Just a few months ago, Uriah Hall was performing magic, surviving the ground assault of former Strikeforce champ Gegard Mousasi and ending things with a Matrix-esque spinning kick and flying knee combo. Then, it seemed like Hall had finally learned how to pull the trigger when he needed to.

Such was not the case tonight. Taking on TUF: Smashies winner Robert Whittaker on the UFC 193 main card, Hall seemed flat – probably due in no small part to Whittaker’s penchant for pressure and throwing hard leather.

For three rounds Hall threw feints and spun his hips to chamber his patented move. But he rarely followed through with the technique, and the few times he did, Whittaker made him pay via ground and pound or the kind of counter-striking that left the American battered by the third round.

Hall had his moments – his front-leg high-kick lashed out faster than a serpent’s tongue, and Whittaker had to shake off the cobwebs despite blocking them.

It wasn’t enough, though, and when time expired, Whittaker got the unanimous decision he so rightfully had earned.