Charles Jourdain rebounded from a rough first round and came away with a split draw in his fight against Josh Culibao at UFC Fight Island 4.
“Air” Jourdain was set to take flight once more on Saturday. That came as featherweights Josh Culibao and Canadian Charles Jourdain collided in a promising preliminary card match-up at UFC Fight Island 4.
Jourdain, a former TKO double champ, was known for his flashy, fan-friendly style, including a deadly flying knee. The Canadian’s ceiling was high, as shown by his knockout of South Korean prodigy Doo-Ho Choi, but he’d found mixed results in the UFC to date. Culibao had arrived in the promotion earlier this year, dropping his debut against Jalin Turner.
The first round opened with Jourdain throwing his characteristically wild knees and flying attacks. Culibao looked to find the clinch early in order to stifle the attacks, but there was little doing in the efforts. Jourdain went to the body often with the kicks, but it didn’t stop the forward movement of Culibao. After some mild exchanges a big right hand dropped Jourdain. He recovered quickly, but wasn’t on the sturdiest of legs. On the clinch that followed Jourdain looked for a guillotine that was unsuccessful and ultimately bailed on it. Culiabo looked way more confident as the round ended.
— UFC (@ufc) October 4, 2020
The confidence carried over to the second round with Culibao being the aggressor early on. Jourdain was falling back on the heavy kicks that were successful early, but Culibao was landing the better shots to the head. Culibao lost his balance in an awkward exchange against the cage and Jourdain looks for another front choke, he can’t finish it, but does wind up on top. He lands a half dozen heavy shots to the ribs as the round ends with him on top. A close round with Culibao landing the majority of the big shots and Jourdain controlling at the end.
Jourdain came out with a sense of urgency in the third. His aggression led him to tagging Culibao and put him on wobbly legs. He poured it on, looking for a flying knee and landing lots heavy shots. In a clinch exchange, Jourdain looked for another front choke, but wound up in half guard. He dropped some bombs and was able to work Culibao over pretty solidly. After standing, he kicked the rear end of Culibao, who appeared to ask for a timeout for a shot to the nuts. The referee waved off that ask and Jourdain jumped in. The weird exchange led to a inverted triangle-armbar attempt. After Culibao slipped his head out, Jourdain returned to the feet where they threw to end the round.
Charles Jourdain and Josh Culibao Fight to Split Draw (30-27, 28-29, 28-28)