Yair Rodriguez sets personal best SSpM and other notes from UFC Fight Night 92

The following is a stats=based recap of UFC Fight Night 92. The number listed in parentheses is the StrikesScore achieved by each fighter.

Yair Rodríguez (206) vs. Alex Caceres (40)
Rodriguez landed 4.8 sig strikes per minute against Caceres which is a new personal best in the UFC. He previous best rate was 3.73 SSpM against Charles Rosa. Rodriguez really upped his volume to achieve this. He attempted 13.52 SSpM, which is nearly double his previous high of 7.31. At this event, Rodriguez’s cardio held up and he successfully defended himself from counters and takedowns. However, missing that many strikes is probably not the best approach to fighting against better competition.

Caceres only managed to land 2.48 SSpM, which is his lowest rate since being knocked out without landing a strike against Francisco Rivera last year.

Dennis Bermudez (671) vs. Rony Jason (-39)
Bermudez was able to steamroll his way through the first two rounds. In the first round, he landed 24 sig strikes while absorbing only one. In the second round, he returned to his wrestling base and landed four of his six takedown attempts. Jason has not won a decision in his eight-fight UFC career since his debut in 2012. 

Thales Leites (476) vs. Chris Camozzi (1)
This fight was just what the doctor ordered for Leites. In his last two fights, he had absorbed 196 sig strikes, so he was probably not looking forward to another beating. Since Camozzi had no answers for Leites’ grappling game, he managed to land only 8 sig strikes over the nearly 13-minute fight. Leites picked up his fifth submission win in 11 UFC wins.

Santiago Ponzinibbio (266) vs. Zak Cummings (10)
Cumings seemed determined to prove that he could win a standup fight with Ponzinibbio. He was able to hang in, but he was continually beaten to the punch. Cummings attempted 36 more sig strikes, but was outlanded 58 to 35. As expected Ponzinibbio had much better footwork and was much more accurate en route to the decision victory.

Trevor Smith (305) vs. Joe Gigliotti (16)
Smith had never absorbed fewer sig strikes in a fight that went to decision. Gigliotti only managed to land 15 sig strikes. The former Iowa State wrestler also landed four takedowns, which is a new career high for UFC/Strikeforce career. 

Maryna Moroz (38) vs. Danielle Taylor (267)
This fight was a historic example of striking ineptitude. Together Moroz and Taylor combined to land only 34 of 353 attempted significant strikes. Moroz attempted 251 strikes and landed only 17, while Taylor also landed 17 on 102 attempts. Moroz’s sig strike accuracy fell from 37 to 22 percent after the performance.

Court McGee (74) vs. Dominique Steele (145)
With only 38 sig strikes landed in a 15-minute fight, StrikeScore does not tell the whole story. However, Steele did outland McGee and landed the better strikes after getting stunned early. However, McGee continue to come forward and attempted 15 takedowns, which always has an influence on the judges.

Marcin Tybura (843) vs. Viktor Pesta (-151)
This fight ended up being an even money fight. Cleary Tybura’s stock fell in the eyes of the bookmakers after his defeat in his UFC debut. He had a clear advantage in the striking game and it showed. Pesta managed to land only 3 sig strikes, which means he has been kept in single digits for his last two fights. Tybura has been ranked as high as #12 by Fight Matrix and will likely get back there considering the heavyweight landscape.

David Teymur (475) vs. Jason Novelli (-103)
Going into the card, it seemed like Teymur was the more polished striker. That turned out to be the case. Novelli struggled to land anything of note and ate heavy strikes whenever he tried to kick. Teymur really found his range in round two and ended the fight. His accuracy jumped from 38 percent first round to 66 percent in the second. 

Teruto Ishihara (453) vs. Horacio Gutierrez (-110)
For his last two fights, “Yashabo” is landing a knockout for every 20 landed significant strikes. He needed only 13 to get it done against Gutierrez. 

Cub Swanson (469) vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri (-30)
Kawajiri came in as a +270 underdog and put a scare into Swanson. “The Crusher” probably deserved to win the first round with a takedown and three passes on the ground. However, two of the three judges ended up giving Swanson 30-27 scorecards. Swanson was the better striker throughout and outlanded Kawajiri on sig strikes in rounds two and three 57 to 17. Kawajiri went three for 12 on takedown attempts and lost for the first time in the Octagon after landing more than one takedown.

Justin Ledet (232) vs. Chase Sherman (24)
Ledet was the superior striker from the start. He ended up outlanding Sherman 113 to 59 on sig strikes, but that does not even tell the whole story. Sherman’s only consistent weapon were some pretty damaging leg kicks. Outside of that, he was not really able to score. Excluding those leg kicks, Ledet’s advantage moves to 113 to 23. After the impressive debut, it will be interesting to see how Ledet does moving forward. Other UFC heavyweights will attempt to test his clinch work and takedown defense much more than Sherman did.