Tonight, at UFC 168, Anderson Silva will rematch the only man to ever defeat him inside the Octagon, Chris Weidman. That fight will serve as the main event of the evening and will be for the UFC Middleweight championship. Before the pay per view card begins, however, a stacked undercard gets everything underway.
The UFC is looking to close out 2013 with a bang, and they have put together a stellar undercard. In the main event of the prelims, TUF 17 alum, Uriah Hall, will take on TUF 1 alum, Chris Leben in a Middleweight tilt. A critical Lightweight bout between Michael Johnson and Gleison Tibau will determine who gets into the top 10 in the crowded division.
Uriah Hall (7-4, 0-2 UFC) is reeling after losing two straight inside the Octagon. In his last outing, he was personally bashed by Dana White. Hall needs a big rebound performance tonight if he wants to keep his job. Chris Leben (22-10, 12-9 UFC) is clearly on the tail end of his career, losing four of his last five and three straight. A win tonight could send him into retirement as a happy man.
Michael Johnson (13-8, 5-4 UFC) is coming off his most impressive performance to date. In August, Johnson dominated the heavily favored, Joe Lauzon, en route to a decision victory. He will look to stake his claim as a Lightweight contender with a win over Gleison Tibau tonight. Tibau (28-9, 12-7 UFC) is currently on a two fight winning streak, and will look to continue the trend with a win over Johnson tonight.
UFC 168 prelim card official results:
Uriah Hall vs. Chris Leben
A flying knee drops Leben immediately. Big knee cuts Leben’s face. Uriah is evading and countering all of Leben’s shots. Clinch from Uriah and they exchange knees. Leben can not catch the much faster Hall. Wheel kick misses from Uriah. Uriah nails Chris with a counter right that drops Leben. Uriah pouring it on, but the bell saves Leben. In the corner, Leben says he can not continue, and the fight is stopped. Strong performance by Uriah Hall.
Official Decision: Uriah Hall defeats Chris Leben by TKO Round 1 (5:00)
Michael Johnson vs. Gleison Tibau
Tibau opened up the fight with some impressive striking. Tibau held Johnson on the fence, but Johnson broke out. Johnson stunned Tibau with a big left hook, but Tibau recovered. Johnson began establishing his jab, but Tibau pushed Johnson up to the fence. Tibau did not advance and the round ended. The second round was Johnson working his striking from the outside. Johnson was utilizing his speed advantage very well. As Tibau moved in, Johnson nailed him with a left hand over the top. As Gleison hit the mat, Johnson landed a hard hammerfist, knocking Gleison out. Great performance from Michael Johnson tonight.
Official Decision: Michael Johnson defeats Gleison Tibau by KO Round 2 (0:32)
Manny Gamburyan vs. Dennis Siver
Early takedown from Siver, but Manny attacked with an armbar. Siver defended, but Manny got to his feet. Siver really opened up with his striking, but Manny was holding his own. Manny got a takedown and attacked with a leg lock. Siver defended with heavy ground and pound, and got Manny’s back standing as the round ended. The second round was opened up by Siver’s leg kicks. Manny got a takedown and bloodied up Siver with ground and pound. Siver got back to his feet, and they both exchanged. Manny actually threw a spinning back kick of his own, but it did not land. Manny got another takedown and finished the round with hard elbows. The third round started with good exchanges from both men, but a Siver kick went low. The fight was stopped momentarily. On the restart, Siver hit a takedown and worked some ground and pound. Ultimately, Siver got Manny’s back with a body triangle locked in. Siver rode the back until the final bell.
Official Decision: Dennis Siver defeats Manny Gamburyan by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Siyar Bahadurzada vs. John Howard
The first round was mostly contested on the feet in a very close battle. Siyar pushed Howard up to the fence, but was reversed. Neither man really landed anything of worth on the feet. Howard hit a nice takedown with a minute to go in the round. Howard got Siyar’s back standing, but Howard didn’t have underhooks and Siyar got out. The second round Howard came out with some heavy strikes, and nailed Siyar with a huge left hook. Siyar ate the punches and returned with some of his own. Siyar got a takedown at 3:30, but Howard threatened with a triangle choke, and Siyar got up. The pace slowed down a lot after the quick start to round 2. Howard picked up Siyar and held him on his shoulders before slamming him. That was pretty incredible. Third round started with a strong left hook from Howard. Siyar is completely exhausted, and Howard is nailing him with combinations. Powerful takedown from Howard, and he is working heavy ground and pound. Howard got into full mount with 90 seconds to go. Howard got the back, but was content with riding until the bell.
Official Decision: John Howard defeats Siyar Bahadurzada by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Early prelim results:
William Macario defeats Bobby Voelker by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27. 30-27)
Robbie Peralta defeats Estevan Payan by KO Round 3 (0:12)