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UFC Fight Night 39: John Howard Vs. Ryan LaFlare

ufc fight night 39

John Howard vs. Ryan LaFlare

Two welterweights looking to make a move into the Top-10 collide, as John Howard meets Ryan LaFlare.

Howard (22-8) has won his last four, including two decisions upon returning to the UFC. He is 6-3 overall with the promotion.

LaFlare (10-0) is a perfect 3-0 inside the Octagon, earning decisions over Court McGee, Santiago Ponzinibbio and Ben Alloway.

Round 1: Howard moves quickly to take the center of the Octagon, looking to make up for a five-inch height difference. LaFlare shoots and scores with a single-leg takedown. Howard working to get off his back, but allows LaFlare an opportunity to apply a choke with three minutes to go. Howard with a straight right and LaFlare tries to roll for a takedown but gets denied. He lands a nice knee from inside the clinch along the fence, but Howard responds. LaFlare throws Howard over his shoulder for another takedown and goes back to a potential choke, but can’t quite get it. Head kick thrown by LaFlare is blocked, but Howard appears to have a rib injury and eats another body kick.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for LaFlare

Round 2: Howard with a left that drops LaFlare, but he quickly gets to his feet and clinches. Howard trying to circle and he gets a takedown of his own. Each reverse the other on the ground and decide after that to stand back up and trade. Big low blow to Howard, who drops and lets out a scream. He is in a lot of pain, as that was a knee directly to the groin. The arena is stunned silent. Howard is asking for the doctor and we are going to have an extended break. Howard does not look good at all and the doctor is administrating some tests on him. He doubles over again and goes down to the canvas after getting touched by the doctor in his abdomen region. Still grimacing in pain, but Howard is going to continue fighting. Howard charges and gets taken down with two minutes to go. LaFlare in side control, gives up his back and eats some knees to the midsection. Knee to the stomach from LaFlare and a left catches Howard. Another takedown, but Howard reverses and takes him to the fence. Howard shows some life with a strong finish.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for LaFlare

Round 3: They just updated the conditions, saying it is 85 degrees with 50-percent humidity. Not a good sign for the heavyweights coming up. Howard kicks LaFlare to the canvas but can’t follow up and gets taken down again. Howard elevates, gets to his feet and lands two perfectly-executed left hooks. Another nice scramble from these two and LaFlare winds up on his back as we go under two minutes. Howard’s corner instructing him it is now-or-never and he goes for a potential heel hook. It doesn’t look like he has it, and is forced to release the hold.

FightLine scores the round 10-9 for LaFlare

Ryan LaFlare def. John Howard via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)