| This was absolutely worth the co-main event billing as these men are always willing to put on a great show for the fans. Tonight was no exception.
Cerrone opened up with some kicks and dos Anjos answered with a few kicks of his own. Both men danced around, felt each other out for a moment but then started opening up about two minutes in. Both men were landing strikes when the distance would close but it was dos Anjos that rocked Cerrone with a right hook with just about 2 minutes left in the round. Cerrone threatened with a triangle choke but dos Anjos saw it a mile away. After scrambling around for a moment dos Anjos started opening up from the guard of Cerrone, landing damaging short elbows. Rafael was in complete control for the last two minutes of the round and it clearly won him the round, 10-9.
The second round was more dos Anjos as he came out landing big kicks and nice straights. He also landed a huge knee to the face of Cerrone as Donald was coming out of the clinch. Cerrone could not seem to find his range with the jab and was having trouble catching dos Anjos. Rafael looked to be in control of the fight but then Cerrone hit a nice blast-double and scored the takedown on dos Anjos. Cerrone couldn’t do much with the position as dos Anjos came back up moments later. From their feet both men threw nice kicks but it was Rafael that was landing the them with more power. With about a minute left dos Anjos presses into Donald and dropped in for a takedown. Cerrone tried to defend but the power of dos Anjos was too much and Cerrone ended the round on bottom. This was a much closer round to score but I still give the edge to Rafael dos Anjos. There was a lot riding on the third and final round.
The third round began just like the other two, with several kicks, low and high, from both men. It still seemed that dos Anjos was pressing and controlling the pace of the fight and he was clearly landing the harder kicks. Cerrone just could not seem to catch a rhythm with his striking as dos Anjos was quicker and always first. About midway through the round Rafael went for a takedown but did not get it. He backed and off they continued striking. Nothing in bunches, but consistent action took place throughout the round. Dos Anjos got caught with a couple of strikes and then shot in on Cerrone again. Dos Anjos seemed to be slowing and now it was Cerrone that was pressing the pace. Dos Anjos was bleeding from his eye but it wasn’t bothering him much. He looked as if he was coasting to the victory, assuming he had the first two rounds in the bag. The fight ended with Cerrone chasing down dos Anjos but he could not catch him.
Rafael dos Anjos put on a great performance against a very tough opponent like Donald Cerrone. He avoided Cerrone’s big strikes, matched him kick for kick and landed his with more power, he out-wrestled Cerrone, and he earned himself a unanimous decision victory.
Dos Anjos was the #10 ranked contender in the UFC lightweight division heading into this fight and he is now riding a 5-fight winning streak with this win over Cerrone. He will likely be facing a top-5 name in his next bout and is probably one win away from a title shot. We’ll be keeping an eye on Rafael dos Anjos. Cerrone is now 1-2 in his last three fights and will likely slip down to the bottom of the top 10 contenders with this loss.
To see what the UFC decides to do with both of these two men following their war at UFC Fight Night 27 stay posted to BJPenn.comDonald Cerrone, Jake Chastain, MMA NEWS, Rafael dos Anjos, UFC FIght Night 27, UFC in Indy, ufc lightweights, ufc news