It’s not a normality in the Ultimate Fighting Championship for a 24-fight UFC veteran to take on a young prospect coming off his UFC debut. Given the circumstances of the world as we know it, and the stylistic similarities between all-action featherweight fighters, Darren Elkins and Nate Landwehr. If you are a fan of fighting, you’re probably well aware of Elkins’ and his unrelenting ability to push through whatever comes his way inside the octagon. Landwehr, having just debuted for the promotion in January, may not be as familiar to some fans of the sport. However, if the matchmaking was any indication, these two featherweights, on seemingly polar opposite ends of the divisional spectrum, were paired together for a reason.
Right out of the chute, the former M-1 Global champion, Landwehr came firing out of the blocks. The Tennessee native immediately pressured Elkins, despite a pumping jab from the long-time UFC featherweight staple, Elkins. Elkins would get off clean and concise combinations early, with Landwehr looking to counter– despite pushing the pace in the early going of the fight. Elkins used a sneaky trip to score a takedown, continuing his solid start, but was unable to make much happen with it. Once they got back up to the feet, there was much more of the same approach from Landwehr who continued to pressure the longtime UFC vet.
After Elkins and Landwehr hopped off the stool for round two, the new blood of the featherweight division began to take form. Blood also began to quickly form in a draped fashion over the face of Elkins, by the midway point of the round the California native was really losing serious blood as a result of the constant pressure fighting approach brought forth by Landwehr.
As the fight wore on, and the blood began to pour from the face of Elkins at an even faster rate, Landwehr began to successfully thwart the attempts to grapple from Elkins. Multiple takedowns were stuffed by Landwehr in the penultimate stanza, and he would use that momentum to carry his efforts into a third and final round.
That aforementioned third and final round began to get real messy, real fast. Elkins’s complexion was completely gone at this point, his face resembling the shade of a ripe tomato, fresh off the vine from all the blood. Once Landwehr continued to stuff takedowns, the two 145 pounders really begun digging in and trading shots. Back and forth they went trading blows in bunches. Landwehr really forming a groove by this point of the fight with crisp combinations and ultimately landing at a favorable clip. Elkins would have one final last gasp attempt to swing the fight in his direction after a hard right hand stunned Landwehr in the latter moments of the round. However, Landwehr was largely unmoved by Elkins’s efforts’, as he continuously yelped and hollered in excitement amidst circling in and out of the range of Elkins. Both men put forth an effort worthy of a horror movie close-up. And when all was said and done, each fighter, as many predicted beforehand, had plenty of facial markings to show for it.