Abu Dhabu, UAE – UFC middleweights Armen Petrosyan and A.J. Dobson were third in on the UFC 280 preliminary card, which went down Saturday in Abu Dhabi.
Both Petrosyan and Dobson were looking to get back in the win column, after single losses in their last outings. Coming into the fight, Petrosyan had an impressive win over Gregory Rodrigues on his record, and another win here would outline him as an underrated fighter in the middleweight division.
The fight began with Petrosyan testing the waters with some low kicks, however, Dobson caught one and pushed him to the mat. It didn’t deter the kickboxer though, who once back to his feet, started firing out the left low kick again. A beautiful combo by Petrosyan saw him land a right hand followed by a left hook that almost landed flush. Dobson’s speed allowed him to elude the shots of Armen, but the leg kicks began accumulating and by the end of round 1, he’d landed 12/12.
At the beginning of round 2, both men let their hands fly and got involved in a trade off. Petrosyan did a good job of staying light on his feet, doing his work and getting back out of range. The activity of the Armenian started tallying up and he started separating himself from Dobson. Whenever Dobson decided to go, he did great work, but the issue being he just didn’t go enough. With a minute left of round 2, Dobson attempted a takedown but had no luck, but during the get up, Petrosyan seemed to step awkwardly on his lead leg.
The fight made it to the final round which is something not a lot of people predicted, and the issue with Petrosyan’s knee seemed to be a thing left in round 2. Dobson’s corner team made it no secret that they believed him to be down 2 rounds, and screams of “you’ve got to go bro” chorussed out. Despite the calls from his corner, it didn’t seem to light a fire up Dobson’s backside, and his inactivity looked as though it would be his downfall.
As the fight ended, the biggest takeaway was that if AJ Dobson would’ve put out more activity, he could’ve really caused the 31-year-old Armenian some issues, but his inactivity caused him to lose the fight.
Official decision: Armen Petrosyan def. AJ Dobson by unanimous decision 30-27, 30-27, 30-27