By Ryan Frederick, WrestlingObserver.com
Welcome to WrestlingObserver.com's live coverage of UFC Fight Night 68: Boetsch vs. Henderson. We are live cageside at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. The event, headlined by a five-round middleweight bout between Tim Boetsch and Dan Henderson, airs on FOX Sports 1, with preliminary action beginning on UFC Fight Pass before moving over to FOX Sports 1. While you wait on the action to begin, check out our preview of the event HERE and coverage of the weigh-ins HERE.
PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC FIGHT PASS- 7 PM ET/4 PM PT):
BANTAMWEIGHTS: JOSE QUINONEZ VS. LEONARDO MORALES
ROUND 1: Morales missed weight for this bout by a pound. Morales with a series of kicks as they come out swinging. They connect and clinch against the fence. Quinonez looking for a takedown off a body lock. Good defense by Morales. Quinonez gets the takedown and into side control. Quinonez moves into the half-guard and looks to pass and goes back to side control. Quinonez spins and takes the back of Morales and looks for the choke. He has it locked in but lets go and Morales is out. Quinonez gets it locked back in and is looking to finish and he gets the tap! Quinonez with the submission win.
Official Result: Jose Quinonez def. Leonardo Morales by submission (rear-naked choke) at 2:34 of Round 1
MIDDLEWEIGHTS: RICARDO ABREU VS. JAKE COLLIER
ROUND 1: Collier with a jab to start. They trade a flurry against the fence and Collier lands a big leg kick and a front kick. Collier with the jab. Abreu lands a nice combo and Collier misses an uppercut. They exchange against the fence and Abreu lands a big kick and knee before a break. Collier with a leg kick. Abreu lands a big right hand and they tie up. They break. Collier with a combo and they trade punches against the fence. They trade leg kicks. Abreu with a nice combination. They trade punches and Abreu with a leg kick. Collier with a leg kick and a high kick. Collier with a body kick and they clinch and he lands a knee. Abreu ducks a punch and ties up but misses a big right hand on the break. Abreu with a leg kick. They trade punches and Collier lands a head kick. Collier with a left hook to the body and then two body kicks. They trade punches. Abreu with a high kick and Collier lands a leg kick and stumbles to a clinch to end the round. 10-9 Collier.
ROUND 2: They trade punches. Collier with a big head kick. Collier misses a left hand. Abreu with a front kick to the face. Collier fires back some kicks. They trade punches and Abreu with a body kick. They trade again. Collier with a combo ending with a body kick. They trade punches. They trade again and Abreu misses a big right hand. Both firing away with shots. They trade again. Abreu looks for a takedown but it is defended as they move against the fence. Big knee from Abreu. They each land body shots. They break. Collier with a combo but Abreu fires back a big right hand. Collier lands a flush right hand. Abreu with a big head kick. Abreu with a combo and then scores a takedown. Abreu works from the guard and lands punches from the top. Abreu with body punches from the top. Abreu works from top to end the round. 10-9 Abreu, 19-19.
ROUND 3: They come out swinging quickly. Collier pushes Abreu back with a teet kick. Collier misses a combo. Collier lands a high kick. Abreu lands a big right hand and a leg kick and then scores a takedown. Abreu moves to the back and has the body lock. Collier works to his feet. They break. They battle with an exchange and Abreu lands a big head kick. Collier with a combo. They trade punches. Collier misses a leg kick. Abreu is bleeding. Abreu misses a takedown but scores on one right after. Collier with punches around the head as Abreu has the body locked. Collier gets to his feet and they are tied up against the fence. They break. Collier with a combo ending with a body kick. Abreu with a big left hand. Abreu with a leg kick and they trade punches. Collier with a big body kick. Collier with an uppercut but Abreu fires back a combo. They trade numerous punches to end the fight and get a big reaction from the crowd. 10-9 Abreu, 29-28 Abreu.
Official Result: Jake Collier def. Ricardo Abreu by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
PRELIMINARY CARD (FOX SPORTS 1- 8 PM ET/5 PM PT):
LIGHTWEIGHTS: JOE PROCTOR VS. JUSTIN EDWARDS
ROUND 1: Proctor with a leg kick to start. He lands another. They trade and Edwards lands some big punches and a knee in the clinch. They trade knees. Edwards working for the takedown. Edwards with some elbows and they break. Proctor lands a big right hand. They trade and Edwards lands a head kick and drops for the takedown and gets it. Edwards on top but they get up and Edwards lands a knee. Proctor with a front kick. Edwards with a right hand. They trade punches. Edwards with a body kick. Proctor with a leg kick and then a combo. They trade punches. Proctor with a big leg kick and then a head kick. They trade punches. They trade again. Proctor with a big leg kick. They trade and Edwards lands a spinning kick to the body. Proctor with a leg kick and then one to the body. They trade punches. Proctor with a leg kick. They trade to end the round as Edwards misses a spin kick. 10-9 Proctor.
ROUND 2: Proctor with a head kick and then a body punch. They trade punches. Proctor with a front kick to the body. Edwards backs him up with a combo. They each miss big punches. They clinch and Edwards lands some knees. More knees from Edwards but Proctor escapes. Proctor with a combo and then a leg kick. Proctor with a head kick. They trade punches. They each land a left hand. Proctor with a body kick. Proctor with a jumping head kick. Edwards lands a big combo. Proctor fires back with a leg kick. Proctor with another but Edwards lands a right hand and then scores a takedown. They get up but Edwards lands against the fence before the circle to the center. Proctor lands a combo ending with a head kick. They trade. Proctor with a spin kick but Edwards fires a combo and lands a jumping front kick. They trade to end the round. Close round. 10-9 Edwards, 19-19.
ROUND 3: Proctor with a leg kick to start. They trade big punches and Proctor lands a solid right hand. Proctor with a combo. They continue to trade punches a minute in with no one landing big. They trade against the fence and Edwards goes for a takedown. Proctor defending against the fence. Proctor lands a head kick as they break. Edwards with a body kick. Proctor with a right hand and then a combo. Proctor with a jab. Proctor lands a left flush as Edwards misses a spin kick. Edwards with a left hand. They trade in close range. Each man lands some punches and Edwards goes for a takedown. Proctor grabs the neck and drops down but Edwards escapes and they get back up clinched against the fence before breaking.Edwards with a right hand. They trade against the fence and Proctor lands a big knee and a flurry and grabs the neck looking for the choke. Wow. Proctor chokes Edwards out cold with just seconds left! Submission win for Joe Proctor.
Official Result: Joe Proctor def. Justin Edwards by submission (guillotine choke) at 4:58 of Round 3
LIGHTWEIGHTS: CHRIS WADE VS. CRISTOS GIAGOS
ROUND 1: Giagos tries a quick takedown but Wade defends against the fence and they break. Wade with an inside leg kick. They trade punches. They trade again and Giagos backs Wade up to the fence. They clinch against the fence and Wade has control. Giagos reverses and they break. Wade ducks under a punch and gets the takedown but Giagos rolls to his feet and they clinch against the fence. They break. Giagos with a big body kick and goes for a takedown. Wade grabs the neck but Giagos pops out. They battle against the fence but break. Giagos drops Wade for a second and they battle against the fence. Wade with a big judo throw and gets right into mount. Giagos rolls out but Wade has the neck. They break. Wade with a head kick. They trade. Wade with a standing elbow. They break and then clinch again to end the round. 10-9 Wade.
ROUND 2: They trade punches and Wade goes high with a kick. They scramble for a moment. Giagos with a body kick. Giagos grabs the body lock and lands an overhand right. Wade with a leg kick. Giagos with a high kick. Wade drops down but Giagos sprawls the takedown attempt. Giagos looks to spin to the back. Wade reverses to the top but Giagos has the neck of Wade. Wade pops out and is in half-guard. Giagos gets out but Wade has the neck. Wade looking for the choke. Giagos plants him more on the mat but Wade still has the neck. Giagos is oit and in side control. Wade reverses to the top and looks to extend Giagos on the mat. Wade grabs the neck again. Wade looks to go to the back and lands a knee. Wade works for the takedown as the round ends. 10-9 Wade, 20-18 Wade.
ROUND 3: Giagos lands a big left hook but Wade comes back with punches. Wade with some body kicks but Giagos lands a left hook. Wade goes for the takedown but Giagos defends. Wade on top looking to extend Giagos on the mat. Wade in the half-guard. Wade gets in the full guard of Giagos. Wade with body punches from the top. Wade with more from the top and Giagos rolls out and they get to their feet. Giagos with a standing knee. Giagos is bleeding pretty good. Wade with a leg kick and then a side kick. Wade gets the takedown but they get to their feet. They break. Wade goes for another takedown but they push up against the fence. They break. Giagos with a combo. Wade with a high kick. Giagos with a body punch. Giagos with some knees as Wade has a hold of his arms. They battle against the fence as the fight ends with both tired. 10-9 Wade, 30-27 Wade.
Official Result: Chris Wade def. Cristos Giagos by unanimous decision (29=28, 29-28, 30-27)
WELTERWEIGHTS: BRIAN EBERSOLE VS. OMARI AKHMEDOV
ROUND 1: Ebersole has his famous arrow in his chest hair. Akhmedov with a big body kick to start. Akhmedov with a leg kick. They trade in a sloppy attempt at a clinch. Akhmedov with another big body kick. Ebersole slips on a kick attempt. Akhmedov with some leg kicks. Akhmedov with a big right hand. Ebersole has a takedown attempt stuffed and eats a right hand from Akhmedov. Akhmedov with another series of leg kicks. Not a lot of action going on. Akhmedov with a right hand and then a combo on Ebersole. Akhmedov with another combo. Ebersole lands a body kick. Akhmedov with another combo and big body kick. 10-9 Akhmedov.
Ebersole threw in the towel between rounds due to a knee injury, so it'll be a TKO win for Akhmedov.
Official Result: Omari Akhmedov def. Brian Ebersole by TKO (knee injury) at 5:00 of Round 1
HEAVYWEIGHTS: SHAWN JORDAN VS. DERRICK LEWIS
ROUND 1: Lewis just misses a head kick and they start swinging. They clinch against the fence. Jordan gets a takedown and is in side control. Lewis gets to his feet and they are clinched against the fence. They break and start swinging. Lewis misses a spin kick. Lewis with a head kick. They each miss a punch Jordan goes for a takedown and gets it but not without eating some back elbows. Jordan looking for the mount. Jordan in side control but Lewis gets to his feet. Jordan with the body lock and looking for the takedown. Jordan with some short knees in the clinch. They break and Lewis slips. They trade big punches back and forth and Lewis grabs the body. Jordan grabs the body and gets a takedown into side control. Jordan with some punches from the side to end the round. 10-9 Jordan.
ROUND 2: Lewis with a jump kick but then gets dropped with a head kick. Jordan swarms on him and looking to finish. Jordan gets the mount and Lewis rolls to his back. More punches from Jordan as Lewis looks to survive. It is over. Jordan gets the win by TKO as the ref stops the fight.
Official Result: Shawn Jordan def. Derrick Lewis by TKO (strikes) at :48 of Round 2
MAIN CARD (FOX SPORTS 1- 10 PM ET/7 PM PT):
BANTAMWEIGHTS: FRANCISCO RIVERA VS. ALEX CACERES
ROUND 1: Caceres comes out on the attack and lands a body kick. Rivera drops Caceres with a left hand and it is all over after a few more punches. The ref stops the fight. Caceres is protesting but he was dropped clean. Rivera gets the win.
Official Result: Francisco Rivera def. Alex Caceres by knockout (punches) at :21 of Round 1
BANTAMWEIGHTS: JOE SOTO VS. ANTHONY BIRCHAK
ROUND 1: Birchak with a leg kick. They trade punches. Birchak with another leg kick. Birchak with a combination that lands. Birchak with a big body kick. They trade punches and Birchak drops Soto with a knee to the body. Birchak with some punches but Soto gets up. Birchak with a big flurry and he knocks Soto out cold! Big knockout win for Anthony Birchak over Joe Soto.
Official Result: Anthony Birchak def. Joe Soto by knockout (punches) at 1:37 of Round 1
FEATHERWEIGHTS: THIAGO TAVARES VS. BRIAN ORTEGA
ROUND 1: They come out swinging. Tavares with a right hand and then gets a takedown. Tavares gets on top but Ortega throws up his legs looking for an armbar. Tavares escapes and is pounding from the top. Tavares with more punches from the top as he avoids a triangle choke attempt. Tavares with more work from the top as he avoids Ortgea throwing his legs up. Ortega goes for another armbar and rolls Tavares over and is on top. Ortega lets go but goes into full mount. Ortega with elbows from the top. Ortgea with big elbows. Tavares reverses and they get to their feet. They scramble back to the mat and Tavares goes into the guard of Ortega. Ortega tries to scarmble out but Tavares stops him. They get to their feet and break. Tavares is cut open. They trade punches. Tavares with a combo and Ortgea gets a body lock. Tavares with a judo throw into top position as he rides out the round. 10-9 Tavares.
ROUND 2: They trade punches. Ortega with a spinning back elbow that drops Tavares. Tavares up quickly and backing away and comes back with a takedown. Tavares on top and landing with some shots. Ortega scrambles and tries to get up but Tavares keeps him on the mat. Ortega working to get to his feet and does and he has the neck of Tavares. Tavares drags him back to the mat. Ortega looks for another triangle attempt but gives up his back. Tavares starts throwing big ground-and-pound from the top. Ortega grabs a leg and looks for a leg lock and they get to the feet before Tavares takes it back down. Tavares with body punches from the top. Ortega with an elbow from the bottom. Tavares with more punches from the top and he is bleeding. Tavares eats some upkicks from Ortega before going back to the guard. Ortega almost has a triangle but Tavares gets out. Tavares with short punches from the top as the round ends. 10-9 Tavares, 20-18 Tavares.
ROUND 3: Tavares has a big cut but fights on. Tavares drops down but the takedown is defended. They trade punches and leg kicks. Tavares with a big right hand. Ortega misses an uppercut and eats a big right hand. Combo from Tavares then he shoots in for a takedown but Ortega spins out. They trade punches and then Tavares lands a low knee and we have a break in the action. Back to action and Tavares lands a big head kick. Ortega with a combo that backs Tavares up. They are trading wildly. Ortega with a connecting spinning head kick. Ortega is coming after Tavares. Tavares has a takedown stuffed but drags it down. They are brought back to their feet. They start throwing wildly and both are looking to finish. Ortega landing big punches and has Tavares in trouble. Tavares tries to take it down. Ortega drops Tavares and is swarming on him. Full mount from Ortega and he is dropping bombs and this fight is over! The ref stops the fight and Ortega with a big win in an awesome fight.
Official Result: Brian Ortega def. Thiago Tavares by TKO (punches) at 4:10 of Round 3
LIGHTWEIGHTS: DUSTIN POIRIER VS. YANCY MEDEIROS
ROUND 1: Medeiros missed weight for this bout. Poirier the big crowd favorite. Poirier with a big left hand. Poirier with a leg kick. Poirier drops Medieros twice and is swarming on him. Big punches from Poirier but Medeiros is surviving. Poirier with a takedown and has the back and looking for the choke. Looking to get an arm under the neck. Poirier has the body locked with his legs. They get back to their feet. Poirier with a big left hand and a big body kick and Medeiros is in trouble. Poirier swarming on him looking for the finish and he gets it! Big finish by Poirier who had Medeiros in all sorts of trouble from the beginning and he gets the TKO win!
Official Result: Dustin Poirier def. Yancy Medeiros by TKO (punches) at 2:38 of Round 1
HEAVYWEIGHTS: BEN ROTHWELL VS. MATT MITRIONE
ROUND 1: Mitrione with a left hand. Rothwell with a leg kick. Mitrione lands a left hand. They trade punches. They trade again and clinch for a moment. Rothwell and Mitrione trade leg kicks. Body kick from Mitrione. Mitrione with a combo and then gets a quick takedown. Rothwell grabs the neck for a guillotine and Mitrione quickly taps! Rothwell with the submission win out of nowhere. Mitrione tapped really quick there.
Official Result: Ben Rothwell def. Matt Mitrione by submission (gogo choke) at 1:54 of Round 1
Rothwell did a promo that I can't even put into words. This has been one of the best fight cards in history, fight card of the year quality.
MIDDLEWEIGHTS: TIM BOETSCH VS. DAN HENDERSON
ROUND 1: Boetsch with a right hand to start They trade punches and Henderson rocks Boetsch and drops him with a right hand and then starts swarming him with punches on the ground and this is stopped quickly! TKO win for Dan Henderson in under a minute.
Official Result: Dan Henderson def. Tim Boetsch by knockout (punches) at :28 of Round 1
Gonna be hard to top this show this year. One of the better UFC events of all-time.