Welcome to live coverage of UFC Fight Night 39: Minotauro vs. Nelson.

Today’s card comes to us live on UFC Fight Pass and from Abu Dhabi.

Now, on to the action! Remember to keep hitting F5 on your keyboard for the latest results.


Rani Yahya vs. Johnny Bedford

The lone bantamweight bout features Rani Yahya taking on Johnny Bedford.

Yahya (19-8) had his three-fight win streak snapped by Tom Niinimaki last November, while Bedford (19-10-1) had the same fate vs. Bryan Caraway in April.

Round 1: Yahya doing his best Gegard Mousasi-impersonation, just standing there to start. Shoot by Yahya is denied, another attempt and Bedford catches him. Yahya drops, eats another and the ref steps in. This one is all over. Yahya looked to be on dream street and remains that way as he is helped to the stool. Upon review, it was an accidental headbutt that caused the knockout, as they both came in. Bedford followed up to get the finish. Even more evidence it was a head butt is the cut on Bedford’s head from the collision.

Johnny Bedford vs. Rani Yahya is declared a no-contest due to accidental head butt at :39 of Round 1

Alan Omer vs. Jim Alers

We being the action in the featherweight division, as Alan Omer faces Jim Alers.

Omer (18-3) is making his UFC debut after winning four straight. Alers (12-1) is also fighting for the first time with the promotion and on a eight-fight win streak.

Round 1: Nice striking to start by both these fighters. Strong low kick from Alers nearly takes Omer off his feet, and he is controlling the center of the Octagon. Overhand right connects from Omer, who is now pushing the pace more in his favor. Alers just misses with a huge knee inside the clinch. Omer catches Alers, who wobbles but doesn’t go down. Spinning back fist by Alers misses, Omer lands a straight right and Alers clinches. Omer lands several shots, including an uppercut, to finish the round strong.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Omer

Round 2: Omer lands and looks to have Alers rocked, but Alers goes for a takedown. Perfectly executed switch by Omer and he winds up on top and in a dominant position. He unloads a few shots and is working to improve his position now. Omer lets him back up and goes to work with his striking, nearly flooring Alers again. Spinning back kick from Omer lands, but Alers catches him coming in and drops him. Alers now on top and in guard. Alers in control, folding him up and unleashing again. Omer gets to his feet with an underhook and body lock combo, and he has Alers against the fence. Good knee to the body from Omer and a left hook.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Alers

Round 3: Alers comes right out and goes on the attack, getting Omer to the canvas. Cut is opened up on the face of Omer and Alers is pounding away on him. Alers goes for a choke, but it allows Omer to get to his feet. Omer now attempting a takedown of his own, but he gets denied. Some very weak knee attempts by Omer, who looks exhausted after trying hard for the takedown. Alers lands a takedown with two minutes to go. Alers dominating on top, but not enough, as the ref stands them up. Omer is sensing he is behind, coming after Alers and taking him down to finish the round strong.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Alers

Jim Alers def. Alan Omer via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Thales Leites vs. Trevor Smith

Right back to the middleweight ranks, as former contender Thales Leites meets up with Trevor Smith.

Leites (22-4) is in his second stint with the promotion and riding a five-fight win streak. Smith (11-4) earned a split decision over Brian Houston for his initial UFC win earlier this year.

Round 1: Leites catches him and Smith doubles over, going down to the canvas. Leites continues to punish away and this one is all over less than a minute into the first round. It was a pair of right hands that dropped Smith.

Thales Leites def. Trevor Smith via TKO (strikes) at :45 of Round 1

Jared Rosholt vs. Daniel Omielanczuk

We’ll conclude the prelims with our first of two heavyweight bouts, as Jared Rosholt battles Daniel Omielanczuk.

Rosholt (9-1) is a former standout wrestler at Oklahoma State University. He defeated Walt Harris in his UFC debut. Omielanczuk (16-3) has won each of his last 12 fights, including a knockout of Nandor Guelmino last September.

Round 1: Both of these men already look sweaty, as the temperature is in the mid-80s in Abu Dhabi. Rosholt with a strong right that connects and follows with a left. He shoots for a takedown and gets it with ease, though Omielanczuk does have his neck right now. Rosholt is working the body with some rights to the stomach and gets out of the choke with ease. He’s looking to mount and possibly end this one early. The former Cowboy is wearing on Omielanczuk with all his weight and is in side control, having busted Omielanczuk up with elbows. He’s almost moved to full mount and lands another huge elbow from in tight. Under a minute to go and Rosholt is going for a possible kimura.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Rosholt

Round 2: Omielanczuk defends the takedown this time and has a potential choke, but releases it and fires off a kick. Rosholt back in on a takedown and he gets it, snapping Omielanczuk to the canvas with a single-leg. No issues for Rosholt to dominate the wrestling int his one. All Rosholt, back to side control and landing elbows, and even knees, at every opening. Omielanczuk gets to his knees and eats a huge shot to the body. Rosholt with a left-right-knee combo, but walks in and eats a counter-left and a right. Rosholt ties up and Omielanczuk pulls guard with under a minute to go.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Rosholt

Round 3: Just seconds in and we are back to the canvas with Rosholt in side control. He mounts, takes the back and lands another pair of knees to the body. He doesn’t appear to want to be on the back, flipping Omielanczuk to his back and working to the mount again. More short elbows to the face with three minutes left. Just a dominating performance from Rosholt, who remains in side control through the final minutes. He attempts a possible submission, but isn’t really working hard for it.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Rosholt

Jared Rosholt def. Daniel Omielanczuk via unanimous decision


Ramsey Nijem vs. Beneil Dariush

Let’s open up the main card in the lightweight division, as Ramsey Nijem collides with Beneil Dariush.

Nijem (8-4) is a former runner-up on The Ultimate Fighter. He snapped a two-fight losing skid by defeating Justin Edwards to start the year. Dariush (7-0) was victorious in his UFC debut this past January, submitting Charlie Brenneman.

Round 1: No touch of gloves and these two are coming right out after each other. Nijem fires off some kicks, but it’s Dariush who lands the best strike, catching him with a counter. Nijem eats a body kick, takes Dariush to the ground and lands some strikes from the top. No ground game in the plans for Nijem, as Dariush is a BJJ wizard. Dariush has him tied against the fence and lands some good shots. Dariush with a flying knee, but Nijem eats it and counters back, taking Dariush to the ground with strikes. He continues to punish, goes for a possible choke before taking the back and unloading. Blood everywhere and in the full mount goes Nijm with over a minute to go. Dariush is in survival mode, as Nijem moves to mount and takes the back. More lefts to the face and even more ground and pound. Huge shots being landed by Nijem and the ref is looking in as he is getting battered. That’s it, as the ref has seen enough and Nijem scores the win.

Ramsey Nijem def. Beneil Dariush via TKO (strikes) at 4:20 of Round 1

John Howard vs. Ryan LaFlare

Two welterweights looking to make a move into the Top-10 collide, as John Howard meets Ryan LaFlare.

Howard (22-8) has won his last four, including two decisions upon returning to the UFC. He is 6-3 overall with the promotion.

LaFlare (10-0) is a perfect 3-0 inside the Octagon, earning decisions over Court McGee, Santiago Ponzinibbio and Ben Alloway.

Round 1: Howard moves quickly to take the center of the Octagon, looking to make up for a five-inch height difference. LaFlare shoots and scores with a single-leg takedown. Howard working to get off his back, but allows LaFlare an opportunity to apply a choke with three minutes to go. Howard with a straight right and LaFlare tries to roll for a takedown but gets denied. He lands a nice knee from inside the clinch along the fence, but Howard responds. LaFlare throws Howard over his shoulder for another takedown and goes back to a potential choke, but can’t quite get it. Head kick thrown by LaFlare is blocked, but Howard appears to have a rib injury and eats another body kick.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for LaFlare

Round 2: Howard with a left that drops LaFlare, but he quickly gets to his feet and clinches. Howard trying to circle and he gets a takedown of his own. Each reverse the other on the ground and decide after that to stand back up and trade. Big low blow to Howard, who drops and lets out a scream. He is in a lot of pain, as that was a knee directly to the groin. The arena is stunned silent. Howard is asking for the doctor and we are going to have an extended break. Howard does not look good at all and the doctor is administrating some tests on him. He doubles over again and goes down to the canvas after getting touched by the doctor in his abdomen region. Still grimacing in pain, but Howard is going to continue fighting. Howard charges and gets taken down with two minutes to go. LaFlare in side control, gives up his back and eats some knees to the midsection. Knee to the stomach from LaFlare and a left catches Howard. Another takedown, but Howard reverses and takes him to the fence. Howard shows some life with a strong finish.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for LaFlare

Round 3: They just updated the conditions, saying it is 85 degrees with 50-percent humidity. Not a good sign for the heavyweights coming up. Howard kicks LaFlare to the canvas but can’t follow up and gets taken down again. Howard elevates, gets to his feet and lands two perfectly-executed left hooks. Another nice scramble from these two and LaFlare winds up on his back as we go under two minutes. Howard’s corner instructing him it is now-or-never and he goes for a potential heel hook. It doesn’t look like he has it, and is forced to release the hold.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for LaFlare

Ryan LaFlare def. John Howard via unanimous decision

Clay Guida vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri

A pair of featherweights will comprise our co-main event, as Clay Guida battles Tatsuya Kawajiri.

Guida (30-14) is just 1-3 in his last four, falling to Chad Mendes last August. He does hold a 2011 win over current UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis.

Kawajiri (33-7-2) has won each of his past six fights, including submission victory over Sean Soriano last January in his Octagon debut. He owns 12 knockout and 10 submission wins.

Round 1: The bout starts and here comes Guida flying out after Kawajiri. I don’t even think I heard the sound to start. Guida landing some big shots and he drops Kawajiri face-first to the canvas. Guida takes his back off the right hand and is going for a choke. Kawajiri being given time to recover from the shot, though, and he is fending off the submission. Guida drops for a potential single-leg takedown. Kawajiri has a potential kimura secured and that keeps Guida from going for the takedown. He rolls and transitions to an armbar. Guida tries to break the hold with a slam, but Kawajiri doesn’t release. Guida slips out and jumps to the back. Kawajiri looking for the armlock again, but Guida moves to his side, picks him up and slams him to the canvas. However, Kawajiri doesn’t let go of the hold throughout the power move by “The Carpenter.” Kawajiri gets in deep and scores with a takedown of his own.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Guida

Round 2: Guida defending takedowns and throwing lefts and rights that are connecting. Guida working for another takedown, but is forced to fend off the submission lock by Kawajiri. Another power takedown from Guida, who does a nice job of avoiding the kimura for now. Kawajiri gets it and Guida rolls, breaking the kimura. Almost a modified piledriver by Kawajiri, who slams Guida on his head. No issue for Guida, who moves to side control as we go under a minute.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Guida

Round 3: Guida doing his constant movement now, despite having gone 10 minutes in 80-plus degree weather and humidity outdoors. Pretty incredible. Kawajiri shoots, Guida defends and grabs the neck, looking for a potential choke. Guida is throwing elbows while Kawajiri continues to work for the finish on the takedown. Guida goes for another takedown and Kawajiri back to trying to lock in a kimura. He switches and tries to grab the neck, forcing Guida to lift him up and slam him to the canvas. Kawajiri tries to lock in the choke, but he’s unable to keep it as Guida breaks free.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Guida

Clay Guida def. Tatsuya Kawajiri via unanimous decision

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira vs. Roy Nelson

It’s time for our main event, as Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira squares off with Roy Nelson.

Nogueira (34-8-1), a former interim UFC heavyweight champion, has not fought since last June when he was submitted by Fabricio Werdum. He is 3-4 in his last seven, with two knockout and two submission defeats.

Nelson (19-9) is looking to snap a two-fight losing skid, as he lost to Daniel Cormier and Stipe Miocic via decision last year. Prior to that, the former Ultimate Fighter winner had finished Cheick Kongo, Matt Mitrione and Dave Herman.

Round 1: Great show of respect by these two, shaking hands to start. Nelson keeping his hands up tight and Nogueira is closing the distance. Nelson fires off a quick right and another, eating a few shots from Nogueira. Big uppercut from Nelson and another drops Nogueira. However, he lets him get to his feet, wanting nothing of the ground game. Nelson going on the attack and Nogueira on his bike, backing up quickly. Huge overhand right just misses from “Big Country.” Nogueira lands his own jab and remains standing right in front of Nelson. Quick right from the American and he comes in with another right that floors Nogueira. He lands a shot on the ground, Nogueira to his feet, and Nelson hits him again. He just has such a quick release of his right that Nogueira can’t block it. Another lands and with 1:20 left Nelson pops another right flush to the face of Nogueira that drops him down and out. This one is all over.

Roy Nelson def. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira via KO (right-hand) at 3:37 of Round 1

Thanks for joining us for some mid-day UFC action.