The main event of a stacked Cage Warriors 106 card saw current welterweight champion Ross Houston take on UFC veteran and interim welterweight champion Nicholas Dalby. There was some back and forth between the two leading up to the bout, mainly coming from the Scotsman which even led to Dalby refusing to touch gloves before the fight started.
Bloodbath Of A Fight
The fight was spectacular and saw a real war of attrition between the two athletes that ultimately led to a bloodbath of a contest. The rangy Houston caught Dalby with a clean elbow to the top of the head and opened a massive gash that immediately began leaking all over the octagon. Dalby seemed unfazed by the cut and continued to pile on the pressure although the reigning champion likely won the opening round.
Referee Marc Goddard called the doctor in to check on Dalby during round one and again before the start of round two, although the corner managed to do a good job temporarily stopping the blood flow.
Dalby came out in round two with a sense of urgency and landed two clean right hands to completely break the nose of the champion. Blood was now flowing profusely from both fighters to the point where the cage floor became more and more slippery.
Rounds two and three swung in the favour of the interim champion as Dalby controlled top position for the majority of these rounds. It was clear that the blood was causing the fighters a big issue as their knees and feet began sliding with every grappling transition and scramble. Dalby even slipped whilst throwing a kick to the legs of a downed Houston which allowed the Scotsman back to his feet.
A Bloody No Contest
Whilst fans were upset at the way the bout ended, I feel as though referee Marc Goddard handled the unusual situation incredibly well. Goddard ended up calling a halt to fight in the third round, declaring the bout a no contest. If the fight had made it to the end of the third round, we would have seen it go to the scorecards for a technical decision where Dalby would likely have become the unified champion. However, with the damage both fighters sustained, and the slip and slide canvas the blood produced, it was not a safe or fair contest to continue.
With both champions retaining their respective titles it is likely that we will see a rematch between the two. In his post-fight interview, Houston opened up the idea of the rematch being on an even bigger stage saying, “how about we have a rematch in the UFC?”. To which Dalby’s response was, “I’m up for that, UFC Copenhagen”.