Strikeforce Undercard Live Blog: Kyle vs. De Lima, Feijao vs. Romero, More

CINCINNATI -- This is the Strikeforce live blog for all the preliminary bouts on tonight's Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov event at the U.S. Bank Arena.

Finishing off the undercard is a featured bout between light heavyweights Mike Kyle and Marcos Rogerio de Lima. Kyle (18-8-1) is coming off a loss last December to Antonio Silva. De Lima (8-0), who is making his Strikeforce debut, defeated Paul Filho last October at FCF in Brazil.

The live blog is below.


Mike Kyle vs. Marcos Rogerio de Lima

Round 1:
Kyle comes charging forward behind wide hooks as de Lima circles away. Kyle has his chin up high, which is maybe not the best idea. Hard leg kick by de Lima and Kyle presses forward behind another punch combo. Kyle digs to the body with a two-punch combo. Another good leg kick by de Lima, and Kyle responds in kind. Kyle tries to work the jab, but de Lima counters with a couple good punches. A hard shot from Kyle seems to have stunned de Lima, but Kyle isn't following up with much. Perhaps he thinks de Lima is playing possum? Another left hook by Kyle hurts de Lima, but Kyle stays patient. De Lima is stumbling around to end the round, but Kyle either doesn't notice or is intent on not rushing in. Odd. MMA Fighting scores it 10-9 for Kyle.

Round 2:
De Lima's nose is bloodied, but he seems more coherent to start the second. Kyle keeps after him and stings him with a straight right early on. Kyle keeps coming in and de Lima backs him up with a sudden flurry. Now it's de Lima stalking, and Kyle goes back to work with the jab. 'Speed, speed!' shouts Kyle's corner. De Lima knocks his leg out from under him with a kick and then smacks him with a hook. Kyle fakes a shot, then moves in for a clinch and leg trips de Lima down, but can't keep him there. Now sooner does de Lima get back to his feet, however, then Kyle trips him down again. De Lima flails with his legs with Kyle in his guard, and Kyle looks to the referee for a call on an illegal upkick. The round ends with Kyle standing over a downed de Lima. MMA Fighting scores it 10-9 for Kyle.

Round 3:
De Lima whiffs on a leg kick, but then lands with a hook. He's following Kyle around the cage, lunging in with one big shot after another. De Lima lands a nice left, followed by a leg kick. Kyle is sticking to the outside, keeping de Lima at a distance with the jab. The crowd does not appreciate it. De Lima continues following him and Kyle shoots for a double-leg, planting de Lima on his back. Kyle works short punches from de Lima's half-guard, but it seems like he's content to ride this round out and win the decision. De Lima is holding on and Kyle rears up to slam him with his shoulder. 'Keep it up!' his corner shouts in the final seconds. The horn sounds and Kyle jumps to his feet, thrusting his fists in the air. MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 for Kyle.

Mike Kyle def. Marcos Rogerio de Lima via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

Rafael "Feijao" Cavalcante vs. Yoel Romero

Round 1:
Romero dances around on the outside for the first minute of the fight, drawing boos from the Cincy crowd. Romero quiets them with a jumping front kick that comes up short, then goes back to disengaging. "Hit somebody!" shouts an audience member. He's not picky about who does the hitting at this point. Hard leg kick by Feijao and he tries to follow with a hook, but Romero dances away. Feijao moves in with a body shot and Romero sticks a left in his face, then postures as if to say, Is that it? The boos are raining down now. Another good leg kick from Feijao, but Romero is gone before he can follow with a right hand. Referee Dan Miragliotta pauses the bout, calls over Romero's translator, and tells him that if he doesn't fight he's going to lose a point. Not a great sign in the first round. After the restart Romero tries for a single-leg, but succeeds only in pulling Feijao on top of him. The boos come tumbling down once the horn sounds. MMA Fighting scores it 10-9 for Feijao...I guess.

Round 2:
Romero throws out a looping right to start the second, then, a few moments later, punts Feijao right in the groin. Feijao immediately reacts, and Romero insists on touching gloves as some sort of apology. Feijao takes only a fraction of his alloted five-minute recovery time, then it's back to work. Romero starts dropping levels in the center of the cage, nowhere near Feijao. Feijao slips off a kick attempt and Romero charges in. Romero opens up with punches and knees, a sudden violent flurry of activity. Feijao swings back and misses badly. Romero keeps the pressure on, then briefly puts him down with a double-leg. Feijao is in trouble, and suddenly it's a brand new fight. Feijao survives and comes back with a nice body kick once Romero has slowed. Romero poses, then shoots for a double-leg and gets slammed himself. They get back to their feet quickly, and Romero backs Feijao up against the fence and unloads, though he seems to be losing some of the zip from his punches. Feijao misses with a head kick, then follows with a spinning backfist that lands and puts Romero down. Feijao goes on the attack as Romero stumbles to his feet in the closing seconds of the round. Big knee and a hook from Feijao, and Romero staggers and falls again. He's laid out, and Feijao takes his time and plants him with a brutal right that bounces his head off the mat. Big Dan steps in just in time to stop the next one. Romero is out.

Rafael "Feijao" Cavalcante def. Yoel Romero via KO (punch) at 4:51 of round two

Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos vs. Jordan Mein

Round 1:
They trade a series of leg kicks right off the bat, then Mein connects with a nice left hand after slipping a Santos right. Santos stays with the leg kicks and spins Mein around a little bit with a particularly sharp one. Mein responds a few moments later by popping Santos' head back with a straight shot. Santos goes the body with a left and Mein sticks him again. Santos charges forward with a brutal leg kick that knocks Mein's legs out from under him, though he recovers quickly. Mein switches his stance up, which lets you know he's feeling those kicks to his left leg already. Looping right from Santos backs Mein up, but Santos can't follow with much before the round ends. MMA Fighting scores it 10-9 for Santos.

Round 2:
Mein tries to get busy with a leg kick of his own, and Santos answers by going high with a kick that grazes his chin. Mein switches his stance again and Santos starts hammering that leg. Mein comes back with a couple good lefts, one after the other, but Santos circles out of trouble and resets. Good straight right from Santos pops Mein's head back. Santos misses with a leg kick and Mein opens up with a flurry on punches as Santos covers up. Spinning back heel kick by Santos misses by a mile. They trade straight shots, jacking each other's jaw in turn. Spinning backfist attempt by Mein misses, so now they've each had their optimistic moment in this round. The horn sounds to end the round, and scattered boos come up from the crowd. MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 for Santos.

Round 3:
Mein finds a bit of a rhythm with left hand counters to start the round, then Santos fires a head kick that's blocked, but still sends sweat flying off Mein's head. Mein lands several more left hand counters as Santos swings and misses, and Santos is hurt. Mein zeroes in with lefts and a hard right elbow. Santos is reeling. Mein follows and batters him with one right elbow after another. Santos is still on his feet, but doing nothing but covering up against the cage. He's clearly out of it, and the ref dives in to save him. Great win for Mein after some early struggles.

Jordan Mein def. Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos via TKO (elbows) at 3:18 of round three

Amanda Nunes vs. Alexis Davis

Round 1: Nunes comes out with a blistering right hand. Davis puts her head down and fires back, and right away it's a slugfest. Davis tries to clinch, but Nunes gets space and clips her with another right. Davis continues staying in close, trying to tie up, and Nunes fires short elbows while jockeying for position. Nunes grabs a single-leg in the clinch and puts Davis down. Davis works back to her feet as Nunes peppers her with short hammer fists. Davis fires off a two-punch combo that catches Nunes flush, but fails to slow her down very much. Nunes continues to swing from the outside, and Davis' face is showing the effects. They clinch against the cage, but Nunes has little problem bullying Davis in close. The horn sounds with Nunes working for another single-leg. MMA Fighting scores it 10-9 for Nunes.

Round 2:
They go right back to slugging it out in the center of the cage to start the second, but they soon end up back in the clinch, where Davis jumps for Nunes' back and ends up on her own back. She doesn't stay there long before getting back to her feet and attacking Nunes' thighs with knees in the clinch. The action stalls and the ref steps in to restart them. Again, this makes for a furious few seconds of striking before Davis gets back to the clinch and pushes Nunes against the fence. Nunes works toward the center of the cage and hip tosses Davis to the mat. Davis quickly gets the top position however and batters Nunes from the top position in the mount. Nunes turns to her stomach and Davis hammers her with both fists. Then ten-second warning sounds, but Davis keeps the pressure on and the ref stops it with just seconds left in the round.

Alexis Davis def. Amanda Nunes via TKO (punches) at 4:53 of round two

Dominique Steele vs. Chris Mierzwiak

Round 1: Steele comes forward and stings Mierzwiak with a straight left. Mierzwiak responds by shooting for the takedown, and in the ensuing scramble he locks up an inverted triangle choke from an unusual angle. Steele stays calm and escapes to his feet, inviting Mierzwiak to join him. Once back on the feet, it's Steele who seems to have the sharper hands, but Mierzwiak keeps trying to bring it to the mat. Steele rocks Mierzwiak with another hard shot, then drills him with a jumping knee before Mierzwiak shoots again. Mierzwiak can't finish the takedown, but back on the feet he rocks Steele for a but of turnabout, then takes his back standing and slams him to the mat. Mount by Mierzwiak, then he takes Steele's back but can't finish the choke. Steele gets back to his feet and they finish the round swinging away. Great start to the night. MMA Fighting scores the round 10-10.

Round 2: Jab from Steele to start the second. Both men showing signs of wear. Steels lands a nice hook and Mierzwiak looks for the takedown again, but can't finish it. Steele looking a little tired, but he shoots for a slow-motion double-leg and puts Mierzwiak on his back. Steele tries to go to work with ground-and-pound from the top, but Mierzwiak is threatening him with an active guard. Triangle attempt from Mierzwiak, and Steele slams his way out before passing to side control and peppering Mierzwiak with more punches. Mierzwiak gets to his feet with Steele stuck to his back, then turns and unloads. They're both swinging with abandon, and there's that jumping knee again from Steele. Steele lands a hard right hand and Mierzwiak crumples to the mat. Steele follows after a beat, but it looks like Mierzwiak will hang on to last the round. MMA Fighting scores it 10-9 for Steele.

Round 3:
They touch gloves to start the final round and the sparse crowd roars its appreciation. Grueling, gutsy fight so far from both men. A weary Mierzwiak clinches Steele against the fence. Just seconds ago his corner was imploring him to "finish this guy," but he might be just trying to last the distance at this point. Leg kick from Mierzwiak and Steele counters with a punch that forces Mierzwiak to his back, despite not landing all that cleanly. Mierzwiak uses an oma plata to go from bottom to top, but can't stay there long before Steele takes his back. They work to the feet and Steele throws the jumping knee yet again. "No more jump knees!" his corner shouts. Takedown by Steele, and Mierzwiak briefly thinks about a guillotine before abandoning the notion. Steels passes to side control, but gets overeager and gives up his back. Mierzwiak has his hooks in and his looking for the choke, but boy does he ever seem tired. Steele manages to turn into him and winds up back in Mierzwiak's guard in the final minute. They end that way, looking exhausted, but with good reason. MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 for Steele.

Dominique Steele def. Chris Mierzwiak via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 29-27)
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