Alves dominates, but Kampmann pulls off stunner
Even Martin Kampmann knew he was in desperation mode in the third round on Friday night.
After submitting Thiago Alves in the main event of the UFC on FX card in Sydney, Australia, Kampmann was brutally honest when asked if he thought he needed a third-round finish after what Alves was able to do to him the first two rounds.
“What are you talking about? I was doing great,” Kampmann deadpanned to Jon Anik. “Thiago caught me with some good shots. I wanted to strike with him, but I wanted to take him down as well. I was definitely behind (going into the third round).”
Alves, aside from a kick from Kampmann that landed on the button in the first round, dominated the fight until a crucial mistake late in the third turned the tides. Trying to close out the fight, Alves shot for a takedown on Kampmann – but fell right into a guillotine that Kampmann was able to hold onto, rolling it over to force Alves to tap with just 48 seconds left in a fight he was on the way to winning, likely with a unanimous sweep of the judges’ scorecards.
“I was eating too many punches going into the clinch,” Kampmann said. “I hit him with that kick in the first round but I didn’t capitalize on it. He was staying really heavy with his hips. I thought I had a chance to go for the submission (when he took me down) and I squeezed it. That was my window.”
Kampmann (19-5, 10-4 UFC) won for the second straight time and fourth time in his last six outings – though many would say his two losses very easily could have been wins for him. A split decision loss to Jake Shields at UFC 121 was highly disputed, as was his unanimous decision loss to Diego Sanchez one year ago.
Alves (19-9, 11-6 UFC) saw his struggles continue. They started with a unanimous decision loss in a welterweight title fight against Georges St-Pierre at UFC 100. And since then, the Brazilian has lost three of five. Including the GSP loss, Alves has lost four of his last six bouts.
With the welterweight division in a flux state with St-Pierre on the shelf and Carlos Condit holding the interim title, Kampmann campaigned for a shot at Condit – a move that might make sense considering he’s the only fighter to beat him in the last five and a half years, taking a split decision from Condit at UFC Fight Night 18 nearly three years ago.
“I’d love to get a chance to fight (Condit) one more time, and I know he’d like a chance to avenge that loss he has against me,” Kampmann said.