Joselyne Edwards v. Ramona Pascual
In the first part of the opening round Edwards starts getting the better of the striking exchanges. She utilizes kicks from distance and straight punches. However, as the round progresses Pascual starts finding her rhythm. In the final minute she lands a brutal body kick that clearly hurts Edwards and Pascual then pours it on and lands a heavy flurry. With the damage and nonstop flurry of flush strikes it appears that Pascual has done enough to steal the round. In the second round Edwards gets back to doing well. She is clearly winning the first half of the round and once again Pascual starts picking up steam in the later portion of the round. In the final couple minutes Pascual is also able to land her first takedown of the fight. This definitely made the round much closer but this round could’ve gone to either fighter in the eyes of the judges. In the final round Edwards starts really finding her groove. Up to this point, this is the best she has looked in the entire fight. She starts piecing Pascual up from distance and out landing her by a wide margin. This time Pascual is not able to rally in the later part of the round and the entire round is pretty clear cut in favor of Edwards. As the judges decision comes in, they felt that it was Edwards who had done just enough to get the nod. Edwards by unanimous decision.
Silvana Gomez Juarez v. Na Liang
In the first round of this fight Liang was blitzing nonstop with everything she has. She was lunging with heavy looping strikes and then ducking under after trying to get the takedown. She also lunged with a heavy head kick that grazed the face of Juarez and was thrown with so much intensity that Liang falls to the ground afterwards. Liang was definitely winning the round and finding success with the lunging intensity but eventually Juarez had enough. Juarez waits for the next lunge and pulls back with a two punch counter. The second punch of the counter lands flush right hand directly on the chin and drops Liang instantly. As Liang jumps back to her feet dazed, Juarez throws another two punch combo and once again lands flush on the chin, this time with a left hook. As Liang falls down violently again she’s nearly unconscious and the fight is clearly over. The referee rushes in to stop the fight. A very impressive performance for Juarez and an absolutely devastating finish. Juarez by first TKO.
Kyung Ho Kang v. Batgerel Danaa
The opening round of this bout was very close. From the very beginning Kang had a very clear intention of attacking the calf kicks. Within the first two minutes he had already landed enough to have a serious effect on his opponent. By the end of the round the bruising and swelling was very evident on the leg of Danaa. A very close first round but a slight edge may have gone to Kang. In the second round Danaa starts doing a little better. The round is once again very close and now Danaa is also throwing some calf kicks of his own. Kang of course continues on his calf kicks as well and by the end of the second round left leg of Danaa is looking terrible. In the final round Kang starts landing some good punches in addition to his laser jab and devastating leg kicks. As the round comes to a close this was by far the most clear cut round of the fight and went heavily in the favor of Kang. The leg of Danaa is absolutely chewed up and it feels like the victory should be given to Kang. The judges agree. Kang by unanimous decision.
Brendan Allen v. Jacob Malkoun
The first round of this bout is a mostly striking affair which often happens when two grapplers meet in the cage. Both fighters are throwing heavy strikes and having momentary success but eventually Malkoun ducks under and begins the grappling. He clinches briefly and eventually is able to get under and complete the takedown. From there he gets about a minute of control time until Allen is able to work his way back to the feet. As the fighters are back up and in the clinch, Allen does an absolutely beautiful hip toss that sends Malkoun flying in the air, landing violently on his back. Malkoun is able to escape fairly quickly and once again gets another takedown of his own. A close first round but it may have gone to Malkoun. In the second round Malkoun gets right back to the grappling. He is able to get some more ground control time while landing strikes from the top. Allen is always able to work his way out but Malkoun stays relentless and just seems to be edging the fight out by being smarter and outworking Allen. In the final round Malkoun gets another early takedown and although Allen is constantly reversing, Malkoun stays glued to him and continues to make him work. Allen eventually makes his way to the top and is able to land some good elbows. There are a lot of reversals and beautiful grappling exchanges throughout this round but if feels like Allen has done enough to win the final round. A close competitive fight but in the end the judges felt that it was Allen who had done just enough to get the nod. Allen by unanimous decision.
Hayisaer Maheshate v. Steve Garcia
This fight was a very short lived affair. Garcia was believed by most to likely have a smooth sailing night due to him being the much more experienced fighter who has faced the far better competition. However, if you come in reckless and start throwing heavy looping shots with zero defense in mind, things can go bad for you very quickly. That was exactly what happened in this fight. Garcia comes out and throws wild shots, he lands one or two but then gets blasted flush. He wobbles but is able to clinch against the cage and pressure Maheshate against the cage while he recovers. The fighters eventually work their way back to the middle and Garcia once again comes in reckless. This time he gets caught flush and is knocked out instantly, falling forward and landing directly on his face. A very impressive win for the debut of Maheshate and a rather regrettable performance by Garcia. Maheshate by first round KO.
Seung Woo Choi v. Joshua Culibao
The opening round of this bout was the most exciting round of the night up to that point. Choi comes out looking deadly with his sniper precision throwing beautiful punches and blistering kicks. A good amount of the kicks he threw were laser head kicks that were mostly blocked but are still known to rattle the brain when blocked. Culibao stays patient despite being picked apart from distance and eventually lands a flush shot of his own. He wobbles Choi then blitzes with the follow up attacks. He lands another flush shot that wobbles Choi even further. Rather than clinching or using footwork to buy time, Choi just bites down on his mouthpiece and starts throwing ill advised winging counter strikes while dazed. He gets hit flush yet again and this one drops him instantly. Culibao rushes after him to throw more follow up shots and although it feels like the fight is seconds away from being stopped, Choi somehow does not go out and continues to survive until the end. An absolutely blistering first round which was very clearly won by Culibao. In the second round Choi comes out aggressive and starts finding success again but eventually Culibao is able to land flush once again. Choi is rocked yet another time but by this point the fans are now marveling at the chin and heart of this fighter. The slugfest continues and we get yet another action packed round. By the end of the second round the crowd is on their feet. In the final round the fighters continue to please this rowdy crowd but about halfway through the round they begin to utilize clinching to slow the action a bit. With about 90 seconds left Choi lands a very important takedown. He takes the back of Culibao and immediately starts threatening rear naked chokes. The commentators are extremely excited as are the fans. A nice rally at the end of the fight but it may not have been enough for Choi to steal the win. Two of the three judges felt that it was not. Culibao by split decision.
Jack Della Maddalena v. Ramazan Emeev
This fight was another short lived affair. Emeev comes into this fight the much more experienced UFC veteran who has never been finished in a fight. Maddalena comes in after a masterful debut performance in his UFC debut but is facing a huge step up in competition for this one. The fight begins and the Maddalena immediately starts working that crispy jab of his. Emeev chooses to engage in the striking despite it being the most dangerous area for him to be in. Eventually Emeev attempts his first takedown. He locks onto the leg of Maddalena and is able to work him to the ground. Maddalena scrambles and in transition Emeev is able to latch onto the neck. The choke appears to be tight but Maddalena fights it off with urgency and is eventually able to get free. When the fighters resume on the feet Maddalena gets right back to work. He starts backing up Emeev with combinations and once Emeev is up against the cage Maddalena starts teeing off. He throws a combination and during the flurry he lands a left hook to the body that just seems to melt Emeev. He slowly falls to his knees and curls up in defense mode. Maddalena stands over him throwing more follow up shots but Emeev never tries to escape or stand back up. He has officially given up. The body shot must have been something fierce as Emeev has never been finished in his entire career. Another very impressive performance by Maddalena who is now officially on his way. Maddalena by first round TKO.
Jake Matthews v. Andre Fialho
This fight was an action packed striking affair. Fialho comes into this fight after two very dominant finishes in his previous fights. Matthews was assumed to be the better grappler coming into this fight but he never once tried to use it. He instead chose to stay on the feet and trade strikes with the highly dangerous Fialho. Surprisingly for him, it not only paid off but it paid off in a huge way. Matthews has never looked better in his entire career and it is very clear that he has now leveled up in a very large way. His striking looked elite and he was able to not only out strike the striker, but he did it in a dominant fashion. He was able to avoid being hit while landing flush on a large amount of occasions. He landed at least 7 or 8 shots that would have knocked out most other fighters. Fialho was able to somehow take the shots and demonstrate what an absolutely incredible chin he has. Unfortunately for him, the damage was eventually just too much. Matthews finally lands the shot that folds Fialho against the cage allowing Matthews to and the final two dagger shots to end the fight. The referee calls off the bout. A very surprising and impressive leveled up performance by Matthews. Matthews by second round TKO.
Weili Zhang v. Joanna Jedrzejczyk
This fight was once again an action packed and highly memorable bout. It’s like these two fighters were born to fight each other. As soon as the fight begins they immediately pick right back where they left off. They stand in the pocket and trade absolutely blistering combinations. Joanna is looking good after such a long layoff but Zhang has clearly taken this training camp seriously and is ready. After a few minutes of striking exchanges Zhang now shifts into the other area she has been working on, her grappling. She gets the takedown and holds onto the leg leaving Joanna in an awkward position. This allows Zhang to land several unanswered shots that are flush and damaging. Joanna scrambles out and but with every scrambling transition Zhang is one step ahead and appears to be the physically stronger fighter. In the final couple minutes of the round we are seeing the most dominant minutes we have ever seen between these two fighters. Joanna survives the round but she has been dominated and suffered a lot of unanswered strikes. As she heads back to her corner she looks frustrated. In the second round the fighters meet back in the middle and immediately start trading again. The crowd erupts at all the action. Eventually Zhang goes back to the grappling well and although Joanna is scrappy and always fighting against it, Zhang is enjoying all the momentum in this fight. As the fight gets back to the feet Joanna is walking forward and backing Zhang against the cage. Zhang throws a combination while Joanna is chasing and she finishes the combination with a spinning back fist. Joanna does not see the spinning back fist coming and the strike lands flush. Joanna falls forward almost directly on her face and never moves again. A devastating strike with a heart stopping finish. Zhang has sprints across the cage screaming as the crowd erupts. After the fight Joanna is emotional and chooses to retire. If this proves to be true, it’s a tough way to go out for a legendary former champion. Nonetheless, this was a very impressive performance for Zhang who clearly has leveled up. Zhang by second round KO.
Valentina Shevchenko v. Taila Santos
The opening round of this fight was a highly shocking one. Shevchenko comes into this fight as the legendary fighter who has almost always seemed unbeatable, especially at flyweight. The fighters start off exchanging strikes but then the grappling begins. Santos gets a takedown and during the scrambles she not only appears stronger but she also appears to be a step ahead. She controls Shevchenko on the ground for a good portion of the round and lands a few strikes while threatening chokes. Shevchenko remains calm and survives but it appears to be a clear but round for Santos. In the second round Santos goes right back to the grappling and once again gets the takedown. From there Santos gets another round of good control time. Shevchenko lands some good strikes by punching behind her head but it feels like another round in the favor of Santos. In the third round Santos once again is keeping the momentum in her favor by using her grappling prowess. During the grappling exchanges there is a clash of heads and as the round comes to a close Santos has a huge swelling on her left eye. Regardless, it still feels like she may have won yet another round. In the fourth round the swollen eye becomes a factor. Shevchenko starts throwing more shots to the left side as Santos is having trouble seeing the shots come. The round ends up being a closer round but it was still very competitive and could’ve gone to either fighter. In the final round it feels like the champ may need a finish to get the win. Shevchenko pours on the pressure and starts picking up momentum of her own. When the grappling starts up again, Shevchenko is now able to have her moments and is able to hold Santos down on the ground for periods of time now. This appears to be partly due to the fatigue of Santos. The fifth round ends up being the only clear cut winning round for Shevchenko. As the score cards are being read it feels as if we’re about to have a new champion. However, surprisingly, two of the three judges end up giving the nod to the champion. The commentators are surprised and the crowd is upset. A very scary fight for the ever dominant champion. This has been her hardest test at flyweight by a country mile. She survives with the belt despite that. Shevchenko by split decision.
Glover Teixeira v. Jiri Prochazka
The opening round of this title fight is all action. The fighters strike for about a minute and then Teixeira gets his first takedown. From there he dominates from the top landing ground strikes and making Prochazka work. Prochazka battles and scrambles nonstop but Teixeira clearly wins the first round. In the second round the fighters strike again with extreme violence and then Teixeira eventually gets another huge takedown. From there he once again displays his grappling advantage. He lands more ground strikes and threatens submissions. Prochazka never gives up and is always scrambling but Teixeira is for the most part one step ahead. Another exciting round with some fun momentum swings but it feels as if Teixeira may have taken another round. In the third round each fighter lands some hard strikes and have their moments damaging each other. Teixeira gets yet another takedown and Prochazka scrambles out this time. He gets on top and starts landing devastating shots that now open a cut on the face of Teixeira. Going into the fourth round both fighters are bleeding profusely. The fourth round is more of the same. Teixeira dodging the horrifying unorthodox strikes of Prochazka to survive and then get a crucial takedown. Every time he gets the huge takedown he has a moment of landing ground strikes but eventually Prochazka always finds a way to escape. This fight had more momentum swings than any fight in recent memory. Going into the fifth round the crowd is electric. Both fighters are badly damaged and exhausted. As the fighters begin exchanging again, Teixeira lands a punch that badly wobbles Prochazka. Teixeira then lands another flush strike and Prochazka appears out on his feet. Teixeira then makes the mistake of going for a takedown when he appeared to be only a strike or two away from the finish. This allows Prochazka time to recover. The fighters begin exchanging again and Teixeira once again lands flush and hurts Prochazka. Another scramble ensues but this time Prochazka locks in a choke that looks really tight. Both fighters have fought out of so much that it doesn’t feel like this time will be any different. However, due to exhaustion and the tightness of this choke, Teixeira finally surrenders and taps out. The saddest part about this is that he was up on the score cards and was 30 seconds away from the victory to retain his belt. An absolutely mind blowing fight that will eventually end up in the hall of fame. Prochazka by fifth round submission.