Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone vs. Evan Dunham
Round 1: Cerrone takes the center of the cage. Dunham immediately tries to get the fight to the ground. Cerrone stuffs the attempt. Cerrone lands a knee. Cerrone lands a knee that hurts Dunham. He swarms him and lands a right hand that knocks Dunham down. He dives in looking to finish but Dunham ties him up and survives. Cerrone delivers a hard elbow. Dunham spins out and gains top position. Cerrone looks for a triangle choke but Dunham gets free. Cerrone moves to top position briefly. Dunham stands and presses Cerrone against the cage. He lands knees to the body and legs of “Cowboy.” Cerrone lands a knee inside the clinch that makes Dunham back away. Cerrone steps in with a knee to the body. Dunham is cut above his left eye. Cerrone is beating Dunham to the punch. Cerrone lands a right hand. Dunham answers with a left. The exchange leg kicks. The round ends. MMAWeekly scores the round 10-9 for Cerrone.
Round 2: They touch gloves and the second round is underway. Dunham presses forward. Cerrone lands a kick to the body. Dunham looks for a takedown but Cerrone stuffs it. As Dunham closes the distance, Cerrone makes him pay. Dunham lands a left hand. Dunham steps in with an uppercut that lands. Cerrone delivers a kick to the body. Dunham lands a combination. Dunham works to get the fight to the ground. Cerrone shakes it off and secures a takedown of his own. He lands in side control with two minutes left in the round. Dunham escapes out the backdoor. Cerrone applies a triangle choke. He tightens it down and Dunham is forced to tap out.
The official time of the submission was 3:49 of the second round.
“This fight was big for me. I told myself that if I didn’t go out there and perform like I know I’m capable of then I would’ve retired. It’s a lot of pressure to put on yourself but it really helped me get back that inner fire and drive that I haven’t had in a long time. The money starts to come and people start to recognize you and the drive slips. I always told myself that wouldn’t happen to me but it did. Tonight before the fight I felt that nervous energy that I haven’t felt in several fights. You can’t get that feeling anywhere else in the world. It only happens right before you make that walk to the octagon and I needed to feel that. It reminded me why I love this so much.”