Tonight the UFC returned for their sixteenth fight night inside The Apex. In the main event of the evening was a battle between top middleweights, Jack Hermansson (21-5) and Marvin Vettori (15-4).
It’s been an interesting road on getting to UFC Vegas 16 for Jack Hermansson. Originally, Hermansson was scheduled to take on Darren Till in the main event. However, Till had to pull out of the fight with a knee injury.
Following Till was Kevin Holland. Holland had been 4-0 in 2020 and the UFC rewarded him with the Hermansson fight. However, Holland would test positive for COVID-19 which cancelled the fight. That’s when the UFC turned to The Italian Dream.
Vettori was originally scheduled to fight at UFC 256, however, he couldn’t pass up a main event opportunity. Both of these two men were looking to take another step towards the middleweight title with a win tonight.
UFC Vegas 16 Main Event Recap
As the first round of the UFC Vegas 16 main event got underway, Hermansson opened the striking with a leg kick. Both men were holding the center of the cage as Vettori landed two crisp left hands. Hermansson was very light on his feet, but Vettori was doing well at closing the distance.
Vettori landed a nice uppercut and followed it a straight left. Hermansson countered with a great body kick, however, Vettori was still landing cleaner shots. Vettori’s pressure and speed seemed to be bothering The Joker in the first.
Halfway through the round and Vettori floored Hermansson with a massive straight shot. Vettori followed with big shots, but Hermansson did a good job of grabbing ahold of Vettori. Hermansson was able to pull Vettori into his guard.
Vettori kept looking to land big shots on the ground as the round entered it’s final minute. In his first UFC main event, Marvin Vettori looked excellent in the first round. Dominant round one for The Italian Dream.
To start the second round of the UFC Vegas 16 main event, Hermansson opened with a big hook and pressure. Hermansson looked like he was trying to get the first round back early on. Vettori looked very composed and landed another good straight shot.
Hermansson shot in for his takedown attempt, however, Vettori did a fantastic job of defending. Hermansson got him to the ground, however, Vettori hit a nice switch and ended up on top. Hermansson started to look for submissions when he was on his back.
Vettori settled in looking to just control Hermansson on the ground. With 90 seconds left in the round, Vettori backed away to get the fight back to the feet. Once on the feet, Hermansson started to pressure Vettori but nothing was landing.
Hermansson attempted another takedown, but couldn’t land it. Two rounds to nothing for Vettori in the UFC Vegas 16 main event.
The third round of the UFC Vegas 16 main event saw Hermansson open again with pressure. After a couple of shots failed to land, Hermansson found himself on his back foot. Vettori started opening up his striking with a couple of crisp lefts up the middle.
Hermansson ducked under a shot and timed a takedown attempt beautifully. However, Vettori was able to keep the fight standing with better defense. Vettori seemed to be tiring a little in the third round and his pace was not as high on the feet.
Hermansson started throwing and landing some cleaner shots halfway through the round. Vettori definitely seemed to be tiring as the third round went on. Vettori landed a very clean left, but his shots were getting slower and slower.
Hermansson continued to pressure Vettori in the final two minutes of the round. Hermansson landed two very big right hands and Vettori had nothing to respond with. A much better third round for Hermansson who continued to land clean in the final minute. 2-1 after three in this UFC main event.
The fourth round of the UFC Vegas 16 main event saw Hermansson once again open with pressure. However, Vettori seemed to have his legs a little more in the fourth. Almost looked like he took the third round off.
Vettori looked much more slick in the fourth round landing a couple of clean shots up the middle. However, Hermansson was continuing to walk Vettori down in the fourth. Vettori was doing some good work with his straight left in the fourth.
Halfway through the round and Vettori looks like he caught his second wind. He was really opening up his hands and landing clean in the fourth. Hermansson continued to pressure, but he was landing much less in the fourth.
However, Hermansson landed a beautiful combination just as the round entered the final minute. Vettori countered with pepping Hermansson with shots up the middle. Hermansson seemed to have no answer for those straight shots. 3-1 for Vettori in the UFC Vegas 16 main event.
As we entered the final round of the UFC Vegas 16 main event, Hermansson knew he needed a finish. However, as soon as the round started, Vettori was landing some clean shots. Hermansson fired back trying to empty the tank and landed some good shots.
However, Vettori stayed composed and started firing back at The Joker. Both men seemed content with standing in the middle of the cage and trading big shots. Vettori once again landed a massive left straight, but Hermansson countered with a big right uppercut.
Hermansson continued to pressure, but again, Vettori was getting the better of the striking. Vettori landed a clean uppercut as the fight entered the final 90 seconds. Hermansson threw a big combination, but Vettori just ate it.
Vettori clinched Hermansson and pushed him into the fence as the fight entered the final 30 seconds. Hermansson rolled for a leglock in the final seconds, but couldn’t lock it in. Great UFC main event that I scored for Vettori 49-46.
Marvin Vettori def Jack Hermansson by Unanimous Decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-45)