After taking over Dallas last month for UFC 211, the fight game traveled north of the Red River for UFC Fight Night 112 in Oklahoma City with a little Texas Connects Us flavor.
Oklahoma native and Fort Worth resident Johny Hendricks had the co-main event spotlight on the card against Tim Boetsch in a middleweight match-up but the homecoming didn’t go quite as planned.
Boetsch used a right kick to stun Hendricks and then followed with numerous uppercuts to finish things off for the TKO victory in the second-round. It was Hendrick’s second fight in the middleweight division, winning the first one against Hector Lombard early this year.
The fight faced some issues before the bell even rung. Hendricks failed to make weight during early weigh-ins on Saturday, tipping the scale at 188-pounds, a full two pounds over the middleweight limit in a non-title title bout.
“Bigg Rigg” has a history of weight-cutting problems during his days at welterweight, some which would lead to problems physically. He missed weight twice in his final two bouts before moving up to the 185-pound division. Hendricks also was hospitalized and forced out of a fight against future champion Tyron Woodley at UFC 192 after developing kidney stones during a weight cut.
However, the fight went on as scheduled with Hendricks facing a 20-percent fine for missing weight.
Hendricks considered retirement last year after losing three fights in a row in the welterweight division before deciding to make one final push by moving up to middleweight.
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Mineral Wells native James Vick was in attendance to witness the other main event between Michael Chiesa and Kevin Lee. After his win at UFC 211, Vick not only questioned why he wasn’t in the lightweight division rankings but also called out the winner between Lee and Chiesa. During the press conference last month in Dallas, Chiesa and Lee added more spice to the fight by exchanging some trash talk and punches on stage.
However, the grudge match in Oklahoma City would end in controversy. Lee locked in the rear-naked chock hold on Chiesa towards the end of the first-round when referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bout, awarding the submission victory to Lee. The only problem was Chiesa never tapped out. Needless to say, he was livid immediately afterwards in the octagon. UFC president Dana White later ripped Yamasaki about the decision on social media.
The debate will be whether Chiesa was close to passing out but now nobody will ever know the answer. Lee felt confident either way the end result would be another one in the win column.
“I think I dominated the fight bell to whistle,” said Lee. “He went limp. It was still 45 more seconds left in the fight. I don’t see what the controversy is about. It wasn’t like I was going to let go. I was going to keep chocking him.”
Chiesa also ripped Yamasaki for the early stoppage and challenged Lee to a rematch in December in Lee’s hometown of Detroit, Michigan.
“Something has to be done about it,” said Chiesa. “We are going to seek due diligence. Chances are it’s not to get overturned but I’m not going to go down without a fight. I don’t care where the rematch is. He wants to fight in Detroit. I’m your Huckleberry, let’s go. Let’s run it back.”
UFC Fight Night 112 results:
Kevin Lee def. Michael Chiesa via submission
Tim Boetsch def. Johny Hendricks via second-round TKO
Felice Herrig def. Justine Kish via unanimous decision
Dominick Reyes def. Joachim Christensen via first-round TKO
Tim Means def. Alex Garcia via unanimous decision
Dennis Siver def. BJ Penn via majority decision
Clay Guida def. Erik Kock via unanimous decision
Marvin Vettori def. Vitor Miranda via unanimous decision
Carla Esparza def. Maryna Moroz via unanimous decision
Darrell Horcher def. Devin Powell via split decision
Jared Gordon def. Michael Quinones via second-round TKO
Tony Martin def. Johnny Case via unanimous decision
Jeremy Kimball def. Josh Stansbury via first-round TKO