The third event for the Ultimate Fighting Championship on FUEL TV was a success as the main event between featherweight contenders “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung and Dustin “The Diamond” Poirier stole the show. Both fighters showed what the sport is about going all-out for three rounds and change in one of the most exciting fights of the year. The crowd in Fairfax wasn’t entirely satisfied, though, as eight of the 12 fights on the card went the distance and the fans in attendance audible voiced their displease on more than one occasion throughout the night.
With that said, there was a number of exciting submission finishes, a brutal knockout and the main event sent the fans home happy. Catch my post-fight thoughts and recap for the “UFC on FUEL TV 3: Korean Zombie vs. Poirier” main card below.
- Chan Sung Jung was the shining star at UFC on FUEL TV 3, he put on the performance of a lifetime by methodically dismantling Dustin Poirier in the main event of the night. From the outset, Jung was relentless in his attack and was all over Poirier in the standing position, the clinch, on the ground and with submissions. Jung hurt Poirier with strikes in nearly every round and attempted numerous submissions from multiple positions. After a three rounds of beating his opponent down, the Korean took the fight to the ground early in the fourth round and locked in a fight-ending D’Arce choke that put Poirier to sleep. Fans will be buzzing about Jung’s performance for a long time and it appears “The Korean Zombie” will be the one to challenge the winner of Jose Aldo vs. Erik Koch for the UFC featherweight championship.
- The co-main event of the night saw home state boy Amir Sadollah outpoint UFC sophomore Jorge Lopez in a relatively uneventful, but close three-round fight. Sadollah and Lopez exchanged strikes, takedowns and grappling positions until time ran out and Sadollah was named the victory by split decision. The crowd wasn’t very pleased with the performance of either fighter and frankly, it is hard to see how this fight got the co-main event slot over Donald Cerrone vs. Jeremy Stephens. Nevertheless, Sadollah picks up the win and avoids losing back-to-back fights for the first time in his career.
- Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone bounced back strong from his loss to Nate Diaz last December by simply outclassing Jeremy “Lil’ Heathen” over three rounds in their lightweight scrap. The leg kicks of Cerrone were the highlight of the fight as he landed chopping kick after chopping kick to the legs of Stephens, who simply had no answer for Cerrone’s length and kickboxing skills. Stephens was never able to find his range or timing and that allowed Cerrone to dominate the fight in every aspect. It was a strong performance from Cerrone after his first UFC loss, “Cowboy” is now 5-1 in the octagon, so expect to see him in the cage with a high quality opponent next.
- Yves Jabouin kept his undefeated record at 135 pounds in tact by brutalizing Jeff Hougland en route to a lopsided unanimous decision. The Canadian nearly finished the fight with gruesome strikes to the body on more than one occasion, but due to the incredible toughness of Hougland, an 11-year veteran MMA veteran, Jabouin couldn’t end the fight inside the distance. As always, the diversity of Jabouin’s striking attack was very impressive and with ever-improving takedown defense, the 32-year-old is a monumental task for anyone who cannot keep a fight on the ground.
- The only light heavyweight contest on the UFC on FUEL TV 3 fight card saw Igor Pokrajac and Fabio Maldonado slug it out on the feet for three rounds with Pokrajac coming out on top via controversial unanimous decision. Personally, I had the fight scored 29-28 for Maldonado, giving him the second and third rounds. However, Pokrajac had his moments in the fight when he landed multiple clean punches and knees to the chin of Maldonado. Maldonado’s boxing was really the story of the fight, though, as the Brazilian landed crisp combinations to the head and body of Pokrajac throughout the 15-minute war. The judges didn’t think Maldonado’s active was enough and they gave the decision to Pokrajac, a Croatian fighter who has now won four of his last five fights inside the octagon.
- It’s hard not to feel bad for Fabio Maldonado. The Brazilian has a 1-2 record in the UFC, but he could easily be 3-0 as both of his losses came via razor-thin decision. UFC president Dana White tweeted that he felt Maldonado won the bout, so hopefully UFC management will treat it as such. Regardless of the controversy, Maldonado is making a name for himself as one of the most exciting fighters in the light heavyweight division.
- The opening fight of the FUEL TV broadcast didn’t last long as Tom Lawlor made quick work of Jason MacDonald when he landed a flush right hook behind the ear that sent the Canadian falling flat on his face. After losing two straight fights and three of four overall, Lawlor’s back was against the wall at UFC on FUEL TV 3, “Filthy” delivered big time as ended the fight in a mere 50-seconds.
This article was written by Mike Bohn, founder and lead writer of FightCove.com. You can follow Mike on Twitter at @FightCoveMike. Also, be sure to follow @FightCove on Twitter and “Like” Fight Cove on Facebook.