UFC 282: Hard-Hitting Affair Sees Chris Curtis Drop, Stop Joaquin Buckley

Chris Curtis and Joaquin Buckley, UFC 282
Chris Curtis and Joaquin Buckley, UFC 282 ceremonial weigh-in Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

A fan-friendly match-up between popular middleweights Chris Curtis and Joaquin Buckley kicked off the televised prelims at UFC 282.

Both “Action Man” Curtis and “Newmansa” Buckley had come up short in recent road trips. In the case of Curtis, that was against Jack Hermansson in London back in July, while Buckley had also made the trip to Europe, losing to Nassourdine Imavov at UFC Paris.

There was lots of movement early in Curtis vs. Buckley. Lots of strikes thrown, but not a ton landing flush. Curtis worked his jab. Both worked low kicks, not surprisingly, Buckley also fired a few up high. Buckley pressed forward with a combo, and missed on an uppercut that looked nasty. Curtis then absolutely tagged Buckley with a left hand; Buckley somehow both ate the punch and pressed forward, returning fire!

Buckley then went lower with a jab, hitting the body. Curtis fired an intended inside leg kick that strayed high, halting the action, but Buckley didn’t need long to shake it off. Back underway, with two minutes in the frame still remaining, Curtis blocked a high kick. Curtis landed his left again, not as clean this time. Buckley pressed forward with a combo, as Curtis covered up. His guard was tight, with few of Buckley’s strikes getting through.

Late in the round, Buckley appeared to pick up the pace, specifically when it came to ripping the body.

Round two had Buckley continuing to stay busy. Curtis was still showing excellent defense, but the volume was a factor that could not be overlooked. Curtis was spending too much time moving backwards. The body was there to be hit, and Buckley most definitely hit it. Curtis showed excellent head movement, and fired a kick up high that was blocked. But Buckley was firing in combinations — not that it mattered moments later, when Curtis connected! Curtis landed a left over a high kick. Buckley went down, and Curtis followed up with several nasty hammerfists. At one point, Curtis appeared to put Buckley out, only for him to come back and be put out again before the ref made the save.

Official Result: Chris Curtis def. Joaquin Buckley by KO (strikes), Round 2, 2:49