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Namajunas, Swanson go distance for wins

Read on for UFC Fight Night main card results...
NAMAJUNAS vs TORRES

Strawweight contenders Rose Namajunas and Tecia Torres got elevated to Saturday’s UFC Fight Night co-main event earlier in the week, and they gave a performance worthy of such placement at Amalie Arena in Tampa, with the number three-ranked Namajunas edging the fourth-ranked Torres via unanimous decision.

Scores were 29-28 across the board for Denver’s Namajunas, now 6-2; Coconut Creek’s Torres falls to 7-1. The two fought in the Invicta FC promotion in 2013, Torres winning a three-round decision.

Namajunas attempted to control the fight from long range in the opening round, but whenever the two would trade at close quarters, Torres would win those exchanges with crisp combinations. Namajunas did get a late takedown, keeping the fight close.

The high-level action continued in the second, but this time, it was Namajunas holding the lead, as she found her rhythm and tagged Torres several times. “The Tiny Tornado” got in plenty of kicks though, and the two got the crowd roaring in the final moments with some explosive exchanges.

Torres’ kicks continued to hit the mark in the final round, but a takedown in the final minute of the close round by Namajunas was a key score, making calling a winner a tough task for the judges.

More from Fight Night Tampa: Full results | Postfight bonus recap | Watch: Dana White has final say on Fight Night Tampa | Teixeira KO’s Evans in main event | Namajunas, Swanson go distance for wins; Nurmagomedov takes shorter route | Dodson makes it look easy in bantamweight return | Chiesa, Graves get submission wins, Pennington gets close victory | Backstage Interviews: Glover Teixeira, Rose Namajunas, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Cub Swanson, Michael Chiesa, Raquel Pennington, Santiago Ponzinibbio, Michael Graves | Octagon interviews: Glover Teixeira, John Dodson | Best images from Fight Night Tampa

NURMAGOMEDOV vs. HORCHER

Back in action after a series of injuries kept him sidelined for two years, number two-ranked lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov continued to add to his unbeaten win total, stopping late replacement Darrell Horcher in the second round.
 


Horcher, making his UFC debut, replaced the injured Tony Ferguson on April 7. The bout was held at a catchweight of 160 pounds.

Nurmagomedov took a little while to get going in his first fight since April of 2014, but midway through the round, “The Eagle” scooped Horcher up and slammed him to the mat. There, the Dagestan native patiently took his time before unleashing a series of elbows that cut the Pennsylvania product. In the final minute, Nurmagomedov took Horcher’s back and unleashed more strikes, but the newcomer made it to the horn.

The bout went back to the mat within 30 seconds of the start of round two, and this time, Nurmagomedov ended matters, with strikes from a mounted crucifix and then the back position prompting referee James Warring to step in at the 3:38 mark.

With the win, Nurmagomedov improves to 23-0; Shermansdale’s Horcher falls to 12-2.

SWANSON vs. DIAS

Number six-ranked featherweight contender Cub Swanson was victorious in his first bout since April of 2015, breaking a two-fight losing streak with a unanimous decision win over number 10-ranked Hacran Dias.
 


The first round was a chess match in four-ounce gloves, with both fighters trying to figure the other out. Dias’ striking attack was strong, but too many lulls in the action allowed Swanson to get in his punches and kicks.

A left from Swanson put Dias on the deck early in round two, but Dias weathered the follow-up storm and got back to his feet clear-headed. Dias did his best to even the score, but the measured pace favored Swanson, who was able to pick his shots and get into a comfortable rhythm.

The pattern continued into the third, but with under two minutes left, Swanson scored another knockdown, this one with a head kick, essentially giving the Palm Springs native the lead he wouldn’t relinquish, with a final barrage of ground strikes wrapping up the decision he took via scores of 29-28.

Swanson moves to 22-7 with the win; Rio de Janeiro’s Dias falls to 23-4-1.
Saturday, December 30
10PM/7PM
ETPT
Las Vegas, Nevada

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