the rest of the round was on the feet. Brooks was landing more and cut open Lentz on his nose. Lentz had a couple takedown attempts stuffed and tried to get it to the cage a couple times as well. 10-9 Brooks but close
Brooks was controlling the fight on his feet and Lentz was all cut up and bleeding from various spots on his face. Then Brooks went for another takedown and completed it but Lentz secured a guillotine and Brooks very quickly tapped.
Official result - Nik Lentz (28-8-2) by submission (guillotine) at 2:05 of the 2nd round
Nik Lentz said he's a pro in there and would submit his mother in the Octagon if he had to. He said he'd put 50 grand of his own money on the line against anyone at American Top Team and sent that message straight to Dan Lambert. Good promo.
> Ryan Benoit (9-5, 2-3 UFC) vs. Ashkan Mokhtarian (13-2, 0-1 UFC)
Flyweights* (Benoit missed weight by 3 pounds)
Round 1 was almost entirely Mokhtarian trying to stay away from Benoit. Mokhtarian landed one shot that rocked Benoti about a minute in. Benoit had a nice combo at the end of the round. Other than that, it was just Benoit following Mokhtarian around the cage and the crowd was turning on this fight by the end of the round. 10-9 Benoit but almost a 10-10 round
Round 2 was similar but with a little more action. Mokhtarian was more agressive and rocked Benoit a couple of time with a really hard leg kick hurting him at one point. Crowd was booing pretty heavily at the end of the round when Mokhtarian was running away but Benoit got a late takedown and landed some punches right before the buzzer. Another very close round. 10-9 Mokhtarian, 19-19 overall
Final round had more action as Benoit, in particular, was much more aggressive. Mokhtarian landed a nice spinning back fist at one point and shortly after, Benoit landed a Superman punch. From out of nowhere, Benoit landed a head kick and knocked Mokhtarian out cold. He tried to go to the ground to land more punches but the ref stepped in to stop it.
Official result - Ryan Benoit (10-5) by KO (head kick) at 2:38 of Round 3
Benoit put over his training partners and eventually got around to saying Ashkan was a good opponent but these two had a lot of heat going into this. No callout.
FOX SPORTS 1 MAIN CARD | 10 PM ET/7 PM PT
> Alexander Volkanovski (15-1, 2-0 UFC) vs. Shane Young (10-3, 0-0 UFC)
Volkanovski primarily used leg kicks for the whole round but would switch to punch combos to set up takedown attempts. Young managed to block all but one of the takedowns but that's pretty much all he did as Volkanovski had a 21-3 advantage in strikes landed, easily taking the round. 10-9 Volkanovski
Volkanovski was able to land 3 takedowns in round 2, even though Young's standup game was a little more effective. Not much, though, as Volkanovski had a 48-12 advantage in strikes landed by the end of the round. Young was able to get up fairly easily every time he was taken down though. 10-9 Volkanovski, 20-18 overall
Young tried but was just completely outclassed here. He actually managed a takedown but Volkanovski was quickly up and then landed an Angle Slam type takedown. After that, Volkanovski kept Young down for most of the rest of the round and never stopped landing punches and elbows. Strike count was 71-14 with about a minute left. Easy 10-9 Volkanovski, 30-27 overall. Only question is whether any of the rounds were dominant enough for a 10-8. I don't think so.
Official result - Alexander Volkanovski (16-1) by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26 x 2)
Volkanovski said that Young was a tough opponent and one of the region's best fighters and thinks he'll do better with a full camp next time out. He said that he's getting tired of having late opponent changes all the time and would like to see what he can do when he gets a proper amount of time to prepare for his opponent.
> Elias Theodorou (13-2, 5-2 UFC) vs. Dan Kelly (13-2, 6-2 UFC)
Tough round to score as the entire round was standing but Theodorou threw almost exclusively kicks and Kelly was landing punches, mostly in small flurries. Crowd exploded whenever Kelly did anything but it's tough to tell whether he did damage or not. Kelly was starting to block a lot of the kicks by the end of the round though. 10-9 Theodorou but could go either way.
Theodorou started to take over in the 2nd as he never let up the pace with the constant barrage of kicks but Kelly was definitely slowing down. Kelly did manage a trip takedown but Theodorou got right up. There was a lot of clinch action in the center but Kelly was not able to land many punches. 10-9 Theodorou and 20-18 after 2.
Kelly had his best moment of the fight when he got a takedown and secured a rear naked choke early in the last round. Theodorou escaped fairly quickly and got to his feet and for the rest of the round, it was basically Theodorou landing kicks from distance to the head, body and legs. Kelly never stopped advancing though. 10-9 Theodorou and 30-27 overall
Official result - Elias Theodorou (14-2) by unanimous decision (30-28, 30-27 and 30-26)
Crowd booed the hell out of Theodorou in his post-fight promo, mostly because he refused to touch gloves pre-fight. He said it's because Kelly is two-faced and said nasty things to him in the elevator a couple days before the fight. He said he's been doing this less than 8 years and just beat someone who's been doing judo longer than he's been alive.
> Jake Matthews (10-3, 4-3 UFC) vs. Bojan Velickovic (15-5-1, 2-2-1 UFC)
Matthews spent nearly the entire round trying to secure takedowns. Velickovic was landing a lot of punches and elbows with his back to the cage while defending it. Matthews did manage to get him down twice but did almost no damage when he got there and Velickovic got up quickly both times. Some judges might give it to Matthews for the takedowns but I have it for Velickovic for more effective striking. 10-9 Velickovic
Matthews got a takedown early but Velickovic secured a guillotine on the way down. He used it to gain top position and eventually mount. He took the back of Matthews with a full body lock and controlled him the majority of the round. Matthews was able to get to his feet and was starting to land a bit at the end of the round. At one point the strike count was 83-8 for Velickovic, mostly on the strength of the first. 10-9 Velickovic, 20-18 overall
Matthews opened by throwing more strikes from his feet than he had the entire fight. He used that to set up a takedown and he did more damage than he had in either of the two in the first. Velickovic was able to get to his feet and then take Matthews down. He held him down, while doing damage, but eventually Matthews reversed into top position and did a lot of damage in the last minute. Probably enough to take the round but not the fight on my card. 10-9 Matthews, 29-28 Velickovic overall
Official result - Jake Matthews (11-3) by split decision decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29)
> Tim Means (27-8-1 1 NC, 9-5 1 NC UFC) vs. Belal Muhammad (12-2, 3-2 UFC)
Round was entirely on the feet and both guys threw exclusively punches and almost all to the head. Strike count was 23-20 Muhammad right before the end of the round so it was razor thin. Muhammad did attempt a takedown late, which Means stuffed. I gave it to Muhammad but this was almost a 10-10. 10-9 Muhammad
Similar round although both guys started to throw more kicks and Muhammad had a couple of takedown attempts, even landing one. Means got up right away though. Means had a slight advantage in strikes landed and was starting to mix up his striking a lot more by the end and I gave him the round but another very close one. At the end of the round, strike count was 48-47 Means. 10-9 Means, 19-19 overall
Very close to the first round as no one got any takedowns and the fight was entirely on the feet. Means had a slight advantage in strikes landed but it seemed as it Muhammad landed the harder shots. Muhammad had a couple of takedown attempts. All three rounds were so close this fight could have any score. 10-9 Muhammad, 29-28 overall
Official decision - Belal Muhammad (13-2) by split decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29)
Muhammad called out Colby Covington after the fight, saying he's a coward for putting down other people's countries. That's a bit step up for him but a great name if he can get that fight.
> Bec Rawlings (7-6, 2-3 UFC) vs. Jessica-Rose Clark (7-4 1 NC, 0-0 UFC)
Women's Flyweights* (Clark missed weight by 2 pounds)
Rawlings was more aggressive early but Clark was managing to avoid most of her shots. Rawlings got a takedown but didn't do much damage on the ground. Clark reversed into top position and actually held the position longer than Rawlings. Clark eventually stood up on her own, forcing Rawlings up. In the last minute, the standup was pretty even on both sides. Very close round. 10-9 Clark
They were stuck in a cage clinch for almost 2 minutes at the beginning of the round with both ladies trading control. After separating, Clark scored a takedown and maintained top control for the rest of the round. She was getting fairly close to a head and arm choke but she used that to set up taking the back. She did enough damage to avoid a standup and easily won the round. 10-9 Clark, 20-18
Rawlings was more aggressive to start, knowing that she probably needed a finish and she was landing good shots on the feet. She got a takedown and did some damage there as well. After Clark got up, she scored a takedown and did damage as well. Rawlings got up right at the end of the round. 10-9 Rawlings, 29-28 Clark overall
Official result - Jessica-Rose Clark (8-4) by split decision (29-28 x 2; 28-29)
Clark said that it was a tough weight cut and she needs to stop taking short notice fights. Not much else. Pretty underwhelming night overall for promos.
> Fabricio Werdum (#2, 22-7-1, 10-4 UFC) vs. Marcin Tybura (#8, 16-2, 3-1 UFC)
Werdum was busier on the feet, landing combos and mixing in kicks to the body and legs, which were starting to show their effects by the end of the round. Werdum got a late takedown but Tybura was up right away and took the back of Werdum by the end of the round. 10-9 Werdum
2nd round entirely on the feet and again Werdum was the busier fighter. Tybura did land a nice head kick and Werdum scored with one of his own later on. Tybura was starting to throw leg kicks by the end of the round but Werdum should take it pretty easily. 10-9 Werdum, 20-18
Another round totally on the feet and dominated by Werdum. Tybura had his moments but really looked to be tiring at the end of the round. Werdum hurt him with a few knees to the head from the clinch with about a minute left and tried to take him down but Tybura managed to block that. Total strikes 95-58 for Werdum 10-9 Werdum, 30-27
Round was playing out the same as the previous three until Werdum finally secured a takedown halfway through the round. Werdum looked to be setting up a head and arm choke and moved into side control with a minute left. Tybura somehow escaped that and made it to his feet. Tybura scored a takedown right before the buzzer and Werdum secured a guillotine on the way down. 10-9 Werdum, 40-36
Final round entirely on the feet. Tybura rocked Werdum with a head kick that he's used to knock others out with early. He landed a second one halfway through the round but Werdum stayed on his feet. Werdum was probably slightly busier in the round but Tybura had his best round of the right and was still in there at the end. I gave the round to him but too little, too late. 10-9 Tybura, 49-46 Werdum overall
Official result - Fabricio Werdum (23-7-1) by unanimous decision (50-45 x 2; 49-46)
Werdum said Sydney is beautiful and he wants to bring his family here. He says he has two title belts on the wall at home and wants another one. He thinks he's done enough to earn another title shot. Until Cain Velasquez is ready, it's probably either him or the winner of the Overeem/N'Gannou fight in two weeks who will get the shot.
This show was the longest in UFC history in terms of total cage time and it really felt like it by the end with every main card fight going the distance.
If you want to read my play by play, you can find it here.