Ryan Bader (18-4) fought Ovince St. Preux (16-6) over five grueling rounds in the main event of UFC Fight Night 47 in Bangor, Maine. And when the judges scorecards were read, it was a clear victory for the number 8 ranked light heavyweight in the UFC, Ryan Bader won his 3rd straight bout. And in doing so handed St. Preux his first loss in the UFC in 5 bouts.
While it was not the most entertaining fight to end a full of highlights night of action, the former Arizona State All-American wrestler was able to implement his takedowns and control the fight in four of the five rounds, landing a total of nine takedowns in the fight.
Bader thought OSP was a good test coming off a 4-fight win streak, and although he was looking to mix his boxing more in the fight, it was a switch of game plans during the fight that proved successful.
“I just felt a little flat on my feet at the beginning, and I had to rely a lot on my wrestling,” Bader said. “And he [St. Preux] was long and lanky, and kept a good distance, so I had to improvise a little bit and get it done another way.”
Crediting his recent success—with wins over Anthony Perosh, Rafael Cavalcante, and St. Preux—to going back to his bread and butter, which is wrestling, Bader feels the fights he lost were due to the fact that he got away from his strength.
“For awhile there I kind of got away from it a little bit,” Bader said in reference to his wrestling game. “If you look at my losses, they’re when I go out there and exclusively try to kick box with guys—like Glover, Machida, Jon Jones, those kind of fights.
“I need to mix everything up, that’s my strength, it’s wrestling. I need to mix that up with my boxing and everything else, and keep that in my game. I wanted to get of a little more tonight on my feet, but I couldn’t, so I improvised and got it done.”
As for what’s next for Bader, he wouldn’t commit to any future opponent, instead he was looking forward to going home and taking care of a few injuries first before thinking about his next fight.
“I have a few injuries that I need to address right now, get those all healed up. For me, I just keep my head down and fight whoever they give me.”