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  • Writer's pictureChris Presnell

Lee Chang Ho emerges victorious in breakneck split over Xiao, earns UFC contract

Lee Chang Ho wins Road to UFC

After fifteen minutes of war, Road to UFC season two wraps with Lee Chang Ho taking the bantamweight final in an action-packed decision.

The judges scored the fight between Xiao Long and Lee Chang Ho 28-29, 29-28, and 29-28 for a split decision win for Lee.

The fight started hot with Lee Chang Ho pushing hard for the takedown against Xiao, but Xiao disengaged. Both fighters worked from the clinch against the cage, reversing back-and-forth to start things off hot. It was Xiao that controlled things early on, although getting bloodied by a clash of heads. An elbow off the break from Xiao separated the two fighters back to the center of the cage.

As they move back towards the clinch, Xiao worked from the tie clinch to throw knees and elbows against his Korean opponent. This was bound to be a grueling fight. At two minutes and fifteen seconds into the fight, Xiao secured the double leg and lifted Lee to the air for the first successful takedown of the fight. From there, he moved to the back of Lee, throwing punches and trying to drag his opponent back to the mat.

But his credit, Lee was able to rise back to the feet with his back against the cage. With just over a minute left, Lee looked to fight out of the clinch, securing a Thai clinch and landing a few strong knees against his Chinese foe. With less than a minute, left two fighters move back to the center of the cage, fighting face-to-face from the Thai clinch.

The second round started off with a blitz of a striking exchange from both fighters, picking up right where they left off. Battling once again from the Thai clinch, it appeared to be Lee landing the better of the strikes with knees and uppercuts to Xiao. Separating from the clinch, Xiao landed a hard body kick to the side of Lee. Through the striking exchanges, it appeared to be Lee landing the better of the punching combinations of the two. Once again, working to the cage, Xiao pushed hard for the takedown, but Lee's takedown defense held up strong.

Xiao's gas tank and pressure was on full display, but was he eating too many knees for his efforts? The fight was still razor-close after two rounds of battle.

With no clear winner to begin round three ,the two Road to UFC finalists picked up right where they left off, pummeling each other from the center of the cage. Xiao desperately wanted to get this fight to the mat, but continued to eat knees from the clinch from Lee Chang Ho. Already a marathon of a fight, Lee was now pressing Xiao against the cage, even taking his back in the process.

Now in the most compromising spot of the fight, Xiao work desperately to dump Lee off of his back to prevent the rear naked choke submission. However, as he did, it appear that Lee could be setting up an arm bar on his left side. In a moment of changing tides, Xiao popped out and took the back of Lee, now working for his own rear naked choke finish.

With Lee likely ahead at halfway through the third round, Xiao needed to put up some offense in order to not fall behind. After a minute with Xiao on his back, Lee was able to turn out and bring the fight back up to the feet. Once again, battling from the clinch with less than a minute left, Xiao was able to land heavier punches with Lee once again landing knees to the body.

Even to the very end, the score appeared to be almost dead even.

With the split decision victory going to Lee Chang Ho, the second of season of Road to UFC officially comes to a close.


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