After The Crossfire – UFC Fight Night 54: MacDonald vs Saffiedine

#2 Rory MacDonald caught #10 Tarec Saffiedine with a beautiful striking combination to force referee Herb Dean to call the fight in the third round at UFC Fight Night 54.

After two rounds of careful tactics by both fighters MacDonald connected with a overhand right  left hook combination that buckled the knees of the former Strikeforce welterweight champ.

MacDonald is now widely thought be next in line for a title shot after the winner of champion Johny Hendricks and Robbie Lawler at UFC 181.

Fight of the Night went to Chris Kelades and Patrick Holohan while Rory MacDonald and Oliver Aubin-Mercier snagged performances of the night. $50,000 USD went to all fighters.

Welcome back to The Crossfire.

MMA Crossfire

MMA Crossfire Experts Cassie Wiseman and Kenai Andrews once again check in on the main card matchups.

Cassie Wiseman

MMA Crossfire Expert Cassie Wiseman. She is a martial artist with over six years of study. Training primarily in South Korea, the proud Canadian from Roberts Arm, Newfoundland has black belts in Taekwondo, Hapkido, and proficient in Muay Thai kickboxing. Image courtesy Steve Bartlett

MITCH GAGNON VS ROMAN “ROMAN EL GALLITO” 

UFC Fight Night

Mitch Gagnon of Canada submits Roman Salazar by rear naked choke in their bantamweight bout at the Scotiabank Centre on October 4, 2014 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

ANDREWS PREDICTION: MITCH GAGNON VIA SUBMISSION

WISEMAN PREDICTION: MITCH GAGNON VIA SUBMISSION

WINNER: MITCH GAGNON VIA SUBMISSION

ANDREWS: Gagnon quickly dispatched of Salazar with the rear naked choke.  A tidy piece of work.

WISEMAN:

NORDINE TALEB VS LI “THE LEECH” JINGLIANG 

UFC Fight Night

Nordine Taleb of Canada punches Li Jingliang of China in their welterweight bout at the Scotiabank Centre on October 4, 2014 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

WISEMAN PREDICTION: NORDINE TALEB VIA TKO

WINNER: NORDINE TALEB VIA SPLIT-DECISION

ANDREWS: Taleb did just enough with an essential good third round. JingLiang did well, putting the pressure on Taleb with his takedowns.  I’m sure Taleb and his team will be watching the film on this fight.

WISEMAN:

Wiseman Prediction: Nordine Taleb via TKO.

ELIAS “THE SPARTAN” THEODOROU VS BRUNO “CARLOCA” SANTOS

UFC Fight Night

Elias Theodorou of Canada takes down Bruno Santos of Brazil in their middleweight bout at the Scotiabank Centre on October 4, 2014 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

WISEMAN PREDICTION: ELIAS THEODOROU VIA TKO

WINNER: ELIA THEODOROU VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION

ANDREWS: Just a gritty win by Elias. He overcame the early takedowns and grappling by Santos to land some control and takedowns of his own in the second and third rounds.

WISEMAN:

CHAD “THE  DISCIPLE” LAPRISE VS YOSDENIS “THE PINK PANTHER” CEDENO 

UFC Fight Night

Chad Laprise of Canada and Yosdenis Cedeno of Cuba exchange punches in their lightweight bout at the Scotiabank Centre on October 4, 2014 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

WISEMAN PREDICTION: CHAD LAPRISE VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION

WINNER: CHAD LAPRISE VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION

ANDREWS: This was a boring fight for the most part. Laprise used his grappling to get the better of Cedeno.

WISEMAN:

#4 RAPHAEL ASSUNCAO VS #10 BRYAN “KID LIGHTNING” CARAWAY

UFC Fight Night

Raphael Assuncao of Brazil kicks Bryan Caraway in their bantamweight bout at the Scotiabank Centre on October 4, 2014 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

WISEMAN PREDICTION: RAPHAEL ASSUNCAO VIA SUBMISSION

WINNER: RAPHAEL ASSUNCAO VIA UNANIMOUS DECISION

ANDREWS: Just a dominant performance by Assuncao, using his kicks, striking and knees to punish Caraway, who kept coming forward trying to pressure him. A valiant effort by Caraway, but the elusiveness, footwork and striking of Assuncao was too much.

WISEMAN:

MAIN EVENT

#2 RORY “ARES” MACDONALD VS #9 TAREC “THE SPONGE” SAFFIEDINE 

UFC Fight Night

Rory MacDonald of Canada punches Tarec Saffiedine of Belgium in their welterweight bout at the Scotiabank Centre on October 4, 2014 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

WISEMAN PREDICTION: RORY MACDONALD VIA TKO

WINNER: RORY MACDONALD VIA TKO

ANDREWS: Excellent performance by MacDonald, who kept the pressure on Saffiedine, forcing him to work on the outside. Tarec could not land enough legkicks to back Rory off, and as the time ticked on was forced to take more chances inside.

WISEMAN:

[email protected]

[email protected]

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Kenai is a former Postmedia Network online news and sports editor. He is the Editor-in-Chief for MMA Crossfire.

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