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UFC Fight Night 60 results: Benson Henderson submits Brandon Thatch in the fourth round

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

It was a risky move for both fighters. Former UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson not just taking a fight on short notice, but up a weight class. Brandon Thatch, by contrast, had his chance to shine in front of his hometown crowd at the 1stBank Center in Broomfield, Colo. In the end, though, it was experience and speed beating size and strength as Henderson submitted Thatch in a sensational performance by the former lightweight kingpin in the main event of UFC Fight Night 60.

Thatch started things with him taking center cage, but with both fighters switching stances. Henderson was able to score with outside leg kicks and hard punches to the body while Thatch was able to bully Henderson backwards, score with knees to the body and demonstrate good head movement. If there was a sense of whose power shots did more damage, it appeared Thatch's shots had the bigger effect.

Henderson continued to show good movement while Thatch pursued. The hometown fighter in Thatch had some decent success with low kicks and pushing Henderson backwards, but seemed slightly hesitant to throw with high output. After three minutes, Henderson stumbled on a turn and Thatch used it to drive a hard right hand upstairs. Thatch cornered Henderson against the fence, but twice used a right hook to wrap Henderson's head only to score to authoritative trip takedowns. Henderson was able to get up, however, before taking much damage.

Henderson kicked off the third frame with a whipping body shot, but Thatch appeared to be unharmed. Same goes for the head kick Henderson scored as Thatch backed him up simply with footwork. Henderson, though, was relentless on a takedown attempt, which eventually worked. As he attempted to scramble up, Henderson took Thatch's back. After what appeared nearly two minutes, Henderson attempted an armbar, which allowed Thatch to escape and get back to his feet.

Thatch began the fourth round with a jab and higher strike output, generally. Despite trying to duck and dodge, Thatch ended up eating a hard right hand. He continued to march Henderson down, eventually securing a brutal knee to the face of the former lightweight champion. Just as Thatch pushed forward, though, Henderson perfectly timed a level-changing double. He passed to side control, and despite multiple attempts from Thatch to stand, the former lightweight champion found a way to take his back again. From there, Henderson seized the moment, locking in the bicep grip for the rear naked choke. Thatch fought Henderson's hands, but only for Henderson to lock up a gable grip with the choke locked on. That's all it took as Thatch finally tapped.

The end came officially at 3:58 of round 4.

"You gotta go out there and you gotta test yourself. i didn't know I could win this fight. A lot of times, guys, you have to do something you don't know," Henderson said to UFC commentator Jon Anik post fight. "I wanted to do my movement. Dude's a big dude, so I didn't want to stand with him for the first five minutes. I wanted to be more elusive and then in the second, third, fourth rounds pick it up on him."

"Every win you get - whether it's your first fight, fighting amateur guys, local guys, whether it's defending your UFC championship - every win you have is the most important of your career," Henderson said of the victory. When asked what was next, though, Henderson said he'd prefer a bout with Rory MacDonald.

"I hear there's a big name MacDonald up in Canada who needs a fight," he told the crowd. "If he still needs it, I'm game."

As for Thatch, he was as complimentary about Henderson as he was realistic about his own performance.

"He's just a tough dude," Thatch told Anik. "The guy's got the heart of a champion. I thought he was hurt in the first and second round to the body. I think I threw power more than I should have. I think I should've stuck with speed, but that's just trial and error and I think need more experience. He's a vet, man, and class act. I was really hoping to bring it home for my town."

In the co-main event, featherweights Max Holloway and Cole Miller battled to climb the division rankings. The two traded kicks, high and low, at range, but mostly as range finders. Holloway switched stances to find a home for the straight left, but it was a hard body kick that scored for the Hawaiian early. The two would clinch, but Holloway would press tightly into Miller to close space before separating with authority. They clinched again, this time with Holloway ending up on top after a guard pull from the American Top Team black belt in Miller. He would secure a sweep from half guard and attempt a kneebar, but Holloway would pull out and land decent ground and pound.

Miller would attempt a head kick early in the second, but it whiffed and Holloway landed a decent counter right hand. Miller tried a foot lock that he'd use to bring the fight into guard, but Holloway stepped out. The two would eventually clash heads, which caused a halt to the bout temporarily and a nasty cut over the left eye of Miller. As the fight resumed, Holloway was able to land with short punches inside and avoid Miller using the clinch for anything offensive. While it missed, Holloway attempted a flying knee. The cut over Miller's eye opened again, which appeared to distract him as he was taken down by a scoop double from Holloway just before the bell.

Holloway would kick things off from southpaw, scoring with lefts to the body and backing Miller into the fence where he landed a spinning back fist that seemed to have dropped Miller to the mat. Miller stood and as the two traded, Holloway began to open up even more, landing with overhand rights in orthodox stance, then changing angles or stances and throwing from the opposite side. Miller hung tough and even attempted a late takedown along the fence, ultimately electing to pull guard. Holloway, however, managed to avoid it and attempted a spinning heel kick just before the bell sounded.

Holloway would take the unanimous decision win, earning scores of 29-28, 29-28, 30-27.

Streaking Neil Magny took on Kiichi Kunimoto in a welterweight affair on the top half of the main card. Magny would immediately take center of the cage and fire his jab to keep the Japanese fighter at bay. After about a minute, Magny would punch his way into the clinch, but an inadvertent groin strike would temporarily halt the action. After the bout resumed, Magny's right hand began to find a home. That forced Kunimoto into a clinch, but Magny's takedown defense proved too capable. Magny would reverse position along the fence, scoring with knees in the clinch along the way. Magny also attempted a body lock trip from the clinch, but the Japanese fighter's balance saved him before the final bell.

Magny put together a series of right hand and leg kick combinations to kick off the second frame, but the two quickly clinched. Kunimoto would have some success, though, landing a trip takedown while he pushed for a knee slice pass. Magny would frame for the triangle only to push Kunimoto away and stand. From there, he bombed on Kunimoto, scoring with several hard punches and a takedown himself. Kunimoto locked up the kimura grip, but Magny was in no real danger from the submission. In fact, hard body shots from Magny forced Kunimoto to release the grip. A late flurry from Magny from the back of Kunimoto caught referee Herb Dean's attention, but wasn't enough to force a halt to the bout.

The American came out storming in the third, landing enough jabs to get Kunimoto to defend with his hands, which allowed Magny to score a double leg. From there he transitioned to Kunimoto's back, secured the rear naked choke and forced the tap. The end came officially at 1:22.

A catchweight bout at 191 pounds between Australian judoka Dan Kelly and Patrick Walsh try to walk Kelly down while showing virtually no striking defense. Kelly connected with a right hand counter, but didn't seem to recognize Walsh was particularly hurt. As the round wore on, Kelly would look fresher and more defensively aware, but gave up a very late power double to the American.

Both fighters were throwing hard single shots at one another, this time with Wlash landing the better power shots early. Walsh, though, would sneak in short uppercuts and decent jabs while taking center of the cage. Walsh would try to run down another double leg, but was absolutely stuffed with ease by the Australian. Kelly would find a home for a few more jabs, but Walsh did enough to not sustain any kind of real damage.

Kelly would go back to the jab to start the third round, but both fighters were throwing single, lazy, heavy arm punches that largely missed. Kelly would continue to score rear hand uppercuts and jabs as Walsh was countered or beaten to the punch. Walsh would later sneak through a jab, only to eat a counter cross from Kelly, but again, neither was landing with any sort of authority. In the end, Kelly would take the bout via unanimous decision, 29-28, 29-28, 30-27.

The second bout on the card featured a lightweight scrap between Michel Prazeres and Kevin Lee. Prazeres caught a kick early and used it to land a single leg, but Lee countered with a guillotine. The Brazilian avoided it and managed to take Lee's back as he tried to move to his base. Lee stood to his feet, forcing Prazeres off of his back, but not off of him. Both fighters would exchange bombs on the feet, both landing hard hooks and not doing much to show angles or movement. Lee would take center cage towards the end of the first round, popping his jab and throwing combinations that landed better than Prazeres' flurried, lunging punches.

Lee had some success with quick combos early and even when Prazeres landed a takedown against the cage, Lee would land on his feet and force separation. Prazeres was relentless, forcing Lee against the fence and landing another scoop double not two more times, the second of which at least kept Lee's hips on the floor. Still, the American used a switch to get back to his feet, then used a body lock trip to take Prazeres down and work ground and pound against the fence. The Brazilian would pull Lee over his body and stand, but that put him back at the end of Lee's punches and, ultimately, an excellent level change to double leg takedown.

The pair opened the third round trading winging hooks in the middle of the cage, both sides landing very hard punches before Lee secured the over-under clinch along the fence. Prazeres wouldn't attempt another single leg, but would have no success while showing visible signs of fatigue. Lee would hit a blast double and stuff a peek out from Prazeres while keeping the Brazilian locked in turtle position while banging on him with unrelenting punches. Lee would end the round on Prazeres' back attempting a choke, but he couldn't secure it. Still, it was enough to get the win as Lee defeated Prazeres via unanimous decision, 30-27, 29-28, 30-27

Opening the main card on Fox Sports 1 was a flyweight bout between Ray Borg and Chris Kelades. Borg opened the frame with a double leg scoop close to the fence and after working through good posture control, was able to avoid an armbar attempt while threatening a guard pass. Borg attempted a guillotine, but Kelades was able to go cross-body with him to stuff it and even control Borg for a time before he was able to scramble to his feet. Borg scored two more takedowns, the second was another scoop double, this time, though, Borg walked Kelades away from the fence before slamming him to the mat and securing the pass. Borg nearly threatened the back take, but settled for mount as Kelades backed out. A little ground and pound later, Borg locked up a head and arm triangle, but couldn't get the tap before the bell rang.

The pace in the second round was just as frenetic as the two ran at each other, throwing strikes and attempting takedowns in the clinch. It would be Borg who would score the first bit of meaningful offense, landing another scoop double. Kelades' savvy guard forced Borg into a number of defensive maneuvers, but it was Borg who would prove deft enough to avoid any submission attempts while finding the pass or threaten the back take. From a modified clinch against the fence where Borg was standing and Kelades was seated, Borg nearly locked up a d'arce choke before abandoning it, realizing he didn't have it. The Jackson-Winkeljohn flyweight would end the round attempting a mounted guillotine.

Borg began the third frame with a takedown and move to half guard, but Kelades showed gamesmanship and situational awareness at all times. Kelades tried a sweep where he pulled Borg on top of him where he could transition to the back or mount, but Borg caught it and kept top position while securing a kimura grip on Kelades' left arm. Borg posted on his shoulder and stepped over Kelades from his left side to finally finish the submission. The end came officially at 2:56 of the third frame.

From the preliminary card:

Headlining the main card was The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 8 winner Efrain Escudero in his second bout since returning to the UFC in September of 2014. Escudero almost had his way with Rodrigo de Lima, landing right hands at will and forcing de Lima into sloppy grappling exchanges. When he wasn't landing punches, Escudero was able to work within de Lima's closed guard, scoring hard ground and pound without any real threat of submission. The performance earned Escudero a 30-27, 30-27, 30-27 unanimous decision victory.

Featherweights Chas Skelly and Jim Alers had a gritty back and forth with the Team Takedown product in Skelly ultimately scoring the semi-controversial win. The pair traded foot lock attacks on the floor in the first round before Skelly landed a number of right straights that had Alers rocked before the end of the first frame. By the second round, Skelly was able to continue the effort, landing enough rights to drop Alers to a knee against the cage. The barrage of hand strikes appeared to be enough to finish Alers off, but Skelly landed a knee to Alers' head while he was down. The commission allegedly told UFC commentator Brian Stann the referee was intending to halt the bout before that final strike, so Skelly was awarded the second-round TKO win, which came at 4:59 of the frame.

Zach Makovsky found his way back into the win column with a hard-fought win over flyweight stalwart Tim Elliott. For three rounds, Makovsky used his superior takedowns and committed passing attempts to control Elliott while nearly finishing in the third round with a choke from the back. Elliott, however, was able to hang on and neutralize key portions  of Makovsky's offense. In the end, Makovsky took a unanimoua decision win, claiming 29-28, 29-28, 29-28 across the judges' scorecards.

In the opening bout of the event, James Moontasri defeated Cody Pfister via second-round submission. Moonstari battered and nearly finished Pfister in the first round while stopping virtually takedown attempts. Moontasri picked up where he left off in the second, hurting Pfister again, enabling him to find his way to Pfister's back and secure the rear naked choke. The official time came at 1:49 of round 2.

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