A battle of top-10 middleweights in the UFC kicked off one of the biggest main cards of the year on Saturday night in Anaheim, Calif.
Last July, Heinisch earned a UFC contract with a a first round TKO finish of Justin Sumter on Dana White’s Contender Series. Since then, “The Hurricane” picked up victories against dangerous jiu-jitsu black belts in back-to-back fights. Heinisch defeated Cezar Ferreira at November’s UFC Fight Night 140 event and, most recently, defeated Antonio Carlos Junior at UFC Rochester in May — both via unanimous decision.
Brunson was able to bounce back from consecutive finish losses to Ronaldo Souza and Israel Adesanya with a unanimous decision in May at UFC Ottawa. The 35-year-old is 3-4 in his last seven fights and win over a surging middleweight in Heinisch could be just what Brunson needs to make his way back up to title contention at 185-pounds.
Here is how the fight between Ian Heinisch and Derek Brunson went down at UFC 241, including round-by-round scoring by MyMMANews. For full results of UFC 241, you can check them out right here.
Mike Beltran with a facial hair cut getting this guys started. Heinisch comes out with a big leg kick and a huge head kick, dropping Brunson in the process. Brunson composes himself and hoists Heinisch in the air, but the Factory X trained fighter is able to use great balance and eventually force a separation. Right hand from Heinisch lands and Brunson answers with a stiff jab. Front kick to the body by “The Hurricane”, followed by a leg kick. Brunson very patient here in this opening round. Heinisch with a body kick, left hand counter by Brunson. Under two minutes left and Brunson lands a low kick. High kick checked by Heinisch and Brunson shoots a single. Heinisch lands a right hand on one leg, and an uppercut against the fence. Knee to the body from Heinisch lands and they meet back in the center. Both throw high kicks that are checked. Brunson with a nice counter left hand and he shoots for a double against the fence. Under 10 seconds to go, Brunson shifts to the back and attempts a belly-to-back suplex. Somehow, Heinisch lands on his feet as the round ends.
MyMMANews.com scores it 10-9 for Heinisch
Both guys come up short with kicks early in the round. Brunson maintaining his patient approach as Heinisch remains the aggressor. Heinisch shoots a single, Brunson is able to thwart the attack. Solid right hand lands by Brunson which catches Heinisch’s attention as he looks to take it to the mat. Brunson defends and back to the feet they go. Counter left hand by Brunson and Heinisch looks to be slowing down slightly. Left hand lands by Heinisch, body kick by Brunson. Another body kick lands by Brunson as we approach the halfway point. Body kick from Heinisch lands, a jab right behind it. They trade in the center and Brunson lands a nice left hand. Brunson is on Heinisch’s back and lands some hard left hands. Brunson maintains position and switches to a single. They separate and head back to the center. Jab lands by Heinisch. Brunson throws a high kick and falls to his back as we are under a minute to go. Body kick and a right hand from Brunson. Heinisch misses a looping left hand, and shoots for a single. Brunson ends up on top and lands a series of left hands. They stand and trade in the final seconds. Nice bounce back round for Brunson.
MyMMANews.com scores it 10-9 for Brunson
Final round underway and Heinisch looks fired up after listening to his coach Marc Montoya. Colby Covington is in the building and a “Colby sucks” chant begins. Right hand from Heinisch and Brunson takes his back, belly-to-back suplex from Derek Brunson. Heinisch scrambles back to his feet and Brunson maintains control against the fence. They separate and Brunson lands a nice left hand to the body. Counter left from Brunson, and another left hand from Brunson. Heinisch shoots in to the dismay of his coaches. Heinisch lands a nice left hand and Brunson ties him up, then takes Heinisch to the ground. Heinisch gets back to his feet and eats a Brunson left hand. Past the halfway point and Brunson remains very calm, landing jabs. Big left hand lands by Brunson with under two minutes to go. Left kick to the body and a right hand from Brunson. Leg and body kicks land from Brunson. Right hand from Heinisch who needs to make something happen here late in the round. Brunson grabs a single, Heinisch defends. Both miss right hands, Brunson lands a body kick, and another. Right hand from Heinisch, and a slow looping left misses from the fatigued Heinisch. Under 20 seconds to go and Brunson avoids Heinisch’s aggression. Right hand from Brunson lands and the final horn sounds. Both guys left it all out there, but it looks like Brunson will extend his winning streak to two.