UFC Vegas 92 Results: Lerone Murphy Dominates, Out-Strikes Edson Barboza

Lerone Murphy and Edson Barboza, UFC Vegas 92
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MAY 18: (L-R) Lerone Murphy of England punches Edson Barboza of Brazil in a featherweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on May 18, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Lerone Murphy was looking at a significant step up in competition in the UFC Vegas 92 main event on Saturday, where he was paired up with Brazilian veteran and dangerous striker Edson Barboza.

Murphy spent the opening round head hunting, looking to land power shots and stay out of the way of the crafty Barboza’s attacks. Barboza worked over his opponent’s lead leg, but Murphy declined to change stances to avoid those blows, perhaps another sign of the respect he had for the Brazilian’s striking prowess. In the final minute, the pair picked things up, with Barboza going to his back off an exchange but landing an upkick that left Murphy reeling and showing some damage on the nose.

In the second, Barboza continued to chop away at Murphy’s lead leg. The wind-up on those kicks and the force with which he landed them was nothing short of impressive. Murphy answered with his right hand, and Barboza soon had a bit of blood trickling down the bridge of his own nose. Barboza, however, was plenty mobile, circled out of harm’s way, and went back to chopping the outside of Murphy’s leg.

Changing things up a bit, Murphy charged in for a double-leg attempt. He worked to turn the corner and had Barboza to his knees, but the Brazilian was back up in moments, though warned for a fence grab in the process. Not out of it, however, Murphy clipped Barboza with a right! Barboza seemed to be flagging a little, under fire with his back to the fence. Murphy’s boxing was serving him well, and he added in an elbow. Barboza then slipped off a kick attempt, allowing Murphy to clinch up and fire knees.

Barboza took center early in the third; he’d begun to slow but was still working on Murphy’s legs. Barboza added a kick to the body but Murphy, who had begun to mix in stance switches, got his hands going again, and later shot in for a takedown, forcing Barboza to clinch up. As the round wore on Barboza looked more and more exhausted, and Murphy began picking his shots, landing multiple blows in a combination with just over a minute left. Barboza clinched up to buy himself some time, but the momentum was firmly on the side of Lerone Murphy. At the end of the round, it was Murphy, not Barboza, firing a spinning kick, clearly flowing.

Early in round four, Murphy was warned for having his fingers out-stretched. It wouldn’t matter; the break was short and not enough for Barboza to recover much. Murphy, meanwhile, was well ahead in the striking department, both in terms of volume and significant strikes. It was Murphy landing a calf kick now as well; Barboza still had some snap behind his kicks, but the volume differential made Barboza look like a babbling brook compared to Murphy’s Niagara Falls. Both men were showing blood around the nose, the results of effective jabs.

The fifth and final round had Edson Barboza clearly down and in need of a finish. Whether he could pull a particularly devastating rabbit out of his hat remained to be seen. Murphy clinched up with a body lock from the back, along the fence, about a minute in. Barboza broke free, however, moving back to center. With 90 seconds or so remaining and Barboza’s time quickly slipping away in a round he had been pieced up in, particularly to the head, Murphy did him something of a mercy, landing a takedown. Barboza would make it back up, but there was no miracle for him in Las Vegas on Saturday, no come from behind win. Instead, just a dominant performance from Lerone Murphy, a.k.a. “The Miracle,” who cemented himself as a featherweight to watch at UFC Vegas 92.

Official Result: Lerone Murphy def. Edson Barboza by unanimous decision (49-46, 50-45, 50-45)