Tonight’s UFC Vegas 14 event is headlined by a key lightweight contest featuring former title holder Rafael dos Anjos taking on Paul Felder.
The UFC’s former lightweight champion, Dos Anjos, was initially slated to fight Islam Makhachev in tonight’s event headliner. However, the Russian standout tested positive for Covid-19 and was forced to withdraw from the contest.
With that, Paul Felder (17-5 MMA) stepped up on just five days notice to save the event.
Felder will enter tonight’s UFC Vegas 14 headliner looking to rebound, this after dropping a split-decision loss to Dan Hooker in his most recent effort. ‘The Irish Dragon’ has gone 3-2 over his past five fights overall, which includes a TKO victory over Charles Oliveira.
Meanwhile, Rafael dos Anjos (29-13 MMA) will be looking to snap a two-fight losing skid when he squares off with Paul Felder this evening in Las Vegas. ‘RDA’ is coming off back-to-back decision losses to welterweights Michael Chiesa and Leon Edwards in his most recent Octagon appearances. Prior to the setbacks, Dos Anjos was coming off a submission victory over Kevin Lee.
Round one of the UFC Vegas 14 main event begins and both men come out quickly. Felder lands a low kick. ‘RDA’ misses with a front kick attempt. Another low kick from Paul Felder. Rafael dos Anjos with a good body shot and then a kick. Felder rips off a combination. Dos Anjos with a high kick that gets blocked. He lands a good follow up body kick. Felder spins and misses with an elbow. Dos Anjos shoots in for a takedown. He gets it. ‘RDA’ immediately begins working from the full guard of ‘The Irish Dragon’. He lands a pair of shots before Felder attempts to scramble. Rafael holds him in place and looks to pass to half hard. Another scramble from Paul Felder and this time he is back up. Dos Anjos stays on him. He lands a pair of knees. Felder with an uppercut and then breaks free from the clinch. Paul Felder with a good combination. ‘RDA’ returns fire with a kick to the body followed by a left hand. Dos Anjos rips the body of Felder with a hook. Paul with a jab. One minute remains in the round. Felder pushes for the clinch. He moves Dos Anjos back up against the cage. ‘RDA’ switches the position and drags Felder to the ground. Paul quickly gets back to his feet but eats an elbow. Rafael breaks loose and lands a good right hand to close out round one.
Round two of the UFC Vegas 14 main event begins and Rafael dos Anjos quickly moves to force the clinch. Paul Felder breaks free and lands a good low kick. ‘RDA’ with a straight left up the middle and then another. He shoots in for a double leg takedown but Felder defends. The fighters battel in the clinch against the cage. ‘RDA’ breaks free and lands a good body kick. He follows that up with another straight left. Paul Felder responds with a terrific combination. Dos Anjos with a high kick and then a left hand. He lands a left hook over the top and shoots in for another takedown attempt. Once again Felder is able to defend but ‘RDA’ is still on him and eventually trips him to the floor. Felder scrambles back up but Rafael is still all over him. Knees from the former lightweight champion. He looks to drag ‘The Irish Dragon’ back down to the canvas but this time Felder avoids the trip. Paul is able to break free and lands a nice front kick to the body. ‘RDA’ replies with a sharp left hand. The horn sounds to end round two.
Round three of the UFC Vegas 14 headliner begins and Paul Felder throws a heavy body kick to start. The fighters exchange low kicks. Dos Anjos presses forward and lands a front kick. He forces the clinch and lands a knee. ‘RDA’ drops for a takedown but Felder defends. Good punches from both men in the pocket. Felder this time forces the clinch. He presses Rafael dos Anjos against the cage. The Brazilian reverses the position and then scores a big takedown. He moves to half guard and looks to secure dominant position. Just over two minutes remain in the round. Felder scrambles back up to his feet. The lightweight warriors begin to battle in the clinch. They eventually separate following a big elbow from ‘RDA’. Dos Anjos shoots in for a late takedown. One minute remains in the round. Rafael dos Anjos picks up and slams Felder. He looks to immediately move to mount but Paul is able to defend. Ten seconds remain. ‘RDA’ looks for a kimura but it is not there.
"I need Rocky III this round."
— UFC (@ufc) November 15, 2020
Round four of the UFC Vegas 14 main event begins and Paul Felder comes out quickly after his corner told him he needs a finish to win the fight. Dos Anjos circles and then lands a jab. Felder returns fire with a combination. ‘RDA’ with a big kick to the body. That was nasty. Paul misses with a high kick. Dos Anjos lands another heavy kick to the body. He pushes ‘The Irish Dragon’ back up against the cage and begins working some knees. Felder is doing his best to avoid going back to the ground here. He gets an under-hook and looks to separate. ‘RDA’ stays on him as they battle for position. Good knees now from ‘RDA’. Felder breaks free and lands a good left hand. Dos Anjos returns fire but Paul shoots in and lands a takedown. ‘RDA’ reverses the position and unloads a few punches before the horn sounds to end round four.
— UFC (@ufc) November 15, 2020
The fifth and final round of the UFC Vegas 14 main event begins and Paul Felder lands a big right hand and then a kick to the body of ‘RDA’ to start. The former champion quickly looks to force the clinch and does just that. A big elbow from Dos Anjos and Felder is a bloody mess. Rafael gets a takedown and immediately passes to half guard. Rafael dos Anjos is landing ground and pound while searching for potential submissions. He begins landing some heavy knees to the body of Felder. ‘The Irish Dragon’ scrambles back up to his feet. ‘RDA’ looks to drag him back down. He does and begins landing more ground and pound before the horn sounds to end round five.
Official UFC Vegas 14 Result: Rafael dos Anjos def. Paul Felder by split decision (47-48, 50-45 x2)
Who would you like to see Rafael Dos Anjos fight next following his decision victory over Paul Felder this evening in Las Vegas? Share your thoughts in the comments section PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com November 14, 2020