Chael Sonnen narrowly beat Michael Bisping by unanimous decision in the co-main event of UFC on Fox 2 on Saturday night to set up an anticipated rematch with UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.
Bisping nearly spoiled the rematch as he staved of most of Sonnen’s early takedowns and countered with punches, but Sonnen mounted Bisping in the final round and attacked with submissions and ground and pound to earn the unanimous decision with 30-27, 29-28, and 29-28 scores from the judges.
MMAFrenzy.com’s play-by-play of Sonnen vs. Bisping is below:
Round 1 – Big John is our referee and we’re underway. Sonnen storms out and immediately counters a Bisping hook with a takedown. Bisping escapes and Sonnen pokes Bisping on the way and Sonnen attacks. Sonnen looking for takedowns now and Bisping defending. Sonnen with a nice clinch to a back trip takedown. Nice punches by Sonnen from the top but Bisping escapes. Bisping turns Sonnen along the cage and then goes for a takedown of his own that Sonnen defends. Sonnen clinches Bisping against the cage and Bisping with a nice knee. Bisping turns Sonnen against the cage and is working shots to the ribs. Chael throws a wild combo that misses and Bisping counters beautifully. Chael’s takedown attempt is blocked and Bisping turns him agains the cage. Nice knee by Chael but Bisping with another nice one. Wild strikes by Sonnen miss and Bisping lands a nice combo. Chael misses another takedown and ends up pinned to the cage again. Bisping misses a slow spinning kick and the round ends. Chael started strong but struggled late with Bisping’s takedown defense and more accurate strikes. MMAFrenzy scores the round 10-9 Bisping.
Round 2 – Chael extremely rigid with his standup and goes for another failed takedown attempt. Bisping then reverses Chael against the cage and goes to work with dirty boxing ala Randy Couture. Sonnen has not looked good grappling so far. Nice combo by Bisping. Sonnen with another double and finally gets Bisping down. Sonnen looking to smother, Bisping being active with strikes off his back. Bisping is controlling posture well. Sonnen lets Bisping up and lands some nice strikes as the Brit stands. Bisping with a nasty overhand left. Bisping works Sonnen against the cage again and lands some nice dirty boxing strikes. Bisping briefly attempts a single and misses but keeps Sonnen pinned to the cage. Nice pair of elbows from Bisping. Sonnen grabs a thai clinch but does nothing with it. Bisping with a nice knee. Ugly spinning kick attempt by Bisping misses. Bisping is fighting like Couture tonight. MMAFrenzy scores the round 10-9 Bisping (20-18).
Round 3 – Fighters touch gloves and we’re off. Another double from Sonnen and he lands this one. Sonnen controlling posture and lands a nice strike but Bisping is staying active. Bisping threatens with a leglock but lets it go. Sonnen lands a few shots and Bisping tries to position for an armbar but misses it. Bisping gives up his back to escape and Sonnen immediately seizes the opportunity to look for a finish but Bisping ties him up. Sonnen gets back to full mount and is looking for an arm triangle. Sonnen is basing out and not landing much damage now. Shoulder slams from Sonnen. Bisping hip escapes to half-guard and throws punches to the ear of Sonnen. Sonnen is looking for an arm triangle but Bisping regains full guard. Bisping grabs a whizzer and gets back to the cage with thirty seconds left. Bisping gets back on his feet and reverses Sonnen against the cage and lands a takedown of his own. Big elbows from Bisping to end the round leave Sonnen dazed at the end. MMAFrenzy scores the round 10-9 Sonnen but the fight should go to Bisping (29-28).
Chael Sonnen def. Michael Bisping via unanimous decision (30-27,29-28,29-28)