Ryan MacDonald suffered the first loss of his professional MMA career in his UFC debut, losing a unanimous decision to Chris Gutierrez in March. MacDonald, 26, is a Nebraska-native and had gone 10-0 to begin his run as a pro. He made his return against veteran Louis Smolka at UFC Vancouver.
Smolka is on his second stint with the UFC, after being cut in 2018. Prior to being released, Smolka was 5-5 in the promotion, following up a four-fight winning streak with a four-fight losing streak. After the release, the 28-year-old went 3-0 in various promotions throughout 2018, earning another shot with the UFC. Since his return, both to the promotion and to bantamweight, Smolka is 1-1, coming off of a first-round submission loss to Matt Schnell in March.
Round 1: Smolka hunted for the big shot early and didn’t let MacDonald find his range. Smolka landed a leg kick then went to the body, while MacDonald kept swithing up his stance before firing off a head kick. Smolka rushed in and landed to the body again. Smolka landed a nice combination close in with a hard right.
MacDonald looked for range with a left but Smolka continued to move forward and fired off punches. Smolka continued landing to the body with combinations. MacDonald tried for a combination of his own but Smolka secured the clinch. The pair worked in the clinch for a moment before breaking and Smolka, again went back to pressing the pace. MacDonald landed a nice leg kick but Smolka fired off a hard left that badly hurt MacDonald. MacDonald tried to recover but the damage was done and Smolka looked to finished as he landed another combination, with a final right hand over the top that sent MacDonald to the mat and ended the fight.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) September 14, 2019
Winner: Louis Smolka def. MacDonald via TKO @ 4:43 of Round 1