Holly Holm scored a brutal head kick knockout of Bethe Correia in the main event of UFC Fight Night 111: Holm vs. Correia in Singapore.
Holm, the woman who handed Ronda Rousey her first career loss, came into Saturday’s card with three consecutive losses and few answers about her future in the sport. Correia had a win and a draw in her last two fights, but entered the evening the underdog to Holm.
The first two rounds saw little action with Holm, the counter-striker and Correia, fighting much more tentatively than normal, throwing from outside range. The referee even had to step in during the second round to instruct the fighters to make something happen.
Holm made it happen shortly after Correia goaded her forward with a taunt in the third round. A beautiful left-leg head kick to the head put Correia on the ground and out of it. A follow-up punch sealed the deal but was unnecessary.
In the co-featured bout, Andrei Arlovski took on Marcin Tybura in a heavyweight brawl. Tybura secured mount early in the first round and rained down enough punishment to bloody up Arlovski’s face. But in the process he also punched himself out and was gassed going into the second.
Arlovski took control there and landed some big shots standing, but he was tired himself and had to spend much of the round holding Tybura down. The third round went the other way, with Tybura holding Arlovski down in a dominant position to secure the decision victory.
Saturday’s main card got started with a strong performance from former champion Rafael dos Anjos. He was taking on Tarec Saffiedine, himself the last Strikeforce middleweight champion before the promotion went under. It was a back-and-forth fight, but one that dos Anjos won with a higher volume of striking and damage done over three rounds.
Dong Hyun Kim, the eighth-ranked welterweight in the UFC, took a fight against Colby Covington, a relative unknown, and paid for it. It was an extremely uneventful fight, with Covington smothering Kim against the fence for three rounds. Either way, Covington got the convincing unanimous decision win.
The preliminary card ended with a bang when Jon Tuck scored a quick TKO victory over Japanese legend Takanori Gomi. There were four knockouts total on the preliminary card. One notable one saw a doctor’s stoppage win for Alex Caceres over Rolando Dy at the end of the second round.
Below is the full play-by-play from Saturday’s main card and below that is the full list of results from the entire fight card.
Holly Holm def. Bethe Correia via KO (head kick) at 1:09 of Round 3
Round 1: The fighters circle and very few shots are thrown initially. Holm lands two big kicks to the body after a couple minutes of feeling out. Holm lands another side body kick as Correia misses with an overhand. Correia throws a winging right hook, but Holm steps aside and lands another kick, this one around Correia’s shoulder. Holm lands a left jab and Correia finally lands herself, with a stiff left hook. The round comes to an end with the crowd booing despite it being a five-round fight.
Round 2: Holm, a counter striker, isn’t really throwing and Correia seems to be trying to work a counter game herself. Nothing lands for the first two minutes. Correia throws a bit right jab and left hook, both of which graze Holm. Holm lands another spinning back kick to the body. The referee steps in and warns the fighters that they aren’t engaging and that something needs to happen. They do try for more shots after the warning, but nothing is landing. Correia goes for a takedown with 15 seconds to go. She gets Holm against the fence and throws multiple knees to the shins as the round comes to an end.
Round 3: Holm lands a nice body kick again to start the round. Correia drops her hands and seems to be taunting Holm. They circle, and Holm throws a big left head kick that immediately knocks Correia out. Correia lands sitting up, but clearly out of it, and Holm finishes her with a quick punch before the referee steps in to stop it. Correia had put her arm up, knowing that she was beaten, but Holm didn’t stop until the referee forced her to. A beautiful head kick!
Marcin Tybura def. Andrei Arlovski via unanimous decision (29-28, 28-27, 29-27)
Round 1: Arlovski lands a huge spinning body kick to start the fight. Not long after, Tybura takes advantage of another kick attempt from Arlovski to secure a takedown. He ends up in full guard. Tybura works the position for a couple minutes. He eventually manages to pass to full mount. There were times when Arlovski was holding him down in guard and the fight was nearly being stopped and stood up, but Tybura got the pass and started raining down shots from mount. Arlovski does a good job of slipping punches from his back, but Tybura is throwing at such a high volume he’s absorbing a ton of damage. Arlovski gives up his back and Tybura continues to rain down shots. Arlovski rolls out of it, gets to his feet and throws some big shots. Tybura is out of gas, and Arlovski lands several big punches as the round comes to an end.
Round 2: Arlovski will be hoping his opponent is gassed out, but both fighters are taking big breaths at the start of the round. Arlovski lands a huge right hook and just misses with a head kick. Tybura is clearly gassed, but Arlovski is too and he can’t keep up the offense. He pushes Tybura up against the fence. They stay there for well over a minute. Tybura gets away and Arlovski lands another good jab. Arlovski goes for a takedown and they both end up against the fence again. Both of these guys seem like they’re conserving energy at this point. No shots are really landed until under a minute to go in the round, when the referee separates them. They are separated for about five seconds and then they end up tied up again. The round comes to an end.
Round 3: Arlovski lands a leg kick to start the round. Tybura’s corner tells him to secure the takedown in the round. This time, Tybura gets Arlovski up against the fence. Tybura tries for a takedown, and doesn’t get it. He keeps Arlovski up against the fence, and when they get back to their feet Tybura manages to lift Arlovski and put him on his back for the takedown. Tybura nearly passes to mount, but winds up in half guard. Arlovski tries to turn out of it, but Tybura gets Arlovski’s back. He is looking for a rear-naked choke, but Arlovski is going to try and turn it around. He can’t get it, and Tybura manages to pass to mount with a minute to go. Tybura lands a big elbow. Arlovski turns and gives up his back, but Tybura has his hooks in. Arlovski spins again and manages to end up in half guard again, but with only 20 seconds to go there’s not much he can do. The round and fight comes to an end, and it will likely go to Tybura.
Colby Covington def. Dong Hyun Kim via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-26, 30-27)
Round 1: Covington tries for a big wheel kick right off the bat and slips. He quickly gets to his feet and gets Kim against the fence. Covington hangs on Kim for a couple minutes, landing the occasional knee to the leg or body, but can’t get Kim properly on the mat. He briefly gets him down, but Kim is quickly back up to his feet. Covington continues smothering him against the fence. Kim has barely thrown anything this round, but neither has Covington. Still, it’s Covington who is controlling the fight. Covington finally disengages and lands a nice elbow. Kim begins throwing, landing a left hook and a right straight. Covington lands a body kick, and then another. He misses with a right hook and Kim lands with a knee to the body. They go back against the fence and the round comes to an end.
Round 2: Covington shoots for a takedown and Kim sprawls, defending it well. Kim is landing some body shots and a few shots to the head from the position. Covington, an NCAA wrestling champion, gets back to his feet quickly and presses Kim against the fence. The crowd begins booing as Covington keeps Kim against the fence while throwing around a dozen knees to Kim’s shins and thighs. Kim gets out of it, and frustrated, charges forward. Covington lands a winging left hook that stumbles Kim. Covington rushes him and tries a jumping knee, but it glances off of Kim’s defense. Kim smiles, and has recovered, but Covington hurt him. Covington then gets him against the fence yet again and starts throwing the short knees. Kim tries a judo throw that is partially successful, and he ends up sprawled. But Covington gets right back up and again presses Kim into the fence. The round ends with virtually no action.
Round 3: They don’t tie up against the fence for a seemingly unprecedented amount of time. Kim lands some nice jabs, while Covington throws several leg kicks and body shots. Covington wings more of those wide hooks, but Kim stays out of range of them. Covington does land a jab and hook of his own and then he shoots and gets Kim up against the fence. There they stay for more than a minute before Kim actually hooks Covington’s arm, spins him around and puts him on the ground. Kim can’t hold him down though and they resume their familiar position against the fence, with Covington holding Kim and Kim unable to do anything about it. The round and fight comes to an end. An uneventful fight ends in favor of Covington.
Rafael dos Anjos def. Tarec Saffiedine via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Round 1: Saffiedine throws a pair of headkicks that are blocked early in the round. Dos Anjos throws and lands a nice leg kick. Dos Anjos goes for another, but Saffiedine goes for a takedown at the same time and he gets dos Anjos on his back. Saffiedine tries to transition to side control, and in the process dos Anjos comes very, very close to locking in a kimura from his back. Saffiedine gets out of it, and in the process of another scramble, they both get to their feet with two minutes to go. They tie up near the cage and this time, dos Anjos gets the takedown and lands on top of Saffiedine. Saffiedine threatens an armbar of his own and they get back to their feet. Dos Anjos lands a few nice punches and stays right in front of Saffiedine. Nothing huge lands and the round comes to an end.
Round 2: Dos Anjos lands a nice right jab as Saffiedine lands an inside leg kick. Dos Anjos is pushing this fight, consistently pressing forward. He ends up with his back to the cage when Saffiedine turns him around though. Saffiedine tries to clinch up and throws knees but dos Anjos gets away from it. Saffiedine lands a nice jumping elbow after a couple minutes of scrapping against the fence. Dos Anjos continues throwing high volume, inside strikes. He also continues trying to work the takedown. Saffiedine lands a right hook but dos Anjos keeps walking forward. Dos Anjos throws and lands a good body kick, but ends up against the fence again. Dos Anjos may have landed an illegal knee in the round when Saffiedine had a hand down.
Round 3: Saffiedine just misses with a head kick near the beginning of the round. Dos Anjos lands a big leg kick as Saffiedine connects with a short right hook. Both fighters land some good inside hooks to the head, and dos Anjos connects with a big body kick. After some more dirty boxing against the fence, dos Anjos lands another strong body kick that briefly freezes Saffiedine, who circles away. Saffiedine lands a right jab, but dos Anjos keeps coming forward. Dos Anjos lands a good knee to the body. They both throw kicks and punches as the round and fight comes to an end. Both fighters took damage, but dos Anjos landed more significant shots and should get the decision win.
Full UFC Fight Night 111 results
Women’s Bantamweight: Holly Holm def. Bethe Correia via KO (head kick) at 1:09 of Round 3
Heavyweight: Marcin Tybura def. Andrei Arlovski via unanimous decision (29-28, 28-27, 29-27)
Welterweight: Colby Covington def. Dong Hyun Kim via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-26, 30-27)
Welterweight: Rafael dos Anjos def. Tarec Saffiedine via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Lightweight: Jon Tuck def. Takanori Gomi via TKO at 1:12 of Round 1
Heavyweight: Walt Harris def. Cyril Asker via TKO at 1:44 of Round 1
Featherweight: Alex Caceres def. Rolando Dy via TKO (doctor’s stoppage) at 5:00 of Round 2
Flyweight: Ulka Sasaki def. Justin Scoggins via submission (rear-naked choke( at 3:19 of Round 2
Welterweight: Li Jingliang def. Frank Camacho via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 28-27)
Bantamweight: Russell Doane def. Kwan Ho Kwak via TKO at 4:09 of Round 1
Flyweight: Naoki Inoue def. Carls John de Tomas via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
Woman’s Bantamweight: Lucie Pudilová def. Ji Yeon Kim via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)