Updated Saturday, October 22, 2022 at 1:30PM MST
We’re back! You would think music would have brought me back before the UFC, but here we are. I do have something in the works regarding new music from indie artist, so don’t worry. I have not forgot about the indie music fans. But now, it is time for the fight fans. One of the most anticipated cards of the year is underway with Brazil’s Charles Oliveira taking on Khabib’s protege, Islam Makhachev, later this morning/early afternoon.
This card is a bit early for us Americans since the fights are taking place in Abu Dhabi this time around. So here I am with my coffee recapping some of the fights and highlighting the social media commentary. If there is anything that you believe that should be added or pointed out that you caught during the fight, feel free to add it below in the comment section.
Prelims (ESPNews/ESPN+ at 10 a.m. ET)
Karol Rosa def. Lina Lansberg via Majority Decision
The above video is probably the only set back Rosa had with Lansberg. Dominating this fight from the beginning, Rosa slipped up for a quick moment and hit Lansberg with an illegal strike which resulted in a point being taken away in the second round. But Lansberg was unable to capitalize on that misstep. Not much more to add to this fight. Pretty much went the way the oddsmakers thought it would go.
Muhammad Mokaev def. Malcolm Gordon via Submission
Gordon had a chance a few times. He just couldn’t pull it off. I doubt that the oddsmakers were moved by the few submission attempts by Gordon. They had Mokaev as a BIG favorite. The biggest favorite on the card (-1150). Ultimately, it went the way they thought it would, but it took a few rounds to round out. I am looking forward to seeing more from Mokaev in the future as he gets older and matures his game plan execution.
Armen Petrosyan Def. AJ Dobson via Unanimous Decision
I was a little surprised once I saw the 30-27 across the board from the judges. But it seems Dobson just didn’t have a good game plan against Petrosyan. He didn’t capitalize on what seemed like an injured knee and came off a bit hesitant in other parts of the fight. Again, another fight ended the way the oddsmakers predicted.
Abubakar Nurmagomedov Def. Gadzhi Omargadzhiev via Unanimous Decision
This fight had a similar incident like the Rosa fight. Nurmagomedov landed a knee to Omargadzhiev when his hand was still touching the ground, which constitutes and illegal stroke to a downed opponent. The difference here is that the knee didn’t seem to do the same damage as it did in the Rosa strike. With this being the same ref from the Rosa strike, some criticized the inconsistency. Hence, the explanation above. Outside of that incident, Nurmagomedov was able to put forth a solid game plan to get the win.
Nikita Krylov Def. Volkan Oezdemir via Unanimous Decision
These big boys started going at it from the jump. Oezdemir look to have the advantage in the striking arena which got Krylov wobbling and looking to close the distance a grapple a bit. Krylov got a good hit after a while which seemed to turn the tide a bit and take his back. The first round was the ultimate roller coaster.
After the excitement and attendance of the first round wore off, Krylov seemed to be the only one with energy left. Oezdemir just looked gassed and couldn’t put it back together. He was taken down multiple times and caught a bunch of punches to the face that I believe wouldn’t have landed earlier in the fight when his tank was full. But, this one ended the way oddsmakers predicted, once again.
Caio Borralho Def. Makhmud Muradov via Unanimous Decision
Another “the oddsmakers were right” type of story. Lots of warnings given. No points deducted. No disqualifications. Borralho withstood it all and pulled through.
Belal Muhammad Def. Sean Brady via TKO
The feature prelim fight! I have to start by saying the oddsmakers finally got it wrong. These guys were pretty close. Both have strong ground games, so they kept it on their feet and traded blows. Honestly, it was close as I’ve seen in a while. Muhammad would give a good shot and Brady would counter. And vice versa. In the second round, Belal rocked Brady to the point that he could not return serve and the fight was stopped just before the second round ended.
Main Card (ESPN+ PPV at 2 p.m. ET)
Manon Fiorot Def. Katlyn Chookagian via Unanimous Decision
No fireworks. Nothing to really get overly excited about. This match was as close as the judges ruled. Fiorot took the fight over Chookagian 29-28 across the board.
Beneil Dariush Def. Mateusz Gamrot via Unanimous Decision
The beginning of this fight started with a fast pace. First round may go either way to most, but I’m thinking the edge may be given to Gamrot. But Dariush put on a good performance in that second round. Definitely his round. But the biggest hit came in the third round. Although Beneil Dariush was always winning, he closed the door with a massive left hand which could be heard over the noise (and fight, I guess) in the crowd.
Sean O’Malley Def. Petr Yan via Split Decision
My heart was racing for this fight. Been waiting for it since it was announced. A takedown by both fighters in the first round. A solid punch from both fighters in the second round. In Petr Yan fashion, he started to get stronger as the fight went on. It seems Yan’s knockdown was a heavier hit. But the third round was just as nuts. Both fighters landing big shots. Yan getting a takedown or two. We need another fight.
I wanted O’Malley to win. But after watching the fight, I thought AT BEST, it was a draw. But I honestly thought this was Yan’s fight. I’m not sure many would disagree with me. They must be setting up a second go around of this fight. I am definitely a little surprised if I’m being honest.
Aljamain Sterling Def. T.J. Dillashaw via TKO
Honestly…lol! Some may call it lucky but what else is Sterling supposed to do?! From the commentary right after the fight, Dillashaw knew he had an injury issue prior to the fight. He said it kept pooping in and out. He said it may have been dislocated around twenty times during the training camp. I’ll bypass the conversation he had with the ref prior to the fight where he disclosed his injury and asked for leniency.
I’m annoyed by this fight because though I rather Sterling win, I didn’t think he would and I don’t like that he won this way. But this is the fight game. I’m curious to see what fights happen next in the bantamweight division after this result.
Islam Makhachev Def. Charles Oliveira via Submission
This fight lived up to the hype! Two of the best in the division. There is no question to that. I anticipated seeing Oliveira’s striking against Islam. Thought Oliveira would’ve had the striking edge but that proved to be wrong in a way. Islam’s striking is what led to the submission eventually.
I was nervous seeing Islam stand so long. That’s just not his strongest skill and it’s what led to the only blemish on his record to date. I was very excited to see each use their ground game against the other. Two different styles going head to head with Islam’s style proving to be superior, for now. The hype is real. Islam did what he and Khabib said he would do. Great fight!