Over five rounds, Strickland was just relentless while going after Uriah Hall with punches in bunches and absolutely battering him with combinations without ever really slowing down. While Strickland wasn’t able to get the stoppage, he put on a showcase with his striking attacks as he outclassed a devastating knockout artist in his own right in Hall.
When it was over, the judges scored the fight 50-44, 50-45 and 49-46 with Strickland earning his fifth consecutive win in a row and fourth straight at middleweight.
“Five rounds are a little fun,” Strickland said after getting his hand raised. “The last round is the funnest. You get so tired, you don’t are about getting hit. He’s a guy that I’ve always respected. He kind of scared me cause I came up watching his highlights. It was an honor to fight Uriah, I appreciate the battle.”
Strickland was quick to set the pace with a slick jab that he was constantly putting in Hall’s face while putting the former Ultimate Fighter finalist on his back foot. The output from Strickland was relentless while sticking the basics with a left jab and then a hard right hand behind it.
While Hall was struggling with the jab, he did manage to connect with a few hard shots of his own in the opening round including a couple of well-timed left hooks whenever he was able to draw Strickland into an exchange.
The volume attack continued from Strickland as he was just throwing a variety of punches in succession, which continued to give Hall problems as he struggled to find any opening for his own combinations. Strickland’s ability to push Hall against the cage also allowed him to just pepper away with strikes without much fear of reprisal.
By the time the fight was midway through the third round, Hall was favoring his left eye thanks to eating all of those jabs and then things went from bad to worse after he was clubbed with a shot behind the ear during an exchange that left him wobbled. Strickland recognized that Hall was hurt and he brought the fight crashing to the ground where he started hammering away with punches in an attempt to put him away.
To his credit, Hall survived the round but he was rattled with his coach Sayif Saud imploring him to battle through adversity and look for the finish if he wanted to get the win.
In desperation mode, Hall was definitely swinging for the fences in an attempt to stage an epic comeback but Strickland stuck to the basics while throwing that same jab that paid dividends for him all night long. Strickland was obviously aware of Hall’s dynamic offense but he also didn’t seem to care much as he continued to march forward with punishing combinations to secure the victory.
Ever since returning from a near career ending motorcycle accident, Strickland has looked better than ever and a serious threat to anybody with a number next to their name at middleweight. That said, Strickland has never cared much for call outs, which is why he’s just ready to face whoever the UFC throws at him next.
“I don’t care [who I fight next],” Strickland said. “I just want to fight. I want to make money. It gives me purpose. If I wasn’t in the UFC, I’d probably be cooking meth in a trailer in prison.”