On Saturday night, Australian light heavyweight Jimmy Crute returned to his home country for a showdown against heavy hitter Alonzo Menifield to open the UFC 284 main card. Crute entered the Octagon after dropping his last two bouts against perennial contender Anthony ‘Lionheart’ Smith and current UFC light heavyweight champion, Jamahal Hill. On the flip side, Alonzo Menifield went into the contest having scored back-to-back first-round knockouts in his last two appearances.
Jimmy Crute immediately came out swinging. Menifield swings and Crute changes levels, bringing his opponent to the ground. Menifield gets to the fence and attempts to work his way up. Crute uses his weight to keep Menifield down, but eventually, Menifield is able to get upright. Crute quickly picks up and slams Menifield to the canvas. Menifield is able to scramble back to his feet, but the relentless wrestling of Crute puts him on the mat once again. Menifield wall walks back to his feet but is quickly taken back down. Crute nearly locks in a guillotine, but Menifield is able to pop his head out and gets back to his feed. Menifield unloads a series of strikes that rock Crute. In response, Crute throws a kick that is caught by Menifield and uses it to send Crute crashing to the mat. Menifield jumps on Crute’s back and delivered ground and pound. Crute scrambles to his feet but eats another big right hand that drops him. Crute instinctually grabs for a leg and holds on until the first round comes to a close.
Things picked up right where they left off in the second with Menifield putting Crute on the ground and taking his back, delivering ground and pound throughout. Crute crawls to the fence and works his way back to his feet, but eats a crushing elbow from Menifield followed by another. Crute is clearly exhausted, but still trying to compete. Menifield lands a straight left followed by a 1-2 combination. Menifield is staying patient, utilizing the jab. Big knee from Crute lands followed by a glancing head kick. Menifield moves in and lands a brutal right that backs Crute up to the fence. At this point, Menifield is outstriking Crute 54 to 14 in significant strikes. Menifield presses Crute against the fence as both fighters appear to be taking a breather. Crute is able to complete a single-leg takedown against the fence and takes Menifield’s back. Crute fishes for a rear-naked choke, but his own exhaustion is keeping him from applying an adequate squeeze as the second round ends.
Both men come out for the final five minutes clearly exhausted, but continue trading strikes. Jimmy Crute is putting on the pressure early, attempting to work Menifield to the fence for a takedown attempt, but Menifield is able to defend and stay on his feet. Crute switches to a single leg and nearly completes it, but Menifield blatantly grabs the fence to stop the takedown. As a result, referee Marc Goddard deducts a point from Menifield and puts the fighters back in a 50/50 position. Crute continues working for a takedown against the fence, but Menifield manages to stay on his feet until Crute switches direction and drives Menifield to the center of the mat. Crute maintained control until the final 10 seconds when Menifield gets back to his fight. By then, it was too late to do anything.
Official Result: Jimmy Crute vs. Alonzo Menifield is ruled a majority draw (29-27, 28-28, 28-28)
Check Out Highlights from Jimmy Crute vs. Alonzo Menifield at UFC 284 Below: