Dana White’s Contender Series 2021 Week 4 Play-by-Play & Results

By: Tristen Critchfield
Sep 21, 2021
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Jacob Rosales (155) vs. Victor Martinez (156)

Round 1

The lightweights touch glvoes and we’re underway, with Martinez looking to apply pressure. Martinez lands a left hook, prompting Rosales to shoot for a lw single leg, but Martinez defends nicely. Rosales looks to attack the lead leg of his opponent, but Martinez appears to be quicker to the punch in the early going. Rosales grabs a leg and this time gets Martinez to the canvas. Rosales works his way to the back as Martinez attempts to stand up. Rosales maintains a waist lock, and Martinez is warned by Mike Beltran for grabbing the fence as Rosales attempts to drag him back down. They separate and return to the center of the cage. Rosales lands a nic left hook to the body. Martinez counters a low kick with a glancing right hand. Rosales moves forward and connects with a right hand. Martinez answers with a jab to the chest. A leaping knee just misses for Rosales. Another jab to the chest lands for Martinez, and he follows up with a two-punch combination to the head. A left hook connects for Martinez. Rosales sticks a couple jabs and then dropos Martinez with about 10 seconds remaining. Rosales tees off with punches as Martinez works his way back up. Martinez survives the round, but that final exchange won the round for Rosales.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Rosales
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Rosales
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Rosales

Round 2

Rosales with another big 1-2 to start the frame. Rosales lands a low kick to the lead leg, then has a high kick blocked. Rosales sticks another jab, then walks forward and tags Martinez with a left hook. Rosales changes levels and takes his foe down near the fence. Martinez quickly scrambles up. Martinez still throwing plenty of strikes himself, working behind his jab and front kicks to the knee. Rosales has a head kick blocked. Rosales lands a left hook to the body, then Rosales with a nice combination to the head. Martinez jabs to the body. A right uppercut-straight left cobo lands for Martinez. Martinez follows a jab with a oblique kick to the knee. Rosales misses with a standing elbow but lands a front kick down the middle. Rosales changes levels against the fence, but Martinez denies the shot and lands a combination as they separate. Rosales finds the range on a jab, but Martinez answers with multiple punches. Martinez with another oblique kick to the knee before the horn.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Martinez
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Martinez
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Martinez

Round 3

Both fighters land jabs early,, and then Martinez makes his foe stumble with a leg kick. Martinez with a straight right to the body, then jabs to the face. Another solid jab lands for Martinez. Rosales shoots, but Martinez shucks him off and digs to the body. Rosales may have an inury to his right hand or arm, which is limiting his use of that limb. Martinez with another couple jabs. Rosales lands a nice head kick, but Martinez is unfazed. Rosales is using a lot more kicks now. Martinez sticks a solid 1-2 combination. Another solid jab for Martinez, and he eludes a high kick from his opponent. Martinez rips the body with a left hook. Rosales continues to move forward, but he’s throwing his left hand almost exclusively. Another jab connects for Matinez. Martinez denies a takedown attempt, then scores one of his own in the last 10 seconds. Martinez ends the round in top position.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Martinez (29-28 Martinez)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Martinez (29-28 Martinez)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Martinez (29-28 Martinez)

The Official Result

Victor Martinez def. Jacob Rosales via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28) R3 5:00

Kleydson Rodrigues (126) vs. Santo Curatolo (125.5)

Round 1

Rodrigues takes the center of the Octagon at the outset. The Brazilian opens with a spinning back kick to the midsection. A long right hand connects for Rodrigues. Curatolo tries to close the distance, but Rodrigues shucks him off with ease. Rodriguez fires a front kick to the midsection, then has a high kick blocked. The Brazilian kicks the inside lead leg of his opponent. Rodrigues throws a leaping knee followed by a head kick before the flyweights clinch. Curatolo lands a combinaiton on the break. The Brazilian lands an inside leg kick. Another leg kick connects for Rodrigues. A spinning wheel kick glances across Curatolo’s face. Another spinning wheel kick is blocked. Rodrigues moves in close and Curatolo answers with a punching combination. A straight left finds a home for Rodrigues, who then digs to the body with a right hook.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues

Round 2

The taller Rodrigues again takes the center of the cage and attacks with a leg kick and a body kick. The Brazilian is attacking with a toolbox of kicks. Curatolo catches a capoeira-type kick, but he lets the leg go and they’re still standing. Rodriuges moves in and Curatolo counters with a two-punch combination. Another body kick lands for Rodrigues, and Curatolo looks gunshy. Rodrigues follows an inside leg kick with a flying knee, which allows Curatolo to secure a body lock and a takedown. Rodrigues is up in short order. Curatolo moves in with a multi-punch combination. Rodrigues goes back to the body kick, but than an attempted leg kick lands to the groin of Curatolo, and the action is paused. Curatolo takes about a minute and the fight resumes. Rodrigues backs Curatolo into the fence with a push kick, but the American answers with a combination. They clinch in the center of the cage and Rodrigues lands a pair of knees, then goes with a knee upstairs on the break. The Brazilian flurries with punches and he is stalking Curatolo against the fence. A failed flying knee allows Curatolo to tie his foe up, and the round will end with him pushing Rodrigues into the cage.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues

Round 3

Rodrigues sticks a jab, but Curatolo moves in and lands a left hand. Rodrigues shrugs off a clinch attempt, and lands a two-punch combination. Curatolo answers and cracks his foe with a shot of his own. Rodrigues attacks the legs of his opponent, who is on the outside of the cage. Rodrigues chops away with an inside low kick. The rangier Brazilian is using a variety of kicks to keep Curatolo off balance. Another inside leg kick makes Curatolo stumble momentarily. Rodrigues lands a low kick and Curatolo catches it, but lets the leg go. Rodrigues atempts the flying knee again and they tie up, with the Brazilian shoving his foe into the fence. From there, he lands a knee to the head and a vicious elbow. He’s landing heavy offense in close quarters before jumping guard for a guillotine. Curatolo is able to pop his head free, and know he’s on top with about 1:20 remaining. Rodrigues uses the cage to return to his feet. He breaks Curatolo’s grip and lands a heavy knee. A long right hand connects for the former Jungle Fight champ. Rodrigues ends the fight with a spinning back kick to the gut and then just misses on a leaping knee before the horn.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues (30-27 Rodrigues)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues (30-27 Rodrigues)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues (30-27 Rodrigues)

The Official Result

Kleydson Rodrigues def. Santo Curatolo via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) R3 5:00

Steven Nguyen (145.5) vs. Theo Rlayang (146)

Round 1

Nguyen flicks out a high kick right away, but Rlayang blocks it. Rlayang responds with a heavy leg kick. Another leg kick lands for Rlayang. Nguyen stalks his man against the fence and lands a body kick. Nguyen lands a nice jab, and then the featherweights trade low kicks. Rlayang goes for a single leg but Nguyen denies it with ease. Nguyen lands a leg kick. Rlayang lands a body kick. Nguyen counters a low kick with a straight right hand. Nguyen with a left hook, and Rlayang answers with an inside low kick. Nguyen stuffs a takedown and Rlayang whiffs on a right hand. The featherweights trade leg kicks again. Nguyen with a straight right hand. An outside leg kick lands for Rlayang. Another straight right finds the range for Nguyen. Nguyen continues to control the range until the horn.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Nguyen
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Nguyen
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Nguyen

Round 2

Rlayang grabs a leg, kicks out Nguyen’s standing leg and briefly has a takedown. Nguyen scrambles back up immediately. Nguyen backs up Rlayang and lands a straight right. Another straight right, and now Nguyen is getting comfortable, as he lands several punches to the head. Rlayang has a high kick blocked. A left hook-right hand lands for Nguyen. Another stiff straight right finds the mark for the Fortis MMA product. Nguyen walks Rlayang into the fence and tags him with a right hand. Rlayang changes levels, turns Nguyen off the fence and gets a takedown. Nguyen quickly reverses into top posiition and has full mount against the fence. He lands a few punches to the head and then lets Rlayang up. Another right lands for Nguyen. Rlayang lands a chopping low kick. A body kick connects for Rlayang. Nguyen follows a 1-2 combination with a low kick. Nguyen with another solid series of punches. Rlayang answers with a kick to the body, but this round belonged to Nguyen.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Nguyen
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Nguyen
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Nguyen

Round 3

Rlayang opens up with a kick to the body. A front kick finds a home for Rlayang, but Nguyen answers with a straight right. Rlayang misses on an overhand, and Nguyen counters with a two-piece combination. Rlayang looks to jump on Nguyen’s back, but his opponent shucks him off. Nguyen snaps Rlayang’s head back with a pair of jabs. Then Rlayang throws a kick that lands low, and the action is halted. The fight quickly resumes. A jumping high kick by Rlayang is blocked. Nguyen connects with an inside low kick. Nguyen backs up Rlayang with a straight right hand. Nguyen pokes Rlayang in the eye, and both fighters are warned to keep their hands closed. Rlayang lands an outside leg kick. He then pressures forward with a right uppercut that splits Nguyen’s guard. Rlayang ups his aggression and misses a flying knee. A hard body kick lands for Rlayang, and Nguyen answers with a body-head combination. A jab lands for Nguyen, but Rlayang extends his fingers and pokes his adversary in the eye. Mike Beltran pauses the action again before taking a point from Rlayang. Nguyen connects with a jab, then another. Rlayang attacks the inside leg of his opponent. Nguyen moves forward and lands a two-punch combination.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-8 Nguyen (30-26 Nguyen)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-8 Nguyen (30-26 Nguyen)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-8 Nguyen (30-26 Nguyen)

The Official Result

Steven Nguyen def. Theo Rlayang via Unanimous Decision (29-27, 29-27, 30-26) R3 5:00

Michael Morales (170) vs. Nikolay Veretennikov (171)

Round 1

Veretennikov lands an inside low kick to begin the action. A lead left hook finds the range for Veretennikov. Morales catches his foe coming in and sticks a jab. A body kick lands for Morales and Veretennikov answers with a low kick. Morales launches himself off the fence for a Superman punch. Morales ducks under a punch and secures a body lock. He pushes his opponent into the fence. They separate and return to the center of the cage. A solid 1-2 connects for Veretennikov. Morales presses forward with a low kick. An inadvertent eye poke from Veretennikov prompts a pause in the bout. Veretennikov lands a pair of solid punches to the face and Morales shoots. Veretennikov defends, turns his man around and flurries with some good shots. A Superman punch finds a home for Morales. Veretennikov lands a jab and just mmisses a high kick. Veretennikov has a body kick caught and then partially lands a spinning back fist before the horn.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Veretennikov
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Veretennikov
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Veretennikov

Round 2

Morales jumps off the cage and lands another Superman punch. Veretennikov answers with a left hook. A left jab backs up Morales. Morales explodes for a takedown and winds up in Veretennikov’s full guard. Morales postures up and lands a pair of right hands. Referee Mark Smith urges Morales to work from top position. Morales obliges and picks up the intensity of his ground-and-pound. Veretennikov gives up his back as he scrambles to his feet. Morales maintains a rear waistlock and drags Veretennikov back down. Morales is now in side control as Veretennikov attempts to push off the fence. Veretennikov gets up and creates separation. Morales lets his hands go, attacking with power punches to the head of his opponent. Morales marches forward witih heavy hooks, prompting Veretennikov to shoot. Morales sprawls and moves to the back of his foe. Veretennikov is crouched on the mat, eating punches. Smith is taking a close look. Veretennikov finally stands, and Morales ends the round with the rear waistlock.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Morales
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Morales
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Morales

Round 3

Morales flicks out his jab, then sticks another jab. Morales lands an inside leg kci. Morales digs to the body, but Veretennikov fires back as best as he can. They stand still in front of each other for a moment and Morales yells at his adversary. Morales steps in with an overhand right. Morales with a left to the body and a right to the head, as he seems to be growing in confidence. Morales shoots for a takedown and Veretennikov defends with his back against the cage. Veretennikov reverses position and lands a knee to the chest. Now Veretennikov is on top, and he dives into his foe’s guard. He moves to side control and drops knees to the body. Morales looks to scramble up, and Veretennikov can’t maintain the front head lock. Veretennikov is on his knees, clinging to a single leg, but Morales defends well and the fighters are in something of a stalemate. Veretennikov won’t give up on the single leg, however. Morales scrambles up, then lands a double leg with 30 seconds to go in the fight. Morales postures up to land some ground-and-pound. Veretennikov scrambles up, but Morales executes a big suplex and follows up with some hammerfists just before the horn.

Sherdog Scores

Tristen Critchfield scores the round: 10-9 Morales (29-28 Morales)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Morales (29-28 Morales)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Morales (29-28 Morales)

The Official Result

Michael Morales def. Nikolay Veretennikov via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27) R3 5:00

Hashem Arkhagha (189: Missed Weight) vs. A.J. Dobson (184.5)

Round 1

The middleweights are trading heavy hands at the outset. They tie up after a big exchagne and Dobson lands some knees in the clinch. Arkhagha with a big right hand. Dobson drops his opponent with a flurry of power punches and dives into top position. Dobson is inside Arkhagha’s full guard, Arkhagha briefly frames an armbar, but Dobson escapes and drops hammerfists. Dobson is now in side control. Dobson isn’t really attempting any offense from the position, as Arkhagha is doing his best to hold him close. Arkhagha is able to recover full guard. Dobson postures up and tees off with some big punches. Dobson stands and Arkhagha is on the retreat as he returns to his feet. Dobson lands more punches and Arkhagha appears to be hurt. Arkhagha flails away with punches and Dobson takes his man down. Arkhagha is turtled up against the fence, and Dobson fires away with a series of right hands to the side of the head. Instead of continuing that assault, Dobson looks for a rear-naked choke. That gives Arkhagha a chance to control the wrists of his foe. Dobson goes back to landing punches to the head before sliding his arm under his opponent’s chin. The choke is tight and Arkhagha is forced to tap out in a matter of seconds.

The Official Result

A.J. Dobson def. Hashem Arkhagha via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) R1 4:21
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