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January 20, 2021 | Posted by Robert Winfree
UFC on ESPN 20

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#8 Michael Chiesa (170.5 lbs.) vs. #9 Neil Magny (171 lbs.)
Warlley Alves (171 lbs.) vs. Mounir Lazzez (171 lbs.)
Vinicius Moreira (206 lbs.) vs. Ike Villanueva (206 lbs.)
#9 Viviane Araujo (126 lbs.) vs. #8 Roxanne Modafferi (126 lbs.)
#13 Tyson Nam (126 lbs.) vs. #9 Matt Schnell (126 lbs.)
Lerone Murphy (146 lbs.) vs. Douglas Silva de Andrade (145 lbs.)
#13 Omari Akhmedov (186 lbs.) vs. Tom Breese (186 lbs.)

Gaetano Pirrello (136 lbs.) vs. Ricky Simon (136 lbs.)
Zarrukh Adashev (126 lbs.) vs. Su Mudaerji (126 lbs.)
Dalcha Lungiambula (186 lbs.) vs. Markus Perez (186 lbs.)
Francisco Figueredo (126 lbs.) vs. Jerome Rivera (126 lbs.)
Mike Davis (154.5 lbs.) vs. Mason Jones (156 lbs.)
Sergey Morozov (135 lbs.) vs. Umar Nurmagomedov (136 lbs.)
Manon Fiorot (126 lbs.) vs. Victoria Leonardo (125.5 lbs.)

Hey there everyone, good morning and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE UFC on ESPN 20 coverage. I’m Robert Winfree, and it’s entirely too early here for a 14 fight card that looks like this one does. The main event is a solid welterweight affair as top ten fighters Michael Chiesa and Neil Magny battle to see who gets into the title picture and who goes back into the mid rankings meat grinder at welterweight. The rest of this card though? Look guys, I’m not paid to gild the lily about this stuff, I call it like I see it and I don’t see a whole lot. Fortunately we could still get great action even if the event looks a little lackluster on paper.

UFC on ESPN 20 comes to the world from Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. On commentary we have John Gooden, Daniel Cormier, and Paul Felder with Brett Okamoto doing the sideline gig. As for the rules we’re using most of the new ones with the exception of the downed fighter rule, you still only need one hand touching the mat to be considered downed. Instant replay and the replay official position are in use, as is the ability to restart the fight after replay if that’s applicable. We’re also in the regular 30 foot diameter cage instead of the 25 footer installed at the UFC APEX facility.

Victoria Leonardo is making her UFC debut on the back of a win on Dana White’s Contender Series, she’s got a two fight winning streak overall and is trying to make the most of her one chance to make a good first impression. Manon Fiorot took this on short notice, but she has a five fight winning streak and is hoping to maximize the opportunity presented to her. The odds are with Fiorot at -190 to a +170 comeback for Leonardo.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: Manon Fiorot (5-1, 126 lbs.) vs. Victoria Leonardo (8-2, 125.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Fiorot is two inches taller and has an inch of reach over Leonardo. Southpaw for Fiorot. Both women miss some punches early. Some side kicks to the leg and body from Fiorot, Leonardo barely misses a right hand. Head kick from Fiorot lands flush, that wobbles Leonardo for a second but she’s still upright. Fiorot lands a couple of punches. Leonardo is struggling to get into her punching distance. A couple of counter rights from Fiorot land. Knees to the body from Fiorot as they clinch up and hit the fence. Both land rights as they break the clinch. Hard side kick from Fiorot to the body. Leonardo blocks a high kick but she’s getting pieced up at distance. Another clinch and Fiorot stars in on the knees to the body before they break. Straight left and a right from Fiorot, she’s got Leonardo hurt but can’t quite finish the show. They clinch again, Fiorot with more knees to the leg and body then a left elbow as they break. The longer this goes the more Fiorot is working Leonardo over. Leonardo backs away for the final seconds of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Fiorot

ROUND TWO: Fiorot avoids some jabs to start the round, then fires a head kick and a check right hook. Another right hook from Fiorot. Bit of a right from Leonardo. Straight left from Fiorot lands, Leonardo is kind of out of sorts. Side kick from Fiorot. One two then a right elbow from Fiorot as she avoids a clinch attempt. Another rush from Fiorot, then she sprawls away from a takedown attempt. Fiorot lands a straight left that stands Leonardo up briefly. Another clinch, Fiorot drives Leonardo to the fence and looks for a takedown, in fact she gets a double leg into side control. Leonardo gets half guard immediately, then hips to full guard but Fiorot lands some punches along the way. Fiorot stands and makes Leonardo regain her feet. Right hook from Fiorot lands, then a straight left. Another right hook from Fiorot, Leonardo can’t get out of the way of that punch. Head kick and a long flurry of punches from Fiorot against the fence prompt the stoppage.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Manon Fiorot via TKO, head kick and punches, at 4:08 of Round 2

Solid debut from Fiorot, who will get an interview with a translator. She says this went exactly as she wanted, then talks us through the finish.

Fiorot as been throwing her left leg high, Leonardo kind of anticipates that as Fiorot feints her back leg but Fiorot instead throws the lead leg up and over the shoulder to smash home the head kick. From there it’s just finishing instinct as she never allows Leonardo to recover.

Umar Nurmagomedov has been out of action since November of 2019, but he’s had three different bouts fall through while trying to make his UFC debut. Now finally getting into the Octagon he’s trying to remain perfect as a professional and leave a good impression on the UFC audience. Sergey Morozov brings a five fight winning streak into his UFC debut, he’s likewise trying to announce his arrival with a win and at least stall out the budding hype around Nurmagomedov. Nurmagomedov is a prohibitive favorite at -500 to a whopping +400 comeback on Morozov.

Bantamweight Bout: Sergey Morozov (16-3, 135 lbs.) vs. Umar Nurmagomedov (12-0, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Nurmagomedov has two inches of height and reach over Morozov, he’s also seven years younger. They touch gloves to get us going. Nurmagomedov misses a head kick and goes southpaw, lands an inside leg kick and is back to orthodox. Bit of a jab from Morozov. Another inside leg kick from Nurmagomedov, he’s doing a fair bit of switching his stance. Morozov misses a right, but that one got close. Morozov is looking to counter naked kicks with a right, Nurmagomedov decides to hit a double leg then jump to the back and hops into the backpack position as Morozv stands. Nurmagomedov bails on the hooks, hits a mat return from the rear waist lock, then another as Morozov granby rolls. Some scrambling from Morozv, he nearly gets on top but gets free instead. Morozov misses a right hand, he lands an inside leg kick though. Nurmagomedov with a body kick, then a front kick. Morozov forces a clinch and misses a left hook on the break. Another body kick from Nurmagomedov. Morozov avoids a head kick. Nurmagomedov dodges a right and hits a double leg. Nurmagomedov gets the back as Morozov tried to stand, and he’ll end the round with full back mount.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Nurmagomedov

ROUND TWO: Head kick from Nurmagomedov hurts Morozov, he lands punches in close and Morozov is backing up and trying to regain himself. Leg kick from Nurmagomedov, but Morozov seems to have cleared the cobwebs from that. Another head kick from Nurmagomedov is partially blocked, then he lands a hard body kick. Nurmagomedov checks an inside leg kick, then gets a double leg. Morozov back up but Nurmagomedov is on his back but slips off as Morozov stands and separates. Another takedown from Nurmagomedov, he gets the back again and is into the backpack position as Morozov stands. Nurmagomedov gets a mat return, then puts one hook in as they reach the fence. Both hooks in for Nurmagomedov again, and he’s trying to flatten Morozov out. Choke attempt from Nurmagomedov, he has to adjust it a couple of times but does eventually get it and puts Morozov to sleep.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Umar Nurmagomedov via Technical Submission, rear naked choke, at 3:39 of Round 2

Solidly impressive debut from Nurmagomedov, good offensive diversity but still a little rocky off of the back foot. Nurmagomedov gets some mic time, he says he’s happy and feeling good. Khabib is doing his translation, he says this was like Khabib’s win nine years ago but he did it one round sooner than Khabib did.

Sadly this clip doesn’t show the adjustments from Nurmagomedov, he had to switch his grip and deal with hand fighting a few times but maintained the position and ultimately put Morozov to sleep.

Mike Davis has gone 1-1 in the UFC, he was last seen in October of 2019 putting a legitimately uncomfortable to watch beating on Thomas Gifford. Since then he’s had two fights with Giga Chikadze fall out and he’s hoping to have an active 2021 start off with a win. Mason Jones is undefeated coming into his UFC debut, he’s going for a memorable performance to announce his arrival. Davis is a slight -155 favorite to +135 on Jones.

Lightweight Bout: Mike Davis (8-2, 154.5 lbs.) vs. Mason Jones (10-0, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Davis is two inches taller while Jones has an inch and a half of reach advantage. Jones opens with a spinning back kick, Davis gives him a calf kick in reply. Bit of a head kick from Davis. Left to the body then a right from Davis. Davis lands a straight right, then a calf kick. That left to the body from Davis again. Hard right from Davis, then another left to the body. Jones lands a left but Davis is slipping a lot of his offense. Jones lands a leg kick, but Davis gets a takedown off of it and lands punches from half guard before Jones regains his feet. Leg kick from Jones lands. Davis with a left body kick, then a one two. Jones lands a hard calf kick. Davis lands a calf kick. Both men land punches in the pocket, Davis gets another takedown. Jones fights up but eats a knee and they trade rights. Spinning back kick from Jones, Davis lands a right hand counter. Another clinch, Jones with a knee to the body before they break. Davis lands a right. Some calf kicks are traded, Jones lands an uppercut but is taken down again. Davis lands a few punches, Jones back up. Jumping knee from Davis locks up Jones for half a second as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Davis

ROUND TWO: Both men jabbing as the round starts. Hard calf kick from Davis sweeps the legs from Jones, he lands a left as Jones fights back up. Left from Davis in close, Jones lands an uppercut. Bit of a right from Davis, Jones with a right to the body. A series of punches from Jones, Davis responds with a right hand. Jones is just eating punches but he’s still coming forward. Some lefts from Jones, Davis is putting himself on the fence. Calf kick from Jones, Davis hits a right to the body. Davis cracks Jones with a right. Back to the calf from both men. Another right from Davis after a right to the body landed. Jones with a three punch combination to the body and head. Bit of a body kick from Davis, but Jones is firing longer combinations and the punches on the end of them are finding the target. Davis with a calf kick. Bit of a left hook from Davis and he avoids the counters from Jones. Jones with a leg kick and a right to the body. A couple of body shots then a right from Davis wobble Jones. Another right from Davis, then a head kick but Jones takes him down into full guard. Jones has a rock chin. Davis works his guard high as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Davis but a razor close call there, 20-18 Davis overall

ROUND THREE: Jones coming out kicking, Davis with a bit of a left hook. Jones jabs the body, then they both land hooks in close. Stiff jab from Davis, then a couple more body shots. Jones tries a double leg, that stalls out but he lands an elbow. Davis with an elbow of his own as he gets off the fence. Jones is bleeding under the right eye, and his left is swelling a bit. Counter right from Jones. Hard right from Davis. Both men land rights. Leg kick from Jones, then a right to the body. Davis with a stiff left. More front kicks from Jones, the man wont stop coming forward. Davis misses some blows, but lands a right the sprawls away from a takedown and lands a calf kick. Knee from Davis. Another calf kick from Davis, they clinch up and trade in close before separating. Knee to the body from Davis in close, then a calf kick but Jones lands a right. Both men with body kicks, then Jones lands a right. Another clinch on the fence, some short punches from Jones as they break. Davis lands a knee to the body, then they trade as the fight ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Jones and this likely comes down to the second, 29-28 Davis overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Mike Davis via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Heck of a fight there however you scored it, Fight of the Night so far but no interview for Davis.

Jerome Rivera lost pretty badly in his UFC debut when he was stopped by Tyson Nam, he’s trying to bounce back here and get his first win in the UFC. Francisco Figueiredo is the brother of flyweight king Deiveson Figueiredo, and that slightly nepotistic connection probably contributes to his debut here as he hasn’t exactly been active. Figueiredo last fought to a draw in September of 2019, and only had one fight in 2018, but he could leave that behind with an impressive performance now that he’s on the big stage of the UFC. The odds are with Figueredo at -145 while the +125 payout on Rivera is a tempting value bet.

Flyweight Bout: Francisco Figueredo (11-3-1, 126 lbs.) vs. Jerome Rivera (10-3, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Rivera has four inches of height and reach over Figueredo. Southpaw for Rivera. Both men probing with kicks early, but nothing is really landing yet. They clinch up and hit the fence. Some knees to the body go back and forth. Figueredo with a short up elbow and they break. Right from Figueredo. Rivera lands an inside leg kick. Another inside leg kick from Rivera and they clinch up, trade knees. Figueredo with a foot sweep timed with a knee from Rivera and lands in side control. Rivera hip escapes to full guard and starts working from his back. Figueredo lands a few body shots. Both men land strikes. Rivera has a body triangle working, Figueredo lands a hammer fist. Rivera opens his guard, Figueredo stands over Rivera but ultimately disengages and they’re on the feet again. Rivera lands and they clinch up again. Figueredo avoids a trip attempt and is able to separate. Figueredo has gone southpaw now, and lands a left. Rivera lands a leg kick then misses a head kick. Figueredo avoids a takedown, they scramble back up and Rivera is able to ankle pick Figueredo against the fence as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Figueredo

ROUND TWO: Figueredo coming forward as the round starts. Both men kicking, Figueredo has gone southpaw again and is landing leg kicks. They clinch, Rivera basically pulls guard and we’re on the mat again. Rivera is trying to work his guard, Figueredo lands an elbow. More short elbows from Figueredo. Rivera keeps trying to get his guard in play but Figueredo is posturing through it and moves to half guard then lands a knee to the body. Full guard again for Rivera but this doesn’t seem to be a winning proposition for him. Figueredo stands and looks to pass, decides against it and resets on the feet. Rivera is pushing forward, he’s trying to keep Figueredo working, and they clinch up again. Some knees from Rivera as he’s got Figueredo on the fence before Figueredo spins free. A body shot from Figueredo, he seems to like southpaw against the southpaw Rivera as he’s hanging out there. Left from Figueredo, Rivera lands a body kick. Another left from Figueredo but he’s wearing down a bit if his activity is any indicator. Rivera with some front kicks to the body, then lands a left. Another clinch, and that’s where the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Figueredo, 20-18 Figueredo overall

ROUND THREE: Rivera showing offense as the round starts. Figueredo is backing up, but Rivera isn’t really threatening him yet. Both men miss offense. They clinch, Rivera with some knees to the body and he pushes Figueredo into the fence. Little outside reap from Figueredo, and he lands on top in half guard. Rivera wall walks, eats an elbow and they break. Bit of a leg kick from Rivera. One two from Rivera, he eats a leg kick but he’s starting to press the action. Jabs from Rivera miss and Figueredo clinches him into the fence. Short elbow from Rivera as Figueredo is trying to trip him down again. Rivera drops for a double leg, he spins to the back and lands a knee to the head as Figueredo gets back chest to chest. This time it’s Figueredo who slips around to the back, Rivera gets chest to chest quickly. Both men with knees to the body then they break. More pressure from Rivera, he lands an elbow. Figueredo lands a left. Rivera with body shots then a knee, he’s trying for the finish but he walks into a clinch and they hit the fence again. They break, Rivera with a combination in close, he’s trying for the finish. Both men swing, they clinch and Rivera tries a headlock throw and I die inside because Figueredo predictably gets the back. Rivera spins into him, they fight to the feet and stall out the final seconds in the clinch until Figueredo hits a trip to land on top as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Rivera, 29-28 Figueredo overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Francisco Figueiredo via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Decent if unremarkable fight. No interview for Figueiredo.

Dalcha Lungiambula has gone 1-1 in the UFC but has been out of action since November of 2019, he’s trying to put his most recent loss and the inactive 2020 behind him and remind everyone he could be a prospect in the division. Markus Perez has gone just 2-4 in the UFC and is on a two fight losing streak, he needs a win pretty badly here if he wants to salvage his time in the UFC. Lungiambula is a slight -150 favorite to +130 for Perez.

Middleweight Bout: Dalcha Lungiambula (10-2, 186 lbs.) vs. Markus Perez (12-4, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Perez is five inches taller but Lungiambula has three inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Perez, and they touch gloves as they get going. Body kick from Perez. Stiff right from Perez. Blitz from Lungiambula, doesn’t really land but he gets a clinch and then a big slam. Perez grabs a guillotine, Lungiambula moves to half guard on the safe side and Perez bails on that. Full guard for Perez now as Lungiambula landed an elbow. Bit of a right from Lungiambula. Perez gets rubber guard, he’s attacking an omoplata, switches towards a gogoplata but can’t secure it and goes back to a high guard. Elbow from Lungiambula, Perez back towards rubber guard. Perez wraps the head and uses a guillotine threat the regain his feet, he’s controlling Lungiambula and making him work now. Some knees to the thigh from Perez. They break and trade as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Lungiambula

ROUND TWO: Perez with some kicks early, aiming at the body. Lungiambula misses a right. Both men switch stances and Perez lands a couple of body kicks then they go back to orthodox and southpaw. Bit of a right from Lungiambula but he’s fatiguing badly. Perez lands a left. Lungiambula with a clubbing blow to the body and off balances Perez to get on top. Perez tries an armbar, Lungiambula gets free and moves to the ride position as Perez gets to his knees. Perez gets a kimura grip, and falls to roll for it and commits to the shoulder lock but he’s stuck on bottom trying for it. Lungiambula muscles his arm back on the safe side of his hips but Perez is holding the grip. Full guard now for Perez as he bails on the kimura. Lungiambula misses a right but passes to side control. Perez to full guard again. Some short blows from Lungiambula, Perez is trying to hit a sweep or at least sit up on a single leg. More elbows and hammer fists from Lungiambula, Perez is cut in the hair I think. They’ll end the round trading elbows on the mat.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Lungiambula, 20-18 Lungiambula overall

ROUND THREE: Perez coming forward again, he needs a finish. Body kicks from Perez, Lungiambula lands a right to counter. Another clinch and they hit the fence. Some knees from Perez. Both men land knees to the body, Perez is landing a bit more often as they fight for position. Perez misses a spinning elbow as they break. Bit of a left hook from Lungiambula. Perez lands a left. Another clinch, and they’re trading little blows along the fence. They trade rights on the break. Body shot from Perez, and he’s after the clinch again. Lungiambula is defending a double leg attempt. Some knees to the body are traded now, but the ref isn’t happy with the activity and separates them. Another couple of missed punches, and another clinch. Some knees are traded, and Perez takes one low so we’ve got a timeout. Perez doesn’t take long, and they reset on the feet. Lungiambula backs away from kicks as time runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Perez, 29-28 Lungiambula overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Dalcha Lungiambula via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Utterly forgettable, nothing of note. No interview for Lungiambula.

Su Mudaerji has gone 2-1 in the UFC and is on a two fight winning streak, but perhaps more relevant he returned to flyweight for his last fight and scored a quick first round KO. Now Su is looking to keep climbing the flyweight ranks, a division that offers a fairly quick path to the title if the UFC likes you. Zarrukh Adashev lost his UFC debut last year when he was flatlined by Tyson Nam, he also missed weight for that fight at bantamweight but he’s trying his hand at flyweight for this one and at least won the battle with the scale. Adashev is hoping to move beyond his debut loss and prove himself a valuable asset at 125. Su is a heavy -500 favorite to +400 for Adashev.

Flyweight Bout: Zarrukh Adashev (3-2, 126 lbs.) vs. Su Mudaerji (13-4, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Su is three inches taller and has seven inches of reach over Adashev. Southpaw for Su. Inside leg kick from Su, Adashev goes southpaw and lands a left. A lot of stance switching from Adashev. Both men with some punches. Su keeps avoiding some rushes and landing inside leg kicks. Both men land lead hand hooks. Mostly inside leg kicks from Su, neither man has found much meaningful success. Su lands a jab, and Adashev lands a counter left. Adashev coming forward now, lands a bit of a right. Adashev misses some looping hooks, he’s just exploding forward and wading but not really measuring or setting up. Inside leg kick from Adashev. Bit of a left from Su will be the last blow of the round.


ROUND TWO: Su avoids some punches, Adashev still has no read on the range. A prolonged rush from Adashev and he lands a left on the end of it. Su lands an inside leg kick. Left from Su lands flush. Adashev avoids a spinning attack and lands rights from the back then a left hook as Su gets free. Bit of a right from Su. Right hook from Adashev drops Su for a second, but Su bounces back up. Both men with punches that don’t quite land. Counter right hook from Su drops Adashev to his knees, Adashev back up but he got wobbled badly. Su with a left, he’s stalking forward and looking to finish but Adashev is circling not just backing up. They spend the last 30 seconds or so circling while Su fires a few kicks.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Su, 20-18 Su overall

ROUND THREE: Both men swinging early, but not landing. Su lands a leg kick. Adashev blocks a high kick but can’t find the follow up offense. Bit of a left from Su. Another left from Su. Su lands an inside leg kick. Adashev just can’t find a way into his range, as commentary makes jokes about shepparding. Su blocks a combination. Both men miss punches but Adashev is the one who looks like he’s losing. Bit of a left from Su and Adashev falls short on his attempted counters. Both men land inside leg kicks, Adashev lands a right. Some forward pressure from Adashev, he lands a bit of a left hook. Left from Su. Adashev comes forward and swings, he lands a bit of a right but that’ll be the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Adashev I guess, but a low impact round, 29-28 Su overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Su Mudaerji via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2)

There was some interesting stuff on occasion but the fight felt like it hit the rhythm in the first and never deviated. Su does get an interview, he isn’t happy as he wanted to do more in the fight. He says his lead hand is his main weapon and he’s trying to learn in that respect from people like Max Holloway. I mean there’s a lot to learn from Holloway, and his lead hand work is quite good.

Ricky Simon fought to a split decision win over Ray Borg the last time we saw him, that was back in May of 2020 and he’s trying to get another UFC winning streak up and running here. Gaetano Pirrello brings a two fight winning streak into his UFC debut, and he’s got a real shot to gain some notoriety here given Simon’s standing in the promotion and his time with them. Simon is a big -500 favorite to a +400 payout on Pirrello.

Bantamweight Bout: Gaetano Pirrello (15-5-1, 136 lbs.) vs. Ricky Simon (16-3, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pirrello is an inch taller while Simon has an inch of reach advantage. Forward pressure from Simon early. Leg kick from Pirrello. Bit of a right from Simon, he tries a double leg and Pirrello defends. Simon lands a right. The right from Simon is landing, he tries another takedown but the effort hits the fence. Quick angle change from Simon and he’s got Pirrello down in half guard. Pirrello to full guard, scrambles back up but Simon grabs a rear waist lock and keeps the clinch on the fence. Simon drops for a double leg, gets a bit elevated slam and moves to half guard on the fence. Pirrello wall walks but is still clinched and Simon rides him back down to his base. Simon puts one hook in, Pirrello back up and gets chest to chest and Simon drops for a single leg. Spinning elbow from Simon misses but he uses that to drop for the double leg and gets Pirrello down again. Some punches and hammer fists from Simon ad he’s in half guard. Pirrello kicks him off and stands. Bit of a kick from Simon, and Pirrello misses a spinning back kick as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Simon

ROUND TWO: Simon misses a front kick and spinning back fist to start the round. Pirrello is stalking forward, lands a couple of lefts then an inside leg kick. Knee from Pirrello to the face, Simon just eats it and gets after a double leg against the fence. Simon gets the double leg, Pirrello is trying to wall walk but is getting smooshed into the fence. Some lefts from Simon, Pirrello does wall walk but is still clinched. Simon drops to a double leg and gets it. Full mount for Simon, but Pirrello hip escapes and wall walks but still can’t get free. Simon with another takedown along the fence, it’s getting easier for him to hit those. Pirrello wall walks again but he can’t get free. Another double leg from Simon, this time he lands in mount. Pirrello shrimps to half guard but Simon grabs an arm triangle, patiently squeezes and eventually gets the tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ricky Simon via Submission, arm triangle choke, at 4:00 of Round 2

Mic time for Simon, who says he’s a wrestler who just tires to disguise it with his striking and mentions his credentials and puts over his coaches. He talks us through the finish, and mentions he loves to lift and slam people. Asked who he’d like next he wants to fight Brian Kelleher, a sensible callout.

This is nice from Simon, he uses the same hip motion that Pirrello is using to escape mount to secure the arm triangle and get the tap.

Apparently that will end the prelims, though we’re still on ESPN/ESPN+ for the main card.

Omari Akhmedov just had a six fight unbeaten broken when he dropped a decision to Chris Weidman, he’s trying to bounce back and avoid his second UFC losing streak. Tom Breese went 1-1 last year but he’s coming off of a good performance and is hoping to build on that for his first winning streak since 2016. The odds are with Breese at -150 to +130 for Akhmedov.

Middleweight Bout: #13 Omari Akhmedov (20-5-1, 186 lbs.) vs. Tom Breese (12-2, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Breese is three inches taller but has just half an inch of reach over Akhmedov. Southpaw for Breese. Both men swing power hand punches that don’t quite find the mark. Akhmedov on a double leg, Breese grabs a guillotine but can’t keep it and Akhmedov moves to half guard. Some short elbows from Akhmedov. Breese is trying to set up a hip escape, Akhmedov keeps landing punches. Finally back to full guard for Breese. Akhmedov with hammer fists and punches. There’s some swelling on the right cheekbone of Breese. Akhmedov goes Donkey Kong with punches from guard, he’s got some power here. Breese to his knees looking to regain his feet, Akhmedov spins to the back and lands blows before Breese gets full guard. Akhmedov moves to half guard and lands lefts. Breese is able to kick him off and regain his feet but Akhmedov is after another takedown and gets it. Breese looks to tie up the legs, Akhmedov avoids an inside heel hook. Akhmedov doesn’t get his leg all the way back and Breese uses the entanglement to trip Akhmedov and then he spins to the back. Both hooks in for Breese and he’s after the choke. Akhmedov holds off the choke attempt for the final 30 seconds or so.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Akhmedov

ROUND TWO: Slower start to this round, Akhmedov with a bit of a right. Single leg from Akhmedov, he drives into the fence with that and they stall out. Akhmedov is really committed to the single leg, Breese counters with a spladdle attempt, he grabs at a calf slicer from the bottom as Akhmedov sits into 3/4 mount. Full mount now, Akhmedov grabs an arm triangle choke and forces Breese to tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Omari Akhmedov via Submission, arm triangle choke, at 1:41 of Round 2

If Akhmedov has figured out his energy issues he’s a real problem for the division. Mic time for Akhmedov, he says he had a great camp and was ready to maintain the pace he set. He talks us through the finish, noting he’s been drilling that submission all camp.

This is a nice little move from the calf slicer threat into full mount from Akhmedov. From there he locks up the arm triangle, and patiently squeezes until Breese has to tap.

Lerone Murphy is undefeated as a professional including a draw and win in the UFC, he’s coming off of that win and is looking to continue building positive momentum in a deep division. Douglas Silva de Andrade scored a win in his return to featherweight in 2019 and now he’s trying to build his first winning streak since 2016 and really settle into the division. The odds are with Murphy at -320 to a tempting value payout of +260 on de Andrade.

Featherweight Bout: Lerone Murphy (9-0-1, 146 lbs.) vs. Douglas Silva de Andrade (26-3 1 NC, 145 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Murphy is two inches taller and has five inches of reach over de Andrade. Southpaw for de Andrade and they touch gloves to get us going. Murphy goes southpaw as well now. Both men probing early with offense, bit of a jab from Murphy. De Andrade switches his stance, and lands an inside leg kick. Both men doing a lot of stance switching at this point. Murphy is managing distance quite well, he lands a calf kick. De Andrade lands a calf kick. Bit of a right from Murphy, then he misses a head kick. Murphy with another calf kick. Right to the body from Murphy, de Andrade needs to change things up because fighting at distance is not working for him. Murphy checks a calf kick and lands a right hand. A couple of rights from Murphy, de Andrade lands a body kick. Bit of a blitz from de Andrade, mostly blocked but that was a nice sign of life. Murphy lands another calf kick. De Andrade grabs a single leg, that stalls out on the fence and they break with a couple of elbows. Another calf kick from Murphy. That will be the last relevant blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Murphy

ROUND TWO: De Andrade comes out swinging, but not landing much. Murphy tries a kick, de Andrade takes him down and gets his back in a nice scramble. Body triangle from de Andrade, Murphy breaks it though and escapes to his feet. Calf kick from Murphy, that leg is hurt. They punch into a clinch, Murphy lands a knee. De Andrade with a knee to the body, but eats an elbow. Murphy tries a body lock takedown, but de Andrade reverses and lands on top. De Andrade to full mount, Murphy to his knees and wall walks up. They get chest to chest, Murphy digs the body with knees and punches then breaks. De Andrade avoids a calf kick but that leg is hurt. Hard left to the body from de Andrade, that got Murphy’s attention in a hurry. Murphy avoids a clinch and lands a right, but ate an elbow on the way. Calf kicks are traded. Murphy catches a kick and lands a right. Pull back right from Murphy, then another calf kick. De Andrade punches in close, Murphy fires back. A right from Murphy closes the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Murphy, 20-18 Murphy overall

ROUND THREE: Some hand fighting early, de Andrade slips on a spinning kick, that left leg is toast. De Andrade is having to be southpaw to protect that leg. Both men land power hand punches. Bit of a right from Murphy. A right from de Andrade wobbles Murphy, he pushes into a clinch though and Murphy is stalling things out. Murphy digs the body on the break, de Andrade lands a right as well. There’s a kick to the groin of Murphy so we’ve got time for him to recover. Murphy can continue so we’re back to fighting. De Andrade is coming forward, they trade knees to the body. Clubbing right from de Andrade lands. They trade in close, credit to Murphy’s toughness and de Andrade’s grit because neither is giving up. Murphy with a jab to the body then a right to the head. Murphy with a calf kick. De Andrade lands a right, he’s still marching forward. Murphy after a single leg, that stalls on the fence though. They trade punches in the clinch, Murphy gets a trip and scrambles to top position. Murphy in half guard, de Andrade trying to frame with his arms and he does get full guard. That’s where the fight will end, with a flurry from Murphy.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Murphy but the closest round of the fight, 30-27 Murphy overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Lerone Murphy via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28 x2)

No issues with de Andrade taking the third, but too little too late in any event. Mic time for Murphy, because this event needs to drag on further. Murphy says he’s not too pleased with his performance, and dedicates the win to his grandmother who’s funeral he had to watch on a phone in quarantine. That’s rough. He puts over the power of de Andrade, then says he still hasn’t shown the best of himself.

Matt Schnell has been bouncing between bantamweight and flyweight during his time in the UFC, and just had a four fight winning streak snapped when he was stopped by Alexandre Pantoja. Now Schnell is trying to bounce back from that loss and start climbing the flyweight ranks again. Tyson Nam is on a winning streak up at bantamweight, he’s back at flyweight for this fight though and is trying for his first win in that division during his UFC run. Nam is a slight -130 favorite to +110 for Schnell.

Flyweight Bout: #13 Tyson Nam (20-11-1, 126 lbs.) vs. #9 Matt Schnell (14-5, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Schnell is an inch taller and has two inches of reach advantage. Schnell feinting forward early, Nam trips him up but wont engage with him on the mat. Bit of a left hook from Schnell in close. Front kick to the body from Schnell. Nam lands an inside leg kick. Right from Nam partially lands. Schnell lands a right of his own, but he doesn’t seem to have the power to trouble Nam. Left hook from Schnell, he’s got some good technique but he needs to get Nam’s respect and he doesn’t yet. Nam checks a leg kick. Neither man has a good feel on the timing or distance yet, they’re still kind of getting a feel for each other. Nam lands a right to the body. Schnell avoids a few punches. Right from Nam but Schnell with a combination to counter that lands flush. Nam lands a jab. Schnell with a left hook, he lands a right at the end of that. Nam misses a kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Schnell

ROUND TWO: Both men punching again. Schnell’s accuracy and volume are starting to get to Nam a bit. Nam lands a looping right hook. Hard right from Nam, Schnell just eats it but that was a hard punch. Schnell baits a right and lands a left then a leg kick. Nam’s face is busted up from the constant work Schnell is putting in. Both men land rights, Schnell follows it up with a left hook. Short left hook from Schnell lands. Another left hook from Schnell in close, he’s finding the target more than Nam. Schnell lands a jab. Combination from Schnell, Nam fires back with one and both men were partially successful. Schnell lands a body kick but takes a bit of a right in return. Nam with a right to the body. Jab from Schnell. Nam’s body work has been a good adjustment so far. Schnell avoids some punches, and lands a left hook. Quick counter combination from Schell closes the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Schnell, 20-18 Schnell overall

ROUND THREE: Both men back to exchanging, Schnell’s hand speed and quick movements in the pocket are carrying the day though. Both men land rights in close. Body kick from Schnell. Nam lands a left hook. Double jab from Nam, another good choice as it’ll help with distance, but he misses the right. Schnell lands a calf kick. A couple of lefts land for Schnell. Combination from Schnell, Nam lands a left. Some more lead hand work from Schnell and he avoids a looping right from Nam. Both men land in close but the volume of Schnell is still a problem for Nam. Some body to head punches from both men in close. Schnell lands a left hook. Nam can’t find the target this round. Bit of a right from Nam. Nam lands a left hook in close, then they trade in the pocket. Schnell backs away for the final seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Schnell but I’m not sold on that one, 30-27 Schnell overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Matt Schnell via split decision (28-29, 29-28 x2)

I do not understand that split at all, Nam getting the third is probably correct but the first two seemed like Schnell rounds. Schnell on the mic, he doesn’t like the split either and notes that Nam hits hard but he kept chipping him away all fight. He says he felt good and feels he had the much higher punch count. Asked who he’d like next he says flyweight is wide open with good fights, and says he’ll call the matchmaker tonight and they’ll figure it out.

The broadcast confirms a fight rumored for UFC 258, the welterweight title fight between champion Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns. Nice to have that made official, and that is probably the most compelling bout for the dominant champion.

Roxanne Modafferi has been trading wins and losses since returning to the UFC in 2017, she’s coming off of a win though and is trying to secure back to back wins for the first time in either of her UFC stints. Viviane Araujo has gone 3-1 in the UFC only losing a decision to Jessica Eye after Eye missed weight, she’s coming off of a win and is hoping to take aim at someone in the top five if she can best Modafferi. Araujo is the favorite at -330 while a Modafferi win would pay out at +270.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: #9 Viviane Araujo (9-2, 126 lbs.) vs. #8 Roxanne Modafferi (25-17, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Modafferi is three inches taller and has an inch of reach over Araujo. Both women circling and probing with punches, Araujo lands a few straight rights while switching stances and angling. Both women with some lefts, Araujo’s jab is working quite well. Right to the body from Araujo. Left uppercut from Araujo lands flush. Modafferi’s right eye is already swelling and red from the lefts Araujo has landed. Bit of a right from Araujo then a calf kick. Left hook from Araujo wobbles Modafferi. Modafferi rushes forward, Araujo with a step off right and Modafferi gets dropped but she gets up quickly. Those jabs from Araujo are really doing a number on Modafferi. Some stance switching from Araujo, she mostly works from orthodox and lands another right hook. Straight left from Araujo. Modafferi ducks under a punch and gets a clinch that hits the fence. Araujo slips out to the back and mat returns Modafferi to her knees. Rights from Araujo, she gets the back and starts looking for the choke but she’s only got one hook in and short time. Modafferi will see the end of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Araujo

ROUND TWO: Araujo back to bouncing, circling, and picking apart Modafferi at range. Araujo with a right, she’s moving very well and hitting Modafferi at distance. Stiff jab from Araujo. Modafferi tries a single leg, Araujo limp legs free and spins to the back standing and lands punches. Modafferi spins free and avoids an elbow. Araujo with more jabs. Calf kick from Araujo, Modafferi lands a counter right. A couple of rights from Araujo, Modafferi is trying to pressure forward but she’s running into punches. Right from Modafferi lands, she tries a takedown but Araujo avoids it and resets. Araujo lands a jab, and gets a double leg into side control. Modafferi is cut around the right eye now, probably that last jab from Araujo. A few shoulder strikes from Araujo as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Araujo, 20-17 Araujo overall

ROUND THREE: Modafferi is coming forward swinging but she’s missing and eating punches. Takedown for Modafferi, Araujo scrambles up and gets into the clinch on the fence. Single leg from Araujo into side control. They separate, Araujo back to jabbing. That right eye of Modafferi is swelling up and could be a problem. Combination from Modafferi, she’s pressing forward still. Right from Araujo. Modafferi still pressing forward, they clinch up and Araujo drives her into the fence. They fight there for a bit then break. Araujo avoids a punch and gets a double leg in open space into the full guard for Modafferi. Modafferi is trying to get her guard working, Araujo knee slices to half guard then straight into side control. That’s where the clock will run down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Araujo, 30-26 Araujo overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Viviane Araujo via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27 x2)

Araujo is a real threat in that division, sharp on the feet and the ground in addition to being physically strong. She gets an interview, she starts in English and thanks the city and the UFC brass then puts over Modafferi and is quite happy with the win. She goes to Portuguese now, and mentions how hard she worked on her boxing in camp. Asked who she wants next she wants anyone, just wants to remain active.

Isaac Villaneuva has gone 0-2 in the UFC, his saving grace being that those were mostly entertaining brawls but that kind of good will only lasts so long and he could really use that first UFC win here. Vinicius Moreira has gone 0-3 in the UFC and has been finished in the first round in each case, he’s very likely fighting for his job here. The odds are with Villanueva at -120 to an even +100 on Moreira.

Light Heavyweight Bout: Vinicius Moreira (9-4, 206 lbs.) vs. Ike Villanueva (16-11, 206 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Moreira has three inches of height and reach over Villanueva. Both men kind of feinting as the round starts. Moreira lands a front kick to the body. Villanueva with some punches in close, then he checks a leg kick. Moreira is covering up and not firing back, so when Villanueva fires hooks he’s hitting the forearms more often than not. Uppercut from Villanueva. Leg kick from Moreira. Combination from Villanueva, again mostly blocked you can only cover up and hope to block those for so long. Villanueva is starting to go to the body now, a good choice on someone who uses that kind of guard. Right to the body from Villanueva. Moreira with some front kicks, but he’s not offering a whole lot. Villanueva lands a right, the fourth in his combination but he finally got around the guard. Moreira lands a superman punch. Villanueva with another left to the body. Moreira with a body kick, and eats a counter right. Villanueva lands an uppercut. They trade rights, and then in a very uncoordinated fashion try to swing. Bit of a right from Villanueva, he’s not working the body as much anymore. Moreira kicks the body, Villanueva with a counter right. A Moreira superman punch closes the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Villanueva

ROUND TWO: Both men miss punches to start the second. Bit of a right from Villanueva. Moreira walks into a right hand, and he’s OUT.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ike Villanueva via KO, punch, at :39 of Round 2

Not a good fight, but a finish at least. Mic time for Villanueva, he says he’s just a blue collar Mexican from Texas who puts in the work. He calls last year the ugliest year of his life, gives love to his family, and says you can’t stop anyone with his work ethic. He talks us through the finish, mentioning his body work helping to set up the finish. To close he will fight whenever the UFC needs, and says he’s got to be back at his regular job on Monday.

There isn’t a whole lot of technique here, but enjoy the KO.

Warlley Alves has gone 3-2 in his last five fights, he lost his last fight and missed all of 2020 so now he’s trying to re-establish his presence in the promotion and the division. Mounir Lazzez debuted in the UFC last year with a win over Abdul Razak Alhassan that got him to a three fight winning streak, he’s trying to extend that here and start the long march through the welterweight division. Lazzez is your favorite at -240 while the +200 payout on Alves might tempt a few bettors out there.

Welterweight Bout: Warlley Alves (13-4, 171 lbs.) vs. Mounir Lazzez (10-1, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Lazzez is two inches taller and has four inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Leg kick from Alves and he punches into a clinch right away then they hit the fence. Knee from Lazzez. Lazzez defends a trip attempt and he spins Alves into the fence. Short elbows from Alves now, then a spinning back fist that stuns Lazzez and he clinches back up. Cross body hip toss from Alves, Lazzez quickly gets half guard. Some lefts from Alves, Lazzez wall walks but is still clinched. Spinning elbow from Lazzez but Alves keeps the clinch. They break and Alves with a trio of liver kicks that crumple Lazzez and Alves pounds him out on the mat.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Warlley Alves via TKO, body kicks, at 2:35 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Warlley for his work this afternoon. Mic time for Alves, who talks about the injuries he’s had to overcome to get back into the cage. He talks us through the finish, and puts over his coaches for getting him ready. Asked who he wants next he doesn’t like calling people out because acrimony isn’t a good image for the sport, but he wants to fight Nate Diaz and prove that winners don’t do drugs.

Here’s the finish, you can see Lazzez partially block these but the force is such that his own elbow is getting driven into the liver and he just can’t sustain under the barrage.

Michael Chiesa has been with the UFC since 2012 but he seems to have found consistency now that he’s moved up to welterweight. Chiesa is undefeated in that weight class including his current three fight winning streak, and a win here could line him up for a fight with someone in the title picture. Neil Magny is also on a three fight winning streak and looking to take aim at the title picture with a win. The odds like Magny at -140 while Chiesa’s comeback sits at +120.

Welterweight Bout: #8 Michael Chiesa (17-4, 170.5 lbs.) vs. #9 Neil Magny (24-7, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Magny is two inches taller and has four and a half inches of reach over Chiesa. Southpaw for Chiesa, lands an inside leg kick. Both men probing with the lead hand. They clinch up, then break without anything really happening. Chiesa with a front kick to the body. Another leg kick from Chiesa. Magny coming forward now, trying to jab but not finding it much. Bit of a body kick from Chiesa. Chiesa slips a right, he’s the one coming forward now. Left from Chiesa lands. Right hook then a left from Chiesa both land. Magny misses some punches, but lands a right at the end of the combination. They clinch, Chiesa then hits a body lock takedown into half guard. Chiesa looking to pass, Magny stops that but Chiesa is after his arm and that attack stops a sweep attempt from Magny so they wind up still in half guard. Some short elbows from Chiesa. Chiesa passes to full mount just before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Chiesa

ROUND TWO: Chiesa circling and jabbing as the round starts. Bit of a right from Magny. Chiesa with a front kick to the body, clinches up and starts looking for the takedown against the fence. Magny gets a body lock and is after his own takedown. Some pummeling from Chiesa, he’s got the body lock now. Takedown from Chiesa, and he lands in the guard. Magny throws up a triangle, Chiesa rolls through and keeps top position. They scoot to the fence and Magny wall walks but is still clinched. Chiesa reverses a clinch takedown attempt and lands on top in the guard of Magny. Elbows from Chiesa, Magny is hurt from that and Chiesa passes to 3/4 mount. Magny gets half guard but Chiesa has control now. Chiesa is looking to pass, he winds up in half guard on the other side and lands some elbows. Some more short punches from Chiesa, then an elbow. Magny gets butterfly guard, but eats an elbow and Chiesa moves to half guard again. The round ends in that spot.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Chiesa, 20-18 Chiesa overall

ROUND THREE: Chiesa circling again, Magny trying to come forward. Magny with a blitz into a clinch and they start fighting for position. Chiesa is able to break the body lock and start fighting for position. Magny gets a body lock takedown, he jumps to the back and gets one hook in. Chiesa is looking to wall walk, he’s up and still clinched. Chiesa lands an elbow and they break. Magny lands a front kick but he eats a counter left hand. Lefts from Chiesa as he gets another clinch on the fence. Magny slips to the back standing, Chiesa gets chest to chest again. Cheisa’s turn to slip to the back, he tries a few different trips but Magny stalls that and forces him to hit a high crotch and they wind up in a leg entanglement with Chiesa coming out on top in full mount. Lovely move from Chiesa there. Chiesa has to bail as Magny scrambles, he grabs the neck and forces Magny back down and he’s on top in half guard. Elbow from Chiesa, Magny tries to attack the legs but just eats another punch as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Chiesa but could legitimately go either way, 30-27 Chiesa overall

ROUND FOUR: Magny coming forward again, Chiesa circling. Hard right from Chiesa and he gets a takedown into the guard of Magny. Magny closes the guard and starts trying to strike, Chiesa with blows from the top. Elbows and punches from Chiesa. Chiesa passes to half guard and starts trying to attack the arm of Magny. Magny scoots to the fence and tries to wall walk but Chiesa is on his back with both hooks in. Full body triangle for Chiesa now and he’s landing some punches. Magny tries to turn into him, but Chiesa rides him and gets full mount. Scramble from Magny, Chiesa jumps onto his back and starts looking for another takedown. Bit of an elbow from Chiesa and he breaks free. Jumping knee from Magny but we’re clinched again. Chiesa looks for a single leg, Magny threatens with an inverted triangle but there isn’t much there other than control. Some elbows to the kidney from Magny, that’s just mean. Chiesa slips his head free and is in side control. Magny gets half guard, and that’s where the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Chiesa, 40-36 Chiesa overall

ROUND FIVE: Magny likely needs a finish here. They touch gloves for the final round. Magny coming forward, Chiesa circling. Both men showing the jab, Chiesa is running clock but lands a left hand. Glancing left from Chiesa. Magny punches forward, but gets clinched and Chiesa is on his back looking for trips. They wind up chest to chest, Magny then slips around and tries a trip but he winds up on bottom and Chiesa is on top in half guard. Chiesa steps over the head, he’s landing some lefts as he moves around to half guard on the other side. Magny goes to his knees, Chiesa into the ride and forces Magny to his back again. More work from half guard by Chiesa, he’s landing short blows but he’s staying busy enough to avoid even a hint of a stand up. Full mount now for Chiesa, nice pass. Magny quickly hip escapes to half guard. Magny tries to scramble, but Chiesa moves to full mount. Some blows from Chiesa as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Chiesa, 50-45 Chiesa overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Michael Chiesa via unanimous decision (49-46 x3)

An impressive win for Chiesa even if it wasn’t the most crowd pleasing, and no issues with Magny taking the third. Mic time for Chiesa, who puts over Magny and says he wanted to push through five rounds. Then says the election is over, Colby Covington’s schtick is done and he wants him next.

On that note, UFC on ESPN 20 is done. Thanks for reading, be that live or after the fact. Saturday is the big PPV when Conor McGregor returns to battle Dustin Poirier, so I’ll be back here per usual. Until next time everyone thanks again, stay safe out there and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.

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UFC on ESPN+ 20, Robert Winfree