UFC 165 takes place Saturday night from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. The main event features UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones defending his title against Alexander Gustafsson. Gustafsson sports a 15-1 record and has six straight wins in the UFC. He also presents an interesting style matchup for Jones, as his height and reach negates what has been one of Jones' greatest advantages at 205 pounds. In the semi-main event, Renan Barao defends his UFC interim bantamweight championship against Eddie Wineland. Wineland's calling card is his striking but Barao is a prohibitive favorite with the oddsmakers. FS1 preliminary action begins at 5PM Pacific, with the pay-per-view portion of the card commencing at 7PM Pacific.
In preliminary action, Daniel Omielanczuk scored a third round knockout of Nandor Guelmino in a heavyweight bout. Alex “Bruce Leeroy” Caceres utilized superior striking to earn a split judges’ decision over Rolando Delorme. Michel Prazeres overcame a late surge by Jesse Ronson to win a split decision from the judges. And Canadian favorite John Makdessi knocked out Renee Forte with punches in the first round of their contest.
Mitch Gagnon vs. Dustin Kimura
Mitch Gagnon is a Canadian bantamweight who sports a 1-1 UFC record. Dustin Kimura is an undefeated Hawaiian who has finished 9 of 10 opponents in his young MMA career.
Round 1. Kimura lands a nice punch and Gagnon clinches. Gagnon looks for a takedown briefly but gives that up and connects with a solid knee. Kimura is bleeding from the nose. They exchange kicks to the body. Gagnon lands some heavy punches that back Kimura against the cage but Kimura answers with a punch to the body. Kimura lands a hard punch to the body and Gagnon leans down to clutch the spot he was punched. Kimura moves in and Gagnon uses the opportunity to take him down. Kimura looks for a heel hook from the bottom but can't get it and Gagnon lands a few punches from top position. They return to the feet. Gagnon grabs a guillotine choke from the standing position and drops to the ground. Kimura fights it but goes unconscious and the fight is stopped. That was a tremendous one round fight.
Winner: Mitch Gagnon, submission, round 1.
Chris Clements vs. Stephen Thompson
Clements is on the older side for a fighter at age 37, making his UFC debut in 2012. His career record stands at 11-4 with 1 no contest. Thompson is rather unique in his own right, with an unconventional karate background and distinct striking style. He is 2-1 in the UFC.
Round 1. Thompson comes out in a sideways stance and goes to work with kicks from different angles. Clements takes advantage of the unique posture with a leg sweep and then looks for a takedown. Thompson blocks it and gets a takedown of his own. Clements gets up and they trade kicks. Clements clinches and pushes Thompson against the cage. Thompson gets Clements down but Clements stands up when Thompson attempts to pass guard and secure a better offensive position. On the feet, Clements appears a little tired while Thompson continues to move briskly. Thompson steps in with a punch and takes Clements down again at the end of the round. 10-9 Thompson.
Round 2. Thompson drops Clements with a four punch combination and looks to finish the fight on the ground. When he can't, he takes half guard position and looks to move into side control. In the process, Clements just gets up like in the first round. Thompson staggers Clements with a right hand and the referee stops the bout as Thompson moves in looking to land additional blows.
Winner: Stephen Thompson, TKO, round 2.
Ivan Menjivar vs. Wilson Reis
Ivan Menjivar is a veteran of the sport who commands a lot of respect among fellow fighters. He first fought in the UFC in 2004 and has won four of his last six fights. Wilson Reis was once considered an elite bantamweight fighter based on his performances in EliteXC and Bellator but four Bellator losses severely lessened his hype. Now 16-4 with four straight wins, he makes his UFC debut.
Round 1. Reis is the aggressor early, pushing forward and looking to land power punches. Menjivar peppers him with kicks from the outside. They clinch and Menjivar lands some heavy knees with the Thai plum. They separate and the action slows down. Reis shoots for a takedown in the final minute and gets it. Reis lands a few blows to close out the round. 10-9 Menjivar.
Round 2. The fighters trade leg kicks. Reis then catches a leg kick and takes Menjivar to the ground. Reis lands some punches and elbows from top position and Menjivar isn't able to do much from the bottom to threaten Reis. Menjivar finally stands up at the very end of the round. 10-9 Reis.
Round 3. Reis lands a kick to the body and goes for another takedown. Menjivar grabs his neck and looks to set up a guillotine choke so Reis makes sure to get out of danger before grabbing a waistlock and throwing Menjivar back down. This time, Reis is able to secure the dominant full mount position. Menjivar is forced to simply hold on. Reis lands some punches from the top and works to retain control. Eventually, Menjivar is able to get out of mount and has Reis in his guard as the round comes to an end. 10-9 Reis, 29-28 Reis. There's no way Reis doesn't win the fight because the last two rounds were obvious.
Winner: Wilson Reis, unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).
Mike Ricci vs. Myles Jury
Ricci, a veteran of the Canadian MMA scene, gained notoriety from his tenure on the Ultimate Fighter TV show. He hasn't thrived in the UFC thus far, going 1-1 with neither performance standing out. Myles Jury is undefeated at 12-0 with three straight UFC wins including a knockout of Ramsey Nijem and a decision win over the talented Michael Johnson.
Round 1. The fighters start the round a little bit hesitantly. Jury lands a pair of kicks and a right punch. Jury gets a takedown three minutes into the round, utilizing a powerful double leg to dump Ricci on the canvas. Ricci moves over by the cage and looks to wall walk back up to the standing position. Jury just focuses on holding Ricci down but Ricci finally gets up with 10 seconds left. Very dull round. 10-9 Jury.