Kevin Souza SD3 Felipe Arantes – Featherweight
Souza's first fight inside the Octagon wasn't an easy night, as Arantes made him work for the full 15 minutes. Ultimately, two judges preferred his punching prowess to the one who liked Arantes' takedowns and cage control, giving him a narrow split decision win.
The lanky Souza found the range almost immediately with right hands to the head and body, but a perfectly timed takedown had him on the defensive for the second half of Round 1. He did better fending off Arantes' grappling in Round 2, winning it with his movement and outside punching.
The third was harder to score, as Souza stunned Arantes with a right hand halfway through but ended the fight on his back absorbing hard shots to the body. It was enough—barely—to give Souza a 29-28, 28-29, 29-28 debut victory.
Lucas Martins def. Junior Hernandez by submission (read naked choke) at 1:10 of Rd. 1 – Bantamweight
Not many UFC fighters drop two weight classes between fights, but Martins did it and made it work. A quick and sudden slugfest ended with Hernandez stubbornly being put to sleep and the fans on hand cheering for their countryman.
Both men came out willing to trade, and Martins stunned Hernandez in the first 30 seconds. After eating some big shots coming back, Martin landed a flush left-right combo that crumpled Hernandez and left him wide open for a rear naked choke. Junior refused to tap but was put out after only 70 seconds of action.
Elias Silverio UD3 Joao Zeferino – Welterweight
Silverio made his UFC debut a successful one, as his strength and striking proved too much for fellow Brazilian Zeferino. He lacked finishing intuition but looked otherwise comfortable en route to a 29-28, 30-27, 30-27 victory.
It helped that Zeferino had no plan of attack other than trying trips and throws to get Silverio down. They rarely worked, and Silverio ended up on top more often than not even though he was the one looking to strike.
He did get to showcase some nice body kicks and combination punches, at least in spurts, and there was little doubt he'd get the nod from the judges.
Ivan Jorge UD3 Keith Wisniewski – Welterweight
It wasn't a thing of beauty by any means, but a win is a win inside the Octagon. Jorge couldn't figure out a way to do what he wanted early on, but he persevered and looked much fresher down the stretch to earn a unanimous decision over journeyman Wisniewski.
Jorge's initial strategy of looking for takedowns was foiled by Wisniewski's knack for sprawling all the way back to the fence, though he really offered no offense besides knees from the clinch and the occasional short elbow or punch. In Round 2, Jorge almost tired himself out during a long sequence where he was wrapped around his opponent's waist from behind.
Yet it was Wisniewski who ultimately appeared gassed, aided by repeated knees to the body from Jorge. The Brazilian had all the offense over the bout's final few minutes, and he ended up with a fairly comfortable 29-28, 29-28, 30-27 win.
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