by MMAWeekly.com LIVE
Former Strikeforce middleweight champion Cung Le returns to face Scott Smith in the main event of Saturday night’s Strikeforce: Evolution.
MMAWeekly is on location at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., bringing you live results and round-by-round play-by-play.
The first preliminary bout is scheduled to being at 5:00 p.m. PT/8:00 p.m. ET, and the main card, which airs on Showtime, begins at 7:00 p.m./10:00pm ET.
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-Cung Le vs. Scott Smith
R1-Cung with a high kick to the head of Smith followed by a kick to the body. Cung Le lands a spinning back kick to the body of Smith that bounces him off the cage and then drops him. Le pounces and drops hammerfists and multiple punches off of Smith, who amazingly makes it back up. Smith charges in with punches, but doesn’t have any great success. Le drops him again with a backkick, but Smith doesn’t stay down long. More high kicks whirl by the head of Smith. They lock up against the cage after short exchange.
MMAWeekly scores R1 Le.
R2- Smith tries to connect, but can’t and ends up on the wrong end of a Cung Le backkick. Down goes Smith and Le follows him into the guard, where a stalemate occurs. Referee Gig John McCarthy stands them up and Smith charges in with rights and lefts down the middle. Le retaliates and they end up clinched against the fence. They fight out the center and end up right back against the cage in the same spot, until Le circles off the cage and they trade again.
MMAWeekly scores R2 Le.
R3- Le showcase continues as he throws more spinning backkicks, high kicks and a spinning backfist that all either land or graze Smith. Le with a successful takedown. Smith gets back up and traps Cung Le against the fence with a hard shot. Le slides away A left hand followed by multiple rights drop Le, who by instinct and determination jumps up quick only to be dropped again by a similar combination. Le is in bad shape and Smith finishes him with a plethora of strikes on the ground. Referee “Big” John McCarthy steps in and ends the fight.
-Scott Smith def. Cung Le by TKO (Referee stoppage due to strikes) at 3:25in R3.
-Josh Thomson vs. Gilbert Melendez
R1-Gilbert tests the leg of Thomson early with a fast leg kick. A brief exchange lead to an attempted low single by Melendez, but Josh stuffs it. Josh catches a low kick from Melendez and puts him on his seat for a moment and follows it with punches. They’re back up and Melendez goes for another leg, but “The Punk” defends it well. Melendez slides in pumping the jab, but Thomson correctly creates distance here. Thomson wings some nice wide hooks at Melendez before the horn.
MMAWeekly scores R1 Thomson.
R2- A right hand by Melendez connects and leads to Thomson going down for a second. They are up again and trading within moments, until an inadvertent knee to the groin by Melendez stops the action for a moment. When they resume, they continue with Melendez trying to drive Thomson towards the cage with strikes and takedown attempts. Thomson circles off the cage and improves his position forcing Melendez to fight with his back close to the cage. They trade feverishly until Melendez catches Thomson with a good shot and drops him. Gilbert follows him down and finishes the round in Thomson’s guard.
MMAWeekly scores R2 Melendez.
R3- They poke at each other with jabs and leg kicks to start the round. Melendez drives back Thomson with a lightning like leg kick. Gilbert slips after an attempted low kick and they both drop for a second. They’re back up and throwing again. Thomson shoots in for a low single, but Gilbert against it.
MMAWeekly scores R3 Thomson.
R4- They test each other hard on the feet with punches then Thomson pulls Melendez down with a double leg. Melendez pushes him off and they resume the battle on their feet. Melendez utilizes some very good combinations like a jab, cross followed by a leg kick. Thomson goes down, but gets back up quickly. Gilbert’s jabs are landing a lot on an incoming Thomson. Melendez endures body kicks and retaliates with a knee from the muay thai plum. An inadvertent eye poke causes a slight break in action. They pick up but there is little time remaining in the round.
MMAWeekly scores R4 Melendez.
R5- Thomson circles Melendez and then comes in close where they trade some wild wide hooks. A firefight breaks out and both men get as good as they give. A right hand by Melendez drops Thomson to his back, but he is still in it. Melendez follows him down and they battle on the ground, but Thomson wrestles his way back up. Melendez with the jab to leg kick combo. Thomson lands a spinning backkick and Melendez hits a jumping knee to the midsection of Thomson, who hits a takedown. Thomson can’t keep Melendez down and they are up and swinging feverishly again to end the fight.
MMAWeekly scores R5 Melendez.
-Gilbert Melendez def. Josh Thomson by unanimous decision (judges scores read 49-47, 49-46, 49-46).
-Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Matt Lindland
R1-They feel each other out with punches then an attempt by Lindland to clinch and take “Jacare’s” back is thwarted. Souza with the strikes causes Lindland to rush in for a takedown. On the ground, Souza attempts an armbar, but Lindland scrambles out and moves for an umaplata. The tables turn again as “Souza” escapes the attempted submission and catches Lindland with a head and arm choke that forces “The Law” to tap out.
-Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza def. Matt Lindland by submission (due to an arm triangle) at 4:16 of R1.
-Muhammed “King” Lawal vs. Mike Whitehead
R1-Whitehead plays the aggressor as he tries to connect with attempted kicks to the body, but Lawal is quick on the feet and able to slide out of range. Lawal is a lot more defensive than offensive, but when he attacks his connection on punches is pretty precise. Whitehead utilizes a very low leg kick and slides in with a jab, but pays for keeping his hands low, when “King Mo” catches him coming in with a hard right that drops big Mike. Lawal follows him to the floor and drops a series of punches that end with a trio of consecutive right hands that finish the fight.
-Muhammed “King” Mo Lawal def. Mike Whitehead by KO at 3:08 of R1.
-Scott Lighty vs. Antwain Britt
R1- Britt comes out and trades with Lighty. A big miss by Lighty leads to Britt jumping on him and controlling his body while delivering a succession of uppercuts and hooks to the body and head. This same thing repeats itself almost verbatim after Lighty walks into a jab.
-Antwain Britt def. Scott Lighty by TKO (Doctor’s stoppage) at 5:00 of R1.
-Justin Wilcox vs. Daisuke Nakamura
R1- Wilcox lands first with a one-two combination that he uses repeatedly. Nakamura slides in and out, but his timing is off a little. Nakamura attempts some leg kicks before throwing a combination of his own. Wilcox makes Nakamura pay for holding his hands around his waistline by bouncing a bunch of hard shots off his face.
MMAWeekly scores R1 10-9 Wilcox.
R2- Wilcox with a high kick to Nakamura, followed by two jabs and an uppercut. Nakamura continues to taunt Wilcox, but it is not a very successful strategy as Wilcox lands the majority of punches. Nakamura faints strikes then throws a legkick, but it only works a couple of times before Wilcox shoots for the double leg and lands in his guard to finish the round.
MMAWeekly scores R2 10-9 Wilcox.
R3- Nakamura attempts a jumping knee but slips and Wilcox leaps on him with strikes. Nakamura scoots away quickly and they resume on the feet. Back and forth strikes lead to a brief shootout with Wilcox trying the jab, jab, uppercut combo and Nakamura winging hooks. Wilcox has red nose from Nakamura’s punches, but is clearly winning on his volume of punches in the remainder of the fight.
MMAWeekly scores R3 10-9 Wilcox
-Justin Wilcox def. Daisuke Nakamura by unanimous decision (Judges scores read 30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
-Alex Crispim vs. A.J. Fonseca
R1 – Fonseca pushes Crispim against the fence, where Crispim tries to reverse the standing position and ends up hitting a trip takedown. Crispim with a head and arm lock shovels Fonseca back first towards the cage. They’re back up, but not for long until they are up again. Fonseca pushes for a striking match, but Crispim prefers to clinch at for a bit. Fonseca pumps the jab at the horn.
MMAWeekly scores R1 10-9 Crispim.
R2- They hit the ground almost immediately and Fonseca defends against and guillotine choke, but slips it and gets back to his feet, where they start the striking match. Crispim with some hard rear leg kicks to the lead leg of Fonseca.
MMAWeekly scores R2 10-9 Crispim.
R3- Crispim continues to use the leg kick to counter Fonseca’s incoming assault. Fonseca clinches and tries to secure a low single against the fence, but Crispim turns the tables and reverses him against the fence, where he opens up with knees including one to the face when Fonseca was down. Referee steps in and deducts a point. They’re up and down again as Fonseca tries to catch him with an omaplata, but then Crispim slips his arm out and goes for an ankle lock to close the fight.
MMAWeekly scores R3 10-9 Crispim.
-Alex Crispim def. AJ Fonseca by unanimous decision (30-27 on all three cards.)
STRIKEFORCE MAIN CARD (on Showtime)
– Scott Smith def. Cung Le by TKO (Referee stoppage due to strikes) at 3:25in R3.
– Gilbert Melendez def. Josh Thomson by unanimous decision (judges scores read 49-47, 49-46, 49-46).
– Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza def. Matt Lindland by submission (due to an arm triangle) at 4:16 of R1.
-Muhammed “King” Mo Lawal def. Mike Whitehead by KO at 3:08 of R1.
STRIKEFORCE PRELIMINARY CARD (Non-Televised):
– Antwain Britt def. Scott Lighty by TKO (Doctor’s stoppage) at 5:00 of R1.
– Justin Wilcox def. Daisuke Nakamura by unanimous decision (Judges scores read 30-27, 29-28, 30-27.)
-Alex Crispim def. A.J. Fonseca by unanimous decision (30-27 on all three scorecards.)