UFC Fight Night 196 ‘Costa vs. Vettori’ Play-by-Play, Results & Round Scoring

By: Jay Pettry
Oct 23, 2021


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Jonathan Martinez (135) vs. Zviad Lazishvili (135)

Round 1

A UFC fight card that may have otherwise been forgotten has suddenly drawn a great deal of attention thanks to the antics of the headliners. Nonsense and shenanigans, drama and genuine anger appears to have reared its ugly head, but it will make the show more interesting. We begin this 14-fight marathon offering that is currently being counterprogrammed by Bellator, KSW and Glory Kickboxing at the same time with a bantamweight bout. “The Dragon” Martinez (13-4, 4-3 UFC) will welcome Georgian newcomer Lazishvili (8-0, 0-0 UFC) to the organization. There is some dispute about Lazishvili’s official record, as it ranges from the 8-0 on Sherdog all the way up to 13-0 on the broadcast, but the excellent Sherdog Fight Finder staff thoroughly investigated these seemingly missing wins and these eight are all that could be authenticated. Referee Tognoni is in charge of the first fight of the night, and the 135ers touch gloves to begin their scheduled violence. Martinez starts things off with several leg kicks, keeping his debuting foe at bay from opening up with his hands. “The Dragon” slips and counters with a left hand, and he stays away from harm. The kicks of Martinez frustrate his opponent enough until Lazishvili crashes forward to pursue a takedown. He changes levels to go after a single, but Martinez stays leaned up against the fence to stay upright. Lazishvili redoubles his effort, and he slides his foot to try to trip Martinez up but cannot get him down. Martinez stays upright and fights off an inside trip with his back mashed against the wall, and the grind gets embraced early on for fight fans. As they break, Lazishvili lands a left hand and Martinez may have slipped, as he lands on his backside. Martinez pops back up, no worse for wear, but he starts absorbing leg kicks from the Georgian. Martinez, with his head apparently clear, gets off several more effective calf kicks that have marked Lazishvili’s leg up already just three minutes in. Martinez uses distance-keeping kicks like push kicks to the midsection and rangy leg kicks to stifle Lazishvili’s offense. Lazishvili paws out with left hands and he walks through a few jabs to score a solid right hand that Martinez eats like Texas barbeque. Lazishvili pursues a side kick and just steps out of the way from an overhand left counter, and he mimics Martinez by getting off a front kick to the body. Martinez reaches out with long punches as he would prefer to remain at kickboxing range, forcing the Georgian to jump forward to attempt to strike. A solid jab turns into a four-punch combination for Martinez, who ends the round with this barrage of strikes.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Martinez
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Martinez
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Martinez

Round 2

Martinez takes the center of the cage to begin the second frame, and he pump-fakes leg kicks to draw reactions out of his adversary. He mixes in kicks when faking them to keep Lazishvili guessing, and Lazishvili can only jab out towards him while not reaching his target. A short combination connects from Martinez, who lands a few and evades the counters that are soon to follow. Martinez checks a kick and starts hand-fighting while standing, grabbing hold of Lazishvili’s left wrist with his right hand to stop any strikes from coming. Lazishvili answers this by slapping it away and kicking Martinez in the chest. “The Dragon” sits down on a leg kick, and it lands loudly and makes Lazishvili turn about. A right hand from Martinez opens a cut on the corner of Lazishvili’s left eye, and he marks it up with a few more punches to that spot. Lazishvili charges ahead to get off a big right hand, and he catches a step-in knee when Martinez pays him back. Martinez retracts the leg and the two start to trade wildly, with Martinez stepping in with an elbow to try to slash his foe’s face open. They go one after the other with single punches, until Martinez break it up with a front kick. The volume and pace are getting Lazishvili to back away and abandon his takedown approach, as Lazishvili resorts to throwing one power punch at a time while Martinez is loose and would rather touch his man than load up. Martinez slips up a head kick that lands flush, and the Georgia is not concerned as he lets his kicks go down to the thigh. One of Lazishvili’s kicks may have collided with the cup, and Martinez may have gotten away with an eye poke, but they both ignore the potential fouls and keep on scrapping. Martinez counters Lazishvili with a left hand and a knee up the middle after eating a solid punch, and he targets a few front kicks right to the sternum. Martinez looses another head kick that is blocked, and he surprises Lazishvili with one more before the bell.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Martinez
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Martinez
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Martinez

Round 3

The left side of Lazishvili’s face is swelling and marked up, but he is not concerned as he wants to trade in the center of the cage. Martinez meets him with a leg kick that hurts him, and he stings Lazishvili with a one-two. Lazishvili blitzes his foe, but Martinez is able to avoid the brunt of the damage. Martinez checks a leg kick and has one checked right back, and they go tit-for-tat with these kicks until Martinez slips a left hand across the forward bow. Martinez jabs out, and threatens with elbows when Lazishvili looks to advance. “The Dragon” lets off a fiery one-two and a leg kick that nearly trips Lazishvili’s leg out from beneath him. Martinez’ jab is working effectively to slow Lazishvili, who appears to be fatiguing as his volume has waned. The Georgian bull-rushes his opponent for a single leg takedown, and Martinez hops out of the way and stops it from succeeding. When upright, Martinez peppers Lazishvili with jabs, and then loads up on a pair of thudding body kicks that make Lazishvili lower his right elbow. Martinez continues to stick his jab in Lazishvili’s face, and he is elusive enough to dodge the looping punches that come his direction. When Lazishvili whiffs on a power strike, Martinez is there to jab and then put a one-two on the Georgian’s jaw. The jab the best weapon right now for the American, he breaks it up with high kicks and follow-up left hands. When Lazishvili appears to be coming in for some sort of clinch, Martinez is ready to counter with a knee, keeping Lazishvili from attempting this. A stiff jab and a one-two have caused more bleeding from the eye of Lazishvili, who barely blocks a head kick in time. Martinez opens up with striking to end the round as the 10-second clapper sounds, getting off a litany of strikes before the final bell.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Martinez (30-27 Martinez)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Martinez (30-27 Martinez)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Martinez (30-27 Martinez)

The Official Result

Jonathan Martinez def. Zviad Lazishvili via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Livinha Souza (115) vs. Randa Markos (115)

Round 1

It’s a strawweight grappler’s delight in this next offering, when “The Brazilian Gangster” Souza (14-3, 3-2 UFC) meets blazing red-haired Canadian Markos (10-11-1, 1 NC; 6-10-1, 1 NC UFC). The Octagon ranger for this second bout of the day is Jason Herzog, and there is no glove touch to start things off. Instead, Souza runs out of her corner, and Markos has to retreat so she does not get shoulder-checked. When Markos throws a leg kick, Souza backs away to a distance where neither can land blows. Souza jumps forward with a jab, and then jumps away. The redhead punches her way into a clinch, and she scores a pair of thumping elbows while Souza has her head pressed to the wall. The strawweights jockey for position against the wire, with short strikes landing for each woman as they try to control the other. They knee one another in the midsection, and Souza fights off a trip and eats a right hand before they break. Souza jumps in with a right hand, and is out of the way when a counter zooms towards her face. Souza springs into action, hitting a head-an-arm throw and immediately landing in side control to hook up a scarf hold. Souza secures Markos’ right arm between her legs as she goes after a scarf hold armlock, and Markos twists and turns to give up her back. Markos stands up, but with the back control not in her favor, she falls to her knees and then down to her face. Souza instantly wraps up a rear-naked choke, and it is tight and Markos thinks about tapping as her face turns a brilliant shade of crimson to match her hair and fight wear. Markos miraculously muscles her way out of this precarious position, and she powers back to her feet where she elbows Souza in the face emphatically. As they separate, Markos puts on her war face and charges ahead with an inaccurate barrage of punches that nevertheless back Souza against the wall. Souza falls to her back to pull guard, and tries to set up a triangle choke off her back. Markos pushes it off, lands a few blows, and the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Souza
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Souza
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Souza

Round 2

The women decide to clap hands to start off the round instead of sprinting towards action, and Souza wades forward only to backpedal when Markos swings at her. Souza walks through a punch and a little more offense to pursue a single, and she opts to simply pick Markos up and slam her down. Markos defends by hooking her arms around the shoulder for some kind of straight armlock that turns into a neck crank from the bottom. Souza slowly, calmly pulls her head out of the lock and sits up in half guard, where she softens the Canadian up with body shots. Markos looks to sweep, but the fence for Souza allows the Brazilian to defend it. The subsequent attempt for Markos allows her to take top position, as Souza appears to pull guard to keep the fight in this position. Markos accepts this by elbowing Souza in the face repeatedly. This position stalls out as Markos elects to land a few strikes, and keeping Souza on her back. Markos uses her body weight to control Souza, keeping a knee on Souza’s arm and disallow her to sit up or work her way to the fence. Souza recovers full guard and quickly rolls for an armbar, but the redhead backs off, stands up and throws hammers from above. Souza changes things up for a leglock, and Markos sees it coming and stops it. The round ends as Markos lands a little ground-and-pound.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Markos
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Markos
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Markos

Round 3

They touch gloves to start off the final frame, and after a measuring period, they trade leg kicks. A right hand from Markos shocks Souza, and she follows it up with a series of blows to back Souza up against the fence. Markos is fired up, landing blows as Souza is suddenly in the danger zone. A right hand in a furious combination knocks Souza’s head around, and the Brazilian is hurt and goes for a desperation throw. She manages to hit the head-and-arm throw like she did the first round, but she cannot set up a scarf hold like before as Markos turns her around and puts Souza on her knees. Souza aims for a leglock as Markos falls to her back, and a wild scramble ensues as both threaten with submissions until they get to their seats. Markos is the one who pushes Souza over after it transpires, and she fights off a possible submission setup to climb into Souza’s guard. Markos advances to half guard to slam her fist into Souza’s face, and precious seconds tick off the clock as the strike totals accumulate for the Canadian. Souza twists and turns to get up, and Markos follows her to set up a crucifix a la Gary Goodridge and Paul Herrera. The elbows begin to mount for Markos, who is intent on pounding Souza out like Goodridge did to Herrera, but the damage is not enough to finish the fight. Souza breaks the grip, but Markos does not let her off the hook, setting it up again to conclude the match with elbows to the side of the head. Time expires before she can get a stoppage.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Markos (29-28 Markos)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Markos (29-28 Markos)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Markos (29-28 Markos)

The Official Result

Randa Markos def. Livinha Souza via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Jeff Molina (125) vs. Daniel Lacerda (125)

Round 1

What is sure to be a fast-paced flyweight affair is just around the corner, when “El Jefe” Molina (9-2, 1-0 UFC) tries to boss around newcomer Lacerda (11-1, 0-0 UFC), who also goes by Da Silva per the UFC. His full name is Daniel da Silva Lacerda, for those keeping score. The third man inside the Octagon is referee Keith Peterson, who may or may have been seen landing a dropkick to all the nonsense before the fight began. There is no touch of gloves, as Lacerda would rather get out kicking. He spams kicks to the body and legs, surprising Molina in the early going. The kicks do not stop from Lacerda, as Molina is struggling to find his range and slow these strikes. He closes the distance to disrupt Lacerda’s kicks, but it is Lacerda who grabs hold of him and looks to elevate Molina and slam him to the mat. The newcomer climbs on to Molina’s back to serve as a Brazilian backpack while standing, and he fishes for a rear-naked choke while scaling Molina’s back like a tree. The choke grip is more of a neck crank as he manages to wrench Molina to the mat, and as soon as it hits the canvas, he pursues an armbar. Molina scrambles wildly to pull his arm free, and he gets on top as Lacerda closes his guard. Some ground-and-pound gets off from Molina, but Lacerda is quick to set up a triangle from his back. He turns it into an omoplata when Molina twists, but Molina is able to free himself from these positions so he can mount more strikes. A series of powerful hammerfists from “El Jefe” rock Lacerda, but the Brazilian brings his legs up so he can go for an armbar. Molina sees this coming and begins to pound on Lacerda’s face, posturing up to inflict punishment. Answering the age-old question of whether he is looking to protect himself or deal some damage, Molina pushes through a submission attempt to slam his fists into Lacerda’s face until the wild round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Lacerda
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Lacerda
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Lacerda

Round 2

Lacerda is amped up to start the second round, and he pierces the midsection with a kick. Molina is right there in the center of the cage to greet him with a few punches, but Lacerda is not out of it yet as he scores a heavy leg kick. Molina winds up with a huge left hand to counter a naked leg kick, and he knocks the Brazilian off of his feet and flat to his back. “El Jefe” begins to assault Lacerda with ground strikes, forcing Lacerda to turn to his stomach as he keeps his guard around the side of his head. Molina continues to brutalize him with a pair of elbows and a barrage of punches, until he flattens Lacerda out and forces Peterson to step in to save Lacerda from any further damage. What a fight, for as long as it lasted!

The Official Result

Jeff Molina def. Daniel Lacerda R2 0:46 via TKO (Elbows and Punches)

Khama Worthy (155) vs. Jai Herbert (155)

Round 1

Hold on to your hats, because a lightweight banger is on deck when “The Deathstar” Worthy (16-8, 2-2 UFC) seeks to become the ultimate power in the universe at the expense of “The Black Country Banger” Herbert (10-3, 0-2 UFC). Fists and feet are sure to fly, and referee Chris Tognoni may need to keep his head on a swivel from the exchanges that follow the glove touch. Worthy is jittery as he starts off the round, with his hands shaking back and forth as he tries to counter Herbert. With both preparing to counter the other, very little happens the first 30 seconds of the match. Worthy steps in with a punch to the body, and he blocks an overhand right that comes at him. The Brit fires off a body kick, and he steps out of the way from a prodding jab. Herbert slings a high kick that is blocked in time, and he chambers a body kick that collides loudly to the midsection. Worthy walks through a punch to try to land a heavy front kick, but he settles for a slapping leg kick instead. Worthy sneaks a right hand around the guard, and thumps a low calf kick to follow. As Herbert tries to pay him back, a low kick of his own gets checked. “The Deathstar” blasts Herbert with a heavy leg kick that makes Herbert do a little spin, but he gathers himself to start slinging leather. Herbert catches Worthy as he starts to unload with a brutal punching combination and a head kick in the middle. A right hand wobbles Worthy, and the continuous strikes of Herbert appear to have found the thermal exhaust port of his opponent, detonating one by one as Worthy’s legs betray him. The onslaught continues, and a left hook puts Worthy face-down down on the mat. As Worthy rolls to his side, barely grasping on to his consciousness, “The Black Country Banger” continues to bang with ferocious punches from on high. As Tognoni notices that Worthy may be out, he intervenes to stop the fight and award Herbert with his first UFC win in three tries.

The Official Result

Jai Herbert def. Khama Worthy R1 2:47 via TKO (Punches)

Jamie Pickett (184.5) vs. Laureano Staropoli (185.5)

Round 1

Two middleweights on skids trying to right the ship will come to blows next, as “The NightWolf” Pickett (11-6, 0-2 UFC) faces Argentina’s own Staropoli (9-4, 2-3 UFC). Staropoli sports two nicknames of “El Matador” and “Pepi” and alternates between the two. Drawing the assignment for this matchup is mighty referee Mike Beltran, and the glove touch is offered but not accepted as Pickett reaches his hand out. Staropoli paws out a jab but is well out of range, as Pickett holds upwards of eight inches in the wingspan. Pickett swipes at him with a head kick, and he scores a solid calf kick that makes the Argentine take a funny step back. “The NightWolf” throws a big right hand, but his momentum is used against him as Staropoli powers through to grab his leg and try to take him down. Pickett pops back to one leg and back to the wall, where Staropoli begins to squeeze with all his might. The fight stalls out as Staropoli holds on for dear life, and he drops down for a single after a long delay but cannot ground him. Pickett hops back and forth with his right leg in the air, and he sets it down only to knee his foe in the chest. Staropoli grasps the fence to keep Pickett in this position, and Pickett is content to stay on the wire and land knees. Beltran intervenes to break them up after the delay, and Pickett runs forward and throws a high kick only for it to get snagged in midair. Once more, Staropoli catches the kick, which lands above his shoulder, and muscle the American back to the wall. Pickett again stays to his feet, and he gains a little space in the clinch to blast Staropoli with an elbow and a few punches. Pickett lands a body shot, and Staropoli frames off with a knee on the chin that knocks Pickett back to reset. Staropoli gets off a body kick, and he ducks the swarm of punches that all whiz by his head. The round ends as they clinch up again.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Pickett
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Pickett
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Pickett

Round 2

The second round begins as Staropoli pushes the pace, swinging a right hand and a high kick that makes him fall over. Pickett does not bother chasing him to the ground, and Staropoli bounces back up so that he can get the fight back up against the wall quickly. Pickett tries to trip his foe up, and he succeeds enough to drop Staropoli to a knee so that he can circle around to take the Argentine’s back. Pickett gets a hook in as Staropoli crawls to the fence, and he uses it to fight his way up. Pickett, with his arms around his foe’s waist, returns to the prolonged clinch exchange that much of the first frame saw. Beltran implores them to do something, so Pickett scores a single elbow. After “The NightWolf” lands a knee, this spurs Staropoli into action, who escapes and tries to get the fight down. Pickett sees this coming and fires off a counter knee that just misses the target. Staropoli sits down on a right hand, one that gets Pickett’s attention, and he uses the momentum to push Pickett back to the chain-link fence. Staropoli grabs hold of a single, but the takedown does not come close to succeeding and Pickett escapes. Staropoli winds up on power punches, and one such strike wobbles Pickett. The American gets enraged, and he drills his opponent with a salvo of punches. The left eye of Staropoli is starting to swell from the strikes he has absorbed, but he does not appear concerned as he punches his way back to the clinch. Pickett shoves him off and tries to get out to distance range, but Staropoli crowds him again and again. Pickett tries to time a knee up the middle, and Staropoli grabs it, lifts his man in the air and slams him down right before the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Pickett
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Pickett
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Pickett

Round 3

The round begins just like the last one ended, as Staropoli grabs hold of an oncoming knee to pick Staropoli up and put him on the mat. Pickett springs back to his feet, and suddenly, he hits his own takedown to ground the Argentine. After a lull in the action, Staropoli stands back to his feet without taking much damage, and the middleweights clinch up once more. Beltran intervenes as Pickett lifts up a knee that may have slammed into the cup, and Staropoli falls to his knees and starts groaning. Replays show it might not have landed illegally, and Staropoli may have gotten away with a break of about 30 seconds. Staropoli comes out throwing kicks when the action resumes, and Pickett pays him back with a four-piece combination of punches. Staropoli does not like this, so he clings to Pickett and goes after a takedown. Pickett fights it off but is pinned to the wall in a grueling exchange, until he decides it is time for them to start swinging leather so he pushes off. Pickett lands a few punches at a safe distance, only to get tagged with a single counter. Pickett throws a right hand, and Staropoli snatches hold of him to re-embrace the grind one more time. Pickett pushes him around and back to the wall on the other side of the cage, and a knee from Pickett does crack into the cup this time. Staropoli takes 30 seconds to recover and Beltran issues Pickett a stern warning. With 20 seconds to go, they throw caution to the wind. Pickett chains a punch combination into a head kick, Staropoli fires back with a body kick, and Pickett recovers to knee his man in the head. They both trade kicks to conclude this exhausting fight.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Pickett (30-27 Pickett)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Pickett (30-27 Pickett)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Pickett (30-27 Pickett)

The Official Result

Jamie Pickett def. Laureano Staropoli via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Tabatha Ricci (115) vs. Maria de Oliveira Neta (115)

Round 1

Very likely winning the battle of the walkouts today, “Baby Shark” Ricci (5-1, 0-1 UFC) brilliantly selected the “Jaws” theme before facing UFC debutant Oliveira (12-4, 0-0 UFC). Whether at this new weight class of strawweight, she serves as the predator not the prey, we will find out along with nonsense-averse referee Keith Peterson. Oliveira reaches out to touch gloves, but Ricci has no interest in doing so and instead dives for an Imanari roll right out of the gate. Oliveira sees it coming and pushes it away, and she backs off. Ricci lets loose a head kick and an overhand right, as Oliveira pumps out a few jabs. Ricci is forced to leap forward with overhand rights to close the distance, while Oliveira peppers her with punches from a longer range. Ricci cracks her opponent with a huge right hand, shaking Oliveira up and forcing her to back off. “Baby Shark” smells blood and pursues a takedown as she bullies Oliveira into the fence, considering a body lock but ultimately not hitting it. Instead, Oliveira breaks free, absorbs a knee in the face and resets to slings a head kick. Ricci gets off a two-punch combination, and she is countered with a stern right hand when she looses a naked leg kick. The two women still struggle to find their range, as Ricci is missing while swinging wildly. Oliveira catches a kick but does not want to bother with the grappling, and instead gets back to throwing kicks to the leg and up high. Oliveira swats away a leg kick so she can land one of her own, and she rings Ricci’s bell with a right hand. “Baby Shark” swims forward to shoot in for a takedown, and her foe stops her in her tracks and gets off a clean knee. Ricci ducks and darts away, landing a few power punches and catching a kick from her foe. Ricci lifts Oliveira up in the air and slams her down, where she stacks Oliveira up as Oliveira closes her guard. Oliveira opens it to try to score an upkick or two, and the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Ricci
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Ricci
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Ricci

Round 2

Ricci is not nearly as daring to start the second round, instead absorbing a push kick rather than diving in for a low-percentage submission setup. As the two begin to trade, Ricci pushes off with her left hand to jam a finger in Oliveira’s eye socket. A few seconds are all Oliveira needs to clear her eye, and they start off by clashing shins together with simultaneous opposing leg kicks. Oliveira still feels comfortable throwing kicks, landing one to the body as Ricci races towards her. Ricci looks for a body lock or trip of some sort, but Oliveira pushes away as Ricci gives chase. The two women trade hands one after the other, and Oliveira breaks up a few punch exchanges with a pair of leg kicks. “Baby Shark” surges forward, hits a takedown, and puts Oliveira flat on her back in the center of the cage. In the blink of an eye, Ricci claims full mount and starts to unleash ground-and-pound. Ricci starts fishing for an armbar setup, but opts to continue to hammer Oliveira in the face with unanswered blows. Oliveira scoots her way back to the fence while still mounted, and Ricci sucks her back down flat on her back to punish her from above. Oliveira suddenly kicks off the fence as she turns herself around, and she gets back to her feet to break up the dangerous place she was in. They get back to striking range, reaching at one another and landing every so often. Ricci ducks and weaves as Oliveira advances, and she narrowly evades a high kick and pulls her foot back to avoid a leg kick. A left to the body and right to the head land cleanly for Ricci, who powers forward to slam Oliveira down to the canvas. As she stays in Oliveira’s closed guard, she smacks Oliveira in the face with punches and an elbow or two. The round ends in this position.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Ricci
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Ricci
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Ricci

Round 3

Ricci marches out of her corner confidently, only to have her lead leg hammered with a kick flying her way. Oliveira is aggressive to begin this final frame, chasing Ricci down and landing punches. Ricci dances around on the outside, and she gets clipped with a right hand. Ricci pursues a clinch into a takedown in the center of the cage, and Oliveira greets her with a knee that sucks the wind out of Ricci’s sails. Ricci takes a step back to gather herself, and Oliveira continues to attack that target by punching the body. Oliveira slips a windmilling right hand and tags Ricci with a jab, but she walks right into a takedown. Ricci blasts her opponent right down to the ground, where she begins to get off some strikes and slide her way to three-quarter mount. Oliveira squirms towards the wall, and on her side, she tries to get up but Ricci slugs her several times. Oliveira makes her way to her knees, and walks up the cage to get back upright again. Ricci is on her like a cheap suit, but Oliveira flails and gains the separation she so desperately seeks. Oliveira walks forward to throw hands, and a lazy leg kick leads to a takedown try from Ricci. The sheer force of the takedown slams Oliveira’s back into the wire, and she scoops Oliveira’s legs out and plants her on the mat. Ricci does not mind that she is in closed guard with a leg triangle around her waist so that she can smash Oliveira in the face with strikes. The punches begin to mount as less than a minute remains in the fight, and Ricci tries to back off to break the leg grip and step over to advance position, but she falls back into this guard position. Ricci rains down punishment from above to conclude the one-sided bout.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Ricci (30-27 Ricci)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Ricci (30-27 Ricci)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Ricci (30-27 Ricci)

The Official Result

Tabatha Ricci def. Maria Oliveira via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Mason Jones (156) vs. David Onama (153.5)

Round 1

At 155 pounds, the Welshman known as “The Dragon” Jones (10-1, 1 NC; 0-1, 1 NC UFC) is up next to welcome unbeaten Ugandan-born upstart Onama (8-0, 0-0 UFC) to the UFC. Onama has never gone the distance, while Jones has never been finished, so something may have to give here as they collide. Referee Jason Herzog is on top of the action that is sure to be fast and furious, and they want to get right after it as they practically sprint towards one another to throw hands with no interest in touching gloves. They both land cleanly on one another, and Jones starts to find his range as his fists find the target repeatedly. Onama responds in kind after pushing off from a clinch, tagging Jones with a series of blows. “The Dragon” flames him right back with a jab that hurts Onama, sending the newcomer off-balance as he stumbles towards the fence. When Jones tries to finish the job, Onama grabs hold of him to tie him up and get his bearings. Onama breaks free with a right hand, but Jones is right there to work the jab again. As they come too close to throw bombs, Jones grabs hold of a leg and throws Onama down to his back. Jones, who lands in half guard, starts to let loose with some right hands as he attempts to pass. Jones scores an elbow, forcing Onama to buck and roll to his knees, and the newcomer powers back up. The Welshman wrenches him right back down from behind, dropping Onama to his knees, but unable to put him flat on the canvas. When Onama gets back up, Jones successfully hits a mat return to take Onama’s back. As soon as Onama returns to his feet, Jones picks him up in the air and throws him down to the ground. This time, Jones not only takes top position, but he claims mount in the process. Onama turns over to give up his back, and Jones uses this as an opportunity to pound on his foe’s head. Onama does not take this position lying down, exploding out of danger and getting back to his feet. They land strikes at the same time when they get back up, as Jones scores a spinning back kick while Onama dings him back with a hard right hand. The pace is frenzied as they continue to lay into one another, and Onama eats a few body shots to land his own uppercut. They string together lengthy combinations one after the other, and Jones hurts Onama but gets stung right back. A few ferocious blows from Onama open a cut on Jones’ eye, and they throw down right to the bell. What a round!

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Jones
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Jones
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Jones

Round 2

They meet in the middle and start trading, picking up right where they left off. Onama sits down on a left hand, catching Jones cleanly with it, but Jones is not concerned as he fires right back. Onama digs a kick the body and winds up several more punches to the midsection, as Jones backs away to get back to his sharp jab. Onama walks through it to throw bombs, and they both snap the other’s head back as they connect again and again. Jones bullies his foe back to the fence, and Onama ducks down to aim a takedown at his advancing opponent. Jones stops this, pushes Onama back, and changes levels for his own. Onama slams his elbows in the side of the head relentlessly until Jones pulls his legs out and puts the newcomer on the mat. As they scramble going down to the ground, Jones takes the unbeaten fighter’s back and gets his hooks in. Jones turns for a neck crank as Onama tries to buck him off, and he stands up to shimmy and get Jones off of him. Onama is a man possessed, charging ahead with a salvo of strikes that hurt Jones and knock him back to the fence. As they go at it, Onama leans down and puts his hands on the mat to regain his posture. Jones unleashes an illegal knee that smacks Onama in the side of the head, and there is a pause of roughly 45 seconds for Onama to recover from the blow. Herzog warns Jones for this, and they get right back to throwing haymakers. Onama connects with the heavier blows, and Jones tries to gain some space by kicking Onama in the body. Jones closes in and pursues a takedown, where he circles around to take Onama’s back and trip him down. Onama spins out without losing his footing, and Jones gives chase with a pair of hooks before clinching back up. This clinch leads to the Welshman dragging the fight down to the mat, and Jones manages to take Onama’s back before the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Jones
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Jones
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Jones

Round 3

The lightweights meet in the middle to trade strikes, and Onama lands cleaner with a solid right hand. Jones does not budge, nailing his opponent with an uppercut up the middle. A left hand from Onama shakes Jones up, but the Welshman continues to assault him right back with heavy strikes. Onama scores effectively, hurting Jones again and again. Suddenly, Jones grabs hold of the newcomer, elevates him and slams him down, where he hops into full mount. Onama twists and thinks about giving his back up, and this allows Jones to set up an arm-triangle choke. Onama turns to his side to break the grip, and he turns over to his stomach as the hands are no longer clasped. Onama powers back up, but Jones slams him down emphatically. Onama’s gas tank may finally be emptying, for a man that engaged in a furious pace for the better part of two rounds only taking it on a week’s notice. Onama still manages to burst out of the bad spot to get to his knees and back up to the wall, and Jones is holding on tight. Onama gets away with a fence grab to stay upright when Jones lifts him up and slams him down. The Welshman gets off a few right hands as he steps over to secure Onama’s back, and Onama wildly spins around to again recover his position and stand back up. As Jones embraces the grind, Onama lifts a knee up to the body that makes Jones let him go. A one-two from Onama shakes Jones up, and he tries to find a finish but Jones latches on to him to survive to the bell. Although he may have lost for the first time in his career, Onama establishes himself as a fighter to watch going forward after a frenetic battle with his Welsh adversary.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Jones (30-27 Jones)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Jones (30-27 Jones)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Jones (30-27 Jones)

The Official Result

Mason Jones def. David Onama via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Jun Yong Park (185.5) vs. Gregory Rodrigues (185.5)

Round 1

Capping off this lengthy preliminary card, middleweights clash in an interesting style matchup between “The Iron Turtle” Park (13-4, 3-1 UFC) and “Robocop” Rodrigues (10-3, 1-0 UFC). Someone’s three-fight win streak is about to come to an end here, and referee Keith Peterson will be the first to know and the first to slay all the nonsense in the room. The gloves get touched before they are unleashed, and they are cautious to throw as they may respect the other’s power a little too much. Park slowly marches forward, and the first strike of the bout is a light calf kick from the South Korean. “Robocop” gives him a body shot back, and he counters a leg kick with a right hand over the top. Rodrigues skillfully checks a leg kick, and wades through a few jabs his way so he can work the body. Park continues to attack the leg to mixed results, and Rodrigues sets Park a little off-balance with a heavy right hand. They slow down to trade jabs, and Rodrigues continues to check calf kicks like Jose Aldo did recently. Rodrigues closes in so that he can elbow Park in the face, and they start trading and Park gets rocked. Rodrigues does not let him off the hook, landing a glancing right hand while Park slings right back at him. Rodrigues does not get reckless, instead picking his shots with several strikes to the body before pursuing a trip takedown. Rodrigues sweeps the leg, and he steps over to mount before letting it go as Park scrambles. The Brazilian hooks a body triangle up before setting for his hooks in, and he clings to Park’s waist as Park looks to turn into him. Rodrigues considers taking mount, but elects to keep Park’s back as Park expends energy to stand back up. The body triangle tight on Park’s waist, Park is trapped and unable to get out of this bad place. Park turns to his knees, and he begins to absorb thudding elbows and punches while trapped on his side. “Robocop” punishes Park with punches until the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Rodrigues

Round 2

The middleweights are glad to touch gloves to begin the second round before they start to throw caution to the wind, and Park is the first to engage. A right hand over the top, and a left in a string of punches rocks Rodrigues. The Brazilian fights with his back against the wall, as his knees are wobbled while Park lays into him. Park unleashes a flurry, and he eats a few as Rodrigues bites down on his gumshield and brawls. Desperate and hurt, Rodrigues shoots in for a takedown and has his neck snagged in an awkward position. Park goes for an unorthodox guillotine choke, and as Rodrigues gets his wits about him, he reverses the position and goes after his own submission. Park gives his back up, and he explodes out of it at all costs to stand back up. Sensing that Rodrigues may still be hurt, Park lets go with a flurry of punches to tag Rodrigues again. The Brazilian gloms on to Park and whips him around to slam him down with a judo throw, and although Park hits the ground loudly, he is able to burst back to his feet. Park is ready to continue trading leather when he gets back up, and Rodrigues appears spent but is willing to trade. As they continue to put everything into their punches, Rodrigues lands a right, another right, a left and a huge right hook that staggers Park. Suddenly, the South Korean is firmly entrenched in the danger zone, who falls backwards across the cage before rebounding off the wall. Without actually speaking the words, “Robocop” tells his damaged foe, “Dead or alive, you’re coming with me,” as he lays into Park with devastating blows. Park may be out on his feet with the only thing keeping him upright the wall behind him, and Peterson recognizes this and rightfully calls a halt to the wild slugfest. What a thrilling performance for Rodrigues, who survived some major adversity to become the first man to stop “The Iron Turtle” with strikes.

The Official Result

Gregory Rodrigues def. Jun Yong Park R2 3:13 via KO (Punches)

Nicolae Negumereanu (204.5) vs. Isaac Villanueva (205)

Round 1

To kick off the main card, two knockout-friendly strikers battle it out in a classic matchup between Romania and Texas, as Negumereanu (10-1, 1-1 UFC) tries to quiet the storm of “Hurricane Ike” Villanueva (18-12, 1-3 UFC). The light heavyweight draw oversight from referee Mike Beltran, who is ready and powerful enough to jump in at a moment’s notice. A sign of respect is shown as they touch ‘em up, and the next time they swing their fists, they will come much faster. Negumereanu gets off a leg kick as he is warned immediately for outstretched fingers, and he goes after another only to get countered over the top. Negumereanu ducks down for a takedown entry, and although he does not get it, he jams the Texan into the wire. Negumereanu suddenly spins around, clocks Villanueva with a spinning elbow, and backs off to narrowly evade a huge right hand. Villanueva marches forward to brawl, and he catches Negumereanu with a right hand. Negumereanu answers it with a few strikes of his own, and the two start ferociously throwing with everything they have. One rocks the other, and so it continues until Villanueva is hurt badly with a right hand behind the ear. When Villanueva crumbles to his knees, Negumereanu lands a string of punches that almost all hit the back of Villanueva’s head. When Beltran stops the fight, Villanueva protests that he was not hurt from legal blows but rather from a series of strikes on the mohawk line. The fight is over, and it is unclear if there will be any in-cage review following this stoppage, as several of the punches cleanly landed to the back of the head, which would deem them illegal. The official result is a technical knockout, and there may be some a bit of controversy on that ruling that could merit an appeal.

The Official Result

Nicolae Negumereanu def. Isaac Villanueva R1 1:18 via TKO (Punches)

Francisco Trinaldo (169.5) vs. Dwight Grant (170)

Round 1

This welterweight matchup between the 43-year-old Trinaldo (26-8, 16-7 UFC) and Grant (11-3, 3-2 UFC), age 37, features both men trying to prove that age is nothing but a number. They do not touch gloves as they stand before referee Chris Tognoni, who is ready to oversee this combined 80-year-old affair at 170 pounds. Trinaldo marches forward as he looks to engage first, and Grant sticks out several jabs to find his range. They swat at one another’s hand, and Grant gets caught with a right hand as he defends a low kick. A left hand and a huge right hook miss for Grant, allowing Trinaldo to walk forward and boot Grant in the belly with his shin. The welterweights are largely tentative, both looking to counter the other while neither put much into their strikes. Grant uses his reach advantage to jab out repeatedly, and he just misses with an overhand right. “Massaranduba” puts a single leg kick on the calf of his backpedaling opponent, but he has not been able to land much of note. A partial connect for Trinaldo allows Grant to sneak out of the way and circle out of danger, while countering with a left. They both collide with fists and trip the other up, which forces Trinaldo to stumble back but keep upright. With his feet back beneath him, Trinaldo thumps the body with a single kick. Grant winds up with a right hand that gets blocked, and he goes back to his lazy pawing jab to keep Trinaldo at bay. Trinaldo tries to crash the pocket with another body kick, and the strike is blocked. The 43-year-old suddenly springs to life, smashing a counter left hand on the chin of his opponent, wobbling Grant but not putting him down. Trinaldo does not follow up on it, going one-and-done while letting Grant get back into the round. Trinaldo scores another big left hand as they tangle up, and he fires a head kick that Grant barely blocks in time. Trinaldo plods forward, and he clips Grant with a left hand right before the horn sounds.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Trinaldo
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Trinaldo
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Trinaldo

Round 2

The welterweights meet in the middle of the cage to start the second stanza, and Trinaldo goes back to stalking Grant down preparing to unload strikes. As Trinaldo tries to unleash strikes, he reaches his fingers out and Tognoni stops the action to loudly warn “Massaranduba” of his outstretched digits. There was no poke, just a loud stoppage and warning. When they get back to it, Trinaldo slings a head kick and gets countered over the top. They clash together, and Trinaldo sneaks in a left hand to back Grant off. The Brazilian scores his left hook as these single strikes continue to mount. “The Body Snatcher” counters the momentum by snatching a Trinaldo kick and throwing him down to the mat dramatically. Grant starts smashing Trinaldo with ground strikes, until Trinaldo gathers himself and pushes Grant off of him to stand back up. Grant reaches out with a right hand as they both get to their feet, and the pace slows. Grant lets loose with a punch that collides off the guard, and Trinaldo does not answer as his tripled jab misses the mark entirely. Trinaldo ducks a punch to shoot in for takedown, and when that does not succeed, he tries to trip the American down from behind as they lean on the fence. Trinaldo comes up short with a glancing knee to the chin, but he exerts heavy chest pressure to grind the taller Grant into the wall. After a stalemate in this position, Grant pushes off and they both start throwing big punches. One right hand clips Grant behind the ear, and he stumbles but does not go down right before the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Grant
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Grant
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Grant

Round 3

The fighters decide to touch gloves to start up the last round, and the pace resumes where they left off as they recklessly strike. When they wind up with strikes, a cup shot from Trinaldo clatters into Grant’s cup. Grant declines to pause, and Tognoni asks him a few times before ultimately calling a pause to the round as it was a clean kick to the peninsula south of the equator. Tognoni advises Grant to take all the time he needs, and sympathizes with Grant that those strikes never feel good. Grant takes a full minute to recover before they touch gloves to start up again. Grant checks a leg kick, and a finger from the Brazilian jams deep into Grant’s eye. Tognoni notices this immediately and calls a time out, as Grant falls to his knees in obvious, serious pain. Tognoni calls in the doctor as Grant stands back up, trying to clear his vision and ultimately telling the doctor he can see. The American wipes his eye with a cloth several times, and he is struggling but is good to go. Tognoni deducts Trinaldo one point for the eye poke foul, as he already had warned Trinaldo for his fingers out earlier in the round. There is no interest in touching gloves to begin again, as Trinaldo has anger in his eyes and he wants to finish the fight, concerned he may be down on the scorecards in need of a stoppage. Trinaldo stalks Grant down, and Grant counters him preemptively with a left hand. Trinaldo continues to plod forward, and he swings heavily so he can close in and take Grant down. In the open cage, Trinaldo quickly moves to half guard, as he tries to pass further. Trinaldo squeezes down with his shoulder, possibly considering an arm-triangle choke as he keeps Grant flat on his back. The American tries to turn to his side and kick out, but Trinaldo advances to three-quarter mount as a result. Grant desperately tries to keep Trinaldo’s left foot trapped between his own legs so that he can stop Trinaldo from taking mount, but his efforts are futile as “Massaranduba” passes to full mount. With a minute to spare, Trinaldo aims a few punches to the head, and he reclaims mount as Grant bucks and kicks to get out. Trinaldo lands a couple strikes, with a least one to the back of the head, and he slashes down with elbows as Grant turns. Trinaldo cannot get the finish he seeks, and Grant survives any further damage. Due to the point deduction, this one could be scored even.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 9-9 (28-28 Draw)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 9-9 (28-28 Draw)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 9-9 (28-28 Draw)

The Official Result

Francisco Trinaldo def. Dwight Grant via Split Decision (27-29, 29-27, 29-27)

Alex Caceres (146) vs. Seung Woo Choi (145.5)

Round 1

Exciting featherweights on win streaks will come to blows in what should be a thriller, when “Bruce Leeroy” Caceres (18-12, 1 NC; 13-10, 1 NC UFC) tries to sting “Sting” Choi (10-3, 3-2 UFC) with his flashy striking. Trying to keep up with the two will be referee Jason Herzog, who steels himself as they touch gloves. Caceres is first to engage with a leg kick, and he ducks back from a high kick. Caceres fires off a high kick, and he is well out of the way when the South Korean lets loose with his own kick. “Bruce Leeroy” lands a solid kick to the midsection, and one to the lead leg knocks Choi off-balance so that he cannot deliver with big punches. Caceres ducks into a punch and smiles, and he leans back to avoid a head kick. As Caceres looses a quick head kick, Choi greets him with a four-punch combination that knocks the American back and running around the cage to reset. Caceres eats a right hand and smiles, as Choi’s strikes have far more impact. When Caceres gets off a kick to the body, Choi perfectly times a right hand to knock Caceres off of his feet. Choi dives down to finish the job, and he lands a few punches. When Caceres scrambles to get back up, Choi knees him in the face illegally, and Herzog notices this immediately and pauses the action. Herzog calls in the doctor to check on Caceres, who is wobbly leaning against the cage. When Caceres is cleared, Herzog calls over the translator to warn Choi very sternly and deduct one point for his foul, handling the situation very well. Caceres is ready to go, and when the action resumes, Choi tries to nail him with a head kick. Caceres is out of the way, light on his feet, and careful to let a kick go lest it be countered. Choi scores a solid low kick and tries to follow it up, but the fleet-footed Caceres allows him to circle out and pound Choi in the torso with a thudding kick. Caceres comes in with a trio of body shots, only to dart out when Choi lifts a knee towards him. “Bruce Leeroy” ducks back from oncoming offense, and he sneaks up a high kick. Caceres leaps forward with a punch, and Choi cannot quite time him like before. Choi rocks Caceres again with a clean right hand, but Caceres shakes it out and the smile is wiped from his face. Caceres lands a kick to the body, and Choi complains of an eye poke. Caceres apologizes, and Herzog does not see it so he does not pause the fight. Choi cracks Caceres with a right hand, and Caceres drops to a knee but survives. As Caceres gets up, he plants a side kick on Choi’s body, and the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 9-9
Ben Duffy scores the round: 9-9
Brian Knapp scores the round: 9-9

Round 2

The featherweights opt to touch gloves to start off the round, and Caceres sticks out his jab several times. Caceres drops his hands by his waist, darts around the cage and partially absorbs a right hand. Choi pursues a few head kicks, and Caceres is not there to be struck. “Bruce Leeroy” decides to fire off his own head kick, and he falls over when it bounces off the guard. Choi does not chase him down, and when Caceres stands, he has a side kick that grazes the cup but does not force a pause. Choi marches Caceres down and ignores a leg kick so that he could close in and throw hands. Caceres grabs hold of the oncoming Choi so that he can tie him up and push him into the wall, and he gets away with a few fence grabs only to be warned for his efforts. On the break, Choi misses a few head kicks as Caceres relies on head movement and not blocks to keep himself safe. Choi once more whiffs on a high kick, but the right that follows finds a home on Caceres’ shoulder blade. The South Korean again goes back to the well with a head kick, but this one, Caceres is unable to dodge in time. Caceres shakes it off and starts grinning again, slipping in and out with punches. Choi is more tense and composed, with power punches that knock Caceres again the fence. As Choi pressures him into the wall, Caceres sneaks around to his foe's back and hops on to hook up a standing body triangle. Choi tries to scrape the legs off, but Caceres latches on to a rear-naked choke in response. Choi is suddenly in big, big trouble, as Caceres appears to have “The Glow,” getting his forearm either across the chin or under the neck. The South Korean falls to his knees, and the choke is shockingly tight as Caceres squeezes with all his might. Instead of going out, Choi taps, proving that "Bruce Leeroy" is the meanest, prettiest, baddest mofo low down around this town tonight.

The Official Result

Alex Caceres def. Seung Woo Choi R2 3:31 via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke)

Jessica-Rose Clark (135.5) vs. Joselyne Edwards (134.5)

Round 1

Bantamweight women draw the “featured fight of the night” slot when “Jessy Jess” Clark (10-6, 3-2 UFC) returns after a year away to take on “La Pantera” Edwards (10-3, 1-1 UFC). Wanting to get right after it, the ladies do not touch gloves as referee Keith Peterson watches on with no nonsense in sight. The women crash together immediately, and Clark pursues and hits an early takedown. When they hit the ground, Clark comfortably takes top position, where she slowly works her opponent over with strikes. The first half of the round proceeds the same way, with Clark doing little more than lay-and-pray until Peterson stands them up with two minutes left in the round. Clark thanks Peterson for this standup by clinching right up again, and when she goes after another takedown, Edwards reverses her and spins her around on the mat. Clark fights her way back to her feet as Edwards hold on to the grip from behind, and the woman from Panama tries to score a big head kick. Edwards lays into her opponent when on the feet, getting off several punches and a kick, but Clark quickly stops any more offense so she can ground “La Pantera” again. Although Edwards kicks her off for a moment, Clark climbs back on top to ride out the grind-filled round.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Clark
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Clark
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Clark

Round 2

Clark comes out aggressively, but the fight stays on its feet longer than the previous round as Clark decides to let her hands go a little. As Edwards tries to sting her with punches, Clark darts in with an elbow that partially grazes the forehead. Unlike the last period, Edwards decides to go after her own takedown try. Clark watches video of herself fighting to see the position where she cannot otherwise observe, allowing her to break the posture and spin Edwards around briefly. The two jockey for position against the cage until Clark changes levels for a takedown. Although Edwards grabs the cage, Clark is able to wrestle her down to the mat and pass to half guard. Slowly and methodically, Clark works her way over to secure full mount, and Edwards nearly gives her back up in the process. Clark stays heavy, keeping Edwards flat on her back but doing little more. No strikes of note, no submission attempts come from the Aussie, who is more content to just rack up control time. A couple punches land courtesy of “Jessy Jess” when Edwards tries to regain position, and she manages to kick Clark off of her. Edwards spams inaccurate kicks until the round concludes.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Clark
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Clark
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Clark

Round 3

The women touch gloves to clock in the last round, and Edwards starts off firing with a body kick and a few punches up top. “La Pantera” catches Clark with a combination, and the Aussie immediately clinches up to tie her up and stop the strikes from coming. As she maintains this position, she transitions into a body lock throw, and she successfully puts Edwards on her back again. Edwards can do nothing but lay on her back, as she goes back and forth closing her guard and keeping it open. On the offensive side, Clark is also ineffective once she lands the singular takedown, grinding and burning daylight. Clark stands up and looks to rain down a punch or two, but she lowers herself back into Edwards’ guard where the fight stalls out. Although Clark moves to half guard, that is the extent of her activity, without landing a strike of note or even contemplating a submission maneuver. Edwards occasionally bucks, and scoots her way to lean her back on the wall, all while Peterson watches over them getting ready to stand them up. Edwards walk her way up the fencing, and Clark times a knee on the jaw right when Edwards pulls her hand off the mat. The Aussie goes right back to a takedown, easily planting Edwards on her back, where she has successfully tamed “La Pantera.” With one second to go, Clark takes mount; not able to do anything with it with that little time, the horrendous fight goes to decision and is now thankfully over.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Clark (30-27 Clark)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Clark (30-27 Clark)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Clark (30-27 Clark)

The Official Result

Jessica-Rose Clark def. Joselyne Edwards via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)

Grant Dawson (156) vs. Ricky Glenn (155.5)

Round 1

At long last, we have reached the co-main event, which comes in the form of a lightweight collision between acclaimed teams Glory MMA & Fitness and Team Alpha Male. Dawson (17-1, 5-0 UFC) represents the former, while Glenn (22-6-1, 4-3 UFC) fights out of the latter. Marvelously mustached referee Mike Beltran draws the charge for this co-headliner featuring the biggest betting favorite of the night (Dawson at -450), and there is no interest in a glove touch to kick it off. Instead, Glenn takes the outer edge of the cage to land a pair of slapping leg kicks. Dawson goes up high with a head kick that just gets blocked in the nick of time, and he aims a low kick and evades the counter. Glenn slows things down with a calf kick, and one to the body collides loudly. Dawson does not love this strike, and he crashes forward to hit a takedown. Although “The Gladiator” fights his way back up, Dawson successfully lands a mat return to get into side control. Glenn is able to defend himself from any harm, as Dawson is content to keep this position while holding Glenn down. From this position, “KGD” lands a few knees to the side, and Glenn rolls to his stomach and gives up his back. As Glenn scrambles and gets back to his feet, Dawson throws him right back down to the canvas while securing his back. Dawson hooks up a tight body triangle, and he starts softening the TAM fighter up with punches. Glenn turns to the side to break up the leg grip, and Dawson starts slamming his fists on the side of Glenn’s head. A few punches may go errant as he is letting them go, and Glenn does not complain but is getting controlled completely. Dawson considers rolling Glenn over so he can capture mount, but instead goes back to the crushing body triangle from behind. Glenn continues to roll, and try as he might, “KGD” is going nowhere, with the leg grip secured. This painful position remains tight until the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-8 Dawson
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-8 Dawson
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Dawson

Round 2

Glenn leads the dance with a body kick, and he backs off quickly when concerned that Dawson might want to take him down again. Dawson returns fire with a head kick, and then dives forward into a takedown try. A torrid scramble ensues, allowing Glenn to somersault through the position and somehow getting back to his feet. Instead of getting off an illegal knee while Dawson is grounded, Glenn backs off and lets him stand. “KGD” appreciates this, and he thanks him for it by lifting Glenn in the air and throwing him to his knees. Although Glenn gets back up, and he fights off subsequent try, Dawson hits a sweep and puts Glenn on his back. Like the first takedown in the opening round, Dawson instantly secures side control. Glenn is able to scramble enough to retrieve full guard, and he tries to scoot his way towards the wall to walk it up all while Dawson pulls him the other direction. Glenn pulls on the fence to get his way there, and Beltran warns him for this infraction. Glenn signals to Beltran to stand them up as Dawson is doing little but landing sporadic ground-and-pound with no interest in passing. Glenn’s frustration leads to Dawson jumping back and over to the side again, and Glenn is none too thrilled by this development. When Glenn thinks to sit out of it, Dawson pulls him back down by his neck. Beltran asks the two to work as a stalemate ensues in this position, and Dawson elects to hold his shoulder down to crush Glenn’s jaw but do little else. Dawson has a few more knees to the side land, and he grinds his forearm on the chin until picking his arm up to punch “The Gladiator” in the face. The round concludes in this position.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Dawson
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Dawson
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Dawson

Round 3

Glenn wants to get his hands going to start off the round, and he slaps away a body kick. Less than 15 seconds in, Dawson shoots for a takedown. Glenn pushes him off, and then stuffs a second try that immediately follows. As Dawson doggedly pursues yet another takedown entry, this time, Glenn bowls him over as Dawson falls to his back. Glenn sits up and starts landing heavy hammerfists on the nose, and Dawson sits up and tries to land a takedown. Once again, Glenn is the stronger man, and he pushes Dawson over to start landing punches to the side and face. Glenn in half guard just clings to the position, and he uses his shoulder to keep “KGD” down. Not doing much more than Dawson in the last round, Glenn rides out the position before flirting with a brief arm-triangle choke. There is nothing to the choke, and he fights off Dawson pushing off so that he can flatten Dawson out and stop the scrambles. Glenn starts letting elbows go, thumping Dawson’s dome off the cage floor. When Dawson tries to upkick and push his way up, Glenn nudges him back over. Glenn opens up with right hands, and he turns to a brabo choke with seconds left in the fight. Dawson keeps his thumb up in the air for the remainder of the round, signaling that he is not out. When the bell sounds, Glenn points to his fallen foe and claims Dawson is indeed out, and Dawson’s coach James Krause urges Dawson to get back to his feet. There is no 5:00 finish, and we go to the judges. This could be a close one, depending on how this last dramatic round is scored.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-8 Glenn (28-27 Dawson)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-8 Glenn (28-27 Dawson)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-8 Glenn (28-28 Draw)

The Official Result

Grant Dawson vs. Ricky Glenn is Ruled a Majority Draw (29-28, 28-28, 28-28)

Paulo Costa (204.5) vs. Marvin Vettori (204)

Round 1

What can be said about this mess of a fight formerly scheduled at middleweight? On just a few days’ notice, this 185-pound tilt between Costa (13-1, 5-1 UFC) and Vettori (17-5-1, 7-3-1 UFC) transformed into a 195-pound catchweight affair before shifting to light heavyweight the night before weigh-ins. There is more bad blood in this fight than all of the rest of the 13 matches tonight combined, and they would like more than anything to smash the other. They nearly get into a fracas as Costa enters the cage. Referee Jason Herzog will be holding on tight for this flamethrowing main event, and it comes to the surprise of no one that there is no glove touch. Costa takes the center of the cage, and he misses with a high kick but pounds Vettori’s inside thigh with his shin. Vettori launches his own head kick, and Costa sees it coming a mile away and batters Vettori’s lead leg with a kick. Costa has a high kick blocked, and one to the body knocks him off-balance. Vettori charges after him, having landed the counter that may have actually dropped Costa, but Costa backs him off with a thudding body kick. Costa catches Vettori on the way in with a short right hand, and they push one another into the wall as Vettori is in the driver’s seat. Costa again fights his way out, and he eats a left hand and may be stung from one that comes after. Costa scores a right and a body kick, and the two trade vicious right hands. Costa sits down on a body kick again, and Vettori’s left arm is down to block it. Costa lands to the body with a punch, and Vettori counters him with five punches. At the midpoint of the round, Costa appears to be breathing heavy already, and Vettori walks through a leg kick to pressure his opponent. The Brazilian swats away punches, but Vettori is on him working him over with a combination. Costa shrugs it off and fires a body kick off, and Vettori pushes through another that does not have nearly the impact as previous ones. Vettori jabs a few times to back Costa away, and he blocks an overhand right as Costa is trying to load up on single shots. Costa has a head kick get through, but Vettori is not fazed as he pops Costa with a jab and then a one-two. Vettori lands a few punches as Costa shells up, and a left hand pierces the guard as Costa waves him on for more. Vettori sticks and moves, ignores a kick and punch to the midsection, and lands a straight right hand. Right before the round ends, Costa has a head kick zoom by the Italian’s face.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Vettori
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Vettori
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Vettori

Round 2

They meet in the middle and stick out straight punches, and Vettori triples up on a jab before scoring a body kick. Costa’s is much heavier in response, but Vettori shrugs it off to land a quartet of significant punches. Costa gets backed up to the fence, but he lands a right hand that Vettori is able to partially block. Vettori lands a body shot, and Costa suddenly surprises him with a head kick. Vettori is rocked and falls back towards the fence, and “Borrachinha” chases him down with a body kick and a swarm of punches. As Vettori clears his head, he lands a few knees, but Costa is right in his face with another shin to the chin. Vettori’s beard is quite something, as he seems to have his footing beneath him again as he throws right back at his Brazilian foe. They trade kicks, and Vettori has a pair of punches collide with the guard. Costa’s body shots continue to land, but the looping punches are not as accurate as Vettori is able to slip them. The momentum keeps shifting between the two, as Costa gets Vettori’s attention with a punch salvo. Vettori just ducks when a head kick is aimed at his head, but he steps face-first into a left hook. Vettori uses Costa’s forward momentum against him, hitting a well-timed trip to put the Brazilian on the canvas. Costa fights back to his feet and walks up the wall, and he gains separation. Costa reaches out with a body kick and an opened right hand, and his fingers jab the Italian in the eye. Herzog is aware of this as he allows Vettori all the time he needs to recover, bringing in the doctor just in case. As he had already been warned for something from Herzog, Herzog deducts one point for the eye poke. Costa is incensed but there is nothing he can do, so the two get back to business with kicks from both sides. Costa sits down on a pair of head kicks, and Vettori defends himself but the sheer impact moves him. Vettori lances the guard with a pair of punches, and he goes low with a kick as he punches his way into a clinch. Vettori pressures Costa against the wire with a steady diet of punches, and Costa looses a huge right hand that Vettori sees coming. A glancing left hand gets Vettori’s attention, and Vettori blasts him back with a left hook. Both men wobble briefly but they keep it together, to end the round with a flurry.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-8 Vettori
Ben Duffy scores the round: 9-9
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-8 Vettori

Round 3

Vettori is amped up to start off Round 3, putting a jab in Costa’s face a few times. Costa comes up a millimeter short with a head kick, and Vettori is right there to work the body as Costa puts his foot down. Costa slips a punch to land a right, and he takes a step back and absorbs a body kick. Vettori puts a pace on Costa as he pressures him, and when he lands a few punches, Costa slaps his belly to entice him to throw more. Costa wings a spinning wheel kick, and it skims off Vettori’s hair. As he lands, he catches Vettori with a right hand, but the Italian is able to run out of the way and recover. “The Italian Dream” goes right back to his aggressive ways, landing right hands and busting Costa’s nose open. As they clinch up, Vettori has a single elbow pound into Costa’s face, and Costa grins widely. Costa backs his foe off with a straight right hand to the body, but Vettori is undaunted, as he walks the Brazilian down to throw hands. Three punches split the guard of Costa, who circles off the fence to not take more damage. Vettori lands a single kick, and Costa crashes forward to hit his own unexpected takedown and put the Italian on his back. Costa gets kicked off, and he jumps back down to fight it. When Vettori gives his neck up, Costa jumps guard for a guillotine choke. Vettori does not appear concerned, as he wriggles his neck out and puts Costa flat on his back. Vettori begins to get his ground-and-pound going while Costa closes his guard, with punches and elbows to keep Costa guessing. As Vettori lands a few more strikes from on top, the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Vettori
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Vettori
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Vettori

Round 4

As he has done for the previous rounds, Vettori charges ahead to start off the round. A huge body kick from Costa resounds around the arena, and Vettori is able to tank it and keep pressing forward. The Italian pushes Costa against the fence, where he unloads with a combination of punches. Vettori changes things up every so often with a sharp jab, and he sits down on one with a crisp left hand that makes Costa shake his head. Make no mistake, that punch hurt. Vettori jabs a few more times to keep Costa back, and because of this, he is able to dodge a high kick. Vettori rolls with a head kick, but it might have opened a cut on the side of his eye. Vettori advances and pours it on with a barrage of brutal blows, and Costa winds up with a hook to the body to prove he is very much still in the fight. Costa tags Vettori with a few punches, and Vettori is right there to throw back at him. Another big body kick from Costa connects cleanly on the midsection, and he lands one to the side of Vettori’s knee for good measure. A solid combination from Vettori gets Costa’s attention, one punctuated with a left hand that draws a huge smile out of Costa. Vettori tries to push on the accelerator, only to take a flush kick to the body. Vettori steps in with a knee, and Costa takes the knee to the cup and tells Herzog to back off so they can keep fighting. Costa has his hands down, and Vettori times a swift left hand that backs Costa up to the fence. Costa lets go with a combo of power punches when he is in this position, and Vettori takes a deep breath as he avoids most of them. Vettori blitzes forward, pursues a takedown, and is stuffed. Costa slams his shin into Vettori’s waist, and Vettori will be wearing it tomorrow but he does not flinch here. Instead, he introduces his own shin to Costa’s body, and Costa simply sticks his tongue out at him. The horn sounds, and the fight has reached the fifth frame.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Vettori
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Vettori
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Vettori

Round 5

The first strike landed in the last round is a huge right hand from Costa, one that Vettori eats like an entire plate of pasta. He follows this with a booming head kick, and Vettori’s chin can never be questioned again after the punishment he has endured the last two fights. They stand right in front of one another and trade, not afraid of the other in any way. Costa smashes his leg into Vettori’s torso like he was hitting a side of beef, and Costa may have finally gotten through to Vettori. Seeing Vettori may be hurt, he peppers him with more punches and a few more kicks, until Vettori shoots in for a desperation takedown. The Brazilian is strong enough to endure and stop it, and he keeps himself upright after the subsequent try. When Vettori cannot get it, he backs off, and Costa follows him with punches. Costa tags his foe with a monstrous right hand, and Vettori wears it and takes a knee and a kick to the body right after. “Borrachinha” continues to batter the body with blistering blows, and Vettori has had enough of them, so he ducks down and telegraphs a double from halfway across the fence. Costa notices it, stops it, and lets Vettori take a step back so he can kick Vettori in the midsection again. Vettori aims a kick to the body to pay him back, but Costa’s are far more emphatic and still landing hard and loud this late into the fight. They start trading, and Costa gets a head kick over the top of the guard. Costa grabs hold of a clinch to try to set up a Thai Plum, but he releases it when Vettori pulls back. Back to his preferred range, Vettori jabs out a few times, but Costa pounds him in the chops with a right hand. Vettori is now the one shaking his head to signal that it does not hurt. The Italian ties him up and hunts for a takedown, and Costa stuffs it and shakes his head. He slaps Vettori in the side and backside as time expires, clearly not thrilled with his performance. The Brazilian might be disappointed, but most fans watching around the world clearly will not be after that wild, hard-fought battle. It is a relief to those same fans that the event ended with a bang and not a dud, like recent weeks, and there will be little time to take a breath as the next big show is right around the corner. UFC 267 will take place next Saturday early in the morning, and it will be a pay-per-view caliber card for free for those that have ESPN+. Although we might not have been here live today due to technical difficulties, we will be here for it next week with bells on. We hope you are too.

Sherdog Scores

Jay Pettry scores the round: 10-9 Costa (49-45 Vettori)
Ben Duffy scores the round: 10-9 Costa (48-47 Vettori)
Brian Knapp scores the round: 10-9 Costa (49-45 Vettori)

The Official Result

Marvin Vettori def. Paulo Costa via Unanimous Decision (48-46, 48-46, 48-46)
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