Thiago Alves stopped former UFC welterweight champion and future hall of famer Matt Hughes via technical knockout early in round two on Saturday, June 7th, at UFC 85 “Bedlam” in front of a sold-out crowd at the O2 Arena in London, England.
The showdown between two of the UFC’s top welterweight contenders was the main event of the eleven-bout pay-per-view event.
Just one day removed from failing to make weight for the bout, which was contested at a catchweight of 175-pounds, Alves stuffed several first-round takedown attempts by Hughes and delivered the majority of the damage in the opening round. Early in the second, Alves caught Hughes with a flying knee that dropped him to the mat and quickly followed with several hard punches to the head to force the referee stoppage 62 seconds into the second round.
After the bout, Alves promptly apologized for failing to make weight the day before, adding that he had sprained an ankle leading up to the bout and was unable to run or train to drop the additional weight.
With the win, the biggest of his young career and his sixth straight in the octagon, the 24-year-old Brazilian, who trains out of American Top Team, now has his eyes set on a welterweight title shot. “Mr. Dana White, I’ve been a good boy. Please give me a title shot,” said Alves.
“He’s a good fighter, he got me, no doubt,” said Hughes following the decisive loss. However, the former UFC champion promised at least one more bout before he finishes his career, calling out longtime rival and fellow former champion Matt Serra.
In the co-main event, England-native Michael Bisping dominated Jason Day, defeating his middleweight foe off with strikes midway through the first round. Bisping dominated from the onset, securing an early trip takedown then unleashing a flurry of ground and pound from side mount. Day was able to scramble away twice but Bisping quickly picked up where he left off, pounding on Day until the bout was halted at the 3:42 mark of the opening frame due to overwhelming strikes.
Mike Swick secured his second-straight welterweight win on the main card, posting a unanimous decision victory over Marcus Davis marred only by a one-point deduction for grabbing the fence. Though Davis was able to connect with some shots in the clinch, Swick too was able to connect while the pair were locked up and dominated the ground, controlling Davis and opening up several cuts on his opponent’s face, to win all three rounds. All three judges rendered scores of 29-27 after taking the penalty into account.
In a fast-paced middleweight bout Thales Leites topped Nate Marquardt via split decision. Though Marquardt clearly won the bout based on the established judging credentials, two one-point deductions by referee Herb Dean cost the former middleweight challenger the bout.
Leites captured the opening round after dropping Marquardt to the canvas with a hard right and mounting his opponent, who was eventually able to escape and survive to round two. Early in the second, Marquardt landed a knee to Leites’ head while his opponent remained on the ground, an illegal strike that caused the bout to be temporarily halted while Leites recovered and a point to be deducted from Marquardt. After resuming, Marquardt quickly picked up where he left off, bloodying Leites with hard ground and pound that was just short of stopping the bout. Despite Marquardt dominating the second, the round is a 9-9 draw due to the point deduction. It’s a similar storyline in the third as Marquardt again lands a hard series of ground and pound, as well as a late piledriver, but has a point deducted for strikes to the back of the head and round three is another 9-9 draw.
After accounting for the two deductions, Leites won a close split decision on the judge’s scorecards securing two cards of 28-27 in his favor. The other judge ruled 28-27 in favor of Marquardt.
In a controversial opening bout to the pay-per-view broadcast, Fabricio Werdum defeated Brandon Vera via late-first round technical knockout.
Vera had the upper hand early in the fight, staggering Werdum with a hard combination though Werdum was able to survive and take Vera to the ground. Once on the canvas, Werdum was able to mount Vera and deliver a string of ground and pound. With just seconds remaining in the round and Vera seemingly defending himself from the blows, referee Dan Miragliotta, the same referee from last weekend’s controversial early stoppage of James Thompson versus Kimbo Slice at EliteXC “Primetime”, stopped the bout in favor of Werdum.
Uninjured from the ground and pound assault, Vera immediately returned to his feet to protest the controversial early stoppage. “There was 15 seconds left. Let me take my ass whupping and go to the second round,” said Vera.
OFFICIAL UFC 85 RESULTS
- Thiago Alves def. Matt Hughes via TKO – Round 2, 1:02
- Michael Bisping def. Jason Day via TKO – Round 1, 3:42
- Mike Swick def. Marcus Davis via unanimous decision
- Thales Leites def. Nate Marquardt via split decision
- Fabricio Werdum def. Brandon Vera via TKO – Round 1, 4:40
- Martin Kampmann def. Jorge Rivera via submission – Round 1, 2:44
- Matt Wiman def. Thiago Tavares via KO – Round 2, 1:57
- Kevin Burns def. Roan Carneiro via submission – Round 2, 2:53
- Luiz Cane def. Jason Lambert via TKO – Round 1, 2:07
- Paul Taylor def. Jess Liaudin via split decision
- Antoni Hardonk def. Eddie Sanchez via TKO – Round 2, 4:15