Over the course of three rounds, Rodriguez battered Mike Perry with strikes as he showcased a strong boxing arsenal that left his opponent with a busted nose and blood pouring from his face when the fight finally came to a close. The scorecards reflected the one-sided nature of the result as Rodriguez won 30-27, 30-27 and 30-26 when it was over.
“This is exactly what I expected,” Rodriguez said following the win. “This is exactly what I wanted to do on the big stage. It couldn’t have went anymore better than this. It played out even better than I imagined.”
In a battle of heavy-handed strikers, Rodriguez was more technical with his combinations, which included a stiff right jab followed by his power left hand behind it. In return, Perry was throwing with fire behind all of his punches but he was struggling to find his range while dealing with Rodriguez’s reach.
While he’s best known for his knockouts, Perry decided to turn to his wrestling where he planted Rodriguez on the mat with a well-timed takedown that helped him avoid further damage on the feet.
On the restart in the second round, Rodriguez listened to his coach Joe Schilling by throwing several hard jabs right down the middle that were snapping Perry’s head back with force. Rodriguez continued to make Perry pay during nearly every exchange as he was connecting with thudding shots that busted up the nose as well as opened a cut on the side of the face.
Ahead on the scorecards, Rodriguez didn’t stop his assault as he stayed tight with his striking and popping Perry with the repetitive straight punches while also mixing in a few blistering hooks as well. Perry was surviving on pure guts and determination but Rodriguez was turning his face to hamburger for the better part of 15 minutes.
After dropping a decision in his last outing, Rodriguez bounced back looking better than ever with his unanimous decision win over Perry as he moves to 4-1 overall in the UFC.