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February 3, 2024 | Posted by Robert Winfree
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MAIN CARD (ESPN+, 7 p.m. ET)
#8 Roman Dolidze (186 lbs.) vs. #11 Nassourdine Imavov (185 lbs.)
#15 Drew Dober (156 lbs.) vs. #13 Renato Moicano (156 lbs.)
Randy Brown (171 lbs.) vs. Muslim Salikhov (171 lbs.)
#7 Viviane Araujo (126 lbs.) vs. #9 Natalia Silva (125.5 lbs.)
Aliaskhab Khizriev (186 lbs.) vs. Makhmud Muradov (185.5 lbs.)
Charlie Radtke (170.5 lbs.) vs. Gilbert Urbina (171 lbs.)

PRELIMINARY CARD (ESPN+, 4 p.m. ET)
Diana Belbita (116 lbs.) vs. Molly McCann (116 lbs.)
Charles Johnson (125.5 lbs.) vs. Azat Maksum (126 lbs.)
Themba Gorimbo (170.5 lbs.) vs. Pete Rodriguez (170 lbs.)
Blake Bilder (144.5 lbs.) vs. Jung Yeong Lee (146 lbs.)
Luana Carolina (128 lbs.)* vs. Julija Stoliarenko (126 lbs.)
Marquel Mederos (155.5 lbs.) vs. Landon Quinones (155.5 lbs.)
Thomas Petersen (261.5 lbs.) vs. Jamal Pogues (265.5 lbs.)


Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 93, I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host. After a week off the UFC is back in action and ready to kick off a pretty packed month of February. This time around we’ve got another Apex card and it’s not exactly a standout on paper but there are a few fights worth noting. The main event sees a couple of middleweight contenders trying to make headway towards the top of the division when Roman Dolidze takes on Nassourdine Imavov. The co-main event has my attention because Renato Moicano and Drew Dober are rarely in boring fights and should produce some fireworks together. Makhmud Muradov is looking to regain hype against unbeaten Aliaskhab Khizriev, Molly McCann is getting a get well fight, and Jung Yeong Lee taking on Blake Bilder might be fun. Beyond that it’s mostly hoping for better action in practice than on paper, but there is some cause for hope all around.

UFC on ESPN+ 93 comes to the world from the UFC Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. John Gooden, Laura Sanko, and Daniel Cormier will be on the call. More of Sanko on the mic is always welcome, she’s quite good in the role. Keep in mind we’re in the smaller cage at the Apex and will have instant replay. There are some new rule changes potentially coming in the future but there are still some administrative hurdles there, but the ABC subcommittee has ruled to remove the 12-6 elbows as fouls and redefine a grounded fighter as anyone with something other than their feet or hands touch the ground. Now that still has to be brought to the various commissions in Kentucky later this year and be voted on there, and then of course each jurisdiction will have to decided if they’ll adopt them even if they pass that. For my money, just legalize knees to the head of a downed opponent already. Anyway there’s a little more below if you want a slightly more detailed recap, but look forward to some more rules confusion in the near future as we figure out who’s adopted what.

Thomas Petersen brings a three fight winning streak into his UFC debut and looks to get his UFC run up and running with a memorable win. Jamal Pogues has gone 1-1 in the UFC, he’s coming off of a loss and is trying to avoid his first ever losing streak. The odds like Petersen at -175 to +145 for Pogues.

Heavyweight Bout: Thomas Petersen (8-1, 261.5 lbs.) vs. Jamal Pogues (10-4, 265.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pogues is two inches taller with three inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Petersen. Both men probe a bit with kicks and hand fighting. Petersen clinches up and they hit the fence. Pogues can’t quite spin free but eventually is able to get out of the clinch. Petersen lands a left hand. Pogues with a right hand. Body kick from Pogues. Pogues lands a left hook after missing a right hand, Petersen doesn’t have a good feel for range at the moment and is getting clipped. Petersen reaches for a takedown but Pogues defends easily. Petersen punches forward but can’t quite find the target. Pogues lands a couple of rights. Bit of a one two from Pogues but Petersen gets another clinch, but once again he can’t keep it and they wind up resetting. Pogues lands a couple of left hooks and Petersen misses his attempted counters. Bit of a right from Petersen. Petersen hits the body a couple of times and they clinch up then hit the fence. We get a break as Pogues took a knee low. Not much of a wait and we’re fighting again, Petersen hits a takedown and moves to the ride pretty quickly. Some rights and hammer fists from Petersen. Petersen picks an ankle so he can move towards back mount, he switches to a regular ride and lands some more short blows to end the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Pogues

ROUND TWO: Pogues gets back to poking the right hand but Petersen is pushing forward. Petersen gets a clinch but he can’t get to the hips or the legs and Pogues spins free. Another clinch on the fence, some knees to the leg from Petersen but not much here and Pogues is able to push free. Right hand from Pogues. Petersen is still coming forward and he walks into a couple of lefts. Single leg from Petersen but he can’t finish it before Pogues gets his leg back. Petersen hits the bod a few times then clinches again. Petersen tries another single leg but Pogues defends. Some punches from Petersen now as he keeps coming forward. They clinch and Pogues lands an elbow. Petersen lands a left hand, Pogues responds with an elbow. Left hand from Petersen, Pogues might be fading and Petersen is just pushing forward. Petersen with a left to the body. Another body shot from Petersen. They clinch up in space and Pogues lands an elbow then breaks. Petersen bulls forward into another clinch and lands an uppercut before they break. Another left to the body from Petersen. A right hand then a left from Petersen will close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Petersen but both have been fairly close, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Petersen gets back to pressure and lands a left to the body. Front kick from Pogues. Another left to the body from Petersen but he can’t follow up. They trade power hand punches. Both men land in close. Petersen lands a left hand. Another left to the body from Petersen but he really needs to follow that up with something. Pogues avoids a single leg. Petersen touches the body again. Pogues lands a right hand. Petersen forces a clinch but can’t keep it. Petersen lands to the body but again, nothing behind it and it’s too late to really hope for a body shot finish. Left hand from Petersen. Pogues lands a body kick then blocks a takedown but it looks like he took an eye poke and we’ve got a time out. Replay confirms the thumb went into the eye. After about a minute the doctor comes in to check on Pogues. Pogues is OK to continue and we’re back to fighting after two minutes. Petersen gets back to pressure and lands a couple of punches. Left to the body from Petersen. Right hand from Petersen and they clinch up but Pogues pushes free pretty quickly. Petersen lands another body shot. They clinch and Pogues misses a punch as they break. Bit of a right from Pogues to close.

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

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

No interview for Pogues because that fight kind of sucked.

Landon Quinones lost his UFC debut last year but is trying to bounce back and hopefully a step down in competition form the battle tested Nasrat Haqparast will lead to his first UFC win. MarQuel Mederos brings a six fight winning streak into his UFC debut and will be trying to maximize his only chance at a first impression. This one is close but Mederos closed at -135 to +115 for Quinones.

Lightweight Bout: Marquel Mederos (8-1, 155.5 lbs.) vs. Landon Quinones (7-2-1, 155.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Mederos is an inch taller while Quinones has half an inch of reach advantage. Quinones comes out with pressure, Mederos is switching his stance a bit while Quinones is southpaw. Bit of a one two from Quinones. Mederos lands a leg kick. Both men land punches in close. Now Quinones is switching his stance as well. A couple of lefts from Quinones land. Mederos lands a punch and they clinch up. Quinones forces things to the fence then gets a takedown and moves to the back as they stand. Mederos gets chest to chest quickly and they wind up separating. One two from Quinones, Mederos is not moving his head when he enters striking range. Stiff jab from Quinones. Bit of a right from Mederos and they clinch again. Mederos is after a takedown against the fence but Quinones defends and spins him into the cage. Quinones tries a lateral drop but it doesn’t complete and they wind up separated. Mederos lands a couple of punches and clinches again. Some knees go back and forth while they jockey for position. They separate without incident then nothing happens for the last 7 seconds or so.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Quinones but a close one

ROUND TWO: Mederos lands a combination of punches before Quinones gets another clinch and they hit the fence again. They fight for position but Mederos seems to be the one in control of things right now. Knee from Mederos and he spins free of the clinch. Circling from Mederos then he off balances Quinones with a calf kick. They trade power hand punches in close then Quinones lands a follow up left. Calf kick from Mederos. Quinones lands a left hand. Knee from Mederos. Mederos lands a right hook. Inside leg kick from Mederos but Quinones lands a couple of punches. Left hand from Quinones. Mederos lands an inside leg kick then a right hand. Both men land punches in close, the pressure of Mederos is starting to work. Front kick from Mederos then a right hand. Quinones lands a left hand and they trade in close. Mederos lands another front kick but misses a few hooks. Calf kick from Mederos then they trade lefts to end the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Mederos but another competitive one, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Both men come out and land power hand punches. Mederos keeps stabbing with front kicks and pushes Quinones back, then Mederos gets to the back in a clinch. Quinones is fighting the grip and is able to turn chest to chest but Mederos is still keeping him on the fence. Mederos slips to the back again but can’t keep it and just lands an elbow before they break. Quinones takes a low kick and we’ve got another time out. Less than 30 seconds and we’re back to fighting. Mederos keeps trying to force the pace and they both land punches. Left hand from Quinones. Mederos avoids a punch and gets a clinch. They fight for position along the fence, there’s a general physicality difference in favor of Quinones that makes me wonder if Mederos might not wind up at featherweight. They trade some body work and Quinones complains of another low blow so we’ve got another time out. Replay shows a knee from Mederos did glance the cup and after 30 seconds we’re back to fighting. Mederos lands a front kick. Left hand from Mederos in close. Quinones lands a combination, then Mederos fires back. Knee from Mederos then a front kick. Quinones fires a high kick that’s blocked. They trade power hand punches in close, looks like Quinones got the better of that and they kind of stare away the last few seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Quinones but again close, 29-28 Quinones overall but I wouldn’t feel comfortable if I’m either guy on the cards

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – MarQuel Mederos via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

No issues with that, all three rounds were competitive. No interview for the winner, guess you need a finish to get mic time at the moment.

Luana Carolina missed weight for this fight, never a good thing, but she’s 3-2 in her last five fights and is trying to get her second UFC winning streak up and running here. Julia Stoliarenko didn’t find much success at bantamweight but did score a first round submission in her flyweight debut last year, now she’s back and hoping for her first UFC winning streak while proving this is the proper weight class for her to compete in. Stoliarenko closed as your favorite at -150 to +125 for Carolina.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: Luana Carolina (9-4, 128 lbs.)* vs. Julija Stoliarenko (11-7-2, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Stoliarenko is an inch taller while Carolina has three inches of reach advantage, plus Carolina missed weight. Southpaw for Carolina. Stoliarenko lands a right hand then a left hook and clinches up. They hit the fence and Stoliarenko starts looking for a takedown but can’t find one yet. Some positional jockeying against the cage then they trade knees. Carolina breaks free and lands a left hand. Both women miss punches. Bit of a right from Stoliarenko. Carolina lands a one two. They trade power hand punches. Bit of a body kick from Carolina and Stoliarenko swings a right hand back but misses. Carolina tries a spinning attack and gets taken down because of it. Stoliarenko can’t quite keep the position though as Carolina wall walks into a clinch. Bit of a knee from Carolina then she avoids a sloppy spinning elbow as they break. Stoliarenko catches a kick then winds up just pulling full guard when she can’t finish a takedown. Armbar attack from Stoliarenko, she gets to spiderweb with it but there’s not enough time to really extend and finish it before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Carolina but Stoliarenko might have stolen it with the armbar attack

ROUND TWO: Stoliarenko keeps pushing forward, and misses a spinning attack. Bit of a right from Carolina. Carolina keeps probing with front kicks and is trying to keep distance. Left hand from Carolina. Front kick to the knee from Carolina. They trade lefts. Bit of a left hook from Stoliarenko. Stiff jab from Stoliarenko then she gets a clinch and lands knees before they hit the fence. Some positional jockeying but Carolina is struggling to get free so they just trade knees for a bit. Stoliarenko pulls guard and starts working her guard. Carolina lands a couple of hammer fists. Carolina postures up and lands some punches as the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: Carolina tries to keep distance again and fires a head kick but Stoliarenko clinches up right away. Stoliarenko’s lack of takedowns from the clinch is troubling, she’s trying the same couple of things and Carolina has them scouted. Knee from Carolina lands. Bit of an elbow from Stoliarenko. Carolina with another couple of knees. More knees from Carolina, those are adding up at this point. Stoliarenko jumps and gets full guard. Carolina quickly stuffs her into the fence to try and limit the guard options. Hammer fists from Carolina, Stoliarenko tries a triangle choke and it’s technically in but the angle is a little off. Stoliarenko is twisting to the wrong side because of the cage position, she slowly switches and starts angling to lock things down. Carolina is in trouble here and pulls her head out but Stoliarenko instantly grabs for the armbar. Back to the triangle from Stoliarenko, she’s not able to hold the angle though and Carolina gets free. Stoliarenko might have injured her leg or something because she’s stepping badly as they stand, Carolina hits her then hits a hip toss into side control. Punches from Carolina and she just unloads until the ref steps in.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Luana Carolina via TKO, punches, at 4:52 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Ms. Carolina for her work this evening. Mic time for Carolina and the translator, she’s very happy with the win and says the camp was very difficult but the result was worth it. Asked about the submission attempts in the last round and she says she worked a ton on defending her arms and was ready for them.

Pretty standard stuff from Carolina here, Stoliarenko was done for whatever reason and just taking punches.

Jeong Yeong Lee won his Road to UFC season with a split decision win almost exactly one year ago for his promotional debut, now he’s back in action and looks to extend his seven fight winning streak. Blake Bilder has gone 1-1 in the UFC and he’s coming off of his first career loss, he’s trying to avoid his first losing streak and slow the momentum of Lee. Lee is your favorite at -175 to +145 for Bilder.

Featherweight Bout: Blake Bilder (8-1-1, 144.5 lbs.) vs. Jung Yeong Lee (10-1, 146 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Lee is two inches taller with five inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Lee feints his way forward while Bilder keeps circling. Some feinting from both men. Bit of a leg kick from Lee. Bilder avoids a body shot. Lee lands a left to the body. Bilder starts working the jab a little bit, and Lee lands to the body again. Hard right to the body from Lee, Bilder didn’t like that. Bilder tries a takedown, Lee defends and they hit the fence. Some elbows from Lee as Bilder tries to change levels. Bilder is struggling to do much with the clinch but Lee can’t get out of it. Lee avoids a single leg attack but he really needs to get out of this clinch, he spins free and lands a knee that badly hurts Bilder. Body shots from Lee but Bilder is able to circle off the fence and reset. Lee digs another left to the body. The round ends with them feinting at each other.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Lee

ROUND TWO: Bilder misses a couple of kicks. Lee keeps working his way forward and they both miss left hooks. Front kick from Lee. Bit of a right from Bilder. They trade inside leg kicks. Bilder tries a takedown and they hit the fence. Lee fights off the takedowns in the clinch and keeps sneaking in little punches and elbows. Bilder keeps trying for a takedown against the fence but can’t get them going. Lee lands a knee to the body then gets Bilder on the fence and trips him down into half guard. Lee is able to land some short elbows, he’s trying to set up an arm triangle but Bilder is able to start sitting on the fence to block that. Some lefts from Lee then a flurry that knocks Bilder flatter on the mat, Bilder rolls to turtle and Lee moves to the ride. Bilder stands into the clinch. Lee lands a knee to the head then they trade as they break. Jab from Lee. Bilder has a high kick blocked. Lee with a left to the body then a right hand, that’ll be the last exchange of the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Lee avoids a leg kick. Bilder keeps looking for kicks, and Lee lands a left to the body. Bit of a high kick from Lee. Jab from Lee. Double jab then a right hand from Lee. Bilder tries a takedown, Lee defends as they hit the fence. Bit of an elbow from Bilder. Lee spins Bilder into the fence then Bilder tries a guillotine to dissuade a takedown. Knee from Bilder as he’s holding the arm in guillotine threat. Bilder switches towards a 100% neck crank but Lee postures through it as they sag to the mat and Lee lands elbows from half guard. Arm triangle attack from Lee but the fence and half guard are complicating things so he bails on it. Lee is able to avoid a sweep and land some more elbows. Bilder is unable to get off of his back and Lee sneaks in elbows then some punches. Lee stands over Bilder and punches down as Bilder gets full guard. One final flurry from Lee on top closes the round.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jeong Yeong Lee via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Good performance from Lee, sadly no interview.

Themba Gorimbo has gone 1-1 in the UFC but he’s coming off of a win and now tries to get his first UFC winning streak going. Pete Rodriguez lost his UFC debut when he got out classed by Jack Della Maddalena, then rebounded by beating the comically over matched Mike Jackson, tonight represents arguably the first time in the UFC he’s faced an appropriate level of opposition and he’s also hoping for his first UFC winning streak. The odds are with Gorimbo at -245 to +200 on Rodriguez.

Welterweight Bout: Themba Gorimbo (11-4, 170.5 lbs.) vs. Pete Rodriguez (4-1, 170 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Gorimbo is four inches taller with a significant six inches of reach advantage. Both men probe with kicks, then Gorimbo lands a right hand that crumples Rodriguez and Gorimbo just unloads from on top until the ref steps in.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Themba Gorimbo via TKO, punches, at :32 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Gorimbo for his work this evening. Mic time for Gorimbo, he thanks God first and foremost then puts over The Rock for changing his life for the better. He puts over his coaches and team then thanks his wife for supporting him. He talks us through the finish and says he’s going to auction his gear then do good work for his village in Zimbabwe. To close he wants to become champion this year.

Here’s the finish. Gorimbo throws the overhand and lands more with the wrist and forearm, but that’s more than enough to still do damage and it floors Rodriguez.

Azat Maksum is undefeated including a successful UFC debut in July of last year, he’s shown a lot of promise and looks to solidify himself as the brightest rising prospect in the division with another win here. Charles Johnson has gone 2-4 in the UFC and is on a three fight losing streak, in fairness a couple of those decisions maybe could have gone his way, but now he could well be fighting for his job because a four fight losing streak would be a terrible place for his career. Maksum closed as the favorite at -250 to +200 for Johnson.

Flyweight Bout: Charles Johnson (13-6, 125.5 lbs.) vs. Azat Maksum (17-0, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Johnson is two inches taller but the reach is identical. They touch gloves to get things going, both men are southpaw. Maksum with a left hook to counter a leg kick right away. Johnson tries to tie up but gets shucked aside. Maksum drops Johnson with a right hand then grabs at a d’arce choke on the way down. Johnson is spinning to try and avoid the choke, Maksum keeps working to lock down the choke. Eventually Johnson is able to stand and they reset. Both men orthodox now, Johnson does a lot of switching in general though. Maksum starts probing with the jab and avoiding leg kicks. Jabs from Maksum are working now. A left from Maksum wobbles Johnson then he follows with a knee. Some stance switching from Maksum now as he’s flowing all over Johnson. A jab from Maksum drops Johnson, he caught him off balance there, then he tries for a front headlock as Johnson fights up but Johnson is able to get free. Maksum lands a right to the body. Johnson tries a single leg, that hits the fence then Maksum lands a knee to the body and slips free. Maksum tries a single leg now but Johnson defends and lands a knee. Bit of a right from Maksum. Calf kick from Johnson. Left hand from Maksum partially lands. Johnson lands a front kick. Maksum tries a single leg, he finishes it just before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Maksum

ROUND TWO: Combination from Maksum pretty soon into the round, his hands look pretty smooth thus far. Johnson is circling and looking to find his rhythm. Left hand from Johnson. Maksum has a couple of punches blocked then Johnson lands a calf kick. Both men land in close. Maksum lands a calf kick. Johnson lands a jab and gets a takedown, he moves to the back very quickly and grabs at the choke. Maksum breaks the hooks and spins to get on top. Johnson stands and tries to roll but again Maksum keeps positive position before they stand and separate. Bit of a one two from Maksum. They trade leg kicks. Maksum lands a left hand. Johnson slips trying a head kick, but Maksum can’t follow up. Maksum with an inside leg kick. Johnson lands a couple of punches in close. Bit of a left from Johnson, Maksum tries a takedown that results in a clinch. Johnson defends then lands a punch. Right hand from Maksum. Johnson forces a clinch but nothing comes of it and the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Johnson, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the final round. Maksum is looking to pressure forward more now. One two from Maksum lands. Johnson lands a leg kick. Maksum with an inside leg kick. Front kick from Maksum. Both men land rights in close. Maksum catches a kick and tries a single leg, they hit the fence where Maksum finishes it. Johnson quickly wall walks into a clinch, they trade strikes then break. Maksum looks to work the jab again as they circle. Bit of a knee from Maksum then a left hand. Johnson lands a right hand. Maksum lands a right of his own. Another right from Maksum lands. Both men fall short with punches. Johnson jabs the body. They trade rights. Inside leg kick from Maksum. Johnson lands the one two in close. Maksum catches a kick and looks for a takedown, Johnson tries a ninja choke to defend but then bails on it and lands a punch. They trade in close again. Maksum lands a right hand. Another right from Maksum. Johnson tries a double leg, he finishes it but gets full mount just before the round ends.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Charles Johnson via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Johnson gets an interview, he says he’s working hard in the gym and his wrestling is getting better every day. He thinks flyweight is the most technical weight class and he’s working hard on his skills and mentality. He’d like to fight Joshua Van to open up UFC 300. I’m pretty sure that card is about all booked at this point.

Molly McCann is on a two fight losing streak while going 3-2 in her last five fights, she’s trying to halt that skid by moving down to strawweight and hopefully get her first win since 2022. Diana Belbita has traded wins and losses while going 2-2 in her last four fights, she’s coming off of a loss and is trying to avoid her first losing streak since 2020. The odds are with McCann at -260 to a +210 comeback on Belbita.

Strawweight Bout: Diana Belbita (15-8, 116 lbs.) vs. Molly McCann (13-6, 116 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Belbita is three inches taller with a significant six inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Both women swing some punches early. They trade lefts. A lot of repetitive combinations as they clash, back off and then clash again. Some leg kicks are traded. Belbita lands a left to the body. Some jabs from Belbita as she’s trying to keep things long. Front kick from Belbita. McCann lands a left hand behind a body kick. Belbita lands a left to the body that bothers McCann, McCann then hits a double leg but immediately stands away from the guard and they reset. McCann lands a spinning back kick. Another body shot from Belbita. They clinch up, Belbita with a few knees before McCann forces things to the fence. Another knee from Belbita then McCann tries a spinning elbow as they break. Elbow from McCann lands. Leg kick from Belbita. Belbita with another leg kick then a left to the body. Knee from Belbita. Belbita hits the body again but McCann lands a counter right and we get a bit of brawling. McCann hits a takedown into full mount. Very high mount from McCann and she lands some elbows. McCann grabs an armbar just before the round might end and it’s tight enough to force the last second tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Molly McCann via Submission, armbar, at 4:59 of Round 1

Mic time for McCann, she feels amazing down at strawweight and feels she really should have been down here earlier in her career. She’s been working hard lately and trying harder to ignore the noise and focus on the fight. She puts over her team for all of their work and plans to celebrate tonight.

Pretty standard armbar here, but fundamentals executed well will take you a long long way in combat sports.

That’s it for the prelims, we’re still on ESPN+ for the main card though.

Gilbert Urbina has gone 1-1 in the UFC but did score a nice stoppage in his last fight and now looks for his first UFC winning streak. Charles Radtke is on a five fight winning streak including his UFC debut last year, he’s hoping to continue that momentum and prove himself a prospect in the division. Urbina is your -200 favorite to Radtke’s +165.

Welterweight Bout: Charlie Radtke (8-3, 170.5 lbs.) vs. Gilbert Urbina (7-2, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Urbina is a significant six inches taller with three inches of reach advantage. Urbina lands a leg kick to get things going. Both men probe with the jab, then Radtke lands a couple of punches. Radtke presses forward and both men keep working the lead hand. Urbina is showing a lot of front kicks. Radtke avoids some punches and keeps backing Urbina towards the fence. Left hook from Radtke lands. Radtke with a stiff jab. Another jab from Radtke. Urbina tries a clinch, that hits the fence but nothing comes of it before Radtke spins free. Radtke keeps his jab working. Both men are doing some stance switching now. Solid left from Radtke connects. Urbina takes a kick to the groin so we’ve got a time out. Replay shows maybe the toes got up there. Urbina takes about a minute and we’re back to fighting. Radtke lands an inside leg kick. A couple of punches land for Radtke. Urbina tries an uppercut but Radtke floors him with a left hook, Urbina is nearly out but grabs a leg long enough to not get stopped and makes his way up on shaky legs. Radtke is able to club Urbina down with another left hook and this time the ref does intervene.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Charlie Radtke via TKO, punches, at 4:47 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Radtke for his work this evening. Mic time for Radtke, he wants to get the title in 2025 after Belal Muhammad wins in this year. He talks us through the finish and he wanted to prove he can fight, then warns the oddsmakers against making him the underdog anymore. To close he puts over his team, including Belal Muhammad who’s in his corner right now, then says welterweight looks like crap at the moment and he’s here to help make it great again.

Radtke has a very nice left hook.

Aliaskhab Khizriev is undefeated including a successful UFC debut last year, he’s trying to remain perfect tonight and prove he’s the next big thing in the division going forward. Makhmud Muradov had some hype back in 2019 or so but has gone 4-2 in the UFC and only recently broke a two fight losing streak which cooled his prospects considerably, now he’s trying to get another winning streak going while slowing the rise of Khizriev. Khizriev closed at -140 while +100 on Muradov might be a decent little value bet.

Middleweight Bout: Aliaskhab Khizriev (14-0, 186 lbs.) vs. Makhmud Muradov (26-8, 185.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Muradov is five inches taller with an inch and a half of reach advantage. Both men come out swinging and Muradov takes a finger to the eye so we’ve got a time out. Replay confirms the eye poke. That left eye of Muradov is struggling to open while the doctor is in to talk with him. Muradov can’t really open his left eye so they’re going to give it a bit of time to see if the muscles will stop spasming but we’re halfway done through the 5 minutes. They just wave it off as that eye looks bad.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – No Contest, eye poke, at :11 of Round 1

Well that’s unfortunate, I was looking forward to that fight.

Viviane Araujo has gone 2-3 in her last five fights, she halted a two fight skid her last time out and now looks for her first winning streak since 2021 while also defending her ranking. Natalia Silva hasn’t lost since 2017 and is 4-0 in the UFC, a win here would move her one step closer to the top five in the division as she looks to continue her ascent through the ranks. The odds are pretty heavily with Silva at -355 against the +280 on Araujo.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: #7 Viviane Araujo (12-5, 126 lbs.) vs. #9 Natalia Silva (16-5-1, 125.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Araujo is a full decade older and has three inches of reach advantage but the height is identical. Silva shows kicks early as both women also miss punches. Araujo looks to press forward. Both women try to work the lead hand. Araujo blocks a kick. Again both women miss punches. Araujo catches a high kick and gets a clinch on the fence. Araujo is able to ride things down but Silva bounces right up with Araujo on her back in the clinch. Silva is trying to break the grip of Araujo but Araujo is just hanging out behind her keeping position. Not a whole lot going on here, Araujo has landed a few knees to the leg but nothing else. Silva gets chest to chest and tries a whizzer kick but can’t finish it or get out of the clinch. Silva spins free finally and lands a couple of punches. Spinning back kick from Silva lands. Head kick from Silva, Araujo responds with a left hook and clinches again just as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Silva but probably went the other way

ROUND TWO: Silva gets back to working her kicks and lands a head kick. Both women are working the jab, and Silva is starting to switch stance now. Front kick to the face from Silva then she catches Araujo with a right hand as Araujo closes distance. Silva tosses Araujo away from a clinch. Jab from Silva. Araujo keeps trying to pressure forward. They both miss kicks then Silva lands a right hand. Silva with an inside leg kick. Stiff left from Silva connects. They split jabs again. Araujo avoids punches and gets a clinch on the fence. Not much going on here, Araujo is hoping knees to the leg will keep the ref from separating them. The ref breaks them up. Silva lands a jab then misses a wheel kick. Front kicks from Silva as she’s looking to maintain distance. Araujo lands a right hand to close the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Araujo is trying to push forward again but keeps walking into punches and kicks. Silva lands a left to the body then a side kick. Jab from Silva. Bit of a right from Araujo but she eats two counters. Araujo tries a single leg on the fence but that stalls out into a clinch. Silva is able to spin free and lands a left hand. Bit of a body kick from Silva. Silva with a right hand but Araujo lands a counter left. Jab from Araujo after taking a front kick. Silva hits the body a couple of times. Jabs from both stances from Silva as she’s circling. Bit of a high kick from Silva. Wheel kick from Silva mostly lands. Silva lands a right hand, Araujo grabs a clinch as the round ends.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Natalia Silva via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

I can see Araujo getting the first but she really couldn’t get much going after that. Mic time for Silva and the translator, she opens with English and says she’s over the moon then gives glory to God. She’s just happy and switches to Portuguese to send love to her mother. To close she gets the fans to sing happy birthday because today is her birthday.

Randy Brown has gone 5-1 in his last six fights only dropping to Jack Della Maddalena, he won his last fight and looks to rebuild a winning streak while trying to make another move through the crowded welterweight ranks. Muslim Salikhov has gone 3-2 in his last five fights but he’s coming off of a loss and now mostly tries to avoid his first losing streak and prove he’s still got one more run in him despite his age. Brown is your -265 favorite but +215 for Salikhov might tempt some bettors out there.

Welterweight Bout: Randy Brown (17-5, 171 lbs.) vs. Muslim Salikhov (19-4, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Brown is four inches taller, has a big eight inches of reach advantage, and Salikhov is almost 40. Salikhov lands a leg kick. Brown is trying to work his lead hand and Salikhov keeps landing leg kicks. Salikhov misses a wheel kick then lands a leg kick. Bit of an uppercut from Salikhov in close. Brown is switching his stance, not leg kick related he just does that a lot. Salikhov lands another leg kick. Calf kick from Salikhov. Salikhov falls short trying an overhand right. They trade lefts. Salikhov lands a leg kick. Both men probe with the lead hand again. Bit of a jab from Brown. Salikhov with another calf kick. Salikhov takes an eye poke and we’ve got a time out. Replay confirms the poke but Salikhov only takes 53 seconds then we’re back to action. Brown tries a high kick, bit of a counter cut kick from Salikhov. Salikhov misses another wheel kick. Spinning back kick from Salikhov mostly lands. Double jab then a right from Brown floors Salikhov and we’re done here.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Randy Brown via KO, punches, at 3:17 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Brown for his work this evening. Mic time for Brown, he loves getting the finish and knows he needed it. He talks us through the finish and puts over Salikhov and circled left most of the time to avoid the spinning kicks then got a read for the double jab right hand on that angle that ended things. Asked about the future he wants on UFC 300 against anyone.

Normally you double jab just to close distance, Brown double jabs to change the angle and finds a great one to drop his right hand onto Salikhov. Really good stuff from Brown here.

Renato “Moicano” Carneiro has gone 3-2 in his last five fights, those losses are to Rafael Fiziev and Rafael dos Anjos and he is coming off of a win. Moicano is trying to further establish himself in the division with a win here and possibly take aim at some more ranked competition as the year rolls on. Drew Dober has gone 4-1 in his last five fights only dropping to Matt Frevola and he’s coming off of a win, he’s hoping to climb up the ranks with a win here and take aim at bigger names again going forward. It’s not too surprising to see Moicano as a slight -190 favorite to +160 on Dober.

Lightweight Bout: #15 Drew Dober (27-12 1 NC, 156 lbs.) vs. #13 Renato Moicano (17-5-1, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Moicano is three inches taller with two inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves, Dober fighting southpaw. Both men quickly start throwing punches. Moicano lands a jab. Both men land punches in close. Moicano lands an inside leg kick. Dober with a bit of a left hand. They trade power hand punches, Moicano is a little wobbled and he gets a takedown after not being happy with the striking. Moicano on top in half guard now. Some lefts from Moicano as he starts trying to set up an arm triangle. Dober tries to hip bump and he’s able to get full guard. Moicano nearly gets kicked off but retains top position in full guard. Right hand from Moicano and he passes to half guard. Moicano looks to pass but Dober is blocking him thus far. The round ends with Moicano still on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Moicano

ROUND TWO: Both men show the lead hand as the round starts. Dober lands a couple of lefts but Moicano gets a clinch and then a takedown into half guard. Dober is able to scoot to the fence and wall walk into a clinch. Moicano is not giving up on this and he’s able to drag things back to the mat, this time he’s in full guard but still on top. Dober kicks Moicano off and lands an up kick but Moicano goes back down into half guard. Moicano is trying to set up the arm triangle again but Dober is aware of it. Moicano tries to pass, he nearly gets around but Dober is able to retain half guard rather than give up anything worse. Some short punches to the body from Moicano, he’s doing enough to keep the position and not let the ref get involved. Dober kicks Moicano off and tries to stand, Moicano jumps on his back but Dober keeps scrambling and they wind up on the feet. Moicano tries a clinch, lateral drop from Dober and he’s on top and Moicano is bleeding around the eyes. That cut is around the right eye of Moicano. Dober lands some body shots but he’s trying to get around the guard of Moicano. Some more punches from Dober will land to close out the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Moicano but Dober might have stolen it, 20-18 Moicano overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Moicano lands a couple of lefts. They trade punches again then clinch up, but Dober pulls free pretty quickly. Moicano lands a jab. Dober with a one two. Body kick from Dober then he avoids a clinch. Moicano pokes out a few jabs. Right hand from Moicano in close but Dober lands a hard counter, they clinch up after that but Moicano gets the takedown into top position. Moicano passes to half guard and Dober starts looking to control him. Dober hip escapes to full guard as Moicano keeps bleeding on him. Some hammer fists from Moicano then body to head punches. Solid right hand from Moicano then he tries to pass and gets to half guard. Moicano looks to pass to full mount, he gets stuck in Dober’s quarter guard then Dober shrimps and gets full guard back. Dober tries to scoot towards the fence but Moicano is blocking a lot of that. Moicano moves to side control but puts himself in half guard to stop Dober potentially standing up. Moicano is working and passes towards full mount but again Dober is able to block that and lock down the leg he’s caught in half guard. A few more punches and elbows from Moicano to close the round.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Renato Moicano via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Yeah Dober probably should have had the second the more I think about it. Mic time for Moicano, he sends love to his 62 year old father who just had another child born and he’s happy to have another sibling then says he’s going to get his wife pregnant soon and help populate the world. He gives love to the USA and wants to join the police here once he becomes a citizen and is done fighting. He tells people to go to church and respect the law, otherwise the country will go to hell. To close he puts over his social media stuff, and invites a hater to die and puts over Dober one final time.

Roman Dolidze has gone 4-2 at middleweight and just had a four fight winning streak broken when he couldn’t get much going against Marvin Vettori, now he’s trying to avoid his first losing streak and prove he’s still capable of fighting the very best in the division. Nassourdine Imavov had a tough 2023 when he lost to Sean Strickland than had a No Contest with Chris Curtis, now he’s hoping to put that year firmly the rear view and get 2024 up and running with a win. Fairly close main event tonight, -175 on Imavov to +145 for Dolidze.

Middleweight Bout: #8 Roman Dolidze (12-2, 186 lbs.) vs. #11 Nassourdine Imavov (12-4 1 NC, 185 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Imavov is an inch taller while Dolidze has an inch of reach advantage. Imavov comes out probing with the lead leg. Some jabs from Imavov now. Imavov lands some front kicks. Dolidze lands an inside leg kick. Another front kick from Imavov. Bit of a one two from Imavov and Dolidze grabs a clinch. Short elbows from Imavov while Dolidze is holding the clinch. Dolidze is just focused on holding the clinch right now, but Imavov gets free and lands an elbow. Dolidze lands a knee. Front kick from Imavov lands. Imavov with a couple of leg kicks then he checks the return from Dolidze. More front kicks from Imavov then a couple of rights. Imavov lands a hard right hand then a knee to the body, Dolidze is hurt and Imavov drops him with a left hand. Imavov on top and looking to unload from half guard, Dolidze is defending well enough right now though. Dolidze tries to roll for a leg, Imavov to the back with both hooks in and starts unloading more punches. Imavov keeps punching, Dolidze has based up now but Imavov grabs an armbar and cranks it but the round ends before that can truly develop.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Imavov

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves again. Imavov lands a left gazelle punch. Dolidze misses a few punches. Imavov avoids a high kick. Bit of a body kick from Imavov. Dolidze clinches up and forces things to the fence. Not much offense from Dolidze in the clinch. Imavov gets double under hooks and spins Dolidze into the fence then pulls out of the clinch. Front kicks from Imavov now. Dolidze avoids a right hand and clinches again. Still not much going on here in the clinch. The ref agrees with me and breaks them up. Some jabs from Imavov. Bit of a left hook from Dolidze but Imavov cracks him with a one two. Another right hand from Imavov will be the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Imavov but could go either way, 20-17 Imavov overall

ROUND THREE: Dolidze avoids a right hand and gets another clinch. Imavov gets Dolidze on the fence then spins to the back and kicks Dolidze in the head then knees him in the body before they break. They split jabs for a bit. Front kicks from Imavov then he avoids a clinch. They both punch into a clinch but Imavov landed a good right before they did. Dolidze is trying for control but Imavov is able to break free and cracks him with a right hand. Imavov with a front kick then they clinch. Dolidze is about ready to go if Imavov can recognize it and keep distance properly. Not much doing in this clinch again as Dolidze just controls. Imavov is able to spin free then lands a front kick. Right hand from Imavov then a knee to the body. They clinch again and Dolidze is just holding on. The ref breaks them up with 20 seconds left in the round. Dolidze swings a couple of rights that don’t really land. Imavov goes southpaw to partially land a head kick. Spinning back kick from Dolidze lands to close the round.

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

ROUND FOUR: Sharp left hook from Imavov as Dolidze is trying to brawl. Dolidze forces a clinch and they hit the fence. Once again, per usual, there’s not much going on here. Imavov is trying to make Dolidze at least work in the clinch now and winds up slipping to the back. Dolidze puts his right hand down while Imavov is on his back in the clinch, Imavov looks at the hand and fires a head kick that is probably not fully legal. We get a time out and the ref has to contain things as Imavov and Dolidze’s corner start yelling at each other. Dolidze says he can continue after a minute, the ref takes a point from Imavov which is more or less fair and we’re back to fighting. Imavov lands a right hand. Dolidze gulls forward and they brawl then clinch up again. Dolidze pulls guard and tries for a leg lock, Imavov looks to counter with a d’arce but loses the grip and just winds up on bottom in half guard. Imavov gets full guard then scoots and looks to wall walk. Imavov is to a knee and back upright into a clinch. Bit of a knee from Imavov then he slips to the back and lands a body shot before they break. Right hand from Imavov then a body kick. Another right from Imavov lands. Dolidze misses a spin attack and Imavov gets on his back standing again. They just wind up in a clinch on the fence. The round will end in the clinch.

SCORECARD: 9-9 DRAW after the point deduction, 39-35 Imavov overall

ROUND FIVE: Both men probe with front kicks then Imavov pushes Dolidze over but makes him stand. Southpaw for Dolidze and he gets kicked in the body because of it. Both men miss punches then Dolidze grabs a clinch, because that’s worked so well for the prior 20 minutes. Imavov fights out of the clinch and then gets the back of Dolidze when Dolidze tries to spin. Bit of a head kick from Imavov, this one was legal. Dolidze grabs a double wrist lock and tries to pull guard, Imavov gets on top and Dolidze tries a toe hold. They roll for a bit but Imavov gets free and elbows Dolidze in the head. Dolidze is about done and Imavov stupidly clinches up with him again rather than break and strike. More hugging, which is not a term I use for clinching lightly, and the ref takes a bit too long to break them up but does eventually. Dolidze swings punches that are blocked. Imavov lands a right hand then they clinch. They fight for position then Imavov with an elbow and a knee to the body before they break. Another clinch, Imavov gets free and lands a right hand. Dolidze tries to grab the legs, Imavov with a front headlock and thinks about an anaconda choke but decides against it and lands punches. Dolidze tries to invert but Imavov stands back and makes him stand. Left hook from Imavov will be the last blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Imavov, 49-44 Imavov overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Nassourdine Imavov via majority decision (48-46, 49-44, 47-47)

Clucky, get out. 47-47 is a trash scorecard for that fight, shame on that judge. Imavov gets an interview with his coach to translate, he felt comfortable during the fight and thought he maybe should have had a finish in the first and was a little tired after that. He expected to have the striking advantage, then apologizes for not jabbing enough since he felt one of his hands got hurt. Asked what he wants next he puts over his new team for getting him ready then advocates for his brother to be in the UFC and requests a rematch with Sean Strickland. To close he’s asked about beefing with Chris Curtis still and says Curtis talks too much for a guy who doesn’t do anything in the cage and would be willing to fight him anywhere. He then puts over Dolidze for being tough despite the head kick in the fourth round.

Well on that note UFC on ESPN+ 93 comes to a close. It was about as middle of the road an Apex card as it looked on paper, but we’ll still be tackling the fallout from it on the 411 Ground and Pound MMA Podcast. We’ll also look ahead to next week and UFC on ESPN+ 94, still in the Apex and still with middleweights in the main event. I’ll be back here to cover that as well, and I hope you’ll be reading be that live or after the fact. Thanks 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+ 93, Robert Winfree