Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to the hurt business later tonight (Sat., Dec. 9, 2017) for UFC Fight Night 123 live on FOX Sports 1 from inside Save Mart Center in Fresno, Calif., as featherweight veteran Cub Swanson tries to derail undefeated contender Brian Ortega. In addition to the 145-pound headliner, Jason Knight will square off with Gabriel Benitez in the co-main event, and bantamweight contender Aljamain Sterling will lock horns with former World Series of Fighting (WSOF) champion Marlon Moraes.
But, before the premier bouts get underway on FS1 starting at 10 p.m. ET, UFC Fight Night 123′s “Prelims” action will also go down on Fight Pass starting at 6:30 p.m. ET and FS1 starting at 8 p.m. ET.
Find out what happened right here as the UFC Fight Night 123 undercard recaps roll in real-time:
Alexis Davis vs. Liz Carmouche
The FS1 preliminary headliner pitted former UFC women’s bantamweight title challenger Carmouche (11-6) against fellow journeywoman Davis (19-7) in a crucial flyweight matchup. Davis pushed the action against the cage early, but Carmouche was able to land some short uppercuts inside. Carmouche reversed positioning, pushed Davis up against the cage, and fought for a takedown. Davis wasted little time in throwing up an arm bar, but Carmouche defended nicely before the end of the round. In the second frame, Davis caught a Carmouche kick and took the fight to the canvas. Once there, Davis landed some good ground-and-pound, but referee Frank Trigg eventually stood them up. Carmouche was able to land a few flush right hands before scoring her own takedown right before the bell. The third round saw Davis go back to her arm bar after eating punches on the feet, as she nearly sunk it in before Carmouche slammed her on her head and shook it off. Davis began to tire and Carmouche took full advantage by landing short shots to the body and punches to the head from full guard. Davis was able to flip Carmouche over as a last ditch effort but didn’t have enough time to look for another submission finish. In the end, it was Davis who walked away with the split-decision win.
Luke Sanders vs. Andre Soukhamthath
Rising UFC bantamweight contender Sanders (11-2) looked to rebound from a submission loss to Iuri Alcantara when he stepped inside of the cage opposite struggling veteran Soukhamthath (12-5). It was Sanders who dictated the early action, but Soukhamthath responded with some crisp counters. Sanders kept the pressure going with knees to the body, combinations along the cage, and forward movement that pushed Soukhamthath back on his feet. Soukhamthath came out desperate in Round 2 and it paid off. He caught Sanders flush with a nasty right hook counter that put him out. Soukhamthath landed a few more insurance shots before the referee peeled him off. Sanders quickly got back to his feet to protest, but the damage was done.
Carls John de Tomas vs. Alex Perez
The second of six bantamweight matchups on the card saw 21-year-old Filipino de Tomas (6-2) look to capture his first UFC victory when he took on “Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series” standout Perez (19-4). De Tomas opened up early with some pressure from distance. Perez returned favor by grabbing a hold of de Tomas’ neck and nearly sinking in a D’Arce choke. De Tomas defended nicely, though, as Perez transitioned to a guillotine attempt. In Round 2, Perez quickly took de Tomas down and started to landed short, yet hard, ground-and-pound from back control. Once de Tomas gave up positioning, Perez quickly went back to his D’Arce choke and finally found the finish.
Frankie Saenz vs. Merab Dvalishvili
In the FS1 opening bout of the evening, bantamweight wrestler Saenz (12-5) hoped to end a three-fight losing streak when he threw down with Octagon newcomer Dvalishvili (7-3). The debuting Dvalishvili wasted no time sticking Saenz against the cage and gaining control. Saenz broke free and blasted Dvalishvili with hard knees. Dvalishvili recovered and continued to pressure Saenz along the cage before securing a takedown on the wrestler. Dvalishvili scored another takedown before the end of the frame. In Round 2, Dvalishvili quickly took Saenz back down to the canvas after the veteran launched more knees inside. Saenz turned the tables with a crisp elbow inside. Dvalishvili shot for another takedown, but Saenz sprawled nicely and returned with more strikes to the body. The third round saw Dvalishvili score yet another short takedown after an inadvertent head butt by Saenz cut the UFC newcomer’s eye wide open. Dvalishvili came back with a spinning back fist and combination inside, but Saenz found a home for more short elbows in the clinch. Dvalishvili remained persistent and pressured Saenz along the cage before the final bell rang. In the end, it was Saenz who did enough over the course of three rounds to claim the split-decision win.
Alejandro Perez vs. Iuri Alcantara
The Fight Pass preliminary headliner pitted rising Mexican contender Perez (19-6-1) against 15-fight UFC bantamweight veteran Alcantara (35-9, 1 NC). Perez landed the first meaningful shot by sticking a right hand on the Brazilian’s chin inside. Alcantara kept trying to mix it up, but Perez was quick to exit most of the dangerous exchanges. Alcantara landed a flying knee before the end of the frame. In Round 2, both fighters remained patient on the outer edges as the crowd became restless. Perez was able to land a right on a counter to Alcantara’s leg kick. Alcantara returned with a nice counter left hand that briefly stunned Perez. The third round saw neither fighter really open up, despite two close rounds in the book. Alcantara tried to get things going with his kicks, but Perez was able to lock the action up along the cage, utilizing his smaller frame to pressure the Brazilian low. Perez was able to score a quick knockdown towards the end of the frame, but Alcantara hung in tough before the final horn. In the end, it was Perez who walked away with the unanimous decision victory.
Chris Gruetzemacher vs. Davi Ramos
In the first of two lightweight matchups, Ultimate Fighter alum Gruetzemacher (13-3) looked to improve his Octagon record to 2-1 when he locked horns with Brazilian prospect Ramos (7-2). Gruetzemacher opened up with a huge punch, but Ramos came back with a sick knee down the pipe. Ramos followed his efforts up with another flying knee, but Gruetzemacher ate it like a savage. The Brazilian was then able to catch a leg kick and secure a nice takedown. In Round 2, Ramos quickly knocked Gruetzemacher down with a flush right hand. Gruetzemacher somehow recovered and threatened with a guillotine choke. Ramos kept the action going by launching spinning back techniques one after the other, but ultimately started to tire. Gruetzemacher felt Ramos fading and started to land his own offense on the feet before the bell sounded. In the final frame, Ramos wasted no time taking Gruetzemacher’s back and working towards the rear-naked choke finish. Once the squeeze was applied, Gruetzemacher had nothing left to do but tap.
Antonio Braga Neto vs. Trevin Giles
The opening bout of the evening saw Brazilian submission specialist Neto (9-3, 1 NC) make his first Octagon appearance in over three years when he took on undefeated middleweight prospect Giles (11-0). Giles landed the heavier punches early while pairing his efforts with a jab. Neto looked noticeably slow after the lengthy layoff, but was able to secure a timely takedown. The Brazilian took full control on the ground and worked nicely before nearly locking up an arm-triangle choke. In Round 2, Giles kept landing on the feet with combinations and consistent movement around the pocket. The young prospect rocked the Brazilian and backed him up against the cage, as Neto offered little counter shots. Giles opened Neto up with more stiff jabs and combination work. The third frame saw Neto shoot early and secure a quick takedown along the cage. Giles was able to get back to his feet, though, landing huge punches in return that left Neto wobbled. One final right hand put the Brazilian on his butt and referee Frank Trigg (yes, that Frank Trigg) jumped in for the TKO stoppage.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 123 fight card, starting with the UFC Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online at 6:30 p.m. ET, followed by the FOX Sports 1 “Prelims” bouts at 8 p.m. ET, before the main card start time at 10 p.m. ET, also on FOX Sports 1.
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