UFC Fight Night 40: Horiguchi tops Montague, Smolka suffers first UFC defeat

UFC Fight Night 40 is a thing of the past and while some memorable knockouts took place on the night, a pair of Asian MMA 125-lbs starlets were looking to make a statement in the UFC ranks as they made their second respective octagon appearances.

UFC Fight Night 40 went down Saturday night at the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. The main card aired on FOX Sports 1 following prelims on FOX Sports 2 and UFC Fight Pass.

Kyogi Horiguchi (13-1), a former Shooto staple and champion, entered his bout against Darrell Montague (13-4) off the heels of a TKO victory over Dustin Pague at UFC 166.

In the past, the 23-year-old Krazy Bee disciple was always thought to be an undersized sport in the Bantamweight landscape, but that never stopped him from dominating opponents. His bout against Montague, though, was his first at Flyweight, and the decision to move down a weight class proved to be a good one as the Japanese fighter seamlessly notched a Unanimous Decision victory over his American compatriot.

After a fairly uneventful first round, Horiguchi turned up the tempo in round two, nearly finishing off Montague twice with ground-and-pound. A combination, first, up against the cage forced Montague into a desperate attempt at a takedown, and when that didn’t work out, Horiguchi capitalized with punches in his efforts to stop the fight. Referee Gary Copeland, though, was having none of it. The Japanese fighter eventually bailed on the strikes and switched to a choke attempt instead, but Montague fought it off.

With less than a minute remaining, Horiguchi had Montague in trouble once again, this time, with a hard body kick. Horiguchi kept the onslaught going with punches, but time was against his side as the horn echoed. Montague survived once more, and made it to round three.

Although Horiguchi looked to have slowed down a little, he continued to establish his dominance in the final frame. A successful takedown and counters on his feet was all he needed in the end to secure the stanza and earn a total judges’ tally of 30-27, 30-27, 29-28.

With the victory, Horiguchi improved to 2-0 in the octagon and is now on a seven-fight winning skid. His lone defeat, to date, came at the hands of recent ONE FC Bantamweight title challenger, Masakatsu Ueda.

Louis Smolka suffered his first career defeat on Saturday night, after a hardly fought 125-lbs affair against Chris Cariaso.

Louis Smolka suffered his first career defeat on Saturday night, after a hardly fought 125-lbs affair against Chris Cariaso.

Former PXC Flyweight champion, Louis Smolka (7-1), meanwhile, didn’t have the best of fortunes in his main card tussle opposite Chris Cariaso (17-5).

It was a step-up in competition for the Hawaiian to begin with. Cariaso had over three times the experience, and Smolka’s shift to a new gym perhaps impacted his performance.

Cariaso looked crisp with his strikes from the start, connecting cleanly with a majority of straight lefts and kicks from the southpaw stance. Smolka, meanwhile, was only ever interested in getting his opponent in a clinch near the cage, but hardly tasted success doing so.

In the grappling exchanges, both men had their fair share of dominant positions and while Smolka looked impressive in getting out of several compromising situations, the Hawaiian struggled to get any offense going and was forced to drop a split decision.

It was Smolka’s first career defeat and it’d be interesting to see how the former PXC veteran rebounds from this.

UFC Fight Night 40 was headlined by a stellar Welterweight contest between Matt Brown and Erick Silva, a match-up that produced fireworks and will rightly be in contention for “Fight of the Year” honors.

Check out the rest of the results from the event below:

MAIN CARD (FOX Sports 1 – 7pm PT/10pm ET)

  • Matt Brown def. Erick Silva via TKO (Strikes) at 2:11 of Round 3
  • Constantinos Philippou def. Lorenz Larkin via KO (Punch) at 3:47 of Round 1
  • Daron Cruickshank def. Erik Koch via TKO (Strikes) at 3:20 of Round 1
  • Neil Magny def. Tim Means via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
  • Soa Palelei def. Ruan Potts via TKO (Strikes) at 2:20 of Round 1
  • Chris Cariaso def. Louis Smolka via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

PRELIMINARY CARD (FOX Sports 2 – 5pm PT/8pm ET)

  • Ed Herman def. Rafael Natal via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Kyoji Horiguchi def. Darrell Montague via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
  • Zak Cummings def. Yan Cabral via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Johnny Eduardo def. Eddie Wineland via KO (Punch) at 4:37 of Round 1

PRELIMINARY CARD (UFC Fight Pass – 3:30pm PT/6:30pm ET)

  • Nik Lentz def. Manny Gamburyan via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Justin Salas def. Ben Wall via TKO (Punches) at 2:41 of Round 1
  • Albert Tumenov def. Anthony Lapsley via KO (Punch) at 3:56 of Round 1


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Categories: UFC

Author:Thinesh John

20, Asian MMA nerd in Singapore.


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