Welcome to F4WOnline.com's live coverage of The Ultimate Fighter 23 Finale: Jedrzejczyk vs. Gadelha 2 from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. This is the second of three straight nights of UFC action as International Fight Week continues in Las Vegas.
This event is headlined by a rematch between UFC Women's Strawweight Champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk taking on Claudia Gadelha, this time with Jedrzejczyk's title on the line. In addition, there will be the crowning of two new winners of The Ultimate Fighter as the finals take place. Follow along with our live coverage of the event beginning at 7 PM eastern time with preliminary action all the way thru the main card.
Coverage provided by Dave Meltzer
PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC FIGHT PASS- 7 PM ET/4 PM PT)
LI JINGLIANG (10-4, 2-2 UFC) VS. ANTON ZAFIR (7-2, 0-1 UFC)
ROUND 1- Zafir with a leg kick and then lands a right hand. They trade punches. Zafir scores a takedown and is in the full guard of Jingliang. He passes to half-guard. They get back to their feet and Zafir gets another takedown. Jingliang reverses and knocks Zafir right out with a series of right hands. That came out of nowhere and Jingliang gets the big knockout win.
Official Result- Li Jingliang def. Anton Zafir by knockout (punches) at 2:46 of Round 1
JAKE MATTHEWS (10-1, 4-1 UFC) VS. KEVIN LEE (12-2, 5-2 UFC)
First round: Lee picked him up and slammed him down. Lee landing punches from the top. Matthews back to his feet. They traded kknees. Matthew sin with punches and landed a high kick. Lee acted like it was nothing. Lee landed a big shot knocking out his mouthpiece. Lee with another takedown and got his back. He’s got the hooks in and is landing punches. Lee landed a lot of punches and it was stopped. Matthews didn’t seem hurt and was blocking most of the punches. 4:06
Lee made the most use of his interview time, he directly challenged Al Iaquinta for November in Madison Square Garden. Iaquinta is logical for that show as a New Yorker.
PRELIMINARY CARD (FOX SPORTS 1- 8 PM ET/5 PM PT)
CEZAR FERREIRA (9-5, 5-3 UFC) VS. ANTHONY SMITH (25-11, 1-1 UFC)
First round: Body kick by Ferreira. Body kick by Smith. Smith threw a kick and Ferreira took him down. Ref Chris Tognoni ordered a stand-up. Body kicks by Ferreira. Smith landed a punch and Ferreira took him down. Ferreira landed a few elbows from the top at the end of the round. 10-9 Ferreira
Second round: Smith with a body kick. Ferreira with a takedown. Smith rocked him with a punch and landed a spin kick to the body. Smith landed a left. Ferreira got a takedown with 2:12 left in the round. Ferreira did nothing from the top and a standup was ordered. Smith landed hard elbows and a punch. Smith’s round so 19-19 after two.
Third round: Both trading punches. Ferreira with a takedown. Smith is bleeding. Another standup was ordered and I have no idea why. Ferreria shot for another takedown but Smith has him in a guillotine. Ferreria is out of trouble. Ferreira landing weak strikes from the top but he’s busy. Ferreira 29-28. Not too exciting of a fight.
Scores: All three have it 29-28 Ferreira
CORY HENDRICKS (3-0, 0-0 UFC) VS. JOSH STANSBURY (7-2, 0-0 UFC)
First round: Hendricks with a body kick. Stansbury hurt him with a wild punch. Hendricks with a body kick. Another body kick by Hendricks. Both swinging and missing. Stansbury went for a takedown but Hendricks threw some elbows. Stansbury is bleeding from the left side of the head. Body kick and punches by Hendricks. Spinning backfist by Stansbury. Hard right by Stansbusy and Hendricks back. Close round. Hendricks 10-9
Second round: Stansbury tried a takedown but it was blocked. Hendricks tried a takedown, but Stansbury blocked it and landed on top. A standup was ordered. Body kick by Hendericks. Stansbury with a right. Body kick by Hendricks. Both are in a clinch as the round came to an end. Another close round. Stansbury so 19-19.
Third round: Stansbury took him down into side control. He’s keeping position but doing little in the way of damage. Noting happened at all this round but Stansbury kept his position. He threw a few punches here and there. Stansbury’s round for sure, but first two could go either way 29-28 Stansbury.
Scores: 29-27 Stansbury 29-27 Stansbury 28-28 draw. All the judges must have given a 10-8 third. It was one-sided but not enough damage for me to score it that way.
(#6) JOHN MORAGA (16-4, 5-3 UFC) VS. MATHEUS NICOLAU (11-1-1, 1-0 UFC)
First round: Nothing much happened. Finally they traded punches. Nice right by Nicolau. Uppercut by Moraga. Very little happened. Nicolau 10-9.
Second round: Nicolau landed a nice right. Moraga landed a left. Low kick by Moraga. Right by Nicolau. They traded body kicks. Left by Nicoalu sent Moraga backwards. Nicolau’s round 20-18.
Third round: Low kick by Nicolau. The crowd is finally booing these guys. It’s really been a non-fight so far. Spinning backfist by Nicolau. Right by Nicolau. I don’t know what’s going on in Moraga’s head because he’ s not trying to win this fight. The crowd is booing again. Nicolau with a takedown. Nicolau has his back. Nicolau 30-27. Crowd booed heavily when the fight ended.
Scores: 29-28 Nicolau 29-28 Moraga 29-28 Nicolau
GRAY MAYNARD (11-5-1 1 NC, 9-5-1 1 NC UFC) VS. FERNANDO BRUNO (15-3, 0-1 UFC)
First round: Both swinging wildly. This is a crazy fight. Both swinging wildly. Bruno took Maynard down and Maynard reversed to the top. Bruno knocked Maynard down with a left. Bruno landed a hard left. Both swinging big punches again. Head kick by Bruno. Maynard knocked him to a knee with a punch. Knee by Maynard. Maynand is bleeding. Bruno trying for a takedown and got him down. Maynard back up. Bruno working for another takedown but Maynard blocked it. Bruno 10-9
Second round: Bruno swinging and missing. Bruno landed a number of punches. Maynard back with a right. Maynard with a left. Bruno took him down. Maynard reversed to the top. Maynard working for a guillotine. He gave it up. Bruno landing several punches. Maynard got another takedown and has his back. Maynard took him down again. Maynard’s round so 19-19 after two.
Third round: Maynard got another takedown. Bruno has a guillotine. But Mayanrd escaped. Both look tired. Bruno missed punches, and then slipped and Maynard controlled him on the ground. Maynard’s round so he should win 29-28. Can’t say he resembled the old Maynard.
Scores: All three had it 30-27 for Maynard
MAIN CARD (FOX SPORTS 1- 10 PM ET/7 PM PT)
JOAQUIM SILVA (8-0, 1-0 UFC) VS. ANDREW HOLBROOK (11-0, 1-0 UFC)
First round: Holbrook threw a kick, Silva grabbed his foot and took him down and landed several punches on the ground and it was over. Silva was bouncing his head on the ground with five hard punches. :34
DOO HO CHOI (14-1, 2-0 UFC) VS. THIAGO TAVARES (20-6-1, 10-6-1 UFC)
First round: Choi with a knee. Tavares then took him down. Tavares took him down again. Choi back up. Choi landing punches and knocked him out on the third shot, a right cross. Choi has some amazing firepower in that right. 2:42
Choi issued a challenge to Cub Swanson next, but said that if Tatsuya Kawajiri beats Swanson, he wants him.
ROSS PEARSON (19-10 1 NC, 11-7 1 NC UFC) VS. WILL BROOKS (18-1, 0-0 UFC)
First round: Trading low kicks. Knee by Brooks. Body kick by Pearson. Knee by Brooks. Pearson bleeding from the forehead. They traded body kicks. They’re in a clinch. Brooks with a punch, Pearson with knees. Very close round, Brooks 10-9.
Second round: Body kick and knee by Brooks. Both trading. Brooks with a knee. Brooks with a takedown. Brooks has his back. Knee by Brooks. Brooks with an elbow. Brooks with a body shot Front kick by Brooks. Brooks lost his balance and Pearson ended up on top as the round ended. Brooks 20-18.
Third round: Trading body kicks. Brooks tried a takedown and didn’t get it. Knee by Brooks and he pushed Pearson into the cage. Pearson landed some punches and a knee. Pearson starting to land. Hard body kick by Pearson. Brooks landed a right. Pearson landing a lot of punches now., especially to the body. Best offense of the fight. Pearson with punches and an elbow and a low kick. Pearson continues to work the body. Knee by Brooks . They area trading knees and Brooks took him down. Pearson up and they are trading knees again. Brooks with an elbow. Pearon with a knee. Pearson landed punches at the end. Pearson won the third round, so it’ll come down to the first round, I’ve got 29-28 Brooks
Scores: All three had it 29-28 Brooks. A lot of booing the decision. But it was a fair decision. Brooks challenged Eddie Alvarez, he talked about Alvarez running from him “in another organization.” He put over how talented Pearson is.
TUF 23 WOMEN'S STRAWWEIGHT FINALS
TATIANA SUAREZ (3-0, 0-0 UFC) VS. AMANDA COOPER (1-1, 0-0 UFC)
First round: Suarez is the crowd favorite. Suarez took her right down. Suarez ground and pounding her. Cooper went for an armbar form the bottom. Suarez out and on top. Suarez with punches and Cooper reversed to the top. Suarez up. Suarez with a takedown. Suarez landing punches. She’s working for a D’arce choke and it’s over. The crowd is going crazy. Pretty clear a lot of people watched this season in the crowd and liked her.
Suarez said she got a D'arce onher in practice and talked about beating cancer. The crowd likes her a lot. She came across like a star. Jon Anik talked about her mic skills.
TUF 23 LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT FINALS
ANDREW SANCHEZ (7-2, 0-0 UFC) VS. KHALIL ROUNTREE (4-0, 0-0 UFC)
First round: Sanchez took him down. Another takedown by Sanchez. Sanchez with some punches on the ground but mostly just controlling him. Rountree back up. Crowd popped when Rountree broke free. Sanchez took him right down. 10-9 Sanchez.
Second round: They traded punches. Sanchez is fighting for a takedown but Rountree i s defending well. Sanchez finally got him down. The crowd is booing as Sanchez has his back and keeping him there. Rountree is from Las Vegas so he’s the crowd favorite but he’s not getting any offense. Sanchez is throwing punches from back position. Sanchez 20-18.
Third round: Rountree blocked a takedown. Rounhtree landed a punch. Sanchez is going for a takedown but doesn’t have it Sanchez got him down again. Sanchez has his back and is working for a choke. Sanchez is keeping the position and the crowd is booing. Sanchez keeps landing punches from that position. The crowd is booing heavily. Sanchez 30-27, the crowd is heavily booing.
Scores: 30-25, 30-25 and 30-26. Crowd booed this pretty heavily.
UFC WOMEN'S STRAWWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP
(C) JOANNA JEDRZEJCZYK (11-0, 5-0 UFC) VS. (#1) CLAUD
First round: Gadelha got a big reaction. Joanna got very light boos, mostly cheers, also a big reaction. Great staredown. The crowd is really psyched for this. Gadelha dropped her right away with a punch and then took her down. JJ back up Both trading punches. Gadelha pushed her into the cage. Another takedown by Gadelha. Gadlelha landing punches from the top. She’s now landing elbows to the body. JJ back up. Big trade of punches. Body kick by JJ. Big trade. Gadelha hurt her left knee. Shje’s not moving well and JJ kicking at the knee. Gadelha 10-9
Second round: Gadelha pushed her into the fence but can’t take her down. Gadelha with some punches and got the takedown. Gadelha with punches on the ground. JJ back up. Knee by JJ. Gadelha trying for a takedown. JJ blocked it. She tried it and JJ blocked and on top but Gadelha back up. Gadelha 20-18.
Third round: JJ starting to land now. Gadelha landing back and took her down once again. JJ back up. Trading elbows as JJ is back up. JJ going after the left knee. Body kick and punches by JJ. JJ landing while Gadelha has slowed down. JJ landed a flurry of punches. Gadelha back with punches. Gadelha took her down again. JJ reversed and punched her on the ground, then backed off and told Gadelha to get up. Both trading. JJ is landing a lot and Gadelha threw a hard right that hurt JJ. This is a great fight. JJ with hard elbows and Gadelha aback with an elbow. Elbow by JJ and punches back by Gadelha. The whole place is standing after that round. JJ’s round so 29-28 for Gadelha after three.
Fourth round: JJ landing a lot of punches. She’s also kicking the bad leg. Hard right by JJ. Gadelha is really tired. Gadelha back with punches. Front kick by JJ. JJ landing lefts and low kicks. JJ continuing to land. JJ landed a head kick and punches and is just taking her apart now. Gadelha’s in trouble. Elbow by JJ. JJ with punches and kicks. 10-8 for JJ so I’ve got JJ ahead 38-37 after four.
Fifth round: JJ taking her apart now. JJ landing hard shots. Gadelha rushed in. She’s fighting for a takedown. JJ escaped and landed punches a a high kick. JJ continuing to jab. Front kick by JJ. JJ landing punches. Gadelha tried a takedown but JJ on top and threw a few punches. She told Gadelha to get up. JJ landing al kinds of punches as has Gadelha hurt now. JJ’s round, could be another 10-8, but I’ll go 10-9 and have JJ winning 48-46.
Scores: 48-46, 48-45 and 48-46 for JJ