Chris Weidman brings a win home to Long Island
Some of the best east coast mixed martial arts talent was on display at the Nassau Coliseum in Long Island Saturday night. One fight in particular was not only the main event but symbolic for one long islanders career. Chris Weidman had lost three fights in a row, two of them in his home state of New York and he was not going to let that happen in his home town this time around.
His opponent, Kelvin Gastelum was on a winning streak and his only losses before that had come by decision. A win over Weidman would have put Gastelum in the middleweight title conversation. However, Weidman was not quite ready to be left out of that subject on Saturday night.
With a noticeable difference in size Weidman had a reach advantage and both were well aware they had the ability to end the fight standing. It would be the grappling grind that would be the deciding factor. Round one showed a very patient and relaxed Gastelum, one that would explode with straight left that dropped Weidman causing concern for the Long Island fans in the arena. But the former champion let his wrestling instinct kick in and had him recover to finish the round.
Weidman would try to take him down for the entire fight, with Gastelum defending well but the grind eventually gets someone and it eventually got Gastelum. Once Weidman did get Gastelum to the ground it was only a matter of time before he was able to capitalize on his size advantage and work in an arm triangle choke for the finish in round three.
What better way for the New Yorker who fought hardest to get the ban on MMA lifted in New York, then to get a win in his home town? Regaining the title is next on his list as he called out Michael Bisping in his post fight interview.
Is a redemption match possible in November when the UFC returns to Madison Square Garden?
Chris Weidman def. Kelvin Gastelum via submission (arm-triangle choke). RD. 3
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Patrick Cummins def. Gian Villante via split decision
Jimmie Rivera def. Thomas Almeida via unanimous decision
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