In the co-main event of UFC 172, Phil Davis took on Anthony Johnson in a light heavyweight bout. It was Johnson’s first time back inside of the octagon in two years, and he was looking to make an immediate splash by taking down a top 15 fighter in the division.
Round 1: Davis began the fight by circling away from Johnson’s power hand, before Johnson threw a solid shot to the body. Davis was working hard to get the fight to the ground, but Johnson was showing some much improved takedown defense to avoid being put on his back. Johnson continued to stalk Davis throughout the round, and was able to get off first in every exchange. Davis hit a solid shot to the body, but Johnson was able to hurt him with a counter and sent Davis retreating to the cage. Davis briefly turtled up, before shooting for another takedown and eating a big knee for his efforts. The knee busted up a big gash over Davis’ left eye. Davis attempted to throw a hail mary head kick near the end of the round, but Johnson easily shrugged it off and kept the pressure on with some heavy leg kicks and jabs to bring an end to the round.
FanSided scorecard; 10-9, Johnson
Round 2: Davis was willing to go toe-to-toe with Johnson in the second round, as both men stood in the center of the octagon and worked to find an opening. Davis through a leg kick, but Johnson answered with a big counter head kick. Davis was able to keep his hand up and block most of the damage, and Johnson continued to lay down the damage. Johnson was able to get the better of every exchange, but Davis looked to get clever and shot for a low single. Johnson stepped out of the takedown attempt and was able to keep the fight standing, on his way to taking another round on the judge’s scorecard.
FanSided scorecard: 10-9, Johnson (20-18, Johnson)
Round 3: Davis continued to look for the takedown and was working hard to get the fight to the mat, but Johnson was able to keep everything standing. Davis eventually was able to push Johnson up against the cage, but Johnson responded by pushing Davis away and landing a big knee. Johnson was able to continue landing some heavy shots, with Davis continuing to look for the takedown. Davis threw some elbows to Johnson’s head as the round come to an end, but it likely wasn’t enough to sway the scorecard in his favor.
FanSided scorecard: 10-9, Johnson (30-27, Johnson)
Official result: Anthony Johnson def. Phil Davis via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)