Christian Leroy Duncan had been expected to welcome newcomer Cesar Almeida to the octagon at UFC Vegas 82 — but the Fight Gods had other plans, and with Almeida out, it was Denis Tiuliulin stepping in on short notice.
The middleweight bout arrived on the preliminary portion of Saturday’s Fight Night card.
The opening round of Christian Leroy Duncan vs. Denis Tiuliulin saw plenty of clinch work along the fence. Duncan proved to be strong there, holding on to his opponent with a body lock, looking for the odd takedown, and firing an impressive number of knees from that position. While Duncan couldn’t inflict a lot of damage from there, he also managed to avoid taking any, and was in control for the majority of the frame.
Tiuliulin walked Duncan down in the second, but Christian Leroy Duncan showed impressive speed, attacked at angles, and mixed things up, showing superb creativity in his striking. Throughout the round, Duncan blasted Tuiluilin with elbows, and while Denis Tiuliulin would not go away, he was falling behind on the scorecards, at risk of dropping a decision should the fight go the distance.
It didn’t. In the final minute of round two, Duncan uncorked a volley of uppercuts, with Tuiliulin eventually going down off those plus a couple of uppercuts! Some follow-up strikes left the ref no choice but to wave things off, giving Christian Leroy Duncan his second win inside the octagon.
Official Result: Christian Leroy Duncan def. Denis Tiuliulin by TKO (strikes), Round 2, 4:24