Austin Hubbard def Max Rohskopf via TKO (Retired) (5:00, Round 2)
The fight starts with both men striking hard, showing they’re not afraid to exchange. Hubbard looks the bigger man but Rohskopf is moving well and secures a takedown. ‘Thud’ does well to get back to the feet with strikes landing on the way up. Another takedown attempt from Max as he secures both legs and attempts for knee-bars and heel hooks. Hubbard defends the submissions well though and finds a way back to his feet, landing a big knee as they scramble to their feet. 10-9 Rohskopf.
The second round starts with Rohskopf immediately attempting an emenari roll, but Hubbard defends well. Austin now landing hard strikes, with Rohskopf visibly tiring on the feet. He looks uncomfortable and no longer confident in holding his opponent down. Hubbard senses this and is starting to piece some combos together. Hard shots to the head cause a cut under the eye. Rohskopf is being pieced up on the feet and Hubbard is enjoying himself. Body shots to the visibly tired debutant land as the round ends. Potentially a 10-8 round for Hubbard.
In the corner between rounds, Rohskopf has told his corner to call the fight. He doesn’t want to be in there anymore. His corner tries to send him out to fight despite his requests, but he tells the fight doctor and referee that he’s done and this one is over.
Lauren Murphy def Roxanne Modafferi via Unanimous Decision (30-27 x2, 29-28)
A very even affair, the first round was a scrappy one. Modafferi stepped forward with constant pressure trying to land volume rather than accuracy, while Murphy remained calm and composed landing some nice kicks. Lots of clinch exchanges against the cage but Murphy did well to hold her own and takes the round. 10-9.
Murphy comes out quickly in the second round and rocks Modafferi with a huge left hand, leaving ‘The Happy Warrior’ doing a chicken dance! She pounces for the attack but Roxanne’s chin is so good and she survives the clash. More heavy shots land from Murphy who secures a takedown and lands some ground and pound. 20-18 Murphy.
Final round is more of the same as Modafferi’s striking has zero effect on ‘Lucky’. Murphy dominates the stand up exchanges and Modafferi can’t take her to the ground. She continues to land clean strikes to her opponent and wraps up a comfortable decision win.
Justin Jaynes def Frank Camacho via TKO (Round 1, 0:41)
Short-notice debutant Jaynes comes flying out of the gate looking to take Camacho’s head off. A startling pace to start and some heavy shots landing by Jaynes. A massive left hook connects and knocks Camacho down, he pounces with more strikes and and Herb Dean stops the fight with Camacho still standing. Unbelievable performance from Justin Jaynes.
Gillian Robertson def Cortney Casey via Submission (Round 3, 4:32)
Round 1 begins with Casey coming out strong looking to land some early strikes. Robertson not looking to engage too much on the feet and gets an early takedown with plenty of time to work for the submission. Lots of top control and some good ground and pound but Casey is attacking from the bottom too. 10-9 Robertson.
Round 2 is more of the same with Robertson landing another takedown early in the round and working well from top position. She’s in complete control of this fight, Casey struggling to really hurt her opponent from the bottom but it’s not stopping her from throwing elbows. 20-18 Roberston.
Another early takedown in Round 3 and Robertson does exceptionally well to control positions on the ground. Casey manages to get Robertson into a half nelson from the bottom and throws elbows to the spine but she recovers well. A transition into a belly-down armbar attempt is well defended by Robertson. A scramble sees them both get back to their feet until Robertson lands another takedown. She’s in complete control on the floor and slips in a rear-naked choke out of nowhere to force the tap-out. Super performance.
Marc-Andre Barriault def Oskar Piechota via TKO (Round 2, 4:50)
A fast start to the first round as Barriault looks to land strikes early and heavy. Piechota is retreating and not really looking for takedowns like I expected him too. Barriault landing big shots, causing Piechota to cover up. The round ends with Barriault landing a barrage of punches to the floored ‘Imadlo’ but the buzzer goes to save him. 10-9 Barriault.
Second round is more of the same again as Piechota looks very wary of the power of ‘Power Bar’. Piechota finally shoots for the takedown and secures it, but Barriault is too powerful and finds a way back to his feet. He immediately goes back on the attack with his striking. He lands a big punch that rocks Piechota badly. He jumps on him at the end of the round and hurts ‘Imadlo’ enough for the referee to end the fight with 10 seconds left in the round. Huge win for Barriault’s career in the UFC.
Tecia Torres def Brianna Van Buren via Unanimous Decision (30-27 x3)
Experience vs enthusiasm in the first round as Torres shows patience with her striking, while Van Buren rushes her against the cage, looking for trips and takedowns. Torres stays on the feet throughout, landing some beautiful body kicks and nice combos with her hands. Non-eventful round but Torres comfortable. 10-9 Torres.
Second round and Torres is upping the pace. Lots of kicks and speedy combos landing on Van Buren who’s struggling to keep up. More takedown and trip attempts from the younger fighter, although still no real success. Another round of crisp striking from Torres and excellent defence. 20-18 Torres.
The third round follows a similar pattern for both women. Van Buren is aware she needs a finish now and is pressuring hard. Torres remaining very calm and composed, using her Octagon experience well. She ends the round with a great blitz of kicks and strikes before stuffing a takedown against the cage to rack up a big win against the odds following four-straight losses.
Bobby Green def Clay Guida via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28 x2)
The prelim headliner, two Octagon veterans face off. Guida, as usual, comes out fast swinging and shoots for a heavy takedown but Green defends well against the cage. Guida grabs a single leg and lifts Green into the air to slam him down but Green gets up quickly. Green is landing with straight shots and kicks, even dropping his hands quite low to sucker Guida in. 10-9 Guida.
Round 2 starts and Green has his hands low again. He’s landing big strikes on Guida once again, straight down the pipe. More body kicks and straights to the chin, but Guida pushes forward for more takedowns as usual. Green defends supremely though and continues to piece up Guida on the feet. 19-19.
Round 3 is basically a repeat of Round 2. Strong stand-up by Green and Guida can’t secure any takedowns to take this fight where he wants it. Plenty of attempts and the pace is still high, but Green is just too good a boxer for Guida. The fight ends with a sprawl from Green to deny a takedown attempt by Guida and some strikes as he lays on top of Guida’s head. 29-28 Green for me.
Jim Miller def Roosevelt Roberts via Submission (Round 1, 2:25)
Veteran Miller comes out ready to bang with Roosevelt and both men throw a leg kick to begin. ‘A-10’ lands his kick which sends Roosevelt to the ground, and he lands a big strike as he takes top position. Roberts defending well but Miller is an expert on the ground and works for a guillotine, a hold that commentator Dominick Cruz says Miller is one of the best in MMA at. Roberts tries to explode out of the position from the bottom but Miller holds on to an arm and throws the legs up for an armbar. Roberts holds on and tries to hammerfirst Miller to force him to let go, but then he stands up to slam him and Miller extends the arm perfectly forcing a verbal tap.
Belal Muhammad def Lyman Good via Unanimous Decision (29-28 x3)
First round starts with Lyman Good taking control of the centre and both fighters landing strikes. Belal using good footwork to avoid any big shots from Good and using his jab well. Lead kick lands well for Muhammad as he maintains a good distance. It’s a fast pace for both fighters to keep up but neither lands anything significant in the opening 5 minutes. 10-9 Muhammad.
Muhammad takes the centre of the Octagon and immediately pushes for a takedown but Good does well to stuff it. A few strikes exchanged but once again nothing solid lands. Muhammad then lands a lovely head-kick but Good eats it. Back to the pattern of the first round now as Muhammad using his footwork and movement to dictate the fight. A wild exchange from both sees ‘Remember the Name’ land some big shots before another kick. Good charges in with a wild right-hand that lands clean and looks like it hurts Muhammad but he moves out and avoids further damage. Accidental clash of heads has caused a cut under the eye of Muhammad as the round ends. 20-18 Muhammad.
Cut under Belal’s right eye is causing him a few problems as Good comes out with a lot more urgency in this round. Good takes the centre of the cage and lands two huge right hands knocking Muhammad down! Belal grabs the legs for a takedown as he tries to recover but Good stays up and pushes forward with more punches. A big uppercut lands again as Muhammad is still trying to shake the cobwebs off. Good lands a big right hand again but Belal moves away, before Good hits him with two huge body shots. Muhammad lands a knee and then shoots for a takedown and secures it. Good explodes back to his feet quickly as Muhammad holds on to his back, but Good spins out heading into the final minute. Muhammad shoots for a takedown and secures the hooks with his legs before taking the back. He’s looking for a rear-naked choke with 15 seconds to go. He doesn’t quite secure it, but that takedown may just have secured him the victory.
Raquel Pennington def Marion Reneau via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28 x2)
Opening round and Reneau starts with some quick jabs that are nowhere near their target. Pennington throws a nice left hook while closing the distance and is showing her superior stand-up game already. Some jabs and more left hooks land before Reneau clinches and gets hold of her opponent. She holds on to Pennington and looks for trips but Raquel stays on her feet throughout before the round comes to a close. 10-9 Pennington.
Second round starts with Pennington once again showing some nice striking. A lovely super-woman punch lands before the two clinch together again. Pennington holds Reneau down and lands a nice knee to the gut. Reneau retaliates with a knee of her own but catches Pennington low in the crotch and the fight is paused for several minutes with Pennington in severe discomfort. The fight restarts and the fighters get back into a clinch position. Pennington with a Thai grip around the neck and lands some nice knees but Reneau eats them. She goes for the takedown and ends up on top of Raquel, but ‘Rocky’ explodes back to her feet and lands more big knees and elbows. Pennington goes for the takedown to end the round and eats some elbows from Reneau but the buzzer goes. 20-18 Pennington.
The ladies start round 3 by touching gloves then immediately exchanging big, wild strikes. Reneau goes for the takedown but Pennington is too strong for her and it doesn’t get completed. They break apart and Raquel lands more knees to the body from the Thai clinch then gives Reneau a big elbow to the face. ‘The Belizean Bruiser’ looks tired now as ‘Rocky’ begins to land big strikes. A nice combo against the cage but then Raquel drops down for a takedown but it’s stuffed. Pennington landing big combos heading into the final minute of the fight. Reneau just trying to survive at this point and shoots for a takedown but Pennington holds onto the neck to stuff it and brings Reneau down herself. Big win for Raquel Pennington. 30-27.
Josh Emmett def Shane Burgos via Unanimous Decision (29-28 x2, 29-27)
A blistering start to this fight as neither man gives up an inch to their opponent. Emmett lands some huge right hooks and right overhands flush, but Burgos eats them. Burgos returns fire with his own hooks as well as his left jab, while he chops away at the left leg with kicks. Emmett has shown that the leg-kicks are hurting by losing balance on a number of occasions but both men continue to swing haymakers. Emmett shoots for the takedown at the end of the round but Burgos stuffs it and the buzzer goes. 10-9 Burgos but that could go either way.
Burgos has started using his 5” reach advantage well in this round. Inside kicks and left jabs working well but Emmett’s high pace and explosiveness have him landing flush shots. Burgos eating everything Emmett throws at him though and constantly walking forward. ‘Hurricane’ feinting well and throwing more punches but Emmett lands with a crazy right hook that Burgos eats. What a crazy fight. 19-19 going into the final round.
Third round starts with more fireworks as both men continue to throw big strikes. Emmett throws a big left hand and Burgos finally goes down. Emmett jumps on but Burgos doesn’t look too hurt an throws up for an armbar. A bit of ground and pound from Emmett sees him land a couple of hammerfists, but Burgos explodes up and back onto his feet. An inside kick lands a bit high and catches Emmett on the cup and the referee pauses the fight for an accidental low blow. The fight restarts and Emmett lands a huge overhand right but Burgos eats it again and just keeps coming forward. Emmett throws an overhand left and lands flush on Burgos’ chin and down he goes again. Ground and pound from Emmett but Burgos puts his feet on the hips and kicks back up on to his feet. Burgos pushing forward now and Emmett lands clean again but Burgos stays up somehow. What a crazy fight, what a round. 29-28 Emmett for me.
Curtis Blaydes def Alexander Volkov via Unanimous Decision (49-46, 48-47, 48-46)
The fight begins with a Curtis Blaydes takedown inside 9 seconds, a sign of what may be to come. Blaydes throwing knees to the legs and laying on Volkov, forcing the Russian to carry his weight early. Big strikes against the cage and as Volkov tries to stand, Blaydes just ragdolls him and throws him back to the ground. The round ends with no changes. 10-9 Blaydes.
Blaydes comes out for the second round and starts throwing bombs. He lands flush a few times before a leg-kick. Then he lands another big shot with the right hand and powers through Volkov to complete a takedown against the cage. Volkov moves up to his feet but ‘Razor’ trips him back and turns away from the cage to open up the chance for some trademark ground and pound. Both men jostling for position on the ground but Blaydes lands huge elbows to the face of Volkov. Blaydes lets him back up and then immediately takes him straight back down, almost as if he was just making a statement. 20-18 Blaydes.
‘Razor’ continues to dominate through the 3rd round with his takedowns, landing his ninth so far in this fight. Blaydes continuing to work with sparce shots to the head as referee Herb Dean tells him to work. Volkov struggling to move Blaydes away from him as Curtis jumps up and moves behind Volkov. ‘Drago’ attempts a guillotine submission but never really gets close to securing it before he gets back to his feet. Another round in the bank for Blaydes. 30-27.
Fourth round begins with Volkov throwing a kick and Blaydes catching it and taking him down inside 20 seconds. Curtis Blaydes is now the proud holder of the record for most takedowns in a single heavyweight fight, overtaking Cain Velasquez’s record of 11 in the fourth round of this fight. Blaydes secures yet another takedown and takes a breather in Volkov’s closed guard. Volkov starts throwing some elbows to the head of Blaydes before Herb Dean stands them up. Volkov starting to hunt Blaydes, who is looking exhausted, and gets a huge takedown of his own. The round ends and it’s still a Blaydes round but Round 5 looks very interesting suddenly. 40-36 Blaydes.
Final round and Blaydes hasn’t shot for a takedown yet. His first attempt is met with a huge kick to the face on entry by Volkov, but Razor eats it and continues to push. A bit more jostling for position and Blaydes eventually secures a big takedown. He gets behind Volkov to separate him from the cage, but the Russian holds onto an arm and gets back to his feet. Half way through the round and Blaydes goes for another takedown but Volkov stuffs him this time against the cage. Both fighters are visibly exhausted at this point and Volkov is landing some shots unanswered, but Blaydes explodes for another takedown and puts Volkov flat on his back. Final minute and Razor is controlling the action for a comfortable decision victory. 50-45 Blaydes.