Tyrone Woodley wins bout over Stephen Thompson, but not crowd's favor

Tyrone Woodley wins bout over Stephen Thompson, but not crowd's favor

The two fought to a majority draw on November 12 in NY at UFC 205 in a bout filled with back-and-forth action.

"When you really think about it, I had been coaching myself all the way until the Robbie Lawler fight", explained Woodley, speaking with Keyboard Kimura in advance of his championship rematch with Thompson this weekend at UFC 209. With his back to the cage, Woodley remained patient as he deflected Thompson's kicks away.

Woodley won 48-47 on two scorecards, with the third a 47-47 draw. As UFC title fights go, it will not go down in the vault of greatness.

Overeem's last fight was for the title and it was against Stipe Miocic at UFC 203.

And on top of that, Jon Jones is still suspended, Brock Lesnar just retired, and although Georges St-Pierre is making a comeback, he hasn't fought in almost four years and is 35 years old.

What's clear, however, is that when Woodley, a wrestler from Missouri, and Thompson, a karate stylist from SC, are matched, their skills and counter-prone attitudes result in more of a tight, tactical match than the type of frenetic fighting mixed martial arts fans are accustomed to.

When it was suggested that there's beauty in such a tactical fight, Thompson said, "Exactly". Woodley attempted as best as he could to reach Thompson's chin by slinging wild right hands, once of which put his foe on the canvas late in the period.

That leaves Demian Maia, a grappling expert, sitting in the wings on a six-fight win streak.

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Rashad Evans lost his debut at middleweight to Daniel Kelly in a split decision.

Woodley has only defended the belt once, against Thompson, so he has little if any room to start demanding super-fights or turning down opponents.

Read on for all the numbers you need to know for UFC 209, Woodley vs. Thompson and Nurmagomedov vs. Ferguson.

These figures do not necessarily represent full fighter compensation, which can include Reebok apparel sponsorship revenue and pay-per-view or discretionary bonuses.

UFC Fight Pass, UFC.TV, the UFC YouTube channel and various UFC apps on connected smart devices will all have live streams of different portions of the card available for viewing.

Brian Camozzi tweeted: "Kinda disagree I thought @WonderboyMMA controlled the pace of the entire fight". Lightweight Lando Vannata is listed as heavy -400 chalk in his contest with David Teymur, a distant +300 underdog. He is as balanced as a wrestler there is in MMA with eight wins through KO / TKO, eight through submission and eight through decision.

Opening up the main card, third-ranked heavyweight Alistair Overeem returned to the win column, finishing eighth-ranked Mark Hunt with a knee and punch combination in the third round.

If there was any silver lining to be drawn by Woodley, it was his performance in the final moments of the fight, with the result hanging in the balance.

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