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UFC on ESPN 12: Dustin Poirier fends off scrappy Dan Hooker

'The Diamond' reigns supreme

Dustin Poirier (26-6-0) outworked New Zealander Dan Hooker (20-9-0) late in the main event of UFC on ESPN 12 in a battle of top-5 lightweights.

Both lightweights put on a striking clinic with Hooker attacking the body early with an assortment of kicks and strikes. Poirier returned the favour, peppering Hooker with strikes, then eating a big knee that staggered him but somehow pulled through.

Poirier then went to the ground in the later rounds, which took some starch out of Hooker’s gas tank and then finished strong in the final round. It was clear that his previous experience battling champion Khabib Nurmagomedov paid dividends in this contest.

The judges scored it 48-47, 48-47, and 48-46.

The win secures Poirier current No. 3 ranking and returns him to the win column. Hooker had a three fight win streak snapped with the loss.

Poirier and Hooker secured Fight of the Night, while Julian Erosa and Kay Hansen earned performances of the night. Each fighter earned a $50,000 USD bonus.

Kenai Andrews checks in with his thoughts on the main card.

In case you missed the prelims:

YOUSSEFF ZALAL DEF. JORDAN GRIFFIN VIA UD (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

KAY HANSEN DEF. JINH YU FREY VIA SUBMISSION (ARMBAR) R3 2:26

TANNER BOSER DEF. PHILIPPE LINS VIA KO (PUNCH) R1 2:41

KHAMA WORTHY DEF. LUIS PENA VIA SUBMISSION (GUILLOTINE CHOKE) R3 2:53

MAIN CARD 

SEAN WOODSON VS. JULIAN EROSA

WINNER: JULIAN EROSA VIA SUBMISSION (D’ARCE CHOKE) R3 2:44

ANDREWS PREDICTION: SEAN WOODSON VIA TKO

Andrews: Great win for Erosa, coming in on short notice and choking out the prospect.

TAKASHI SATO VS. JASON WITT

WINNER: TAKASHI SATO VIA TKO (PUNCHES) R1 0:48

ANDREWS PREDICTION: TAKASHI SOTO VIA TKO

Andrews: This one was predictable. Witt was coming in on extremely short notice.

GIAN VILLANTE VS. MAURICE GREENE

WINNER: MAURICE GREENE VIA SUBMISSION (ARM-TRIANGLE CHOKE) R3 3:44

ANDREWS PREDICTION: GIAN VILLANTE VIA TKO

Andrews: I thought Villante would connect before Greene could establish his game, but I was wrong. Good win for Greene.

BRENDAN ALLEN VS. KYLE DAUKAUS 

WINNER: BRENDAN ALLAN VIA UD (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)

ANDREWS PREDICTION: BRENDAN ALLAN VIA UD

Andrews: Allen did have the experience advantage and almost had the knockout finish at the end of the second round.

MIKE PERRY VS. MICKEY GALL

WINNER: MIKE PERRY VIA UD (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

ANDREWS PREDICTION: MICKEY GALL VIA SUBMISSION

Andrews: Now how much of this was due to the cornering of his girlfriend or the fact that he fought smart and well? Obviously, the latter.

DUSTIN POIRIER VS. DAN HOOKER

WINNER: DUSTIN POIRIER VIA UD (48-47, 48-47, 48-46)

ANDREWS PREDICTION: DAN HOOKER VIA TKO

Andrews: Poirier proved he still has some great fights in him yet. Hooker has nothing to be ashamed about. Great fight.

@kenaiandrews UFC on ESPN 12: Dustin Poirier fends off scrappy Dan Hooker

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ExtrafeaturenewsUFC

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

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