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July 22, 2023 | Posted by Robert Winfree
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MAIN CARD (ESPN+, 3 p.m. ET)
#5 Tom Aspinall (258 lbs.) vs. #10 Marcin Tybura (246 lbs.)
Molly McCann (125 lbs.) vs. Julija Stoliarenko (125 lbs.)
Andre Fili (145 lbs.) vs. Nathaniel Wood (146 lbs.)
Paul Craig (186 lbs.) vs. #14 Andre Muniz (185 lbs.)
Jai Herbert (155 lbs.) vs. Fares Ziam (155 lbs.)
Josh Culibao (146 lbs.) vs. Lerone Murphy (146 lbs.)

Davey Grant (136 lbs.) vs. Daniel Marcos (136 lbs.)
Jonny Parsons (171 lbs.) vs. Danny Roberts (171 lbs.)
Joel Alvarez (156 lbs.) vs. Marc Diakiese (156 lbs.)
Mick Parkin (264 lbs.) vs. Jamal Pogues (266 lbs.)
Bryan Barberena (185 lbs.) vs. Makhmud Muradov (186 lbs.)
#7 Pannie Kianzad (136 lbs.) vs. #4 Ketlen Vieira (135 lbs.)
Yanal Ashmouz (155 lbs.) vs. Chris Duncan (156 lbs.)
Shauna Bannon (115 lbs.) vs. Bruna Brasil (115 lbs.)
Daniel Barez (125 lbs.) vs. Jafel Filho (126 lbs.)

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 82, I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the event. Today the UFC is back in London and they’ve brought a lot of the usual suspects for UK events with them. The main event sees rising contender Tom Aspinall return from a pretty bad knee injury he suffered when fighting Curtis Blaydes almost exactly one year ago. Aspinall had been looking every bit a future title contender so seeing how he’s recovered from that injury when he takes on Marcin Tybura will be informative. Elsewhere on the card there are a few notable fights such as Nathaniel Wood continuing his featherweight campaign when he takes on Andre Fili, Paul Craig making his middleweight debut against Andre Muniz, and top prospects Lerone Murphy and Josh Culibao battling things out. On the prelims a few things stand out, Davey Grant is good for a fun fight, Joel Alvarez showed promise before running into Arman Tsarukyan, Makhumd Muradov needs a win pretty badly to regain the promise he showed earlier and he’s taking on Bryan Barberena in Barberena’s middleweight debut. While this isn’t the kind of card that jumps off the page at you it’s got some decent depth, so let’s hope the action delivers.

UFC on ESPN+ 82 comes to the world from the O2 Arena in London, England, UK. On commentary we’ve got John Gooden, Paul Felder, and Michael Bisping. This is a trio that I’ve heard before and generally enjoy. As for the rules I think we’re mostly under the newer ones, but I’m not sure about the use of Instant Replay so I’ll let you know if/when that becomes clear. Also keep in mind we’re in the 30 foot cage instead of the 25 footer that’s in the Apex.

Jafel Filho suffered a loss in his UFC debut earlier this year but now he’s back in action and trying to find that all important first UFC win. Daniel Barez brings a four fight winning streak into his UFC debut, and he’s trying to continue flying the flag for Spanish MMA when he tries to make the most of his only chance for a good first impression. This one closed at a -110 pick ’em.

Flyweight Bout: Daniel Barez (16-5, 125 lbs.) vs. Jafel Filho (14-3, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Filho is an inch taller with two and a half inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Filho opens with some leg kicks. Barez stalks forward and lands a one two. Barez avoids a takedown attempt and lands a few jabs. Calf kick from Barez, then another one. Filho walks into a left hook, then eats a calf kick as well. Filho lands a calf kick of his own but he’s getting a little wild already. Barez digs a left to the body then lands a right hand. Another body to head combination drops Filho but Barez makes him stand. Hard body kick from Barez and again makes Filho stand. Filho misses a left hook and Barez lands a body kick. Hard left to the body from Barez, that one hurt but Filho is still upright. Filho lands some punches of his own now, he’s biting down and firing back and he’s got Barez backing up. Barez lands a right hand then lands a combination against the fence but Filho blitzes off of it. Body shot from Filho then he hits a takedown. Barez works to wall walk, winds up pulling half guard. Filho is after an arm triangle, he passes to mount with it and Barez has to tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jafel Filho via Submission, arm triangle, at 1:34 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Filho for his work this evening. Wild fight for as long as it lasted. Mic time for Filho and the translator, he admits to feeling the body shots but he started moving forward and swinging heavy hands to set up the finish. He says he’s a complete MMA fighter and thanks his coaches for helping make him a complete fighter.

Very fundamentally sound arm triangle from Filho here. I’m curious about Barez not following Filho down the second time he dropped him, the first time I could understand but the second felt like a missed opportunity. Kudos to Filho for persevering through the adversity and finding the finish.

Bruna Brasil dropped her UFC debut back in April but that snapped a respectable seven fight winning streak. Now Brasil is trying to avoid her first ever losing streak. Shauna Bannon is undefeated coming into her UFC debut and will be trying to make it a spectacular one. Brasil closed as the favorite at -140 to +120 for Bannon.

Strawweight Bout: Shauna Bannon (5-0, 115 lbs.) vs. Bruna Brasil (8-3-1, 115 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Brasil is an inch taller with half an inch of reach advantage. Bannon lands a calf kick, Brasil looks a lot bigger of the two. They trade calf kicks as the “woos” show up. Brasil lands a front kick tot he body. Bit of a right from Brasil. Both women are showing some stance switches now. Hard right from Brasil lands. Bannon walks into a left hook. Brasil angles away from a blitz, Bannon is attacking in straight lines. One two from Brasil then a calf kick. Bannon falls short on another blitz, then Brasil lands a calf kick. Head kick from Brasil lands, but Bannon is able to eat it. A few punches from Bannon get through against the fence. Brasil lands another calf kick. Bannon misses some punches. Brasil lands a right hand that wobbles Bannon but I don’t think Brasil realizes it. Right hand then a left high kick from Brasil. Bannon reaches with a right hand and eats a counter left hook from Brasil. Brasil avoids some kicks. Bannon misses a wheel kick. A blitz from Brasil falls a little short to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Brasil

ROUND TWO: Brasil gets back to leg kicking. Right to the body from Brasil. Bit of a side kick from Bannon. Brasil lands another leg kick. Another leg kick from Brasil. Brasil avoids a right hand but Bannon forces a clinch. They trade some knees in the clinch while fighting for position. More knees from Brasil, she’s got a slightly more active clinch game. They fight over trips but neither finds one, then Brasil lands a knee to the body. The ref has seen enough and breaks them, given the lack of positional advancement I can see it. Brasil cracks Bannon with a left hook. Bit of a jab from Bannon, then Brasil lands a left of her own. Bannon keeps using a side kick to try and keep distance but there’s not a ton of force behind it, if Brasil slips to her right she could come down with a counter. Both women miss punches. Spinning back kick from Brasil, then a spinning back fist because we’re throwing spinning stuff now. Takedown from Brasil and she’s on top in half guard. A few short punches and elbows from Brasil land to close out the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Bannon misses a wheel kick. Bit of a side kick from Bannon. Brasil is circling and blocking the offense. They trade rights. Bit of a left from Brasil as Bannon was coming forward. Bannon lands an ax kick but can’t follow up. Stiff jab from Brasil. Brasil misses a head kick. Bannon tries to get her jab working, quite a bit too late but it’s landing. Brasil lands a left hook. They trade lefts. Brasil misses a left hook. A right from Bannon lands. They tie up and Brasil lands some knees before they hit the fence. There’s just a lack of pummeling and hand fighting from both women in the clinch, they’re just holding 50/50 and landing small strikes. Brasil gets a body lock but can’t find a takedown yet. Brasil hits a takedown into half guard. Full mount for Brasil now, 20 seconds left in the round. Bannon scrambles to full guard and Brasil lands punches. Elbow from Brasil, Bannon tries an armbar but there’s no time and the round expires.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Bannon, 29-28 Brasil overall

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

Not sure I agree with 30-27, but Brasil winning is the right call. No interview for the winner, with 15 fights on this card if you don’t get a finish you’re probably not talking until we hit the main card.

Chris Duncan is on a three fight winning streak that includes a contentious split decision win in his UFC debut, but he’s trying to continue that success here with a more emphatic victory. Yanal Ashmouz is undefeated including a win in his UFC debut, he’s trying to remain perfect with another memorable win while proving himself a notable prospect in the division. Another close one by the odds, but they lean towards Duncan at -150 to +130 on Ashmouz.

Lightweight Bout: Yanal Ashmouz (7-0, 155 lbs.) vs. Chris Duncan (10-1, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Duncan is an inch taller with three and a half inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Ashmouz fires a wheel kick but Duncan blocks it. Duncan stalks forward and has a right hand blocked. Ashmouz lands a leg kick. Both men swing punches and partially land in close. Duncan misses a combination. Leg kick from Duncan. Bit of a left from Ashmouz. Duncan lands a right uppercut in close. Bit of a jab from Duncan. Duncan lands a right hand. Ashmouz misses a head kick. Ashmouz tries a takedown but Duncan defends. A couple of punches from Duncan land. A right from Ashmouz partially wobbles Duncan then lands a calf kick. Duncan lands a body kick. A knee from Duncan lands, then he takes Ashmouz down just before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Duncan

ROUND TWO: Ashmouz was checking out his left arm between rounds, it might be injured. Some southpaw play from Ashmouz, he’s definitely somewhat favoring that left hand and might have broken the arm blocking a kick in the first. Duncan lands an inside leg kick. Some kicks go back and forth, then Duncan lands a knee. Right hand from Duncan, he’s just picking Ashmouz apart now. Bit of a right form Ashmouz but he’s getting a little desperate. Duncan is bleeding from the nose, seems like something from Ashmouz got through. Bit of a right from Ashmouz. Ashmouz misses a few high kicks. They trade rights then Ashmouz lands a leg kick. Duncan lands a knee. Right hand then a front kick from Ashmouz. Wheel kick from Ashmouz partially lands then a leg kick behind it. Both men land in close, Duncan might be fading but I’m not sure why. Bit of a head kick from Duncan. Duncan blocks a high kick, then tries a takedown but Ashmouz defends. Ashmouz slips throwing a knee but Duncan doesn’t follow him down before the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: More kicks from Ashmouz, then he lands a right hand but Duncan counters with three punches that land. Duncan lands a knee. Stiff jab from Duncan, then another one. Duncan lands a right hand. Ashmouz lands a body kick. One two from Duncan, but Ashmouz lands a right hand of his own. If Ashmouz’s left hand and arm is as badly hurt as it seems they probably shouldn’t have let him out for this round. Duncan lands a right to the body. Ashmouz lands a right hand but eats a counter knee. Duncan lands a one two, then they trade rights. Ashmouz avoids a few punches but his offensive output is way down. Body kick from Duncan. Knee from Duncan in close. Ashmouz lands a spinning back kick then a right hand but Duncan fires back with a combination. Another knee from Duncan. Duncan lands a one two, he lands a knee and he’s looking for a finish. They clinch up and Duncan gets a takedown into the ride position. Ashmouz wall walks but Duncan is on his back in the clinch. Duncan breaks and lands a couple of punches. Jumping knee from Ashmouz partially lands. Duncan lands a body kick. Ashmouz avoids a combination and they just circle away the last seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Duncan, 30-27 Duncan overall

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

Not sure which round Ashmouz might have gotten, maybe the first would be the only one you could argue. No interview for Duncan.

Ketlen Vieira has gone 3-3 in her last six fights, most recently dropping a split decision to Raquel Pennington but if she’s able to get a win here it might put her in position to argue for a title shot given the wide open nature of the division right now. Pannie Kianzad has gone 4-1 in her last five and while she’s coming off of a win she’s been out of action for over a year, Kianzad is trying to get the biggest win of her career here while also positioning herself in the general title picture. Vieira is the -145 favorite to +125 for Kianzad.

Women’s Bantamweight Bout: #7 Pannie Kianzad (16-6, 136 lbs.) vs. #4 Ketlen Vieira (13-3, 135 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Vieira is an inch taller with two inches of reach advantage. Kianzad is able to land a right hand. Vieira is looking to counter thus far. Vieira has a combination blocked then tries a single leg and drops Kianzad down into side control. Kianzad is able to get half guard but Vieira starts looking for an arm triangle. Vieira lands some short punches. Kianzad fights towards a hip, at least she’s not flat on her back anymore. Vieira grabs at another arm triangle attempt and uses it to force Kianzad flat again. Kianzad is able to get to butterfly guard then full guard. Vieira lands some punches while working to pass again. Vieira passes to half guard. Another arm triangle attempt from Vieira but Kianzad is blocking it. Kimura attempt from Vieira, she uses it to pass to north-south and lands body shots as the round ends.

ROUND TWO: 10-9 Vieira

ROUND TWO: Kianzad lands a leg kick but eats a counter punch. Vieira is looking to jab, she grabs a single leg and dumps Kianzad down with ease then moves to half guard again. Kianzad is able to hip escape to full guard. Vieira lands some punches then looks to pass and gets to half guard. Another kimura attack from Vieira, Kianzad is keeping her arm hidden under her own body though. Some body work from Vieira then she starts working for an arm triangle. The arm triangle is in for Vieira, she moves to full mount with it and starts working to lock things down. Vieira gets an angle with the attack, forcing Kianzad to bridge and try to break it, letting Vieira keep top position. Kianzad is able to get half guard but Vieira is still punching her. Vieira looks for full mount, and grabs at another arm triangle but Kianzad is blocking this one so far. Kianzad is able to hip escape to half guard again and that’s where the round will end.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Vieira, might be a 10-8 argument in there, 20-18 Vieira overall

ROUND THREE: Immediate takedown from Vieira into full guard. Kianzad tries to fire elbows from her back. Vieira lands a few punches as she pushes Kianzad towards the fence. Kianzad moves to her knees but gives up the back in the process. Both hooks in for Vieira. Vieira goes to a body triangle and starts looking for the choke. The choke is getting close but Kianzadis hand fighting still. Kianzad is able to spin into Vieira and get on top in full guard. Some body work from Kianzad. Vieira is content to play guard for the moment, she’s not really trying to stand. Kianzad lands a right hand. A few more punches from Kianzad. The round will end with Kianzad still on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Kianzad, 29-28 Vieira overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ketlen Vieira via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

No interview for Vieira.

Makhmud Muradov had a really nice winning streak at one point including being 3-0 in the UFC, but he’s currently on a two fight losing streak and needs to right the ship here if he’s going to reclaim any part of that previous hype. Bryan Barberena is on a two fight losing streak but isn’t that far removed from stopping Robbie Lawler with strikes, he’s making his middleweight debut here and is hoping to shake things up with success in the new weight class. Muradov is one of the bigger favorites on the card at -380 while that +310 payout on Barberena might tempt a few bettors out there.

Middleweight Bout: Bryan Barberena (18-10, 185 lbs.) vs. Makhmud Muradov (25-8, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Muradov is two inches taller with three inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves, Barberena opens southpaw. Both men swing with the lead hand as they circle. Body kick from Muradov. Muradov punches into a takedown attempt, they hit the fence and Muradov finishes a single leg. Barberena quickly wall walks but Muradov is able to ride him back down. Another wall walk from Barberena, as the crowd the boos the arrival of someone who I assume is known in the UK. Muradov is on the back of Barberena and riding him back down whenever Barberena wall walks. A few lefts from Muradov land, he’s starting to add in damage to his control. Barberena wall walks and they trade punches before breaking apart. Inside leg kick from Barberena. Both men miss rights. Muradov lands a left hook. Both men miss punches in close. Barberena misses some punches. Hard right from Muradov and he gets on top of Barberena. Half guard for Muradov and he looks to control. Barberena scoots to the fence and looks to wall walk. Muradov lands some body shots as he slips to the back. Barberena wall walks then Muradov lands a knee to the body and they break. Body kick from Muradov. Jumping knee from Muradov then he tries a head kick that’s partially blocked to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Muradov

ROUND TWO: Barberena gets back to forward pressure. Muradov lands a right hand that seems to wobble Barberena. Another right from Muradov lands. Muradov lands a body kick. One two from Muradov drops Barberena, he gets on top but Barberena fights up and they reset. Muradov is stalking forward and Barberena still looks a little rattled. Right hand then a left hook from Muradov. Pivoting left hook from Muradov. Barberena is trying to goad a brawl but Muradov wont oblige that. Hard right from Muradov after he avoided an uppercut. Bit of a leg kick from Barberena. Both men land in close. Muradov with a takedown against the fence. Barberena wall walks but gets double legged immediately. Another wall walk from Barberena but Muradov is all over him and rides him back down. Muradov slips to the back as they stand and starts working mat returns. Barberena fishes for a kimura to attack the grip, he sinks for the kimura but Muradov is able to get his arm free and land punches. We get a time out as they banged heads on the mat there. The replay confirms the clash of heads, but Barberena doesn’t want much time so we restart back on the mat. Muradov lands some more punches as they stand then takes Barberena back down again. Muradov will end the round on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Muradov, but there’s a 10-8 argument with that knockdown, 20-18 Muradov overall

ROUND THREE: Barberena comes forward again, he needs a finish and seems to know it. Both men land rights in close. Right hand from Muradov. Muradov lands a body kick. Muradov catches a kick and lands a right hand then takes Barberena down. Barberena wall walks but Muradov is on his back working mat returns. Muradov with some punches, then a body shot as he avoids a ninja choke. Barberena is having an issue with his right eye, not sure if it was a poke or a punch but he’s got the issue. Commentary says it was a poke during a clinch. They separate off the fence and Muradov avoids a few punches. Barberena lands a left hand. Double right from Muradov drops Barberena but Barberena stands up and fires back, that man is insanely tough. Muradov lands a body kick. Barberena is bleeding from the nose but he’s in zombie mode still coming forward. Muradov lands a left hook then a right hand. Body shot from Muradov. Barberena lands a left hand. They trade rights then Muradov lands a knee. Right hand then a right uppercut from Muradov, Barberena just eats them. Barberena lands a leg kick. Muradov stuns Barberena briefly with a right hand. Barberena tries a takedown, Muradov drops his level to defend and they wind up banging heads like rams and we get a time out. Both men are down and that one was bad. The doctor comes in to check on both men, actually the bring in the second doctor so both men can be examined. Apparently both men can still fight and we restart after over a minute. I’m surprised they didn’t just go to a technical decision off of that one, that was hard. Both men land punches in close. Barberena is pushing forward, but Muradov punches him and hits a double leg. They stand then break as Muradov has a high kick blocked. Muradov lands a right hand and gets another takedown, Barberena bounces up as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Muradov, 30-27 Muradov overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Makhmud Muradov via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Much needed performance from Muradov. No interview for the winner.

Mick Parkin is undefeated coming into his UFC debut and now he’s looking to get a big win in his debut on home soil. Jamal Pogues is on a three fight winning streak including a win in his UFC debut back in February, he’s trying to spoil the debut of Parkin and prove that he’s a heavyweight prospect of note. The odds lean towards Pogues at -165 to a +135 comeback on Parkin.

Heavyweight Bout: Mick Parkin (6-0, 264 lbs.) vs. Jamal Pogues (10-3, 266 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Parkin is an inch taller with two inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Both men probe with the lead hand. Pogues lands a jab, then Parkin counters with a right hand. Bit of a leg kick from Pogues. Parkin keeps poking with an inside leg kick. Parkin lands a calf kick. Pogues with a one two. Both men block rights. They trade rights. Jab from Parkin. Pogues lands a jab, then Parkin lands a calf kick. Parkin with a jab then a right to the body. Calf kick from Parkin. Right hand from Parkin. Pogues tries a double leg, defended by Parkin but they hit the fence in the clinch. Elbow from Pogues as they break. Parkin lands a right hand. They trade rights in close. Parkin lands a right hand. Pogues fires some punches that are blocked. Double jab from Pogues. Parkin with an inside leg kick then a calf kick. They trade rights again. Parkin lands a calf kick as the last relevant blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Parkin

ROUND TWO: Pogues tries a single leg and they hit the fence. Both men land strikes in the clinch, Pogues really likes his right elbow strike in close. They break without further incident. Parkin lands a calf kick. Another calf kick from Parkin, those are starting to add up. Parkin lands another calf kick. Some jabs go back and forth, Pogues is working a bit of southpaw now. Parkin lands another calf kick. They briefly tie up then break. Parkin keeps sniping with leg kicks while circling. Pogues tries a head kick, nothing doing though. Bit of a right from Parkin is the last blow of the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Pogues still mostly southpaw, which is muting his offense. Parkin doesn’t seem to know how to attack the southpaw stance after forcing the switch of stance so we’ve got a lot of stalling and feinting. Bit of a right to the body from Parkin. Parkin lands a right hand. Some body work from Parkin now, then a right hand. More leg kicks from Parkin, he’s upping the tempo now and Pogues is wilting. Another right to the body from Parkin. Parkin lands another body shot. Bit of a left from Pogues, Parkin responds with a left hook. More pressure from Parkin, Pogues is still circling. Parkin lands a right hand but Pogues gets a clinch off of it. They break without incident. Both men land rights but Parkin fires a full combination to close the fight as the clock runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Parkin, 30-27 Parkin overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Mick Parkin via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Not the best fight but a decent overall performance from Parkin. Again no interview because there was no finish.

Marc Diakiese has gone 2-3 in his last five fights and most recently dropped a decision to Michael Johnson, he’s trying to avoid another losing streak here and prove he’s a worthwhile addition tot he division. Joel Alvarez has gone 4-2 in the UFC only losing to Damir Ismagulov and Arman Tsarukyan, he’s coming off of that Tsarukyan loss though and is trying to avoid his first ever losing streak with a win here. Alvarez is your favorite at -195 while a +165 comeback on Diakiese is a good little value bet.

Lightweight Bout: Joel Alvarez (19-3, 156 lbs.) vs. Marc Diakiese (16-6, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Alvarez is a notable five inches taller with four inches of reach advantage. Diakiese presses forward early and misses a leg kick. Knee from Alvarez then a left hook and a leg kick. Alvarez lands a couple of jabs. Diakiese checks a leg kick. Alvarez checks a leg kick. Left hook from Alvarez then a front kick. Alvarez with some jabs then a front kick. Diakiese tries a spinning back fist that’s blocked, then misses a wheel kick. Alvarez lands another jab. Both men land rights then Alvarez lands a leg kick. They trade lefts again. Alvarez lands a front kick. More jabs from Alvarez, the size difference is playing a big role here. One two from Alvarez. Chopping leg kick from Alvarez. Bit of a left hook from Alvarez. They both miss punches in close. Bit of a left hook from Alvarez. Bit of a right from Diakiese. Blitz from Alvarez partially lands. Both men miss spinning attacks, then Alvarez gets a clinch and slips to the back as they hit the fence. Alvarez is able to pull things down, Diakiese turns into him and will end the round on top in half guard.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Alvarez

ROUND TWO: Some stance switching from Diakiese now, and he misses a spinning kick. Double leg from Diakiese and he gets Alvarez down in full guard. Alvarez is looking to keep his guard active. Diakiese is keeping Alvarez down but hasn’t done much with it. Not much going on here. Alvarez wall walks as Diakiese gets on his back standing. Trip from Diakiese and he’s back on top. Alvarez fights up to his feet and then gets on top of Diakiese. Alvarez to the ride position landing punches and hammer fists. Diakiese rolls to his back and eats punches before he fights to his feet. Alvarez and Diakiese bang heads, Diakiese complains but the ref says fight on, then Alvarez lands body shots against the fence. Diakiese reaches for a takedown, Alvarez grabs a d’arce choke on the way down and locks it up to force the tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Joel Alvarez via Submission, d’arce choke, at 4:26 of Round 2

They’re going to review that given the clash of heads, but ultimately decide to let the decision stand. Mic time for Alvarez and the translator, he wants a post fight bonus then puts over Diakiese and is happy to be here.

Pretty standard d’arce from Alvarez here, but it’s a good one to observe.

Danny Roberts has gone 2-4 in his last six fights and is currently on a two fight losing streak, he’s been around the UFC since 2015 and can ill afford a three fight skid here as the UFC might think they’ve gotten the best of what he has to offer at this point and could cut him loose. Johnny Parsons brings a five fight winning streak into his UFC debut, and if he can take out a veteran like Roberts it would be a darn good way to kick off his run with the promotion. Another close one here, -130 for Roberts to +110 on Parsons.

Welterweight Bout: Jonny Parsons (8-3, 171 lbs.) vs. Danny Roberts (18-7, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Roberts is four inches taller with a notable five inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Roberts. Roberts misses a head kick. Parsons is kind of lumbering forward, then he lands a left hand. Bit of a right hand from Roberts. Both men are probing with kicks, but Parsons is checking all of Roberts leg kicks. Both men try body kicks. Roberts lands a couple of front kicks. Parsons lands a body kick. Roberts digs the body with a left hand. Parsons lands another body kick. Leg kick from Parsons. Hard body kick from Parsons. Roberts lands a left hand and they both swing in close with neither man landing flush. Body kick then a right hand from Parsons. Roberts lands a jab. Bit of a body kick from Parsons. They trade lefts, then Roberts lands to the body. Parsons catches Roberts with a left hand that backs him up. Both men land in close. A hard left from Roberts lands to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Roberts

ROUND TWO: They punch into a clinch pretty quickly then hit the fence. Roberts lands a knee then eats an elbow as they break. Front kick from Roberts. Parsons lands a knee as Roberts closes distance, then they hit the fence in a clinch. Elbow from Parsons as they break, that was a good one. Roberts lands a left to the body but eats a counter left hook. Parsons is playing around with southpaw now and lands a body shot. Leg kick form Parsons. A right from Parsons drops Roberts, the lands punches then gets on top in half guard. Hard elbow from Parsons, then he lands elbows to the body as well. Full mount now for Parsons, Roberts bridges off the fence and scrambles to his feet but he’s a little wobbled still. They get close and we get some brawling but Parsons is getting the better of this. Jab from Parsons. The southpaw switch has opened up a lot of offense from Parsons and he unloads on Roberts against the fence. Roberts fires back but Parsons is able to knee him to the body. Roberts marches forward swinging and gets Parsons to reset. They trade some jabs. Bit of a left from Parsons. Both men land hooks in close, and Roberts gets wobbled again. Parsons lands some punches from a front headlock as Roberts stands. They split jabs, Roberts is wobbled again. That southpaw jab from Parsons is doing work, he drops Roberts again and lands a couple of punches to prompt the stoppage just before the round ends.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Johnny Parsons via TKO, punches, at 4:57 of Round 2

Well that was a fun brawl. Mic time for Parsons, he thanks God first and foremost then asks if Paddy Pimblett wants to slug with him and says he’ll meet him at lightweight then knock that stupid haircut off of his head. He wanted to fight sharp and smart, then slow things down with defense and wear down Roberts before rocking him late.

Here’s the finish. Roberts wasn’t thrilled with the stoppage but he’d already been dropped a few times and is clearly badly hurt. Nice stuff from Parsons overall.

Because we’re short on time the next fight is unofficially promoted to the main card. Stop booking 15 fight cards and you wont have this problem.

Davey Grant has gone 2-2 in his last four fights but he’s on a two fight winning streak with wins over Louis Smolka and a Submission of the Year contender in his last fight when he choked out Raphael Assuncao with an inverted triangle choke, he’s hoping to build his second three fight winning streak in the UFC and start making moves up the stacked ranks of the bantamweight division. Daniel Marcos is undefeated including his UFC debut in January of this year, he’s looking to remain perfect here and score the biggest win of his career by taking out Grant. The odds are with Marcos at -135 while +115 for Grant is a darn good value bet.

Bantamweight Bout: Davey Grant (15-6, 136 lbs.) vs. Daniel Marcos (14-0, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Grant is an inch taller but the reach is identical. Both men with some feinting and long range probing early. Grant is showing some kicks, then swings a right hand that Marcos blocks. Cut kick from Marcos lands. Marcos blocks a head kick then lands a leg kick. Grant misses a spinning attack, then they both miss right hands. Calf kick from Grant. Both men miss hooks. Marcos lands a calf kick. Bit of a right from Marcos then they trade calf kicks. Marcos lands another calf kick. Grant lands a front kick. Marcos blocks a knee then misses a hook. Bit of a calf kick from Marcos, Grant fires back with a right hook. Another calf kick from Marcos, those might be adding up already. Grant avoids a left hook. Body shot from Marcos then a calf kick. Grant blocks a middle kick, then Marcos lands a right hand. Grant misses a wheel kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Marcos but could go either way

ROUND TWO: Grant avoids a flying knee. Marcos lands a calf kick, then they trade left hooks in close. Grant lands a calf kick. These two are almost too similar in their attacks and it’s resulting in a pretty nullified offensive output from both guys. Some jabs from Marcos in close, then Grant lands a right hand. Marcos lands another calf kick. Grant is bleeding from the nose, I’m not sure if it’s from the nostrils or a small cut around the bridge of it. Bit of a knee from Grant. Marcos ducks under a head kick and lands a jab. Hard kick from Marcos, he aimed at the body but it strays into the groin of Grant who was basically mid switch of stance. Replay shows that’s what happened, not a bad shot and Grant is good to continue after 45 seconds and Marcos apologizes before they restart. Both men miss punches then Marcos lands a calf kick. A lot more southpaw from Grant now, protecting that left leg I think. Bit of a right from Marcos. They trade elbows, Grant is bleeding from around the mouth now too I think. Hard calf kick from Marcos then they trade rights. OK, I’m pretty sure it’s just blood from the nose of Grant. Grant misses some kicks to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Marcos but another round that could go either way, 20-18 Marcos overall

ROUND THREE: OK, that cut is on the nostril of Grant and it’s bleeding a lot. Grant is coming forward again and misses a wheel kick. Marcos lands a couple of jabs. Grant tries a single leg, Marcos defends then they break from a clinch. Bit of a calf kick from Marcos. Grant lands a right to the body. Marcos lands a jumping knee. Grant lands another body shot. Another jab from Marcos. Grant lands a body kick, then has a spinning attack blocked. Back elbow from Marcos partially lands. Grant with another right to the body. More body punches from Grant, pity he didn’t do this earlier because it’s working for him. Both men land lefts. Calf kick from Marcos as they both avoid punches. Grant lands another right to the body. Another right to the body from Grant. Marcos lands a right hand. Marcos with a single leg and gets on top. Grant quickly wall walks with Marcos on him then Grant spins free. More pressure from Grant and they both miss kicks to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Grant, 29-28 Marcos overall but who knows

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

Grant isn’t happy with the decision, and while I understand he also didn’t really get on the offense until the third round and 29-28 either way is perfectly fine. Mic time for Marcos, he opens with English to thank the crowd and put over Grant for the tough find. He gives glory to God, thanks his coaches, and encourages everyone to enjoy the show.

Lerone Murphy is undefeated with only a draw in his UFC debut to blemish his record, he’s looking for another win here and then to start taking on some ranked opponents going forward. Joshua Culibao has never lost at featherweight, his lone professional loss coming at lightweight, and he’s hoping to establish himself as the prospect making the leap to contender at the expense of Murphy. This one is pretty close but the odds are with Murphy at -145 against Culibao’s +125.

Featherweight Bout: Josh Culibao (11-1-1, 146 lbs.) vs. Lerone Murphy (12-0-1, 146 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Culibao is an inch taller while Murphy has half an inch of reach advantage. Both men are moving around and feinting early. A lot of stance switching from both men as well. Murphy misses a spinning back kick. Culibao lands a right in close, then Murphy grabs a clinch to slow his offense. Murphy is after a takedown but Culibao is defending then spins free. Both men miss punches in close then Murphy lands a calf kick. Bit of a body kick then a right hand from Culibao. They trade jabs. Glancing right from Culibao. They trade lefts in close. Another clinch and they hit the fence. Elbow from Murphy as they break, then a calf kick. That one hurt. One two then a left hook from Murphy and he tries for a double leg against the fence. Culibao fishes for a kimura as Murphy switches to a single leg, then Murphy lands a knee and a couple of punches to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Murphy

ROUND TWO: Culibao looks for a takedown and they hit the fence. Elbow from Culibao in the clinch. Murphy uses a whizzer to avoid a full takedown and they break. Forward pressure from Murphy, he blocks a double leg and then forces things to the fence with a clinch. Elbow from Murphy as they break. Culibao lands a knee and gets Murphy to back off. Calf kick from Murphy. Bit of a right to the body from Culibao. Culibao lands a left that seems to wobble Murphy, but Murphy gets a clinch. They wrestle on their knees and Murphy gets the back with one hook in. Both hooks now for Murphy and he starts fishing for the choke. Culibao is defending thus far but he can’t get Murphy off of his back. The round ends with Murphy still on Culibao’s back.

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

ROUND THREE: Culibao is pushing forward to start the round then lands a body kick. Murphy tries a takedown against the fence, but Culibao defends and lands an elbow while keeping Murphy on the cage. Some elbows from Murphy as he defends a takedown but Culibao lands an elbow as they break. A body kick from Murphy locks up and drops Culibao, he gets on top and works some ground and pound from the closed guard but Culibao is able to stall the momentum. Murphy moves to the ride position as Culibao rolls to his knees. Choke attempt from Murphy but Culibao is able to defend. Culibao fights to his seat, Murphy grabs a d’arce choke from that position but Culibao is able to defend and break the grip. Some rights from Murphy as he’s in half guard now. Another d’arce attempt from Murphy but again Culibao defends. Culibao fights to his feet but Murphy drags him back down. Again Culibao stands with Murphy on his back then Murphy trips Culibao down into half guard. Murphy with some elbows and punches. Culibao gets to his knees as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Murphy but there’s a 10-8 argument in there, 30-27 Murphy overall

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

No issues with 10-8 in the third for Murphy. Mic time for Murphy, he felt physically stronger and used wrestling to exploit that but is happy he got to show off his striking as well. Asked about the future he wants to fight again before the end of the year and would like someone ranked between 10 and 15. Reasonable call out in general from Murphy there, I think he could do with a step up in class.

Jai Herbert has a very odd UFC record of 2-3-1 and he’s coming off of a draw. Now all of Herbert’s losses have come to talented fighters but he’s trying to remind everyone that he’s a featherweight to be reckoned with by getting another win here. Fares Ziam has gone 3-2 in the UFC and he’s coming off of win meaning he’s looking for another winning streak in the promotion. Ziam is favored to win here at -155 to +135 for Herbert.

Lightweight Bout: Jai Herbert (12-4-1, 155 lbs.) vs. Fares Ziam (13-4, 155 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Herbert has two inches of reach advantage, he’s also 9 years older. Both men start out probing with long range weapons. Herbert looks to work his lead hand. Ziam is looking to hook off of his jab, and lands a calf kick. Bit of a body kick from Ziam. Herbert lands a calf kick, then another one. Some body jabs from Herbert as they circle. Ziam lands a right hand. Herbert misses a couple of punches. Ziam lands a knee but Herbert gets a body lock and forces things to the fence. Some knees go back and forth while they fight for position. Herbert avoids a takedown in the clinch but Ziam puts him on the fence. They keep fighting for position in the clinch without either man finding a big advantage. Ziam lands an elbow as they break. Ziam lands a jab. Herbert jabs the body but eats a counter left hook. Ziam lands a left hook then a front kick to the upper chest as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Ziam but a close one

ROUND TWO: Both men come out again looking to jab. Bit of a right from Ziam. Herbert backs up Ziam but eats a leg kick. Combination from Ziam. Herbert backs up Ziam into the fence and lands a left to the body. They clinch up, trade some knees then they break. Herbert lands a right hand, then Ziam lands one of his own. Another clinch and Herbert can’t quite find a takedown. Elbow from Ziam as they break. Bit of a left hook from Herbert. They punch into another clinch, Herbert still can’t find a takedown and they hit the fence. Ziam gets a takedown in the clinch and looks to spin Herbert away from the fence. Herbert is able to scramble back up and into a clinch. They trade some knees in the clinch. Ziam gets free then lands a left hook. Another left hook from Ziam lands. Herbert pressures forward but eats an uppercut before they clinch and the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: Ziam lands a leg kick to start the round. Herbert is still trying to get his jab working. They trade inside leg kicks. Ziam lands a left to the body. They trade lefts. Ziam with a bit of a left hook then a calf kick. Another hard calf kick from Ziam. Herbert has had enough of that and forces a clinch then slips to the back. They wind up chest to chest again and Ziam hits a brief judo toss but can’t keep top position, though naturally they come up clinched. Some knees from Ziam then a right hand in close. They trade knees again then break. Ziam lands a calf kick. More leg kicks go back and forth. Ziam forces a clinch and they hit the fence again. They’ll end the round in the clinch.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Herbert but another close one, 29-28 Ziam overall

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

Not a whole lot to say about that one. No interview for Ziam.

Paul Craig is on a two fight losing streak and so decided to try his hand a weight class down, tonight marking his middleweight debut and he’s trying to splash into the division with a win over a ranked contender. Andre Muniz suffered a pretty notable setback his last fight when he lost his nine fight winning streak to Brendan Allen. Muniz is trying to defend his ranking and avoid his first ever losing streak. It’s not too surprising to see Muniz as the favorite at -225 to Craig’s +190.

Middleweight Bout: Paul Craig (16-6-1, 186 lbs.) vs. #14 Andre Muniz (23-5, 185 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Craig is two and a half inches taller while Muniz has tow inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Muniz. Inside leg kick from Muniz, then Craig lands a body kick. Both men keep probing with kicks. Muniz lands a body kick. Bit of a front kick from Craig, then Muniz lands a spinning back kick. Muniz lands a left hand. Craig lands a body kick but neither man has found consistent success yet. Jab from Craig. Head kick from Muniz is partially successful. Both men miss punches. Muniz catches a kick and gets a takedown. Craig has butterfly guard but Muniz is pushing him into the fence. The round will end with Muniz on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Muniz

ROUND TWO: Both men are back to kicking at distance. Muniz gets closer, and Craig grabs a clinch then runs things forward until he gets a takedown into half guard. Craig looks to pass, Muniz thinks about inverting then grabs a triangle choke. Muniz is tightening that down, hooks the leg to clamp things down but his legs aren’t properly locked. Now Muniz tries an armbar but Craig pulls free and Muniz is able to com up looking for a takedown which he gets. Muniz with some punches and elbows from inside the guard of Craig. Hard right from Muniz and he passes to half guard. They accidentally bang heads, Muniz was leading with his and the ref takes away the position and gives Muniz a hard warning. Left then a right from Muniz. Craig hits a takedown into full guard. Muniz grabs at a neck crank as Craig moves to half guard, he might be using it to sweep, but Craig reads it and keeps on top. Craig goes for a d’arce choke, but Muniz is able to defend though Craig has gone to side control. Some short elbows from Craig and he moves to full mount. Craig with more elbows, Muniz is covering up but he’s not addressing the mount and the ref decides to jump in and stop it.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Paul Craig via TKO, elbows, at 4:40 of Round 2

Pretty notable win for Craig in his debut in the weight class. Mic time for Craig, he acknowledges he’s a little crazy but his weight cut went smoothly and he thanks his coaches for the game plan. He brings up a recently deceased Scottish MMA fighter and dedicates the win to him. He’s worked hard on his striking in preparation for this fight, and the powerful kicks were key in setting up the takedowns once Muniz started respecting them too much. Asked about the future he loves fighting in the UK, then sucks up to the crowd a bit.

Nathaniel Wood has gone 2-0 since moving to featherweight last year but he’s been out of action since September of last year and now faces down a notable gatekeeper in the division. That said, a win would be impressive and could further his move up the featherweight ranks. Andre Fili just got his first win since 2020 when he scored a split decision win over Bill Algo, now he’s looking for his first winning streak since 2019 at the expense of the talented Wood. Wood is a decent favorite at -205 while +175 for Fili might tempt a few bettors out there.

Featherweight Bout: Andre Fili (22-9 1 NC, 145 lbs.) vs. Nathaniel Wood (19-5, 146 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Fili has a notable five inches of height and reach over Wood. They touch gloves, southpaw for Fili. Wood lands some inside leg kicks right away. Fili drops Wood with a left but Wood bounces right back up. Front kick from Wood. Some jabs from Fili as they circle. Wood lands an inside leg kick. Calf kick from Wood as Fili has begun switching his stance. Bit of a right from Wood. Fili lands a few jabs, he’s maximizing the length and height disparity thus far. Wood cracks Fili with a right to counter a jab, that staggers Fili and Wood drops him against the fence. Wood on top looking to unload but Fili is able to tie up for a bit and stifle the offense. Elbows from Wood now then a right hand. Fili is able to get full guard and close it, but he’s bleeding around the right eyebrow. Fili fights up but eats a hard calf kick while doing so. Wood fights off a single leg attempt. Body kick from Wood. Calf kick from Wood, he’s started switching his stance as well. Fili lands a left hand. Wood falls just short with some punches. Both men do a little dancing to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Wood

ROUND TWO: Wood lands a stiff jab to start the round. Bit of a head kick from Fili. Wood jabs the body, he’s pressuring forward pretty consistently. More leg kicks from Wood as they circle. Fili lands a jab then a leg kick. Wood jabs, then eats a left hook and Fili has him hurt. Fili with some knees then he gets the back with both hooks in as Wood drops to the mat. But Fili is too high and Wood is able to shake him off and come up on Fili’s back. Only one hook in for Wood at the moment. They wrestle on the mat and Fili winds up on top in the guard of Wood. Both men throw some shots on the mat but nothing much is going on. The round ends with Fili still on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Fili, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Wood with some double jabs. Inside leg kick from Wood. Another inside leg kick from Wood. They split some jabs. Both men are freely switching stance at this point. They trade lefts. More jabs go back and forth. More leg kicks from Wood. Fili lands a left hand. Fili tries a takedown but Wood defends. Wood starts stalking forward but there’s not a lot here to separate them this round. Wood lands a cracking left hook, Fili stays upright though. Leg kick from Wood then a calf kick. Another left hook from Wood lands. Wood lands a front kick. Fili limp legs away from a single leg attempt. Fili then misses a wheel kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Wood, 29-28 Wood overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Nathaniel Wood via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Mic time for Wood, he was confident in the decision but acknowledges being hurt in the second round. Asked what he wants next he doesn’t know, he’ll fight whoever the UFC wants as long as it gets him higher up on the ladder. He feels pretty good now that he’s got a great feel for his skills and he doesn’t have to worry about cutting weight too much anymore.

Molly McCann build a little momentum in 2022 but then closed that year out by being fed to Erin Blanchfield and subsequently getting run over. But McCann has a decent following in England and is trying to score a win for the home crowd here and prove she’s still able to get wins in the UFC. Julia Stoliarenko has gone 1-4 in the UFC and is pretty clearly being brought in here to lose to the home town girl, but will be trying to upset the apple cart with a much needed win as another loss probably ends her time in the promotion. The odds are with McCann at -230 to a +180 comeback on Stoliarenko.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: Molly McCann (13-5, 125 lbs.) vs. Julija Stoliarenko (10-7-2, 125 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Stoliarenko is three inches taller with four inches of reach advantage. Both women with some range finding kicks early. McCann lands a right hand. Stoliarenko lands a left hand. They trade in close. Bit of a left hook from Stoliarenko in close. McCann lands a leg kick. Stoliarenko ducks a punch and hits a takedown, then jumps on the back. Stoliarenko switches to the armbar from the back, she extends it and McCann has to tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Julia Stoliarenko via Submission, armbar, at 1:55 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Ms. Stoliarenko for her work this evening. Mic time for Stoliarenko, she expected to get a first round finish because that’s what she always expects of herself. She wasn’t put off by the boos, and just appreciates the crowd for caring and notes London isn’t that far from her home in Lithuania and her family is here to watch. Asked about the future she doesn’t care, then thanks McCann for the fight.

Here’s the finish, a pretty academic armbar from the back that McCann just never is able to get ahead of in terms of defense.

Tom Aspinall was one of the brightest rising forces in the heavyweight division from his UFC debut in 2020 through 2022 when he suffered a knee injury during a fight with Curtis Blaydes. Aspinall is making his return from that injury here, almost exactly one year later, and is aiming to remind everyone just how good he can be. Marcin Tybura has gone 7-1 in his last eight fights and brings a two fight winning streak into this fight, if he can hand Aspinall another loss it would be one of the bigger wins of his career and might earn him a step up in class going forward. Aspinall is the biggest favorite on the card at -400 against +270 for Tybura.

Heavyweight Bout: #5 Tom Aspinall (12-3, 258 lbs.) vs. #10 Marcin Tybura (24-7, 246 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Aspinall is two inches taller but the reach is identical, Aspinall is also 12 pounds heavier. Southpaw for Tybura, and they touch gloves. Aspinall fires a head kick. Some stance switching from Tybura now as they circle. Left hook from Aspinall in close. Tybura lands a left hand. Front kick from Aspinall, then he avoids a few punches from Tybura. Elbow from Aspinall, then a right hand that drops Tybura and he jumps on top to pound things out and force the stoppage.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Tom Aspinall via TKO, punches, at 1:13 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Aspinall for his work this evening. Mic time for Aspinall, he notes how tough the year has been recovering from the knee injury, he wont say he’s back because he’s different but he does plan on going all the way to the title. He puts over Tybura as a tough fighter and a good person. Asked about getting a title shot he says he’s going to go to Paris and watch Ciryl Gane vs. Serghei Spivac, beat the winner of that fight and then go on to beat Jon Jones.

Well on that note, UFC on ESPN+ 82 comes to a close. Thanks for reading, I appreciate all of you, and we’ll be unpacking all the fallout from this event tomorrow on the 411 Ground and Pound MMA podcast plus we’ll look ahead to UFC 291. I’m back here next week for UFC 291, which is a darn good card on paper, and I hope you’ll be back as well. Until next time thank you again for reading, stay safe out there, and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.

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UFC on ESPN+ 82, Robert Winfree