UFC 221 results: Jake Matthews survives eye gouge, upsets Li Jingliang

11 February 2018

Despite taking a WWE-level rake of the eyes from Li Jingliang in order to get out of a tight choke attempt, Jake Matthews stayed after it and got an upset for one of the biggest wins of his career.

Matthews (12-3 MMA, 6-3 UFC) took a unanimous decision from Jingliang (14-5 MMA, 6-3 UFC) with a pair of 30-26 scores and a 29-28.

The welterweight bout was part of the main card of today’s UFC 221 event at Perth Arena in Perth, Western Australia. It aired on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

Things were tentative early while the fighters looked for an opening. Midway through, Matthews looked like he had found some confience. And three minutes into the round, Matthews knocked Jingliang to the canvas with a short left hand. Matthews quickly went to the canvas and tried to get the finish. He got full mount, then took Jingliang’s back with a body triangle and looked for a rear-naked choke. He couldn’t find the finish, but it was a big statement of a first round for the home fighter.

Jingliang had a moment in the second when he hurt Matthews. But in the scramble, Matthews went after a submission on the canvas. And when he had a guillotine choke seemingly locked on, Jingliang managed to get out of it and send the fight back to the feet. The two slugged at each other in the final 45 seconds, but neither went down.

The talk of the round, though, was just how Jingliang was able to get out of the guillotine choke. Replays showed a viciously blatant eye gouge by Jingliang that helped force Matthews to break the choke.

Matthews shot for a takedown in the first minute of the third and got it, but Jingliang got back to his feet after eating a few punches. Midway through the round, Matthews planted Jingliang with a right hand – but once again, Jingliang recovered in an instant and got right back up and found himself on top of Matthews on the canvas. The two were back on their feet in the middle with a minute to go. With 30 seconds left, Matthews landed a flying knee after checking on the time, but then drove in for a takedown with 10 seconds left.

Matthews won for the second straight time after a two-fight skid. Jingliang had a four-fight winning streak snapped.

Up-to-the-minute UFC 221 results include:

For complete coverage of UFC 221, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie

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