The following is from our live coverage of UFC 98: Evans vs. Machida. To access our full coverage, click here.
Matt Hughes vs. Matt Serra
Matt Serra came to the cage to the Rocky theme, which got a good response from the crowd. He was booed a little during the ring introductions though. Matt Hughes got a standing ovation when he was introduced.
Round 1: No touch of the gloves at the start of this one, to the surprise of no one. Serra landed a big shot early that took Hughes down. Serra kept pounding away, and it almost looked like it was going to be over early. Hughes was able to regain his composure and pushed Serra against the cage. Serra was finally able to break away at the midway point of the round and they were back to the center of the cage. Hughes got a big takedown into side control and got Serra’s back. Serra was able to block a rear naked choke and got back to his feet. FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Serra.
In between rounds, it’s apparent that Hughes is hurt as he asked his corner if he was knocked down during the round.
Round 2: Hughes was able to take Serra down early in the round and landed some shots from the top, but wasn’t able to do much damage. Serra rolled his eyes as Hughes was dropping some of his shots. With ten seconds left in the round, they were stood up but weren’t able to do much as the round came to a close. 10-9 for Hughes.
Round 3: Hughes landed a good right hand early and got another takedown. Serra was trying to go for a triangle, but couldn’t secure it. Hughes stayed in control of the round by laying on top, but wasn’t able to do much and they were stood up again. Serra came out swinging and landed a right hand. Hughes went for a takedown, but Serra was able to reverse it and take Hughes down. Serra dropped some big punches from the top and went for a kimura. They hugged after the fight and Matt Hughes raised Matt Serra’s arm. Serra finished strong, but I still give it to Hughes, 10-9.
Winner via unanimous decision (all judges scored it 29-28): Matt Hughes
After the fight, Hughes said he’s a free agent now and isn’t ready to hang it up. He did say he wants to stay with the UFC.
Serra gave Hughes props for his win and noted that he was upset about the loss. Joe Rogan asked Serra is he wanted to go back down to lightweight, but Serra said that it would be tough because he loves his pasta.