Holm, Tuivasa gain momentum in Chicago


Former UFC women’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm bounced back from her December loss to Cris Cyborg at United Center on Saturday, scoring a shutout three-round unanimous decision over debuting former Invicta FC champion Megan Anderson on the UFC 225 main card.

Scores in the featherweight contest were 30-27 and 30-26 twice.

Anderson wasted no time getting to work, and she landed hard shots on Holm in the opening round before Holm was able to slow things down with a clinch against the fence. With a little less than two minutes left, Anderson got free, but it was clear that Holm didn’t want a striking match, so she took her foe to the mat and kept her there until the end of the round.

Holm ruled the second with her grappling attack, both in the clinch against the fence and on the mat, and in the final minute, she poured it on with heavy blows from the full mount position.

And while Anderson was able to hang in for the final five minutes, the third was another dominant round for Holm, whose grappling game was unstoppable on this night.

With the win, Holm improves to 12-4. Anderson falls to 8-3.


Rising Australian star Tai Tuivasa didn’t get another first-round knockout, but he did get a huge win, as he won a close, but unanimous, decision over former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski.

An interesting first round saw Tuivasa experience the first adversity of his UFC career, as Arlovski bloodied him and stalled the action as the two hit the canvas. When standing, though, “Bam Bam” was able to drop Arlovski briefly with under two minutes left, and he landed the harder shots throughout.

Entering the second round for the first time as a pro, Tuivasa looked ready to go, and the two proceeded to get in some heated exchanges, both fighters getting their shots in.

The third remained close, but the harder shots were landed by Tuivasa, who emerged victorious by identical scores of 29-28.

The No. 12-ranked Tuivasa improves to 10-0 with the win. The No. 9-ranked Arlovski falls to 27-16 with 1 NC.


In the main card opener, Mike Jackson handed former WWE superstar CM Punk his second pro defeat, winning a shutout three-round unanimous decision in a welterweight bout.

Jackson and Punk traded right hands in the opening minute, Punk’s having the greater effect as he was able to pin Jackson to the fence for a spell. Jackson got loose in the second minute, and it was clear that he had the crisper striking, but Punk did do some good work in the clinch. Jackson’s takedown defense was solid for the most part, but in the final minute, Punk got the bout to the mat, a big score for the Chicago native.

A minute into round two, a right hand hurt Punk, but he was able to get a hold of Jackson until his head cleared. Jackson used that hold to take the fight to the mat, and he proceeded to ground-and-pound his way through the rest of the round, bloodying Punk’s face in the process.

The third was all Jackson, with Punk’s heart the only thing keeping him in the fight, but there was no surprise when the judges returned three scores of 30-26 for Jackson, now 1-1. Punk falls to 0-2.

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