UFC Vegas 17 Results: Stephen Thompson Dominates Geoff Neal With Expert Striking

UFC Vegas 17 Stephen Thompson Geoff Neal
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - DECEMBER 19: (L-R) Stephen Thompson kicks Geoff Neal in a welterweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on December 19, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC)

Stephen Thompson reminded fans why he’s one of the best welterweights in the world with a dominant performance against Geoff Neal in the main event of UFC Vegas 17.

Stephen Thompson and Geoff Neal closed out 2020 in the main event of UFC Vegas 17. Since his two title shots against Tyron Woodley, Thompson is 2-2 and was coming off a win over Vicente Luque. Neal was one of the premier up-and-comers of the welterweight division, going 5-0 with four stoppages since entering the UFC.

Thompson started the fight with a few kicks trying to find his range, then landed one to the leg of Neal. He landed a step-back counter right hand as well, then a side kick to the body. Thompson went to the body with a jab. Neal marched forward then landed a combination once Thompson’s back hit the cage. Neal’s goal was to limit the space of Thompson, but Wonderboy was still landing his kicks. Neal was getting countered whenever he closed the distance. The straight punches of Wonderboy kept flying through, then a clash of heads happened as Neal swung a left hook. The round ended shortly after and both men were cut from the head clash.

Neal tried something different to start the second round, fighting through the kicks of Wonderboy before clinching him against the cage. Thompson broke free and was letting his hands go on the feet as Neal kept a high guard. Neal landed a double jab and couldn’t build off of it. The jabs continued to land with ease for Thompson. Body kicks were traded and Neal snapped a leg kick. After more Thompson success, Neal landed a combination against the cage right before the end of the round.

Thompson was mixing up jabs and kicks to start the third round and after a combination from him, Neal closed the distance and clinched Thompson against the cage. Thompson broke free and got back to work. Neal started to find more success with his jab and then caught a kick to get back into the clinch. Thompson snapped a head kick after they separated then followed up with straight punches. Thompson began putting more pop in his shots near the end of the round.

Neal responded to a few Wonderboy strikes with a double jab. Thompson was still putting in the work with straight punches and Neal clinched up. He fired a spinning backfist after exiting and Thompson met him with a barrage of shots. Both men slipped after head kick attempts then Thompson got back to the jabs that had found so much success up to that point. Neal pushed forward and clinched up again. He was able to hold Thompson until the end of the round.

Thompson seemed to have a leg injury heading into the final round, with bad swelling over his right knee. Neal landed a power left out of the gate and a combination to follow and Thompson fired back with a combination and a high kick with his right leg. Thompson stayed busy enough with the hands to compensate for his compromised movement, inviting exchanges with the dangerous Neal. Thompson kept pouring it on and Neal had to clinch with him against the cage. They eventually separated and combinations started flying from both sides. They swung to the final bell as Wonderboy pushed through the injury to make it the full 25 minutes.

Stephen Thompson def. Geoff Neal by Unanimous Decision (50-45 x3)