Mike Perry Guts Out Split Decision over Paul Felder in Bloody War at UFC 226
Mike Perry can now say he’s earned a victory by decision.
Typically known for his vicious knockouts, Perry showed new facets to his game on Saturday night as he out dueled Paul Felder in a back and forth war before getting the nod by split decision at UFC 226 from Las Vegas.
Strange enough, the very first exchange in the fight resulted in both athletes getting a cut on their heads after Felder and Perry clashed heads almost immediately.
Thankfully the blood didn’t flow down into their eyes as the action quickly picked up with Perry trying to bully Felder around the cage as he took on the veteran lightweight, who was moving up to 170 pounds for this fight.
While Perry definitely targeted some big powerful shots early, Felder found his footing midway through the round as he began landing with great accuracy while standing at a distance.
Perry continued to push forward with the clinch and then unleashing elbows on the inside during every exchange. Felder avoided taking much damage, however, and he fired back with a lightning quick spinning back fist before the round ended.
Much to Felder’s surprise, Perry actually mixed in a takedown in the second round but the fight didn’t stay there very long before the fighters worked their way back to the feet.
As the round continued, Felder was still trying to work at distance but it appeared that he may have suffered an injured hand during one of those exchanges because he wasn’t committing as much behind his punches.
In return, Perry uncorked a huge left hand that cracked Felder with about a minute to go as he opened a massive cut on Felder’s head that immediately began gushing blood across his face.
By the time the horn sounded, Felder was wearing a crimson mask but Perry was wearing some damage of his own after a back and forth battle through the first 10 minutes.
In between rounds, Felder told his corner that he suffered a broken arm, which explains why he was seemingly favoring his hand during that second round.
Despite the injury, Felder took the center of the Octagon and continued to throw that broken arm at Perry regardless of the damage inflicted.
— UFC (@ufc) July 8, 2018
As the round continued, Perry began to land with more regularity while finding a home for his power punches that kept Felder from every putting together any real combinations because he was force to play defense in return.
After three hard fought rounds, the judges returned a split decision with two scorecards going in favor of Perry to give him the win.
Perry had recently relocated his training camps to begin working with coaches Greg Jackson and Mike Winkeljohn in New Mexico and it appeared that was already paying off as the always aggressive welterweight showed much more patience and composure throughout this fight.
Now Perry will push forward after getting his first decision win to bounce back after two straight losses while Felder will likely return to the lightweight division, which has been his home since he first arrived in the UFC.