Jorge Masvidal survived a huge overhand right by Daron Cruickshank in the first round to get a unanimous decision verdict at UFC on FOX 12. The win takes his overall UFC record to 4-1, with his sole loss being an entertaining and close battle with Rustam Khabilov.
Cruickshank put in a valiant effort, showing his power in the first round by scoring a huge knockout which almost finished the fight with one punch. However, it was the resilience and experience of Masvidal that proved the key to victory, with Gamebred getting a couple of takedowns, showing slick jiu-jitsu and threatening with multiple submissions to win the last two rounds. One judge even scored the round 2 as a 10-8 for the former Strikeforce alum.
Here is how the fight played out.
I really like this fight. Masvidal coming off an impressive decision win over Pat Healy, while Cruickshank has finished his last two fights via spectacular TKO.
Round 1 – Masvidal fighting tall. Cruickshank catches the kick and returns one of his own. Cruickshank misses a punch combination, Masvidal taking the centre and pressing forward. Body kick from Masivdal. A huge right hand drops Masvidal! But he’s right back up! Masvidal was hurt bad! Spinning wheel kick misses from Cruickshank. That was absolutely huge there from Cruickshank, out of nowhere. Masvidal seems to have his wits about him. Cruickshank with two body kicks. Cruickshank with a 1-2. Nice jab there. Masvidal eats a leg kick, and a 1-2, then a side kick. Cruickshank looks awesome again. A short left. Masvidal with a quick combination. And an overhand right. Cruickshank’s kick is caught and huge knees by Masvidal! Nice short left by Masvidal, who eats a body shot. Front kick from Cruickshank lands. Body kick. He’s catching Masvidal coming forward. What a combination with a leg kick at the end. Masvidal getting outworked so far. Knee to the body from Masvidal then doubles up to jab. Cruickshank charges forward but doesn’t land. Good combination by Masvidal but he eats a couple of body kicks. Spinning back fist misses from Cruickshank. Masvidal with the knees. Spinning back kick just misses from Cruickshank. He avoids the punch from Masvidal. Big body kick. Masvidal with the takedown at the end of the round. Great round, close to a 10-8.
Cooper scores round 1 10-9 Cruickshank.
Round 2 – Cruickshank’s left eye is bothering him. He’s struggling to see out of it. Overhand right then a kick by Cruickshank, but avoided by Masvidal. Body kick lands from Masvidal. Cruickshank with the takedown! Masvidal works his way up but Cruickshank has the clinch. Masvidal holding on to the neck and rolls! Excellent job. Into the guard of Cruickshank now. Half guard. Masvidal decides to stand and Cruickshank threatens with the up kicks. Half guard again now, Masvidal dives back in. Short elbows from Gamebred. Masivdal seems to be taking over now. Cruickshank rolls and Masvidal is working on the d’arce now. He might have it! Will he tap? This is Masvidal’s signature move. Cruickshank surviving so far, and he does! But huge elbows from Masvidal. Great resilience from Cruickshank, who regains guard. More huge elbows! Cruickshank seems to be threatening with a kimura now, holding onto that right arm of Gamebred. He lets it go. Masvidal now controlling the left arm of Cruickshank in the handcuff position. He lets it go and lands some short shots. He’s still in guard but landing a lot of shots which will accumulate up. Elbows from the bottom by Cruickshank, but Masvidal hits him even harder from the top. Masvidal gets into half guard and lands some short shots to end another fun round.
Cooper scores round 2 10-9 Masvidal (19-19).
Round 3 – Leg kick from Cruickshank is checked. Nice combination from Cruickshank but a great jab counter from Masvidal buckles him. Cruickshank blitzes and lands a 1-2. Body kick by Cruickshank then a jab. Masvidal drops down and works on the single leg, but Cruickshank defending well thusfar. He’s got the back of Cruickshank in the clinch now. Knees to the thigh. Cruickshank rolls under and Masvidal recognises it, threatens with the d’arce but instead improves his position. Cruickshank trying to hit the switch but unable to. He wall walks but Masvidal has his hands clasped. He lets go and instead lands a couple of shots. Cruickshank tries for the kimura then forces Masvidal to escape. Cruickshank gets the takedown and gets to the back straight away! But he’s too high up and Masvidal wriggles free and is now on top inside the guard. Cruickshank threatening from the bottom but Masvidal lands some short shots. Half guard now. He’s working on an arm triangle but Cruickshank recognises it and defends. He regains guard but Masvidal is hammering away with short strikes. Herb Dean warning that he’ll stand them up. Masvidal gets half guard, Cruickshank once again threatening with a kimura. But he’s turtling up and Masvidal is landing some huge shots! Big knee by Masvidal! He’s going for the takedown at the end of the round, Cruickshank goes for the choke but the round ends.
Cooper scores round 3 10-9 Masvidal (29-28 Masvidal).
Result: Masvidal via unanimous decision (29-28 x2, 29-27).
A fantastic fight full of technical striking, nice ground exchanges and a lot of action. Cruickshank proved his worth, but Masvidal was great in the last two.
Check out the results for the fight card as they stand below. The full play-by-play can be seen here.
Preliminary Card (FOX)
Jorge Masvidal def. Daron Cruickshank via unanimous decision (29-28 x2, 29-27).
Patrick Cummins def. Kyle Kingsbury via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-25, 30-24).
Tim Means def. Hernani Perpetuo via unanimous decision (29-28 x3).
Brian Ortega def. Mike De La Torre via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:39 in first round.
Preliminary Card (UFC Fight Pass)
Tiago Trator def. Akbarh Arreola via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27 x2).
Gilbert Burns def. Andreas Stahl via unanimous decision (29-28 x3).
Joanna Jedrzejczyk def. Juliana Lima via unanimous decision (30-27 x2, 29-28).
Noad Lahat def. Steven Siler via unanimous decision (29-28 x3).