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UFC Fight Night 124 live results: Jeremy Stephens vs. Doo Ho Choi

Welcome to F4WOnline.com's live coverage of UFC Fight Night 124: Stephens vs. Choi, emanating from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

The Octagon appears in St. Louis for the very first time, and with it comes an exciting main event in the featherweight division as Jeremy Stephens takes on Doo Ho Choi.

Stephens is looking to score his second straight win and move into the title picture in the featherweight division. Choi is also looking to climb into that picture as he competes for the first time since a December 2016 loss to Cub Swanson in one of the greatest fights in UFC history.

Also on the main card, Paige VanZant makes her debut in the women's flyweight division as she goes against Jessica-Rose Clark, Kamaru Usman looks to continue his climb at 170 pounds, going for his eleventh straight win against Emil Meek, and Michael Johnson makes his debut at 145 pounds as he takes on Darren Elkins, winner of five straight fights.

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.

Before the fights begin, be sure to check out our preview of UFC Fight Night 124.


> Mads Burnell (8-2, 0-1 UFC) vs. Mike Santiago (21-10, 0-1 UFC)
Featherweights* (Burnell missed weight by 4 pounds)

Burnell got an early takedown and did some damage, eventually moving into side control. Santiago managed to stand up from side control and after stuffing another takedown attempt, he ended up on top. Burnell got up quickly but Santiago had a pretty good guillotine attempt. Santiago controlled the rest of the round, getting another couple of takedowns and a sub attempt. 10-9 Santiago

Almost a reverse of the first round. Santiago got the early takedown and did a little damage. Burnell was eventually able to sweep into top position but Santiago got up quickly. Burnell then took him down and quickly took hte back and had Santiago in a lot of trouble. Santiago got close to getting up at one point but at the end of the round Burnell had a rear naked choke and the bell may have saved Santiago. 10-9 Burnell, 19-19 overall

Burnell got an early takedown and managed to hold Santiago down for most of the round. He was active enough to avoid a standup but didn't do a ton of damage. Santiago was landing elbows from his back but they didn't do damage either. Santiago did manage to get to his feet with a minute left but couldn't escape the clinch of Burnell. 10-9 Burnell, 29-28 overall

Official decision - Mads Burnell (9-2) by unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)

Burnell thanked Santiago for a good fight, apologized for not making weight and insisted that his future is at 145. 

> Danielle Taylor (9-2, 2-1 UFC) vs. JJ Aldrich (5-2, 1-1 UFC)
Women's Strawweights

Aldrich has a considerable reach and size advantage. Early in the round, she kept her distance and landed occasional strikes while managing to avoid Taylor's strikes for the most part. She got a takedown with 90 seconds left and managed to hold Taylor down for the rest of the round. 10-9 Aldrich easy

2nd round was completely on the feet. Taylor was busier and also seemed to land the harder shots. Aldrich was managing to land jabs from distance but couldn't really put together any combination. Taylor also defended a takedown attempt at the end of the round. 10-9 Taylor but close, 19-19 overall

All on the feet again despite a late takedown attempt by Aldrich. Aldrich dominated the first minute with several punch combos and a nice spinning back fist. For the rest of the round, she stayed away from Taylor and landed jabs from distance, without barely getting touched. 10-9 Aldrich, 29-28 overall

Official result - JJ Aldrich (6-2) by unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)

Aldrich thanked her training partner Rose Namajunas after the fight but didn't really have much else to say. 

> Kalindra Faria (#13, 18-6-1, 0-1 UFC) vs. Jessica Eye (11-6 1 NC, 1-5 1 NC UFC)
Women's Flyweights

Faria was doing damage on the feet early and landed a head kick about a minute in that rocked Eye. Eye went for a takedown but Faria reversed and ended up on top. The rest of the round was both ladies on the ground with their legs locked attempting submissions. Neither seemed really close but they were so tied up, they couldn't get to their feet. The did manage to stand up right before the buzzer. 10-9 Faria

Eye got an early takedown and immediately took the back. She managed to control her for the entire round. She was working submissions the whole time but never really got close. She did also do a little ground and pound. St Louis hasn't adopted the new rules and scoring or it would be a 10-8 but easy 10-9 Eye and 19-19 overall

First half of the round was on the feet. Eye was throwing more but Faria was landing the harder shots. Eye got a takedown but Faria was active from her guard with sub attempts so Eye stood up on her own, forcing Faria up. Eye got another takedown with a minute left and held her down till the end of the round. 10-9 Eye, 29-28 overall

Official result - Jessica Eye (12-6) by split decision (29-28 x 2; 28-29)

Eye cut an explicit-laden promo where she said that takedowns matter and no one cares if you can punch. She guaranteed that she'll win the title in her new division. Crowd reaction was mixed. 


> Kyung Ho Kang (13-7 1 NC, 2-1 1 NC UFC) vs. Guido Cannetti (7-2, 1-1 UFC)

Both guys were coming off long layoffs but came out firing. Cannetti rocked Kang with a head kick and then reversed a takedown attempt to end up on top. Kang was composed from his back and weathered the storm before getting to his feet. Cannetti was throwing all kinds of wild kicks but missing most of them. Kang got a takedown with a minute left and moved right into mount. He eventually secured a triangle. Cannetti stood up and lifted Kang off the ground and into the cage but Kang held onto the choke. He eventually fell to the canvas and Cannetti tapped quickly. 

Official result - Kyung Ho Kang (14-7) by submission (triangle choke) at 4:53

> Talita Bernardo (5-2, 0-1 UFC) vs. Irene Aldana (7-4, 0-2 UFC)
Women's Bantamweights

Great opening round for Aldana. She was landing punch combinations seemingly at will early and rocked Bernardo badly. Bernardo with a desparation takedown attempt but Aldana ended up on top. She did some ground and pound but Bernardo is really good on the ground so Aldana got up as soon as she could. At the end of the round, Bernardo just fell to her back and Aldana stayed up, landing leg kicks before dropping hammer fists at the end of the round. 10-9 Aldana, almost a 10-8

Bernardo was relentless with takedown attempts early and finally got Aldana down about 2 minutes in. But once she got there, she did nothing but hold Aldana down and Aldana was landing a lot of punches and elbows from her back, tying her up with a body lock. Aldana postured up with a minute left and ate some upkicks before Aldana got to her feet. Aldana got a takedown of her own right before the buzzer. 10-9 Aldana, 20-18

Bernardo was a little more aggressive on the feet in the last round, managing a couple of good punch combos but Aldana was just as effective. She rocked Bernardo with about 90 seconds left and Aldana pulled guard. She was able to sweep into top position but Aldana quickly got up. Aldana managed a takedown of her own right at the end. Bernardo's face was a bloody mess by the end. 10-9 Aldana, 30-27 overall

Official result - Irene Aldana (8-4) by unanimous decision (30-27 x 3)

No post-fight interview but it should be noted that the "woo-birds" are out in full force for the UFC's debut in St Louis. 

> Matt Frevola (6-0, 0-0 UFC) vs. Marco Polo Reyes (7-3, 3-1 UFC)

One of the wildest sub-one minute fights you'll see. Both guys came out throwing wildly and connecting more than they were missing. Frevola had his mouthpiece knocked out but Reyes was relentless and wouldn't let up. Frevola was briefly down but got back up. Both kept just throwing bombs and Reyes was definitely getting the better of it. Then Reyes just knocked Frevola out cold with a brutal exchange. Frevola was up fairly quickly though so he looks okay. 

Official result - Marco Polo Reyes (8-3) by KO at 1:00

> James Krause (24-7, 5-3 UFC) vs. Alex White (12-3, 3-3 UFC)

White dominated the standup early, landing several punch combos. Krause got hold of him on the cage and worked for almost a minute for a takedown before finally getting it. He held him down from side control for the majority of the round but didn't do a ton of damage. Enough to win the round though. 10-9 Krause

Round started off the same with White probably even more dominant on the feet than he was in the first. Krause got a takedown but couldn't do anything from the top and White was more active from his back. White was able to get up and got a takedown of his own. Krause was up quickly and managed another takedown before the round ended. I had White 10-9 in round 2 and all tied up 19-19 but White's corner told him he was down 2 and needed a finish.

Krause was not interested in standing at all this round and went right to the cage clinch. He was constantly working for the takedown and finally got it about halfway through the round. He didn't do anything on the ground until the very end but White wasn't doing a lot either and I gave the close round to Krause 10-9 and 29-28 overall

Official result - James Krause (25-7) by unanimous decision (29-28 x 3)


> Darren Elkins (#10, 23-5, 13-4 UFC) vs. Michael Johnson (#10 LW, 17-12, 9-8 UFC)

Opening round was entirely on the feet although Elkins did have a missed takedown attempt. Johnson looked great. I didn't see stats but seems like he outstruck Elkins 5-1 and did a lot of damage. Johnson got off a ton of combos and mixed in leg kicks and body punches with the head strikes. 10-9 Johnson, almost a 10-8

Elkins got a takedown 15 seconds in and was landing a lot of punches. Johnson tried to get to his feet and in the process, he gave up his back. Elkins set up the rear naked choke with punches and once he secured it, Johnson tapped quickly. 

Official result - Darren Elkins (24-5) by submission (rear naked choke) at 2:22 of the 2nd round

Elkins said he knows he won't get a title shot right now but he wants a top contender in a fight where he can get a title shot if he wins. A fight between he and Brian Ortega would make a lot of sense. 

They aired a nice tribute to Matt Huges, who of course was near death after an accident last summer. Interviews with Dana White, GSP and BJ Penn highlighted the piece. They then brought him out to his entrance music to a thunderous pop. He walked to the Octagon roughly but on his own power, in a Robbie Lawler t-shirt. Almost impossible to watch this and not have a tear in your eye. 

If you're just following along with the coverage and not watching the show, you can see the return here

> Kamaru Usman (#10, 11-1, 6-0 UFC) vs. Emil Meek (9-2-1 1 NC, 1-0 UFC)

Usman got an early takedown. Meek had a guillotine attempt but Usman was never in trouble and once he escaped, he stayed in control for the whole round. Meek managed to get to his feet but Usman stayed in control of his body the whole time. He didn't do a lot of damage but controlled for over 4 minutes and  10-8 Usman in my book 

It took Usman until haflway through the round to get the takedown here but when he did, he held him down for the rest of it. Meek did some damage from his back but Usman had a couple of barrages where he landed elbows and punches to the head and Meek was cut all over the place by the end of the round. 10-9 Usman, 20-17 overall

Usman only needed a minute to take Meek down here. He did more damage than he'd done in either of the other two rounds. Meek got up a few times but every time, Usman took him right down again. He had several submission attempts but nothing terribly close. Another 10-8 round from me and 30-25 Usman overall

Official result - Kamaru Usman (12-1) by unanimous decision (30-27 x 3)

Usman said he only fought to 30 percent of his capacity and dominated a Viking with ease. He says no one in the divison can keep up with him and called out Colby Covington. He said he's going to come have a discussion with Dana White at cageside. Crowd booed the hell out of the decision and the promo. 

> Paige VanZant (#11 WSW, 7-3, 4-2 UFC) vs. Jessica-Rose Clark (#10, 8-4 1 NC, 1-0 UFC)
Women's Flyweights

Clark was doing damage on the feet but Paige landed a Superman punch and seemed to be weathering the shots. VanZant went for a takedown but Clark ended up on top and controlled her for the rest of the round. She did almost no damage on the ground and wasn't even trying to advance but the ref never stood her up. 10-9 Clark

VanZant landed a spinning backfist and got a takedown a minute in. Clark got up fairly quickly and then got a takedown of her own. Was looking the same as the first but VanZant managed to sweep into top position. Clark had a triangle from the bottom and it looked tight but VanZant stayed in it and managed to land some punches of her own. VanZant told her corner that she broke her arm in the first. 10-9 Clark, 20-18 overall

Last round entirely on the feet. VanZant threw almost exclusively kicks with a few knees mixed in but only a couple of punches and nothing with the right hand. She was connecting with a lot but Clark was landing a lot of punch combos and definitely landed more overall. Announcers were talking like Paige won the round but I didn't see it that way. 10-9 Clark, 30-27 overall

Official result - Jessica-Rose Clark (9-4) by unanimous decision (29-28 x 2; 30-27)

> Jeremy Stephens (#9, 26-14, 13-13 UFC) vs. Doo Ho Choi (#13, 15-2, 3-1 UFC)

First round entirely on the feet. They started by throwing a lot of leg kicks but Choi's seemed to be landing more. Stephens was more active overall in the round but Choi was far more accurate and did more damage as Stephens was bleeding from the nose by the end of the round. Choi's leg kicks really seemed to be affecting Stephens as well. 10-9 Choi

Choi lands a high kick to open that doesn't even seem to bother Stephens. Stephens started to land with punch combos and leg kicks. Stephens dropped Choi with a punch and then finished him on the ground with elbows as the ref moved in to stop it. 

Official result - Jeremy Stephens (27-14) by TKO (elbows) at 2:36 of the 2nd round

Jeremy Stephens asked for a Korean translator for his post-fight promo and put over Choi. He says he wished he could've performed in Korea for those fans and hopes he won some fans from that country. He dedicated the fight to Josh Neer and called out Brian Ortega or anyone in front of him in the rankings.