Nam Phan took an electrifying decision over Leonard Garcia at UFC 136 in Houston on Saturday night. Neither fighter let up for one second during the fight. On all three judges card, Phan won 29-28.
Phan got the edge early, teeing off on Garcia then knocking him down. Phan quickly moved into Garcia's guard, but after the referee didn't see enough action, he stood them up. Phan wobbled Garcia, and then defended one of his takedowns. Phan used body shots to create damage, and kept Garcia on his heels. In the final seconds of the round, Phan had one more onslaught to knock Garcia down again.
Garcia became more wild in the second round, winging big strikes that didn't go anywhere near Phan's face. Phan used short, fast punches to Garcia's face and body throughout the round. As the round wore on, Garcia began to tire, and a cut opened underneath his eye.
Between rounds, Phan said, "Let's touch gloves," to Garcia, who laughed and called Phan a word not fit for Cagewriter.
The first minute of the third round followed the same script that the rest of the fight had followed until Garcia knocked Phan down. He quickly got back to his feet, but Garcia teed off, swinging for the fences on every punch. They clinched, which slowed down the pace, but not for long. Phan took Garcia down, but the ref stood them up.
In the final minute, Garcia threw spinning backfists, swinging hooks, and every punch in the book. With less then 30 seconds left, Garcia tried for an unsuccessful takedown. As the round ended, the two swung wildly until the final horn ended, causing the crowd at the Toyota Center to erupt in cheers.
"I knew I had him in trouble. He had gathered so many points in the beginning. I knew I had to finish him," Garcia said after the bout.
This is a rematch of their December bout, which Garcia won by a controversial decision. Phan appeared to be the clear-cut winner in that bout, and was angry about the loss. He said he didn't want to fight Garcia a third time, but Garcia said he would be up for it if it were in Houston.