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411’s UFC 294 Report: Makhachev KO’s Volkanovski

October 21, 2023 | Posted by Robert Winfree
UFC 294 Image Credit: UFC

MAIN CARD (Pay-per-view, 2 p.m. ET)
Champ Islam Makhachev (155 lbs.) vs. Alexander Volkanovski (154.5 lbs.) – for lightweight title
Khamzat Chimaev (185.5 lbs.) vs. Kamaru Usman (184.5 lbs.)
#2 Magomed Ankalaev (206 lbs.) vs. #7 Johnny Walker (205 lbs.)
Ikram Aliskerov (186 lbs.) vs. Warlley Alves (185.5 lbs.)
Muin Gafurov (135.5 lbs.) vs. Said Nurmagomedov (136 lbs.)

#10 Tim Elliott (126 lbs.) vs. #11 Muhammad Mokaev (126 lbs.)
Trevor Peek (155.5 lbs.) vs. Mohammad Yahya (156 lbs.)
Javid Basharat (136 lbs.) vs. Victor Henry (136 lbs.)
Abu Azaitar (186 lbs.) vs. Sedriques Dumas (186 lbs.)
Mike Breeden (159.5 lbs.)* vs. Anshul Jubli (155.5 lbs.)
Muhammad Naimov (145.5 lbs.) vs. Nathaniel Wood (146 lbs.)
Victoria Dudakova (116.6 lbs.)* vs. Jinh Yu Frey (116 lbs.)
Sharabutdin Magomedov (186 lbs.) vs. Bruno Silva (186 lbs.)

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC 294, I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the event. Well 12 days ago this event took a couple of big hits, the original main event of Islam Makhachev defending his lightweight title in a rematch with Charles Oliveira fell through when Oliveira suffered a cut that forced him out of the fight. Stepping in on that very short notice to replace Oliveira is featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski, Volkanovski and Makhachev fought back in February with Makhachev taking a competitive decision, now Volkanovski is trying to become a two weight champion under pretty adverse circumstances. Their first fight was one of the better all year, especially if you like the technical side of things, and both men stand to gain and lose a lot here so it could be a good main event. The co-main event got hit as well, the original fight was Paulo Costa taking on Khamzat Chimaev but Costa had a resurgence of staph in his elbow and in steps former welterweight champion Kamaru Usman. Dana White has claimed the winner of this will get the next middleweight title shot, of course we know that will only happen if the winner is ready and able to fight on the UFC’s terms on the UFC’s schedule so the words don’t mean a whole lot but in theory that added stakes to the bout. The entire main card is pretty solid, Magomed Ankalaev tries to rebound from his draw with Jan Blachowicz against usually entertaining Johnny Walker, Irkam Aliskerov is back in action and Said Nurmagomedov is back in action against Muin Gafurov. Elsewhere on the card Muhammad Mokaev gets a step up in class against wily veteran Tim Elliott, Muhammad Naimov gets a pretty tough fight against Nathaniel Wood, and a name that’s risen around the regional MMA scene in Sharabutdin Magomedov makes his UFC debut. Honestly it’s a pretty darn good card on paper, so let’s hope it bears out in practice.

UFC 294 comes to the world from the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. There’s not official commission here and I think the UFC generally just uses the Nevada protocols when they’re self regulating so I’m going on that assumption here. John Anik, Daniel Cormier, and Paul Felder will be calling the action while Megan Olivi does the roving reporter bit. The last thing to keep in mind is that we’re in the usual 30 foot cage set up.

Sharabutdin Magomedov is undefeated coming into his UFC debut with only three of his fights going the distance, now he’s trying to make the most of his only chance to make a first impression. Bruno Silva has gone 4-3 in the UFC overall but he’s just 1-3 in his last four fights and is coming off of a loss to Brendan Allen, Silva needs a win here to right the ship and get back on the winning side of things. Magomedov is your -345 favorite to a +275 comeback on Silva.

Middleweight Bout: Sharabutdin Magomedov (11-0, 186 lbs.) vs. Bruno Silva (23-9, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Magomedov is two inches taller while Silva has an inch of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Both men with some feints, then they trade inside leg kicks. Both men start showing stance switches, Silva seems to favor southpaw right now. Bit of a side kick from Magomedov. Back to orthodox Silva and he avoids a few leg kicks, then lands a spinning back kick. Silva lands a one two to counter a leg kick. More southpaw for Silva, and Magomedov lands an inside leg kick. Head kick from Magomedov rocks Silva but he stays upright and avoids a knee. Silva tries a double leg but Magomedov avoids it. Left hand from Silva lands but he can’t quite find the follow ups. Magomedov lands a couple of leg kicks, then they trade rights. A couple of kicks from Magomedov partially land, one of them strays low and we get a time out for Silva to recover. Replay confirms a leg kick did indeed hit the groin, and Silva is ready to continue after 45 seconds. Jab from Silva then a leg kick. Both men are switching stance again and Magomedov keeps chopping at whichever leg Silva has forward. They trade lefts, Silva might have landed better. Bit of a body kick from Magomedov. Silva stalks forward and lands a hard right hand, they trade punches then Magomedov lands a couple of body kicks only for Silva to crack him with a right hand as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Magomedov

ROUND TWO: Magomedov gets back to kicking as the round starts. Hook kick from Magomedov partially lands, then a leg kick to follow up. Silva checks a leg kick then lands one. They get close, Magomedov lands a knee but Silva lands a right hand as they break. Left high kick from Magomedov partially lands, then a body kick to follow up. Silva starts stalking forward again, and Magomedov lands a knee to the head. Front kick from Magomedov then an inside leg kick. Another front kick from Magomedov then a leg kick. Stiff jab from Magomedov. Silva times a double leg with a kick and gets on top in full guard. Silva with some body shots as Magomedov lands elbows from his back. They trade punches on the mat, Magomedov keeps firing those elbows. Silva lands a right hand from top position. A few more punches from Silva as Magomedov keeps his guard mostly closed. Left from Silva, he stands and looks to pass but can’t get around the guard and has to go back into it. Both men are bleeding now, Silva in the hair while Magomedovis cut around the right eyebrow. A couple of more punches from Silva, then Magomedov kicks him off and misses a kick at the head, Silva gets back on top as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Magomedov but a very close one, 20-18 Magomedov overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the final round. Magomedov fires a couple of inside leg kicks but on the second one Silva gets a takedown into guard. Silva lands an elbow. A few body shots from Silva land. Magomedov lands a few punches but Silva lands a hard right hand. Silva lands a couple of lefts. Silva works to pass but can’t quite get to half guard. Magomedov scoots towards the fence and looks to wall walk, he’s able to do so and they clinch up on the fence. Both men land uppercuts then Magomedov fires a head kick as they break. Silva tries to clinch but Magomedov elbows him a few times, but as he tries to keep striking Silva double legs him again. Some body shots from Silva. Both men land short elbows on the mat, then Silva lands a couple of rights. Magomedov with some elbows off of his back. Silva tries to pass again and winds up just landing a right hand then finally passing to side control. Magomedov kicks Silva off and regains his feet then lands a wicked body kick as the last blow of the round.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Sharabutdin Magomedov via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

I don’t fully agree with 30-27 but you could make an argument for Magomedov in the third so I’m not up in arms over it. Mic time for Magomedov and the translator, he opens with English to say hi and express love to his fans and thank the UFC and his fans, he’s happy with this fight. He says he tried to be careful in this fight, and next time he’s going to be even more dangerous. To close he goes fully into Russian to again thank everyone for their support.

Viktoria Dudakova is undefeated including a successful, if short, UFC debut when her opponent dislocated her elbow during a grappling exchange but she’s looking to improve on that win here and prove herself a rising prospect in the division. Dudakova did technically miss weight here and likely wants a win to help smooth over that gaff. Jinh Yu Frey has gone 2-5 in the UFC and is on a three fight losing streak, she could easily be facing a win or go home situation here. Dudakova is almost prohibitive favored at -500 to +380 on Frey.

Strawweight Bout: Viktoria Dudakova (7-0, 116.6 lbs.)* vs. Jinh Yu Frey (11-9, 116 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Dudakova has two inches of height and reach, she’s also 14 years younger and of coursed missed weight by around half a pound. They touch gloves, Frey fighting southpaw. Both women swing in close, Dudakova lands a right hand as they exit the pocket. Dudakova punches close, clinches up but Frey is able to shove free pretty quickly. Bit of a right from Dudakova, Frey lands a right to the body. They trade punches in close again. Dudakova forces a clinch and they hit the fence. Some knees from Dudakova but she doesn’t like the position as Frey starts pummeling and disengages. A couple of punches from Dudakova partially land. Bit of a combination from Frey, then they bang heads and we get a time out as the ref checks on them. Replay shows it was just accidental, both women changing levels as they got to the pocket, but they can both continue after a little under a minute. They trade power hand punches. Dudakova tries a takedown, Frey stays upright and they start clinching. Knees from Dudakova then a right hand and Frey lands a left hand of her own as they break. Dudakova forces a clinch but can’t find a takedown and Frey shoves her away. Jab from Dudakova. Bit of a jab from Dudakova, then she sits down Frey with a left hook and tries to follow up but the round ends as she’s looking to flurry once Frey stands.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Dudakova

ROUND TWO: Combination from Dudakova, Frey isn’t happy and hits a double leg into half guard. Frey is trying to work for an arm triangle. Side control for Frey, she’s being very methodical here and Dudakova is struggling to handle that. Dudakova hip escapes to half guard, then all the way to full guard. Frey avoids an armbar attempt and lands hammer fists then stands over Dudakova and lands a leg kick. Left hand from Frey, Dudakova lands an up kick but can’t quite get up to her feet. Frey eventually avoids a kick and goes back into side control. Dudakova shrimps to full guard pretty quickly. Elbow from Frey. Dudakova tries an armbar but doesn’t have the arm deep enough to really threaten it. Frey stands over Dudakova and Dudakova gets up to reset on the feet. Bit of a right from Dudakova, then Frey lands a left hand. Dudakova jabs the body then lands a body kick. Bit of a head kick from Dudakova then a body kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Frey, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Both women come out working the lead hand to start the last round. Bit of a one two from Dudakova. Dudakova avoids a takedown and lands a right hand. Dudakova with a combination in close, she just seems a little busier at this point. They trade rights. Stiff couple of lefts from Dudakova then Frey lands a left of her own. Dudakova lands a right hand. Short right from Dudakova lands then they trade lefts. Bit of a left hook from Dudakova after Frey lands a left to the body. They clinch up and hit the fence. Dudakova lands a couple of knees. Frey can’t find a takedown yet in the clinch. They trade punches on the break. Body kick from Dudakova then they trade punches in close to end the round.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Viktoria Dudakova via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

No interview for Dudakova.

Nathaniel Wood has gone 7-2 in the UFC and currently boasts a three fight winning streak and is undefeated since moving up to featherweight, if Wood can get to four in a row here it could easily earn him a step up in class for his next opponent. Muhammad Naimov is on a four fight winning streak including a successful UFC debut back in June, he’s taking a definite step up class here but that does mean a win would fully cement his status as a prospect worth watching. Wood is a pretty notable favorite at -325 to +260 on Naimov.

Featherweight Bout: Muhammad Naimov (9-2, 145.5 lbs.) vs. Nathaniel Wood (20-5, 146 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Naimov is three inches taller with an inch of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Naimov probes with the jab early, Wood is measuring for leg kicks. Both men play around with stance switches, and Wood lands a couple of hard calf kicks. They trade in close and Naimov drops Wood with a right hook but Wood bounces up and into a clinch. Inside trip from Naimov and he’s on top in full guard. Wood looks to work his guard, Naimov lands a short elbow. Wood looks to wall walk but Naimov keeps attacking his legs to keep him on the mat. Some punches and hammer fists from Naimov. Wood is now sitting on the fence and looking to wall walk, Naimov is fighting to keep things on the mat but Wood regains his feet still in a clinch. Wood gets Naimov on the fence, Naimov spins him and then knees him in the groin so we’ve got a time out as that one looked bad. Replay confirms there was a knee to the groin followed by a legal blow to the solar plexus, that’s a tough situation. Wood can continue after 1:25 and they touch gloves on the restart. Wood fires a couple of inside leg kicks as Naimov is fighting southpaw, then Wood cracks Naimov with a right hand that sits him down. Naimov bounces up and they clinch again. Wood with some punches in the clinch then an outside trip into side control. Wood tries mount, Naimov looks to counter and Wood scrambles to grab a kimura but loses it. Naimov on top lands some punches then passes to side control. Wood rolls to his knees, Naimov grabs a front headlock to keep him on his knees. They fight up and trade elbows in the clinch as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Naimov

ROUND TWO: Naimov fires a kick to start the round but it strays into the groin so we get an almost immediate time out. Replay confirms the kick went low as Wood is trying to recover. Wood can continue and Naimov gets a hard warning, the ref could have taken a point there and I wouldn’t have objected, both low blows have been pretty bad. Naimov tries a takedown and they clinch up on the fence. Both men land punches in close, Wood hits an outside trip and gets on top in half guard. Naimov stands but Wood gets to his back in the clinch. Wood is trying for a cheese donkey but winds up bailing on that one to keep a chest to chest clinch. Naimov tries an outside trip and eventually gets it into half guard. Wood quickly looks to wall walk but Naimov is able to keep top position in half guard. Naimov looks to posture up, Wood elevates his base and wall walks into a clinch. Wood tries a kimura to counter a double leg, but loses the grip and Naimov finishes the takedown. Wood wall walks into a clinch and that’s where the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: Wood lands a calf kick to start the round, then Naimov fires a hook kick. Naimov tries a spinning kick and Wood gets the back standing. They hit the fence and Wood separates. Bit of a left hook from Wood. Naimov is mostly southpaw at this point, bit of a left hook from Wood in close. Glancing right hook from Wood, Naimov lands a left in response. A lot of forward pressure from Wood, he’s trying to keep Naimov near the fence. Cut kick from Wood to counter a head kick. Naimov avoids a right hand and tries a double leg which he finishes against the fence. Wood wall walks into a clinch. Naimov looks for a takedown, Wood threatens a front choke to break that and then lands a one two. Hard one two from Wood, he’s got Naimov backing up and a little rattled. Front kick from Wood then another right hand. They split jabs then both men miss hooks. Bit of a right from Wood, then another front kick. They trade jabs, Naimov misses a spinning hook kick and Wood gets on top and unloads with punches but Naimov will survive to see the end of the round.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Muhammad Naimov via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Apart from the low blows and desperation glove grabbing when hurt that was a pretty darn strong performance from Naimov, Wood is no joke and that was not at all a fluke kind of win. No interview for Naimov.

Mike Breeden has gone 0-3 in the UFC and missed weight by a fair amount here, his second time doing so in the UFC, and Breeden likely needs a win if he wants to stay with the promotion. Anshul Jubli is undefeated including a successful UFC debut earlier this year and he’s getting something of a showcase opportunity here, which just means he has to make the most of it especially against an opponent who’s never tasted victory in the UFC. The odds are with Jubli at -260 to a +210 comeback on Breeden.

Lightweight Bout: Mike Breeden (10-6, 159.5 lbs.)* vs. Anshul Jubli (7-0, 155.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Jubli is two inches taller while Breeden has an inch of reach advantage, he also missed weight pretty badly. Some jabs from Jubli then they trade leg kicks. Both men doing some feinting, Breeden misses a few punches. Jubli jabs the body but Breeden lands a counter punch. Front kick from Jubli. Both men punch in close then Jubli lands a knee before they separate. One two from Jubli in close, bit of a right from Breeden and Jubli lands a front kick to exit the exchange. Chopping right hand from Breeden. Breeden keeps looking to flurry. Jubli lands a right hand that seems to trouble Breeden. Jubli misses a head kick then lands a calf kick. Breeden barely avoids a knee strike. They trade rights. Breeden tries a takedown, can’t get it and winds up landing a knee before they break. Jubli lands a right to the body. Breeden misses a couple of punches. Left hook from Jubli then a front kick. Breeden lands a left hook in close but then eats a knee. Right hand from Breeden and they then trade in close. Breeden with a one two. Jubli lands a right hand. Left hook from Breeden. Jubli lands a right to the body as the last relevant blow of the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Jubli

ROUND TWO: Jubli quickly lands a right hand that hurts Breeden, Jubli backs him to the fence and is looking to flurry. Front kick from Jubli, Breeden is bleeding around the left eyebrow now. Jubli enters a clinch but can’t find anything and they wind up breaking. They both land in close then Jubli lands a knee to the body. That cut on Breeden doesn’t look great. Bit of a right from Breeden. Yeah that cut is bad, you can see the hanging skin when Breeden moves to profile. Jubli lands a jab, then Breeden lands a right hand. Bit of a left from Breeden. Jubli lands a right hand but eats two hard counters. Body kick from Breeden. Jubli lands another right hand. Bit of a one two from Breeden. Stiff jab from Jubli lands. Both men land in close, this is turning into a slugfest. Calf kick from Jubli, but Breeden counters with a right hand. Breeden with a right hand. Bit of a calf kick from Breeden. Body kick from Jubli. Both men land in close again, when they hit the pocket Breeden is a tad more active but Jubli is landing better at distance as the round closes.

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

ROUND THREE: Both men swing punches in close then Jubli lands a knee. Breeden is marching forward and barking at Jubli, he lands a right hand. Jab from Breeden, then a right hand when Jubli tries to counter. Breeden is just yelling at Jubli and punching him. Another right from Breeden then a flurry, Jubli is hurt and Breeden is trying to tee off but Jubli reaches for a leg to back him off. Breeden keeps coming forward and jabbing, he’s got Jubli hurt and unsettled mentally as he’s got him to the fence. They trade rights then Breeden avoids some further punches. Jubli has a couple of punches blocked. Bit of a flurry from Breeden. Jubli lands a right. Breeden lands a left hook in close. A right from Breeden drops Jubli and the ref jumps in as Jubli almost face planted.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Mike Breeden via KO, punches, at 3:00 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Breeden for his work this morning. Mic time for Breeden after that comeback win, he knew he had to get in Jubli’s head and knew he needed a win after a less than stellar start to his UFC run. He started barking once he knew Jubli was fading and got into his head with that.

Here’s the finish. Breeden was down and decided to just go nuts in the last round, barking, shouting, marching forward and swinging power punches at Jubli. The combination visibly unsettled Jubli and that hurt his defense, then after he got hurt with a punch earlier he never really got his feet back under him. Bruising right hand in close and around the guard of Jubli puts him down and gives Breeden the comeback win.

Abu Azaitar has gone 1-1 in the UFC but he’s coming off of a loss and over two years on the sideline, now he’s trying to reintroduce himself to the audience and prove he’s still a potential force in the division. Sedriques Dumas has gone 1-1 in the UFC but he’s coming off of a win and he’s hoping to get his first UFC winning streak up and running here. Somewhat surprising to see Dumas the -245 favorite, that +200 payout on Azaitar might tempt a few bettors out there.

Middleweight Bout: Abu Azaitar (14-3-1, 186 lbs.) vs. Sedriques Dumas (8-1, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Dumas is a notable five inches taller, has three inches of reach advantage, and is nine years younger. Both men do some feinting as the round starts. Dumas lands a calf kick. Azaitar blocks a high kick and badly misses a punch, he’s got no read on the distance yet. They trade leg kicks, then Azaitar catches a kick and off balances Dumas with a right hand. Dumas scrambles back up and hits a clinch takedown into half guard. A few short blows to the body from Dumas. Not a whole lot going on here, Azaitar can’t do much to get up and Dumas is keeping him pinned while landing some short blows. Dumas lands a knee to the body, love that from half guard when you can get the angle for it. A few short rights from Dumas. Dumas is working to set up a stockade and lands rights once he gets it before Azaitar gets away from it. The round ends with Dumas still on top landing a few strikes.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Dumas but there might be a 10-8 argument in there given how impotent Azaitar’s offense was

ROUND TWO: Dumas shows front kicks early then they clash on leg kicks, that looked unpleasant. Leg kick from Dumas. Azaitar checks a leg kick then tries a flurry of punches that doesn’t quite land. Dumas avoids a few punches, Azaitar is swinging heavy punches. Bit of a right from Azaitar in close. Dumas checks a calf kick, that sounded nasty. A couple of jabs from Dumas land. Calf kick from Dumas, Azaitar with a few rights to counter. Left from Dumas. Dumas lands a calf kick. They trade rights. Dumas with another kick and Azaitar fires a few punches that are blocked. Azaitar catches a kick and gets a takedown. Some rights from Azaitar but Dumas quickly scrambles back up into a clinch on the fence. A couple of knees from Azaitar then a leg kick as they break, that’ll basically end the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Azaitar, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Azaitar misses a head kick to start the round. Dumas shows the rear leg and lands a leg kick. Side kick from Dumas. Azaitar avoids a spinning kick then lands a leg kick. Inside leg kick from Azaitar. Azaitar avoids a takedown attempt but pulls the hair while doing so, his second time doing that. Hard jab from Dumas wobbles Azaitar, he presses forward and lands a one two. Right hand from Dumas. Azaitar lands a couple of rights to the body. Both men show the front kick then Dumas lands a jab. Another jab from Dumas, his reach advantage is paying dividends here. Right to the body from Azaitar. Dumas lands a right hand. Azaitar falls short with some kicks. Bit of a right from Dumas, Azaitar tries a takedown but Dumas defends and lands a head kick to close the round.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Sedriques Dumas via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

No interview for Dumas.

Javid Basharat is undefeated including three wins in the UFC, he’s looked pretty good during that run and now looks to begin the difficult transition from prospect to contender. Victor Henry has gone 2-1 in the UFC and is coming off of a win, he’s trying for his first UFC winning streak while hoping to at least slow the hype around Basharat. Basharat is a big -535 favorite to +400 on Henry.

Bantamweight Bout: Javid Basharat (14-0, 136 lbs.) vs. Victor Henry (23-6, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Basharat is two inches taller with an inch of reach advantage, he’s also eight years younger. Both men with some feinting as they circle. Henry lands a cut kick to take Basharat off his feet briefly. Basharat lands a leg kick. Henry checks a leg kick. Front kick from Henry. Calf kick from Henry, Basharat tries to counter with a few punches that partially land. Basharat has started switching his stance as he looks for angles on Henry. Bit of a side kick from Basharat. Darting left from Basharat. Henry blocks a body kick and lands a leg kick. Now Henry is playing with southpaw on occasion, still mostly orthodox. Basharat catches a kick and gets a takedown, Henry quickly to his knees and back up against the fence. They get chest to chest and Henry avoids a takedown then lands some short punches. Basharat tries a high crotch but Henry defends and Basharat lands a knee then separates. Basharat tries a spinning back kick towards the head but Henry avoids it. Henry marches forward and lands a hard inside leg kick. A bit more southpaw play from Henry now, he lands an inside leg kick from that stance. Basharat misses a right hand. They clinch up and Henry forces him to the fence. They end the round in the clinch.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Basharat

ROUND TWO: Basharat fires a low kick, that hits the groin and Henry drops as we get a time out. Same ref who didn’t take a point from Naimov earlier. Replay confirms the low blow as Henry is trying to recover on the mat. Henry is still almost flat on the mat as we approach the two minute mark. The doctor comes in to check on Henry, though the doctor claims the kick didn’t hit him low. What quackery is this? Henry gets up after three and half minutes but can’t stay upright. We’re less than a minute left on the recovery time and Henry is still on his knees. With just a few seconds left Henry stands but he can’t continue and the fight is waved off.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – No Contest, accidental groin strike, at :15 of Round 2

Well that’s unfortunate, Josh Barnett had to help Henry walk to the back. Hopefully they can rebook that, it was a solid fight for as long as it lasted.

Mohammad Yahya is the first fighter from the United Arab Emirates to make his way to the UFC, he’s getting a home game for his debut and brings a five fight winning streak with him. Yahya is trying to live up to the moment placed before him here and get that all important first UFC win. Trevor Peek has gone 1-1 in the UFC and has had some bizarrely fun fights during that time, he’s coming off of a loss though and is trying to avoid his first losing streak. The odds are with Peek at -185 to +135 for Yahya.

Lightweight Bout: Trevor Peek (8-1 1 NC, 155.5 lbs.) vs. Mohammad Yahya (12-3, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Yahya has three inches of reach advantage. Yahya starts switching his stance right away. Peek lands a leg kick, he’s moving forward right away. I’m calling a little BS on the height measurement as Yahya looks taller when they’re next to each other. Peek lands a right hand that drops Yahya, he looks to follow up and fires a high kick then gets a takedown. Yahya wall walks into a clinch. Yahya keeps fishing for a guillotine position as Peek lands some knees to the body and leg. Peek misses a right hand as they break. Body kick from Yahya. Yahya lands a left hand. Inside leg kick from Peek. Another inside leg kick from Peek. They trade power hand punches. Yahya avoids a few kicks. Bit of a left hook from Peek, he pushes forward and tries a takedown against the fence. Peek is trying to get a takedown, Yahya grabs an anaconda choke and rolls for it but there’s not enough time and he bails on it and Peek gets on top as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Peek but a close one

ROUND TWO: Peek pushes forward with kicks early. Yahya lands a body kick. Clubbing right from Peek but Yahya lands a short right to counter him. They trade hooks in close, Peek is trying to unload and man does he visibly load up on every punch. Peek with an inside leg kick then both men miss punches. Another inside leg kick from Peek. Short left from Yahya lands. Bit of a right from Peek. Forward pressure from Yahya, and he lands a body kick. Yahya shows head kicks from both sides now. Peek with a spinning back fist that partially lands then he takes Yahya down with a leg kick, Yahya bounces up and Peek tries a double leg on the fence. Peek bails on that and lands a few punches. Peek marches forward and lands an inside leg kick then tries a flurry that mostly misses. Left to the body from Peek then a couple of punches up top. Body kick from Yahya. They both hand fight at distance to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Yahya but another close one, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Peek lands a left hook early then follows up with a body shot. Peek comes forward and tries to club Yahya. Yahya gets a clinch but Peek takes him down and technically gets to full mount near the fence. Some short punches from Peek as Yahya rolls to his knees and Peek lands another couple of punches as they stand. Clinch fighting and Peek hits an outside reap to get back on top. More punches from Peek as Yahya tries to wall walk then Yahya is able to stand and they reset. Body kick from Yahya. Peek lands a leg kick. Clubbing right from Peek, he can’t quite land the follow up punches though. Yahya lands a left hand and they clinch again. Peek lands some knees to the leg as he’s got Yahya on the fence. They break without incident. Hard left from Yahya temporarily stops the forward motion of Peek. Peek grabs at a guillotine in close and spins Yahya into the fence. Foot stomps and rights from Peek. They break and Peek starts really pushing things as we’re in the last minute. Body shot from Peek then a front kick. Peek with a takedown into half guard and he lands a right hand. Full mount for Peek now, he lands a few hammer fists as Yahya escapes mount, then Peek stomps on his foot as he stands over Yahya and the round ends.

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

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

I can’t complain about 30-27 given the first two rounds were close. No interview for Peek, we’re a little pressed for time I guess.

Tim Elliott has gone 4-1 in his last five fights and is on a two fight winning streak, he’s looking to get to three in a row for the first time since 2016 and stifle the rising momentum of his opponent. Muhammad Mokaev is undefeated and has gone 4-0 in the UFC but he’s taking a pretty serious step up in class here and is hoping to show off his development while continuing to build upward momentum. Mokaev is a pretty big -395 favorite while +310 on Elliott is a very tempting value bet.

Flyweight Bout: #10 Tim Elliott (19-12-1, 126 lbs.) vs. #11 Muhammad Mokaev (10-0 1 NC, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height, Mokaev has four inches of reach advantage. Elliott with some kicks early, the he catches a kick and gets a takedown. Mokaev tries to get his guard in play, Elliott is almost passed to half guard though so it’s tough for Mokaev. Short elbow from Elliott lands. A few more elbows from Elliott and Mokaev escapes to his feet. Bit of a left from Mokaev. Elliott pressures forward, lands a left hook and then sprawls away from a takedown then lands a left hand. Bit of a left from Elliott. A ton of stance switching from Elliott as he’s pressuring forward. Mokaev tries a double leg, Elliott sprawls on him and lands a few knees to the head but the second one was pretty clearly illegal. The ref resets them and warns Elliott. Mokaev misses a spinning attack. A couple of body shots from Elliott land. Mokaev with a bit of a right hand, and he’s able to finally hit a double leg but Elliott is threatening a guillotine. Elliott might be cranking this guillotine down, Mokaev is trying to get his head free and Elliott is working to adjust his grip. Eventually Elliott bails on the choke and lands elbows from his back. Mokaev’s ground and pound remains utterly anemic, it’s been a problem for him thus far in the UFC. The round ends with Elliott throwing elbows from his back.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Elliott

ROUND TWO: Mokaev falls into a double leg attempt, Elliott immediately grabs a guillotine on the way down though. Elliott is really cranking this one but Mokaev eventually gets his head free in the full guard of Elliott. Elbows from Elliott now. Not much offense from Mokaev as he’s keeping top position in the full guard of Elliott. Mokaev tries some hammer fists, they partially land. Mokaev fires a right hand but Elliott grabs a triangle because of it. Elliott tightens that down, but Mokaev is able to slam himself out of it, that was tight and Mokaev was in serious trouble if that slam hadn’t worked. Bit of a Mir lock from Elliott but Mokaev gets his arm back. The round ends with Mokaev still on top not doing much.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Elliott but probably went to Mokaev, 20-18 Elliott overall

ROUND THREE: Elliott moves forward to start the round. Mokaev misses a head kick. Elliott sprawls away from a takedown and grabs a front headlock, he lands a couple of legal knees, then one that is of dubious legality and we get a break. I’m not sure Mokaev had a knee down there, he was in a deep squat more than with a knee down from my angle. The ref checked the replay and saw it was legal so he restarts them in the front headlock. Mokaev is careful to keep a hand down now as they’re in the position. Mokaev times a sweep with a knee attempt and he gets on top in half guard. Elliott starts working to wall walk but Mokaev is holding him down. A few body shots from Mokaev but not much there. Mokaev starts trying to set up an arm triangle, he’s in full mount then moves to side control with it and forces the tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Muhammad Mokaev via Submission, arm triangle, at 3:03 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Mokaev for his work this morning. Mic time for Mokaev despite us being short on time, he needed to finish here as knows how tough Elliott is. He wants a fight with Kai Kara-France or a title fight, but will settle for pretty much anyone above him. To close he wishes for peace around the world.

This is a really nice arm triangle from Mokaev, his wrestling is top notch but he still lacks compelling offense beyond it, or even good ground and pound to help facilitate his submission game. The man is already a problem, if he sorts those issues out he might wear gold.

Well that’s it for the prelims, onto PPV for the main card.

Said Nurmagomedov has a pretty stellar UFC record of 6-2 but he just had a four fight winning streak broken by Jonathan Martinez, now Nurmagomedov is trying to avoid his first ever losing streak and prove he’s still got a bright future in a very stacked division. Muin Gafurov dropped his UFC debut earlier this year but now has a chance to score the biggest win of his career if he can take out the respected Nurmagomedov. The odds are with Nurmagomedov at -285 while a Gafurov win pays out at +230.

Bantamweight Bout: Muin Gafurov (18-5, 135.5 lbs.) vs. Said Nurmagomedov (17-3, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Nurmagomedov is an inch taller with two inches of reach advantage. Nurmagomedov working lead leg kicks early as they circle. Gafurov is generally pushing forward and lands a calf kick but Nurmagomedov returns it. Front kick from Nurmagomedov. Bit of a right hand from Gafurov, then he tries to brawl but Nurmagomedov catches him with a ninja choke and Gafurov taps.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Said Nurmagomedov via Submission, ninja choke, at 1:13 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Nurmagomedov for his work this afternoon. Mic time for Nurmagomedov and the translator, he thanks everyone and feels great especially getting the win after his last loss. He asks for the time on the finish and says his is a key technique for him.

Ikram Aliskerov has only lost to Khamzat Chimaev on the regional scene, he’s currently on a six fight winning streak including a violent win in his UFC debut back in May. Aliskerov is trying to build a winning streak in the UFC and start his march up the middleweight ranks. Warlley Alves replaced Nassourdine Imavov on fairly short notice, he’s just 1-3 in his last four fights, is on a two fight losing streak and hasn’t fought at middleweight since his UFC debut back in 2014, he’s trying to buck the odds in a big way here. Aliskerov is the biggest favorite on the card at -600 to a +440 comeback on Alves.

Middleweight Bout: Ikram Aliskerov (14-1, 186 lbs.) vs. Warlley Alves (14-6, 185.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Aliskerov is an inch taller but has four inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Front kick from Aliskerov. Both men keep probing with kicks early. Jab from Aliskerov. Inside leg kick from Alves. Aliskerov checks an inside leg kick. Bit of a jab from Aliskerov. Right hand from Aliskerov to counter a leg kick. Alves misses a few punches. Aliskerov lands a right hand. Jab from Aliskerov drops Alves for a moment. Head kick then a knee from Aliskerov, he unloads on Alves against the fence and eventually Alves drops to end the fight.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ikram Aliskerov via TKO, knee and punches, at 2:07 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Aliskerov for his work this afternoon. Aliskerov gets an interview and thanks the crowd for their support, he’s speaking English at first then switches to Russian to say he always tries to finish quickly. He hopes for a top ten opponent after this win, my hunch is they’ll try the Imavov fight again but that’s pretty close to that spot. When talking us through the finish he puts over his team then closes with a language the translator doesn’t speak.

Magomed Ankalaev hasn’t lost since 2018 and is coming off of pretty controversial draw last year when he fought Jan Blachowicz for the vacant light heavyweight title in a fight the majority of people thought he won, now he’s back and trying to possibly secure another title shot with a win. Johnny Walker seems to have quietly found his feet over the last year or so, he’s on a three fight winning streak and if he’s able to best Ankalaev here it might put him very close to the title picture. Ankalaev is your -360 favorite to +285 for Walker.

Light Heavyweight Bout: #2 Magomed Ankalaev (18-1-1, 206 lbs.) vs. #7 Johnny Walker (21-7, 205 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Walker is three inches taller with a serious seven inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Ankalaev. Both men do some feinting as Ankalaev works Walker backwards. Bit of an inside leg kick from Walker. Bit of a right from Walker. Ankalaev fires a head kick that’s blocked. Walker lands an inside leg kick. Ankalaev with a calf kick of his own, he’s aiming at that back leg with those. Front kick from Ankalaev then an inside leg kick as well. A right from Ankalaev off balances Walker for a second. They trade inside leg kicks again. Bit of a left to the body from Ankalaev, then another one that seems to bother Walker but when Ankalaev tries to close Walker with a jumping knee to dissuade. Ultimately Ankalaev gets a takedown against the fence and unloads with lefts from the ride position. Another left from Ankalaev lands. Walker wall walks to a knee, but Ankalaev fires a knee towards the chest while the knee is down but it catches the chin and we’ve got a time out because that was clearly illegal. The quack doctor is back to check on Walker, apparently the doctor calls this off and no one understands what’s going on. That doctor is a disgrace.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – No Contest, doctor’s stoppage, at 3:13 of Round 1

Things got a little heated after that ruling, Dana White had to get in the ring to settle down Walker and Ankalaev. Seems like there might have been a point where the doctor asked Walker what country he’s in and Walker either didn’t understand or didn’t answer fast enough and the doctor felt he couldn’t continue. Very poor showing for this fight doctor.

Kamaru Usman is the former welterweight champion but he’s on a two fight losing streak that saw him lose and then fail to regain that title, now on short notice he’s stepping up in weight to possibly earn a shot at the middleweight title with a win. Khamzat Chimaev is undefeated and has gone 6-0 in the UFC but he missed weight so badly for his last fight that they had to swap his opponent and he’s been out of action for a little over a year. All that said, the UFC seem to like Chimaev and he might be able to leap frog the title picture at middleweight with a win here. The odds are pretty solidly with Chimaev at -355 while +280 on Usman might be a tempting value bet.

Middleweight Bout: Khamzat Chimaev (12-0, 185.5 lbs.) vs. Kamaru Usman (20-3, 184.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Chimaev is two inches taller while Usman has an inch of reach advantage. Chimaev forces things to the fence right away and is able to kind of ride Usman down. Full back mount for Chimaev now as Usman is working to stand. Some punches and hammer fists from Chimaev as he’s riding Usman. Usman is slowly trying to work Chimaev higher on his back and get him to fall off but Chimaev is able to reset his position. A few short punches and an elbow from Chimaev. Usman stands and Chimaev is in the backpack position, Chimaev fishes for a choke and Usman tries to spike him forward and Chimaev has to break the choke right now. Usman slowly builds to his knees again with Chimaev on his back. A few more punches from Chimaev, he keeps trying to open up a choke but can’t quite find it. Usman builds up, Chimaev bails on the hooks to drag him back and then puts the hooks back in. Chimaev ends the round on Usman’s back.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Chimaev as Usman had almost no offense

ROUND TWO: Chimaev with some stance switching to start the round, he seems to like southpaw. Both men are feinting with the lead hand as they look for reads. Calf kick from Usman. Jab from Usman lands. Body kick from Chimaev lands. Bit of a front kick from Usman. Chimaev side kicks the knee. Bit of a right from Usman, he’s also half reaching for the lead leg of Chimaev when Chimaev is southpaw. Usman goes southpaw for a bit and lands a right hook. Chimaev jabs the body a few times but this has been a pretty sedate round. One two from Usman backs up Chimaev, then he lands a calf kick as well. Bit of a left from Usman. Chimaev tries a double leg, and gets it along the fence. Chimaev is technically in side control but it takes him a bit to get his head out of Usman’s grip and nothing comes of the position before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Usman, 19-18 Chimaev overall

ROUND THREE: Chimaev tries a takedown but Usman defends this one and resets. Usman jabs the body. A lot of southpaw from Usman at this point, both men have been doing a fair amount of switching. One two from Usman lands, then they trade rights. Usman avoids a double leg and fires a head kick that’s blocked. They split jabs then Usman lands a front kick. Both men land rights in close. Stiff jab from Usman. Chimaev might be fading as Usman is pouring on the pressure. Chimaev avoids a takedown from Usman. Inside leg kick from Chimaev, he tries a takedown and on the second effort he finishes the double leg into half guard. Usman blocks a mount attempt but Chimaev has him more or less flat on his back. Chimaev keeps Usman down and lands a few short punches. A few body shots from Chimaev, he’s just controlling Usman. Usman scrambles free and they reset. Usman has 24 seconds to turn this around. Usman misses a few punches then they get close and swing for the final seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Chimaev, 29-27 Chimaev overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Khamzat Chimaev via majority decision (28-28, 29-27 x2)

Mic time for Chimaev, he says what happens in the cage is nothing compared to the suffering in the world and the death and suffering of children over the world is heartbreaking. No matter your religion we need to live together in peace. He says he was in school when Usman was fighting and becoming champion, he puts him over as well as his coaches then puts over his own coaches. A lot of gratitude is expressed by him, then when asked about potentially getting the next title shot he doesn’t have words, he’s not here for titles he’s here to make money and be happy. More thanks are expressed and he loves to fight, he’s just happy to be able to feed his family today. To close he sends words to Chechnya that goes untranslated.

Alexander Volkanovski is building a legacy as one of the best to fight in the sport, he’s never lost at featherweight where he’s the current champion with five title defenses. Volkanovski took this fight on 12 days notice and has a chance to avenge his only UFC loss when he again battles for the lightweight title in a quest to become a simultaneous two weight world champion. If he’s able to pull this off under these circumstances it’ll be one of the most impressive feats in UFC history. Islam Makhachev is the reigning lightweight champion, he hasn’t lost since 2015 and already holds a win over Volkanovski from back in February of this year. This fight is Makhachev’s second title defense and if he’s able to best a great like Volkanovski a second time it would further solidify Makhachev’s status as arguably the best in the world right now. Given the short notice opponent change it’s not surprising to see Makhachev as the -250 favorite to Volkanovski’s +205.

Lightweight Title Bout: (c) Islam Makhachev (24-1, 155 lbs.) vs. Alexander Volkanovski (26-2, 154.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Makhachev is four inches taller while Volkanovski has an inch of reach advantage. Southpaw for Makhachev while Volkanovski might play around with stance switches. They touch gloves to get us going. Both men immediately start hand fighting with the lead hand, then Makhachev fires an inside leg kick. Volkanovski works to feint his way forward, both men are probing with leg kicks. Makhachev has a head kick blocked, then tries a takedown but Volkanovski sprawls and they wind up on the fence. Volkanovski spins Makhachev to the fence and lands some short lefts then a knee to the body. Some more short punches and knees from Volkanovski while Makhachev works knees to the body. Knee from Makhachev and he spins Volkanovski to the fence. Volkanovski quickly spins Makhachev back and they both get back to landing knees then separate. Bit of a body kick from Makhachev. Makhachev with a left hand, partially blocked. Head kick from Makhachev drops Volkanovski, he gets on top and pounds things out to force the stoppage.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – and STILL UFC Lightweight Champion Islam Makhachev via KO, head kick and punches, at 3:06 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Makhachev for his work this afternoon. Mic time for Makhachev he gives glory to God first and foremost and says he’s not celebrating this win because of all the crazy violence around the world. He puts over his coaches then puts over the crowd. He talks us through the finish and notes he used his left kick a lot more this time because he planned on doing that against Oliveira but then thanks Volkanovski for the fight and puts him over as a real champion. To close he speaks Russian that goes untranslated, then says he doesn’t care who he fights next.

Volkanovski gets interviewed as well, he puts over Makhachev’s kick and says it hurts to lose but Makhachev is a great champion. He says he backs himself every time and opportunity, but maybe you need a full camp against Makhachev. He wants to stay busy and offers to fight in January, but with that kind of a knockout that it seems a little dicey for a 3 month turnaround. Next he apologizes for not putting on a better show to close.

To close the broadcast we get some medical updates, Chimaev thinks he broke his right hand in the first round and Walker was still pissed but there seems to have been kind of a language barrier hindering things. Walker is interested in running that fight back. Victor Henry vomited in the back and has been taken to the hospital for examination and ultrasound.

Well on that note UFC 294 comes to a close. Thank you for reading, I do not take you patronage for granted. We’ll be unpacking all the fallout from this event on the 411 Ground and Pound podcast tomorrow and I hope you’ll tune in. There’s no UFC event next week but I’ll be back November 4th when the UFC heads back to Brazil for UFC on ESPN+ 89. I hope you’ll be back as well, but until then enjoy Halloween, stay safe out there, and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.

article topics :

UFC 294, Robert Winfree