Song Yadong Cruises to A Questionable Split Decision Win Over Casey Kenney

UFC 265 kicks off it’s main card with a bantamweight bout between China’s Song Yadong and Casey Kenney of the USA. Kenney is coming off of a split decision loss to former bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz and Yadong a loss to Kyler Phillips.

With a win, either fighter will make their way to a ranked opponent and an opportunity to fight their way into the UFC top 15 bantamweight division.

Song Yadong vs. Casey Kenney Fight Recap

Round 1

Kenney takes the center immediately. Kenny looking for the leg kick early on using the teep to use distance as well. Song Yadong bounces in and out of range and fires two big rights to Kenny’s guard. Yadong fires hooks that are lighting fast. Yadong uses the jab to pop Kenney a couple times. The two are lighting fast with their jabs and hooks; exchanges are very quick. Yadong comes forward and Kenney blocks a shot and laughs loud taunting him. Yadong responds with a huge body kick. Yadong is great with his footwork keeping Kenney whiffing. Kenney senses the pressure and applies his own on Yadong, posing the Korean to the fence. As time expires, Kenny keeps pushing forward bring the fight to a more hesitant Yadong.

Round 2

Round 2 begins and Song Yadong comes back with the kicks. Yadong rips to the body well and Kenney comes back over the top. Kenney lands a clean right coming in at the 4 minute mark. Kenney is pushing the pace more now, having Yadong on the back foot. The two have slowed down a little bit with the forward pressure on each other but still are throwing with some heat. Kenney consistently has Yadong to the fence but keeps missing on the strikes. Yadong has the distance down well so far. Kenney shoots the takedown and Yadong pulls him up and gets out of the takedown. Kenney keeps pushing forward and Yadong is heavier on the feet as he’s backing up but Kenney can’t capitalize. Kenney catches Yadong with a left that buzzes Yadong slightly. Yadong pushes Kenny to the fence as time expires in the round.

Round 3

Yadong comes out of round 3 fast. Kenney is tired from throwing and missing and chasing Yadong. Yadong slips a big right and circles out. Song Yadong lulls Kenney in and starts to throw and Kenney backs out each time. Yadong continues to out work Kenney with his footwork consistently circling out. Kenney catches Yadong with a head kick as Yadong dips but Yadong eats it. Yadong steps to the side and catches Kenny with a beautiful uppercut to the body. Kenny shoots the takedown but Yadong sprawls beautifully. Yadong, knowing he’s ahead, waits on Kenney to go first and counters to get him out of the pocket. Kenney shoots with a minute left and Yadong sprawls again. The two start to trade hooks with 30 seconds left giving the crowd what they want. With ten seconds left Kenney shoots in on Yadong getting the takedown and landing a couple elbows and the clock expires.

Result: Song Yadong defeats Casey Kenney via split decision (30-27, 29-28, 28-29)

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