Roland Delorme vs. Michinori Tanaka
Round 1: The fighters meet in the center of the cage without touching gloves. Tanaka moves side to side. Tanaka lands first with an outside leg kick. He continues to move laterally on the outside. He throws a leg kick and Delorme catches it and lands a right hand and takes Tanaka down. Tanaka reverses him. He works in Delorme’s guard. He lands a right hand. Delorme works to control Tanaka’s posture. Delorme delivers elbows from the bottom. Tanaka peppers Delorme with short shots to the body and head. The round ends. MMAWeekly scores it 10-9 for Tanaka.
Round 2: Tanaka steps in and lands a solid right hand to start the second frame. Delorme lands a jab and Tanaka counters with an overhand right. Tanaka continues to move on the outside. Delorme rushes in but misses with a right hand. Tanaka looks to get the fight to the ground. He tosses Delorme to the ground. Tanaka works in Delorme’s guard. He lands left hands to the body. He moves to the half guard position. Tanaka steps over into the mount position. Delorme hip escapes to half guard. Tanaka lands elbows and punches. Delorme is cut. Tanaka delivers clean elbows from the top position. The round ends with Tanaka landing a series of short elbows. MMAWeekly scores the round 10-9 for Tanaka.
Round 3: Delorme hasn’t been able to deal with Tanaka’s lateral movement on the outside. Tanaka closes the distance and throws Delorme to the canvas. Delorme works for a reversal but can’t get it. A scramble ensues. Delorme gains top position. He advances to the mount. Tanaka reverses him and works inside Delorme’s guard. He lands elbows. The cut under Delorme’s eye has opened up again. Tanaka moves to the mount position and checks the clock. Delorme works his way back to guard, but gets hit with punches as he does. Delorme scrambles to his feet, but Tanaka drags him back to the ground. Tanaka maintains top position. The round ends. MMAWeekly scores it 10-9 for Tanaka.
The judges score the fight for Tanaka by unanimous decision. All three scorecards read 30-27.
“I felt great all week and I had a wonderful camp. I didn’t have nerves coming into my UFC debut which surprised me because I expected it to play a factor. If I had to grade my performance tonight I’d give myself a 20 out of 100. I don’t think I was aggressive enough. I should have definitely attacked more but I will work on those things and be back much better.”