After a three-week hiatus, the Octagon returned Saturday with UFC Fight Night 76 from Dublin, Ireland.
While the Irish faithful had plenty to celebrate on the night, the main event did not go their way. Louis Smolka locked up a rear-naked choke on Paddy Holohan and earned a second round submission victory.
The two were thrust into the headline role after injuries scrapped the planned main and co-main events for the card.
Another Irish fighter, Norman Parke, sent Reza Madadi back to the drawing board with a decision victory. Parke was welcoming Madadi back after an extended layoff from competition due to a prison sentence following a robbery in his native country.
Unbeaten fighters Darren Till and Nicolas Dalby fought to a majority draw. Till stated after that he suffered a shoulder injury and was “just taking punches” in the third. After initially booing, the crowd gave the two a standing ovation for their efforts.
It took Neil Seery a couple of times to lock up a guillotine choke on Jon Delos Reyes, but once the Irish fighter secured it, he wasn’t going to let up. Seery, a Dublin native and father of four, earned his third Octagon victory with a second round submission to start the main card.
Stevie Ray concluded the early prelims by claiming a decision over Mickael Lebout using his effective striking to win his 19th career bout.
Aisling Daly wasn’t able to get the finish she desired, but the Irish fighter brought the arena to their feet with a strong performance and win over Ericka Almeida. From her entrance through the third round, the crowd was loud and proud for Daly.
Krzysztof Jotko showed incredible dance skills after pulling out a split decision win over Scott Askham. He did several spins and pounced to his feet in celebration after the scores were read.
Tristar prospect Tom Breese destroyed Cathal Pendred, embracing the villain role against the Irish fighter. Breese moved to 9-0 with the first round stoppage win.
Wrestler Darren Elkins scored his 20th career win and eighth with the UFC by picking up a decision over Robert Whiteford. He is now second in the featherweight division for wins all-time.
Garreth McLellan earned his first Octagon victory to open the show, scoring a third round finish vs. Bubba Bush with just two seconds left in the fight.
Complete results can be found below:
Norman Parke def. Reza Madadi via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Darren Till vs. Nicolas Dalby ends in a majority draw (29-28, 28-28, 28-28)
Neil Seery def. Jon Delos Reyes via submission (guillotine choke) at 4:12 of Round 2
Stevie Ray def. Mickael Lebout via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Aisling Daly def. Ericka Almeida via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-27, 29-28)
Krzysztof Jotko def. Scott Askham via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Tom Breese def. Cathal Pendred via TKO (strikes) at 4:37 of Round 1
Darren Elkins def. Robert Whiteford via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Garreth McLellan def. Bubba Bush via TKO (strikes) at 4:58 of Round 3