‘Hollywood’ Case wins again, stays unbeaten
By MARTY BALL
Jefferson native Johnny “Hollywood” Case made Iowans proud once again for the fourth straight time Saturday night by defeating his fourth consecutive opponent inside the UFC octagon. The 26-year-old lightweight continued his undefeated UFC campaign in Sao Paulo, Brazil with a unanimous decision victory over 32-year-old and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil native Yan Cabral. The triumph propelled Case’s overall record in mixed martial arts to 22-4 while Cabral fell to 2-2 in the UFC and 12-2 overall.
The three-round bout between the two warriors began with nearly a minute of standup before Cabral shot in on a takedown attempt with 4:08 remaining in the opening period. Case fought off the attempt, stuffed Cabral to the ground and used his ground-and-pound game for nearly 20 seconds before letting Cabral back to his feet. The pair exchanged more punches and kicks on the feet for 35 seconds before Cabral took his second takedown shot of the fight. This time, the Brazilian fighter was successful in taking Case down, but failed to do any real damage from the top position before Case escaped with 44 seconds left in the round. The period expired with both competitors on the feet and Case landing a handful of jabs and kicks to seemingly win the round.
After a short break, Round 2 commenced with more standup as both fighters tried to earn a slight edge over the other. The duo chose to keep the fight on their feet for the first two minutes before Case caught Cabral with a stiff right jab that sent the latter to the octagon canvas. Case continued his attack with his opponent on the ground before securing himself in the top position for the second time of the fight. Once again, Case allowed Cabral to climb to his feet to avoid any submission attempts by the black belt Brazilian Jiu Jitsu artist. The strategy proved to work for Case as he stayed poised on his feet through the final two minutes of the round. Using a combination of body and head kicks, one-two jabs and a strong takedown defense, Case remained in complete control as the second period came to a close.
The third round was initiated with another minute of standup until Cabral earned his second takedown of the fight with 4:01 left in the bout. Desperate to make up for lost ground, Cabral immediately went for a rear naked choke in hopes to win the fight by submission. Refusing to give in, Case effectively fought off Cabral’s choke attempt for nearly three minutes before reversing his opponent and taking the top position with 1:15 left. Case did what he could to convince the scoring judges that he was not phased by Cabral’s takedown attempts by landing blow after blow from half guard. Using his strong wrestling skills, Case kept Cabral down on the canvas for nearly the remainder of the round until he allowed Cabral to his feet with just 10 seconds left. Case used those 10 seconds to throw as many punches as possible and after landing a majority of them, cut his opponent under his left eye to bloody up Cabral’s face as time expired. Following the conclusion of the fight, the UFC judges scored the bout 29-28 in favor of Case in all three rounds, declaring him a UFC winner for the fourth straight time.
Post fight, it was revealed that Case had broken his left thumb and left foot during the brawl. He told media that earning the victory inside the octagon would help ease the pain between now and his next cage battle, however.
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