Eric Shelton knew he was fighting for job at UFC Fight Night 121, beyond relieved to keep it

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Filed under: News, UFC

SYDNEY – It took him three tries, but Eric Shelton got his first UFC victory with a unanimous decision over Jenel Lausa at UFC Fight Night 121 in Sydney, Australia. And if you don’t think he went into that fight feeling like his roster spot was on the line, guess again.

“That was exactly what I was thinking,” Shelton told MMAjunkie. “I knew I had to get out there and be dominant, whether it was on the ground or on my feet. And I felt when I got it to the ground that I could finish it there, and if not, be dominant.”

After the year he had, Shelton (11-4 MMA, 1-2 UFC) had every reason to believe it would take a dominant effort to win over the judges. In both his UFC debut in January, as well as his second fight at UFC 214 in July, Shelton put forth a strong effort and came up short with two consecutive split-decision losses.

And since the UFC doesn’t typically retain fighters who lose three straight to start their octagon careers, the pressure was on in this fight. So when Shelton heard his name called after three hard rounds against Lausa (7-4 MMA, 1-2 UFC), the relief was overwhelming.

“You have no idea,” Shelton said. “It feels like Heaven has come down on me, like, ‘Here you go. Here’s your gift for working hard and staying the course.’”

But with one win in three tries throughout 2017, the flyweight isn’t looking for a long layoff before he attempts to capitalize on his newfound momentum.

“I’m back in there as soon as they got me,” Shelton said. “I know I’ve got to take two months rest or whatever, but I’ve got mouths to feed and I’ve got a family that supports me, so there’s no resting for me. I’m coming and I’m coming strong.”

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 121, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

UFC Fight Night 121 results: Eric Shelton grinds down Jenel Lausa for first UFC victory

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After Eric Shelton dealt with an early takedown from Janel Lausa, he put things on cruise control thanks to takedowns and dominance on the ground.

Shelton (11-4 MMA, 1-2 UFC) won a unanimous decision against Lausa (7-4 MMA, 1-2 UFC) with a sweep of the judges’ scorecards for his first UFC victory. He picked up scores of 30-27, 30-26 and 30-25. The fight stats showed Shelton with a 186-11 margin in the striking department.

The flyweight bout was part of the preliminary card of today’s UFC Fight Night 121 event at at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney. It streamed on UFC Fight Pass ahead of the rest of the card on FS1.

Lausa faked a right early, then slipped away from a left high kick from Shelton. Seconds later, he had to block a right high kick. A minute in, Lausa tried a hard kick of his own. But 90 seconds in, Shelton threw a looping right and Lausa took advantage. He scooped him up and slammed him to the canvas. On the ground, he landed a good punch from Shelton’s guard, then drove Shelton toward the cage.

But Shelton worked nicely from the ground, got back to his feet, and took Lausa’s back standing. With two minutes left, he took Lausa to the cage and pressed his back to the fence. Lausa got an underhook and used it to get back to his feet with 90 seconds left. With 40 seconds left, Shelton drove from several feet out and got an easy double-leg takedown and landed good ground-and-pound to close out the frame.

Lausa tried a big overhand right early in the second, and Shelton tried the same moments later. A minute in, Shelton got another takedown, then briefly threatened with a guillotine choke. But Lausa stirpped it away and got to his feet. But not long after that, Shelton sat him back down, got to full mount, then forced Lausa to give his back. Shelton stayed on top and worked punches and elbows and had three minutes to work with.

He got back to full mount again midway through the round and landed a huge elbow. Lausa scrambled out and picked up a slick guillotine, but Shelton popped his head out and was back to top position. Shelton’s strikes from up top were heavy through the rest of the round, but he couldn’t put Lausa away.

Shelton ripped off a big leg kick early in the third. When Lausa tried an uppercut, Shelton drilled him with a counter right. And 100 seconds into the final frame, Shelton picked up another takedown and kept Lausa frustrated along the fence. Shelton kept beating Lausa up to the head and body. Lausa did his best to block the shots, and at least stayed out of trouble of being finished – but it was clear much of the fight had been beaten out of him. Shelton let Lausa back to his feet late, but there wasn’t enough time for him to get anything done.

“It feels amazing to get the first win of my UFC career,” Shelton said. “I had a couple of close fights before this, so I knew I had to prove myself tonight. My coaches and I knew we had be dominate whether we were on the mat or standing, so I just kept my pace up and outworked him each round. I want to keep this momentum going so I want to fight again as soon as possible.”

Shelton picked up his first UFC win after a pair of split-decision losses to open up his tenure. He snapped the first losing skid of his pro career. Lausa lost for the second striaght time and has the first losing skid of his pro career.

Up-to-the-minute UFC Fight Night 121 results include:

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 121, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

(MMAjunkie’s John Morgan contributed to this report on site in Sydney.)

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Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Jenel Lausa signs to fight Eric Shelton at UFC Fight Night 121 in Australia

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A flyweight bout between Jenel Lausa and Eric Shelton is the latest addition to November’s UFC Fight Night 121 lineup in Australia.

Lausa (7-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC) announced the matchup with Shelton (10-4 MMA, 0-2 UFC) via Instagram:

Instagram Photo

UFC Fight Night 121 takes place Nov. 18 at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney. The event airs on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.

Lausa makes his third UFC appearance after debuting roughly one year prior to UFC Fight Night 121. The 29-year-old Filipino fighter won his initial bout with the promotion and picked up a unanimous-decision win over Zhikui Yao at UFC Fight Night 101. His sophomore appearance wasn’t as smooth, though, and “The Demolition Man” dropped a unanimous decision to undefeated Magomed Bibulatov at UFC Fight Night 110 in April.

Shelton, meanwhile, is still in search of his first UFC win. After an appearance on Season 24 of “The Ultimate Fighter,” Shelton has come up just short of victory on two occasions. The 26-year-old lost a split decision to Alexandre Pantoja at UFC on FOX 24 in January before losing another split decision to Jarred Brooks at UFC 214 in July.

The latest UFC Fight Night 121 card includes:

  • Mark Hunt vs. Marcin Tybura
  • Joanne Calderwood vs. Bec Rawlings
  • Belal Muhammad vs. TBA
  • Jeremy Kennedy vs. Alex Volkanovski
  • Rashad Coulter vs. Tai Tuivasa
  • Ryan Benoit vs. Ashkan Mokhtarian
  • Alex Chambers vs. Nadia Kassem
  • Daniel Kelly vs. Elias Theodorou
  • Jenel Lausa vs. Eric Shelton

For more on UFC Fight Night 121, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

UFC 214 results: Jarred Brooks edges Eric Shelton for split decision in UFC debut

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Jarred Brooks and Eric Shelton played for points over three rounds, rarely committing to a sustained scrap in a lackluster affair.

Brooks (13-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC), who made his debut after his scheduled octagon debut in February was canceled, squeaked out more points over Shelton (10-4 MMA, 0-2 UFC) to pick up a split-call.

The flyweight bout was part of the preliminary card of today’s UFC 214 event at Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. It streamed on UFC Fight Pass ahead of additional prelims on FXX and a main card on pay-per-view.

The final scores were 29-28 twice for Brooks with one judge giving the same score to Shelton, who suffers his second straight split-decision loss since his turn on “The Ultimate Fighter 24.”

The perpetually amped Brooks, meanwhile, keeps his unbeaten record intact after a UFC 208 fight with Ian McCall was scrapped when McCall fell ill.

For as much noise as Brooks made in the leadup to that ill-fated fight and tonight’s debut, his approach was muted. He spent most of the first round stuffing Shelton against the cage, trying to wrap the head for a choke. A last-minute attempt wasn’t good enough to take home the submission.

“I think the takedowns I got were the difference,” Brooks said. “I really had octagon jitters. I said that it wasn’t going to happen, but it was for real. The UFC jitters are for real and just the process of everything is crazy. My next time out, fans will see a lot more striking and a lot more versatility out of me.”

Brooks avoided Shelton for the bulk of the middle frame, bouncing around yet doing little to advance his agenda. When his uppercut glanced off Shelton’s temple and appeared to do damage, he missed the cue and kept his hit-and-run strategy.

By the final frame, Shelton had finally mastered Brooks’ rhythm and made his mark with a right hand that made Brooks take a knee. But the impact of that punch – and a flying knee into a guillotine in the final seconds – wasn’t enough to convince the judges.

Up-to-the-minute UFC 214 results include:

For complete coverage of UFC 214, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

(MMAjunkie’s Dann Stupp, John Morgan, Ben Fowlkes, Mike Bohn and Ken Hathaway contributed to this report on site in Anaheim.)

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie