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UFC Fight Night 152 (Rochester): Lee vs. Dos Anjos

Published by: Alex “AFM” Minor

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Saturday, May 18, 2019, the UFC held Fight Night 152 in Rochester, New York. Atop this card was an interesting Welterweight matchup between former Lightweights, Kevin Lee and Rafael Dos Anjos. Coming into this fight, Lee was 1-2 in his last three fights, most recently losing to Al Iaquinta by decision. After suffering this loss, Lee had a hard time finding opponents within his division. Therefore, when offered a matchup with a top-ranked Welterweight, Lee jumped at the opportunity to make a splash in a new weight class. Considering Lee’s weight troubles at Lightweight, this move up would likely prove much healthier for the young contender as well.

Rafael Dos Anjos had also moved up to Welterweight from Lightweight , making both men similar in size/frame. However, Dos Anjos was much more acclimated to the weight class having accumulated five fights and three wins already. Going into this fight, RDA was coming of a two-fight losing streak to the likes of Colby Covington and current champ, Kamaru Usman.

All things considered, both men had plenty to prove in this matchup. Whereas Lee had to prove that he could find a similar level of success in a higher weight class, RDA had to prove that he was still one of the best fighters in the world with the ability to snatch another title.

In the first round of the fight, both men wasted no time engaging in hostilities. As soon as the bell sounded, they met in the middle and began trading powerful combinations. Kevin Lee was much more aggressive than RDA to start. While RDA was being patient and picking his shots, Lee was walkingd him down, landing hard, straight punch flurries and roundhouse kicks to the body. Lee also managed to get a big takedown with a good amount of control. RDA landed a takedown late in the round as well.

The second round was much different as Lee seemed to slow down and RDA began tagging him at will with laser punches and head kicks. Nevertheless, Lee steadily pushed RDA back to the cage to keep control and attempt takedowns.

In the third round of the bout, Lee was wilting badly. RDA got two takedowns with a great amount of top position. Lee managed to reverse position on occasion, but RDA was the main aggressor in the grappling-heavy round.

About 3 minutes into the fourth round, Lee was desperately shooting for takedowns to get the fight back in his favor. Dos Anjos stuffed Lee’s attempt, shoving him down into the turtle position. RDA took advantage of this defensive position by securing the back and landing punches from top. Shortly thereafter, RDA rolled Lee to his back and sinched in his patented Head & Arm choke. Within a few seconds, Lee tapped, and the battle was won.

Rafael Dos Anjos didn’t call out any specific opponents upon his victory. He merely thanked God, his coaches, and proclaimed his goal of becoming a two-division champion. As for Kevin Lee, he has expressed his disappointment since the result of the match. Nevertheless, he has no intention of letting this setback stagnate his career. It is unclear at this time whether Lee will go back down to lightweight or give it another go in his new weight division. Regardless of his decision, several analysts seem to believe that a change in his camp may be necessary for his progression, with a specific focus on his compromising cardio.

Official Results

  • Rafael Dos Anjos def. Kevin Lee via SUB (Head & Arm choke) 3:47 into rd. 4
  • Ian Heinsich def. Antonio Carlos Junior via DEC 5:00 into rd. 3
  • Felicia Spencer def. Megan Anderson via SUB (Rear Naked Choke) 3:24 into rd. 1
  • Vicente Luque def. Derrick Krantz via KO/TKO (Punches) 3:52 into rd. 1
  • Charles Oliveira def. Nik Lentz via KO/TKO (Punches) 2:11 into rd. 2
  • Davi Ramos def. Austin Hubbard via DEC 5:00 into rd. 3
  • Aspen Ladd def. Sijara Eubanks via DEC 5:00 into rd .3
  • Desmond Green def. Charles Jourdain via DEC 5:00 into rd. 3
  • Michel Pereira def. Danny Roberts via KO/TKO (Flying knee/Punch) 1:47 into rd. 1
  • Grant Dawson def. Mike Trizano via SUB (Rear Naked Choke) 2:27 into rd. 2
  • Ed Herman def. Patrick Cummins via KO/TKO (Knee/punches) 3:39 into rd. 1
  • Zak Cummings def. Trevin Giles via SUB (Guillotine) 4:01 into rd. 3
  • Julio Arce def. Julian Erosa via KO/TKO (Head Kick) 1:49 into rd. 3

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