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411’s UFC Fight Night Report: Allen Strangles Craig

November 18, 2023 | Posted by Robert Winfree
UFC on ESPN+090 Image Credit: UFC

MAIN CARD (ESPN+, 5 p.m. ET)
#10 Brendan Allen (186 lbs.) vs. #13 Paul Craig (186 lbs.)
Jake Matthews (170.5 lbs.) vs. Michael Morales (171 lbs.)
Chase Hooper (155.5 lbs.) vs. Jordan Leavitt (155.5 lbs.)
Nick Aguirre (136 lbs.) vs. Payton Talbott (136 lbs.)
#9 Luana Pinheiro (115.5 lbs.) vs. #10 Amanda Ribas (115.5 lbs.)
Uros Medic (171 lbs.) vs. Myktybek Orolbai (170 lbs.)

Joanderson Brito (145 lbs.) vs. Jonathan Pearce (145.5 lbs.)
Chad Anheliger (134.5 lbs.) vs. Jose Johnson (136 lbs.)
Christian Duncan (186 lbs.) vs. Denis Tiuliulin (186 lbs.)
Caio Machado (250 lbs.) vs. Mick Parkin (262.5 lbs.)
Lucas Alexander (148 lbs.)* vs. Jeka Saragih (146 lbs.)
Ailin Perez (136 lbs.) vs. Lucie Pudilova (135.5 lbs.)
Nikolas Motta (155 lbs.) vs. Trey Ogden (155.5 lbs.)
Rafael Estevam (128 lbs.)* vs. Charles Johnson (125 lbs.)

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 90, I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the evening. On the heels of UFC 295 we’ve back in the Apex with a pretty pedestrian Fight Night card. The main event is a decent middleweight tilt between Brendan Allen and Paul Craig, both men are ranked and battling to move up the ranks as the division itself is in kind of a weird place. After that the pickings get a little slim, Jake Matthews vs. Michael Morales has some potential as does Chase Hooper and Jordan Leavitt. On the prelims Joanderson Brito and Jonathan Pearce is pretty interesting, heavyweight prospect Mick Parkin is back and hoping to improve on his UFC debut, but that’s kind of it for interesting stuff on paper. Now obviously there are a lot more fights, and let’s hope they deliver, but if we’re just talking things to be excited about I think we’ve hit the main ones.

UFC on ESPN+ 90 comes to the world from the Apex facility in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. We’ve got Brendan Fitzgerald, Dominick Cruz, and Paul Felder on commentary with Megan Olivi doing the roving reporter thing. As for the rules, Nevada does allow instant replay and the restarting of a fight after replay has been used should that be relevant to the situation. Lastly keep in mind the Apex has the smaller 25 foot diameter Octagon set up.

Charles Johnson has gone 2-3 in the UFC and is on a two fight losing streak, but he’s shown a lot of ability during his UFC time and now looks to break that streak, pull his UFC record to the .500 mark, and prove he’s still a worthwhile addition to the roster. Rafael Estevam missed weight for this fight, never a good thing, but he’s undefeated coming into his UFC debut and wants to capitalize on his only chance to make a first impression. Pretty close on by the odds here, -155 for Estevam to +130 for Johnson.

Flyweight Bout: Rafael Estevam (11-0, 128 lbs.)* vs. Charles Johnson (13-5, 125 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Johnson has an inch of height and reach over Estevam, and of course Estevam also missed weight. Johnson comes out jabbing and stance switching. Estevam lands a body kick then misses a takedown attempt. Calf kick from Estevam. Johnson avoids some kicks, both men are still just getting a feel for things. Estevam tries a takedown, they hit the fence and Johnson is defending the attempt. Bit of a knee from Johnson then Estevam hits a judo throw to get on top. Estevam floats around some butterfly guard work from Johnson and keeps top position, then he lands a couple of lefts. Johnson is able to scoot to the fence and wall walk but Estevam is on his back now. Johnson gets chest to chest and starts working knees to the body and leg. Estevam with another judo hip toss, and he gets the back with both hooks in. Arm triangle attack from Estevam but Johnson gives up his back to avoid it, Estevam is floating between mount and back mount as Johnson tries to create motion. Johnson is able to hip escape to half guard. Estevam avoids a sweep attempt and lands a few short blows. Johnson to his knees, Estevam gets the back again and has both hooks in as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Estevam

ROUND TWO: Estevam immediately tries a double leg, switches to a single leg as they hit the fence and has to settle for a clinch. Outside reap from Estevam and he’s got Johnson down again. Johnson up, but mat returned right away and Estevam jumps to the backpack as Johnson stands. Estevam starts fishing for a choke and they sink back to the mat. Body triangle for Estevam and he’s after the choke again but Johnson is still hand fighting. Johnson is fighting the body triangle but Estevam is the superior grappler and is just a step ahead every step of the way. Eventually Johnson fights to his feet and slings Estevam over the top then they reset on the feet. Front kick from Johnson. Estevam shoots a single leg against the fence, Johnson defends that but Estevam slips to the back standing. Knee to the head from Estevam but Johnson slips free then lands a head kick. A body shot from Johnson then a right hand. Estevam suddenly looks very slow, Johnson lands a body kick then defends a takedown as the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: Johnson comes out swinging, he’s aiming at the body and knows Estevam is fading already. Estevam tries a takedown, Johnson defends and they trade knees then separate. Johnson with another right to the body, Estevam is melting against the fence now. Another body shot from Johnson, then he avoids a takedown attempt. Knee from Johnson, Estevam just eats it and is able to force the clinch. Johnson grabs a bulldog choke and uses that to avoid a takedown but he still can’t get free. Estevam is trying for a double leg against the fence but can’t finish it yet. The ref breaks them up and Johnson gets back to offense. Left hand from Johnson. They trade front kicks then Johnson lands a left to the body, Estevam didn’t like that one. Another body shot from Johnson, he’s backing Estevam up over and over again. Rights from Johnson in close then an elbow. Johnson with another elbow, he’s got 90 seconds to finish this. Estevam tries a takedown, Johnson defends and lands a couple of knees to the body. Right hand from Johnson, he unloads along the fence to the body and head. Estevam is trying to circle away but Johnson is clubbing him. Left and a right from Johnson stagger Estevam. Another Johnson right, then he avoids a double leg. More punches from Johnson but Estevam wont go down. Johnson lands a body kick. Estevam tries a takedown, they wind up in 50/50 guard and Johnson lands a few hammer fists as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Johnson but there might be a 10-8 argument in there, 29-28 Estevam overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Rafael Estevam via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Johnson had a good third round but couldn’t quite get there, no interview for Estevam. With a total of 14 fights on this card I imagine if you don’t finish you don’t get mic time.

Trey Ogden has gone 1-2 in the UFC and is coming off of a loss, now he’s trying to get his UFC record back to .500 and avoid his first losing streak. Nikolas Motta has likewise gone 1-2 in the UFC and is coming off of a loss and trying to avoid his first losing streak. The odds lean towards Motta at -130 to +110 on Ogden.

Lightweight Bout: Nikolas Motta (13-5, 155 lbs.) vs. Trey Ogden (16-6, 155.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Ogden is two inches taller with an inch and a half of reach advantage. Both men come out feinting. A few jabs probe back and forth. Ogden lands a jab. Stiff jab from Ogden lands. Motta with a calf kick. Another jab from Ogden, then he avoids a couple of hooks from Motta. Ogden tries a single leg and that winds up in a clinch on the fence. Some knees to the body and leg from Ogden before Motta is able to spin free. Motta avoids a double leg but gets jabbed again. Another jab from Ogden, that punch is landing but it’s time to start building on it. Motta blocks a double leg then eats yet another jab. More Ogden jabs land, Motta doesn’t have a read on that punch and it’s starting to mess up his nose. Double leg from Ogden and he quickly passes to half guard. Some body to head punches from Ogden and he’ll end the round on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Ogden

ROUND TWO: Motta misses a left hand to start the round. Ogden with a jab then he avoids a couple of counters. Ogden lands another jab then blocks a high kick. Motta misses a couple of punches but he’s trying to up the aggression. Ogden lands another jab. Motta avoids a takedown attempt then lands a couple of punches. Another jab from Ogden. Ogden with another jab. Motta lands a right but over swings his follow ups and misses them. Another Ogden jab lands, then another one. Motta is bleeding from the mouth now, and after all those jabs I’m not surprised. Hard jab from Ogden. Motta bulls forward and lands a right hand, Ogden got a little buzzed by that one. Left hook from Ogden lands, looks like he’s recovered from that right hand. They clinch up and Ogden gets Motta on the fence. Ogden with a knee to the body before Motta spins free. Glancing left hook from Motta but Ogden knees his body again. Motta is marching forward swinging hooks now but he can’t find the target. Another jab from Ogden then a combination to follow up and a high kick that’s blocked. Ogden with a single leg and he gets on top, Motta quickly fights up but eats a knee and a right hand on the way to getting free. Motta looks very fatigued and beat up. Jab then a left hook from Ogden. One last Ogden jab closes the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Motta comes out swinging the right hand, he knows he needs a finish. Ogden tries a single leg but can’t quite secure position and they wind up clinched again. Eventually Ogden hits a double leg against the fence and then mounts the legs as Motta sits against the fence. Ogden lands a few body shots and moves his mount higher towards the hips as he angles Motta off of the fence. Full mount now for Ogden and he starts working for an arm triangle. Arm triangle from Ogden now, he slips to side control to lock the choke down. The ref asks Motta to show he’s there, he checks the arm and I guess doesn’t like what he feels and waves it off but Motta immediately protests and clearly was not out. Let’s see if they’ll review this or let it stand.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – No Contest, premature stoppage, at 3:11 of Round 3

Ogden is unhappy but does get an interview, Felder puts over his performance first and Ogden says he does pressure jabbing and wrestling very well. He was happy with his performance, he’s disappointed because this cost him his win money, he doesn’t even care about the record but is pissed he’s being penalized. Worst case scenario was him just holding that position for another two minutes and getting a wide unanimous decision. Feels like at a minimum if there’s a bad stoppage like that then they could do a technical decision kind of thing. Let this be exhibit #157937 about how the UFC’s pay structure is BS and bad for fighters.

Lucie Pudilova has gone 1-1 since returning to the UFC last year, she’s coming off of a close loss though and is trying to avoid her first losing streak since she was cut from the UFC in 2020. Ailin Perez has gone 1-1 in the UFC but she’s coming off of a win and now looks to build her first UFC winning streak. Perez closed as the -175 favorite to Pudilova’s +145.

Women’s Bantamweight Bout: Ailin Perez (8-2, 136 lbs.) vs. Lucie Pudilova (14-8, 135.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pudilova is three inches taller with an inch and a half of reach advantage. Bit of a head kick from Perez right away. Body kick from Perez. Pudilova tries some kicks of her own, not quite landing yet. Bit of a right from Perez. Spinning back kick from Perez mostly lands. Pudilova lands a body kick, but Perez catches it and gets a clinch on the fence. Body lock takedown from Perez into half guard. Perez is looking to pass, Pudilova tries a sweep but Perez blocks and steps to full mount, nice move from Perez. Elbow from Perez. Short elbows from Perez, Pudilova is just holding around her body and trying to control posture, she’s not actually doing much to escape. Perez chops in a few elbows from the side. Pudilova is trying to buck but Perez is riding well and sneaking in a few blows but she’s not landed anything too hard yet. A few punches from Perez land to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Perez but a marginal one

ROUND TWO: Both women come out jabbing then Perez lands a leg kick. Inside leg kick from Perez. There’s a pretty sizeable mouse under the left eye of Perez, not sure what caused that. Perez with a double leg into half guard. Perez lands a few lefts while fighting to keep control. Pudilova is just holding and hoping for the ref to intervene. Short elbow from Perez, then another one. Perez works to pass to mount, and she gets there. Pudilova back to holding and hoping. Perez with a few short elbows and she’s able to posture up and land a couple of harder elbows. Punches now from Perez, she should start kia-ing and the ref would stop this, but she doesn’t and Pudilova winds up grabbing her again to stifle this. The round ends with Perez still in full mount.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Perez but again slightly marginal, 20-16 Perez overall

ROUND THREE: Quick single leg from Perez, that hits the fence and they settle into a clinch. Perez lands a head kick but then slips in the clinch and Pudilova gets on top in full guard. Perez works to wall walk, and she’s up but still clinched. Some knees from Pudilova before they break. Perez with a body kick, then tries a takedown but Pudilova kind of pushes her over and gets on top in half guard. Pudilova looks to pass to full mount but Perez is able to walk off the fence and they scramble with Pudilova eventually winding up in side control. Perez scrambles to her knees and comes up on a single leg, Pudilova then slips to the back as they stand. knee from Pudilova as they get chest to chest. Some knees go back and forth. Perez keeps the clinch as they jockey for position, she tries the headlock throw but just gives up her back. Pudilova can’t keep the back but winds up in half guard. Full back mount for Pudilova now, she’s after a choke but loses the angle on the choke and wont get it before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Pudilova, 28-26 Pudilova overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ailin Perez via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-28 x2)

No reliable 10-8’s for spending over three minutes in mount during a round? I’m not sure what we’re doing here at this point. No interview for Perez.

Jeka Saragih had a five fight winning streak snapped in his UFC debut back in February, he’s back in action now though and trying to get that all important first UFC win under his belt. Lucas Alexander took this fight on short notice, which probably contributed to his missing weight, but he’s gone 1-1 in the UFC with a win in his last fight and now looks for his first UFC winning streak. Alexander is among the bigger favorites on the card at -500 against a +380 payout for Saragih.

Featherweight Bout: Lucas Alexander (8-3, 148 lbs.)* vs. Jeka Saragih (13-3, 146 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Alexander is three inches taller with four inches of reach advantage, plus he missed weight. Alexander comes out probing with inside leg kicks. A couple of body kicks from Saragih, then Alexander lands a calf kick. Left hook then a leg kick from Alexander. Solid left then a right from Alexander. Alexander lands a front kick. Short left hook from Alexander in close staggers Saragih. Bit of a head kick from Alexander, but he slips and when scrambling to his feet Saragih ENDS him with a right hand and then lands some unnecessary follow ups before the ref jumps in.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jeka Saragih via KO, punches, at 1:31 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Saragih for his work this evening. Mic time for Saragih and the translator, he says this has been a long journey for him and his coaches and thanks everyone for their support. He reiterates the journey has been long, he’s spent more time in the United States than in Indonesia with his family and he plans on going home now that he’s won and celebrating with his family.

Mick Parkin is undefeated including a successful UFC debut back in July, he’s trying to continue that streak here and prove he’s a heavyweight prospect of note. Caio Machado brings a seven fight winning streak into his UFC debut and could make a good first impression by handing Parkin his first loss. It’s not too surprising to see Parkin as a -395 favorite while +310 on Machado might be a decent value bet considering the volatility of developing heavyweight talent.

Heavyweight Bout: Caio Machado (8-1-1, 250 lbs.) vs. Mick Parkin (7-0, 262.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Both men are the same height while Parkin has an inch of reach advantage and is 12 or so pounds heavier. Southpaw for Machado, he comes out and lands a left hand pretty quickly before Parkin grabs a clinch to slow things down. Parkin has Machado on the fence and is kind of holding him there. Parkin drops for a double leg and is able to hit it into full guard. Machado gets full guard and wall walks but Parkin hits a single leg to get back on top in half guard. Machado is able to scramble back to his feet and then misses a left hand. Left hand from Machado. Machado with a right to the body then a left hand. Both men miss punches. They trade in close, then Machado lands a body kick. Parkin kind of lumbers into a clinch but Machado slips free and lands punches. Inside leg kicks are traded, then Parkin with another clinch. Machado lands a knee and they break without incident. Machado digs a left to the body. Parkin lands a jab. Bit of a knee from Machado, then he fires a blitz to end the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Machado

ROUND TWO: Machado comes forward to start the round, and lands a jab. Some body and head jabs from Machado then a one two to the head. Parkin misses a right hand. Machado with another left hand. Parkin forces a clinch and hits a single leg into half guard. Machado is able to hip escape to full guard. Parkin eats a few elbows from Machado. Some labored body to head punches from Parkin. Parkin avoids an omoplata attempt and moves to half guard. Machado is able to hip escape and fight up. They trade some punches, things are deteriorating rapidly. Machado slips to the back in a clinch but tries to take the back and Parkin slings him off over top and gets on top in side control. Eventually Machado escapes and they stand up as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Parkin, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Bit of a right from Parkin to start the round. Machado lands a left hand. Left to the body from Machado, Parkin didn’t seem to like that. Jab from Machado, Parkin counters with a one two. They get close and trade punches before clinching up on the fence. Machado slips free pretty quickly and they reset. Machado shows the jab, then hits the body again but we got a clash of heads and get a time out for that one. That time out doesn’t last long and we’re back to fighting after the ref warns both of them about their heads coming together. Both men land punches again. Machado blocks a double leg and fires a head kick that’s partially defended. Parkin can’t find a clinch or a takedown and Machado can’t muster the energy to counter when Parkin is out of position. Machado lands a knee to the body, Parkin definitely didn’t like that one. Body kick from Machado. Parkin reaches for a takedown but again Machado defends. Both men miss punches. Both men miss punches again, and Machado avoids a clinch. Parkin avoids a left hand then lands a right. Machado with a body kick. Parkin avoids a superman punch. Machado with some jabs to the body and head but things are slowing even more. Parkin lands a right hand. A left hand from Machado stuns Parkin to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Machado but a close one, 29-28 Machado overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Mick Parkin via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

The fight wasn’t good, but 29-28 either way is fine. No interview for Parkin.

Christian Leroy Duncan has gone 1-1 in the UFC but he is coming off of that loss which hampered a bit of the hype the British regional scene had given him, now he’s trying to bounce back and generate some positive momentum. Denis Tiuliulin has gone 1-3 in the UFC and is on a two fight losing streak, he needs a win pretty badly here because a three fight losing streak could well end his time with the promotion. Duncan is a heavy -600 favorite to +440 on Tiuliulin.

Middleweight Bout: Christian Duncan (8-1, 186 lbs.) vs. Denis Tiuliulin (11-8 1 NC, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Duncan is an inch taller with two inches of reach advantage as well. Tiuliulin pushes forward right away and lands punches, which forces Duncan to clinch up and slow him down. Duncan is trying for a body lock takedown against the fence. A few short knees from Duncan but he’s struggling to find much. Some more knees go back and forth now. Duncan sneaks in some shoulder strikes as well. Not a whole lot is going on here, it wouldn’t be the worst thing for the ref to break them up. Duncan lands an elbow. Tiuliulin lands a knee. Another elbow from Duncan, he’s finally found a rhythm for his clinch offense. Knee from Duncan. They break and Duncan misses a spinning attack then blocks an elbow to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Duncan

ROUND TWO: Duncan kicks Tiuliulin in the groin to start the round but Tiuliulin more or less shrugs it off. Stiff jab from Duncan then a left hook. Tiuliulin is backing up and Duncan stalks him to the fence and lands a couple of punches. Tiuliulin fires back and lands a right hand but he’s on the back foot still. Duncan lands a front kick. Short right from Tiuliulin seems to bother Duncan for a moment but he recovers. Tiuliulin lands a left to the body. Duncan is switching his stance as he moves around now. They split a few jabs. Another jab from Duncan, then Tiuliulin lands a left to the body. Duncan with a couple of calf kicks. Tiuliulin lands a right hand then a body kick. Tiuliulin with a calf kick but Duncan counters with a jab. Duncan lands another jab. Tiuliulin bulls forward but can’t quite find the target with his punches. Front kick from Duncan. Duncan forces a clinch and they hit the fence but Tiuliulin quickly spins free this time. Tiuliulin walks forward and lands a calf kick. They trade elbows in close but Duncan lands a couple of more elbows now that they’re in close. Front kick then a left hand from Duncan. Tiuliulin lands an elbow in close. Right hand from Duncan connects. Tiuliulin keeps marching forward, he lands a left to the body but Duncan unloads with right uppercuts in close then a couple of elbows that drop Tiuliulin. Duncan with a few more follow ups on the mat to force the stoppage.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Christian Leroy Duncan via TKO, elbows, at 4:24 of Round 2

Mic time for Duncan after the win, he says he’s worked a lot on his wrestling and kind of fell into it in the first round. He’s happy to have finally put on a good performance in the UFC and hopes to continue to stay active going forward.

Chad Anheliger has gone 1-1 in the UFC but he’s coming off of a loss and is trying to avoid his first UFC losing streak here. Jose Johnson dropped his UFC debut a few months back and now needs to get that first UFC win under his belt. The odds are with Johnson at -205 to +170 for Anheliger.

Bantamweight Bout: Chad Anheliger (12-6, 134.5 lbs.) vs. Jose Johnson (15-8, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Johnson is a significant six inches taller with a notable seven inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Anheliger avoids a leg kick, and man the size difference is obvious when they square up. Johnson continues working kicks to keep distance. Body kick from Johnson then he punches into a clinch and trips Anheliger down. Johnson swings body shots then lands a knee as Anheliger wall walks. Anheliger swings back in close and lands a right hand. Johnson keeps working the front kick, Anheliger does not like those. Both men land rights then Johnson lands a knee to the body as they clinch again. Anheliger with a trip and he gets on top but Johnson kicks him off and stands only for Anheliger to hit body shots and clinch again. Anheliger can’t find a trip and Johnson lands knees to the body once he gets Anheliger on the fence. They fight for position for a bit then eventually separate. Johnson with a front kick to the body. Both men land lefts. Anheliger lands a leg kick. More front kicks from Johnson then they clinch again. Johnson slips to the back in the clinch and lands some knees to the body and leg. More body knees from Johnson then he counters a trip to get on top in full guard. Anheliger tries to get his guard working, he’s able to use an armbar attack to sweep into top position and land a punch but Johnson sweeps him back and lands punches. They keep scrambling as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Johnson

ROUND TWO: Anheliger presses forward right away but Johnson is circling and trying to work front kicks again. We get a time out as there was an eye poke to Johnson on an exchange. Replay confirms the poke and the doctor comes in just to double check, it didn’t look too bad and we’re back to fighting after less than a minute. Johnson is starting to switch his stance a bit now. Both men land lefts then Johnson lands a jab. Left hook from Johnson then a calf kick. Anheliger lands a body shot but then eats an elbow in close. Anheliger looks to brawl but can’t quite force it yet. Johnson with an elbow into a clinch and they trade elbows but Johnson follows up with a knee and Anheliger tightens up the clinch to avoid those. Outside trip from Anheliger and he gets on top in side control. Johnson is able to spin around and walk up into a clinch and lands a knee but can’t get out of the clinch. Anheliger has Johnson on the fence and looks for more trips but can’t quite finish one yet. Johnson grabs a kimura roll, but the fence is there and complicating things as they hit the mat, Anheliger is on top but doesn’t have much, then he grabs a guillotine as they scramble but there’s not much here as Johnson is able to escape and move to the ride position. Back mount for Johnson but only one hook in. Johnson is fishing for a choke then postures up and lands elbows to the head. Punches from Johnson now but Anheliger will ride out the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Both men come out jabbing. Johnson with a right hand. Some more jabs are traded then they just trade in close and Johnson drops Anheliger briefly. Anheliger bounces up, keeps swinging, and then hits a double leg into full guard. Johnson with some elbows from his back, Anheliger is happy to land body to head punches in response. Johnson looks to sit up and grab a guillotine but Anheliger gets his head free. Anheliger with some short elbows as he looks to pass. Johnson blocks a pass attempt but Anheliger keeps throwing punches while blocking the guard work of Johnson. Anheliger lands a couple of punches but Johnson keeps firing elbows from his back then kicks Anheliger off, Anheliger grabs a guillotine as Johnson stands but Johnson passes to side control on the safe side. Hard elbow from Johnson. Johnson works for an arm triangle, doesn’t like what he feels and instead knees the body then gets the back with a body triangle locked up. Some punches from Johnson, Anheliger is trying to scramble as he’s not just conceding the position. Johnson is after a choke attempt, it’s pretty tight and Anheliger tries to fight free but can’t and has to tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jose Johnson via Submission, rear naked choke, at 4:49 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Johnson for his work this evening. Mic time for Johnson after that, which I think is Fight of the Night thus far, he gives glory to God first and foremost then puts over some sponsors and thanks his family and coaches. We’re a little short on time so that’s about all he can get out.

Jonathan Pearce is on a five fight winning streak and has yet to lose at featherweight in the UFC, if he can extend that impressive streak here it should earn him a shot at someone either ranked or at least carrying a bigger name for his next fight. Joanderson Brito has gone 3-1 in the UFC and is on a three fight winning streak and if he can slow the momentum of Pearce it could signify that Britois the rising force at featherweight we should all be watching closely. Close one here but Pearce closed at -130 to +110 on Brito.

Featherweight Bout: Joanderson Brito (15-3-1, 145 lbs.) vs. Jonathan Pearce (14-4, 145.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pearce is four inches taller but Brito has an inch of reach advantage. Pearce shoots very quickly, Brito uses a front headlock to defend as they hit the fence. Brito is able to spin Pearce and land a couple of body shots. Eventually Brito hits a double leg into side control against the fence. Pearce scrambles, Brito tries for the back but he’s too high without hooks and falls over the top so Pearce is able to get on top in side control now. Brito shrimps to half guard but Pearce lands a knee to the body. Some lefts from Pearce, Brito wall walks and blocks a ninja choke attempt but does keep the clinch. Brito clubs Pearce with a right hand as they break. A lot of pressure from Brito and he jabs Pearce. Pearce tries a double leg, can’t finish it but does get a clinch and they hit the fence. Brito with some rights in the clinch, Pearce returns them but Brito eventually spins him into the fence. They keep jockeying for position and trading knees. Pearce basically pulls guard, there’s an armbar in there that he’s trying to develop. Brito gets his arm free and lands punches. Hammer fist from Brito, Pearce comes up into a clinch pretty quickly after that though. Pearce with some uppercuts as they break the clinch. Brito misses a right hand to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Brito but could go either way

ROUND TWO: Pearce is able to hit a pretty quick takedown this round and gets into half guard. Brito blocks a mount attempt but he needs to get up. Full guard now for Brito. Some elbows from Brito land. Pearce is working to pass but can’t get around the guard yet. Brito is kind of stuffed against the fence now and Pearce is working to land short elbows. Pearce moves to half guard and lands a knee to the body then some rights. Brito is able to base up and stand but he’s still in the clinch. Ninja choke from Brito and Pearce has to tap as they fall to the mat.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Joanderson Brito via Submission, ninja choke, at 3:54 of Round 2

Brito and the translator get some mic time, he didn’t feel threatened by Pearce and was well prepared for his predictable wrestling attack. Asked what he wants next he reiterates his prior call out and says he should finally get a post fight bonus.

Uros Medic has gone 3-1 in the UFC and is on a two fight winning streak, he won his return to welterweight his last time out and now looks to continue building momentum in his new weight class. Myktybek Orolbai took this fight on pretty short notice but could make some waves right away if he can best Medic. Despite Orolbai showing up on short notice this closed at a technical pick ’em, -115 for Orolbai to -105 on Medic.

Welterweight Bout: Uros Medic (9-1, 171 lbs.) vs. Myktybek Orolbai (11-1-1, 170 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Medic is three inches taller while Orolbai has three inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Medic, who comes out kicking to the body. Orolbai doesn’t have an answer to the body kick just yet and Medic keeps showing it. They punch into a clinch and Medic lands a knee to the head and them some lefts. More punches from Medic and Orolbai tries for a takedown to slow down this flurry and eventually Orolbai hits a single leg. Medic tries to wall walk, he gets vertical but Orolbai mat returns him. Orolbai moves to the ride position and starts landing rights as Medic stands with Orolbai on his back. High crotch lift from Orolbai and he’s back on top. Orolbai is in the ride position now but Medic wall walks into a clinch. Medic gets double legged again and Orolbai lands some punches while he’s got the legs mounted. Another wall walk from Medic but he can’t get free as Orolbai keeps taking him back down. Medic lands an up kick but Orolbai passes to side control. Orolbai to the ride position now and he lands a few lefts as Medic tries to wall walk. The round ends with Orolbai still on top.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Orolbai but a close one

ROUND TWO: Medic shows the body kick again as the round starts. Orolbai with an inside leg kick. Orolbai punches in close and hits a double leg against the fence. Medic tries to wall walk but Orolbai mounts the legs and looks to start landing offense. Medic settles for getting full guard and Orolbai lands an elbow. Half guard now as Orolbai passes and then gets to the ride again. Full back mount for Orolbai and he starts looking for a choke. Medic is able to hand fight and break the hooks, then he stands but Orolbai is still on his back. They get chest to chest but Orolbai with a takedown against the fence yet again. Orolbai moves to full mount and lands a couple of punches as he moves to the ride while Medic tries to set up another wall walk. Choke attempt from Orolbai but he’s not under the chin, he’s just cranking but he’s able to get enough of an angle on the crank to force the tap as the neck does not really like to bend that way.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Myktybek Orolbai via Submission, neck crank, at 4:12 of Round 2

Mic time for Orolbai after that nasty neck crank, and there is a translator for him. He gives glory to God first then thanks his coaches for all of the work to get him ready on just four days to do what he just did. Asked about the future he says this is just the beginning and says he’ll be at lightweight going forward, welterweight for the short notice was fine but he’s at his best down one class.

Luana Pinheiro has gone 3-0 in the UFC and has an overall nine fight winning streak going, she’s hoping to maintain that momentum here and prove herself a rising force in the division. Amanda Ribas has been trading wins and losses while going 3-3 in her last six fights, she’s coming off of a loss and is trying to avoid her first ever losing streak by handing Pinheiro her first UFC loss. The odds are with Ribas at -225 against +185 on Pinheiro.

Strawweight Bout: #9 Luana Pinheiro (11-1, 115.5 lbs.) vs. #10 Amanda Ribas (12-4, 115.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Ribas is an inch taller with three and a half inches of reach advantage. Both women come out throwing punches. Pinheiro with some hard hooks and clips Ribas with a right hand. There’s no real technique to Pinheiro thus far, just swinging wide and wild. Ribas is able to settle things down but falls short with her punches, there’s swelling around her left eye after getting hit. Pinheiro lands a right hand. Some leg kicks are traded and Ribas is starting to switch her stance trying to find a way in on Pinheiro. Pinheiro lands a body kick. Ribas eats an inside leg kick and falls short with her punches. Pinheiro partially lands a left hand. Right hand then a left hook from Pinheiro, Ribas is cut around the left eyebrow. Spinning back kick from Ribas lands. They get close and trade punches again, the firepower difference for Pinheiro is becoming evident. Pinheiro lands another right hand. Left hook from Pinheiro. Pinheiro lands the right hand again. Another right from Pinheiro lands. They tie up and hit the fence but Pinheiro slips free pretty quickly. Pinheiro lands a couple of rights. Ribas misses kicks to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Pinheiro

ROUND TWO: Bit of a head kick from Pinheiro to start the round, then a body kick as well. Ribas is really lumped up after just that first round. Bit of a right from Pinheiro. Ribas lands a leg kick, she’s mostly southpaw at the moment and I imagine that’s to help her left eye. They trade some kicks. Bit of a right from Pinheiro. Ribas eats a body kick but lands a counter left. Pinheiro doesn’t seem to have as good a set up against a southpaw yet. Ribas with a flurry but Pinheiro clocks her with a left hook. Ribas is orthodox now and falls short on a combination. Pinheiro avoids a spinning attack and then Ribas misses a head kick. Bit of a one two from Ribas, Pinheiro seems to have slowed for some reason. Pinheiro lands a spinning back fist. Bit of a one two from Ribas, she’s back to southpaw now. Body kick from Pinheiro then she lands a couple of rights. Ribas misses a few kicks. Glancing head kick from Ribas. Bit of a one two from Pinheiro. Side kick then a spinning back fist from Pinheiro. Ribas lands a right hand then a spinning back kick. Ribas avoids a takedown then misses some kicks to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Ribas, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Body kick from Pinheiro to start the round. Pinheiro lands a right hand. Ribas keeps showing kicks but Pinheiro gets closer and lands a couple of punches. They trade rights. Ribas misses a combination. Pinheiro grabs a single leg but can’t finish it and has to settle for a knee to the body before they break. Bit of a head kick from Ribas but Pinheiro cracks her with a right hand and they clinch up. Pinheiro is able to hit a hip toss and grabs an anaconda choke for control then winds up on top in full guard as Ribas avoided her back being taken in a scramble. Ribas has full guard and is trying to work it up, Pinheiro lands a few punches to the body and head. Pinheiro avoids an omoplata and lands a knee as Ribas wall walks. Ribas tries a headlock throw but Pinheiro blocks it and they separate. Spinning back kick from Ribas lands. Pinheiro is fading visibly as they trade rights. Front kick from Ribas and she avoids the follow up. One two from Ribas. Wheel kick to the head hurts Pinheiro, Ribas drops her with a follow up right and then lays in some punches on the mat to get the stoppage.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Amanda Ribas via TKO, wheel kick and punches, at 3:53 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Ms. Ribas for her work this evening. Ribas gets an interview, she tells the strawweight division she’s back and deserves their respect. She thanks the UFC for changing her life and the life of her family and she’s starting some kind of foundation to help poor kids from her neighborhood. She notes she’s coming back from surgery on her eye and she’s just happy to be back with the people. The 10 people in the crowd appreciate that.

Payton Talbott is undefeated coming into his UFC debut and looks to make the most of his chance to make a first impression on the audience. Nick Aguirre dropped his UFC debut at the start of the year and now tries to upset the touted Talbott by getting his first UFC win now that he’s back in his natural weight class. Talbott is an almost prohibitive favorite at -800 while Aguirre’s comeback sits at +500.

Bantamweight Bout: Nick Aguirre (7-1, 136 lbs.) vs. Payton Talbott (6-0, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Talbott is an inch taller while Aguirre has three and a half inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for Aguirre, he avoids a kick and tries a takedown then gets Talbott down against the fence. Talbott looks to set up a wall walk but Aguirre lands a few lefts as he transitions to the ride position but Talbott quickly rolls back and gets full guard. Aguirre looks to pass and lands some lefts. Talbott to his knees, Aguirre moves to the ride position. Talbott is able to stand with Aguirre on his back. Aguirre lands a knee and starts working for another takedown. Aguirre is able to jump to the back and ride things down to the mat then locks in a body triangle. Some choke attacks now from Aguirre, Talbott is defending so far though. Some rights from Aguirre now as he’s trying to open up a choke attempt. Talbott stands with Aguirre in the backpack position now and that’s where the round will end.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Aguirre

ROUND TWO: Talbott pressures forward right away and lands a body kick. Aguirre fails on a double leg attempt. A couple of rights from Talbott land. Aguirre grabs at a single leg, he tries to spin to the back but winds up pulling guard. Talbott lands some rights then he’s able to spin to the ride position as Aguirre slowly build to his knees. Aguirre rolls and gets half guard back, and Talbott has had enough of this and stands free to force a reset. Aguirre lands a couple of jabs. Talbott comes forward and Aguirre is able to double leg him against the fence. Aguirre to the ride position as Talbott stands and Aguirre has one hook in. Talbott is trying to slide Aguirre off over the top, they sink back to the mat and Talbott gets on top then lands some lefts. Aguirre tries to work a rubber guard for control but he doesn’t have much and Talbott postures through it. Aguirre inverts to donkey guard but can’t find a leg and Talbott forces him to his back and lands punches from half guard. The round ends with Talbott still on top landing some strikes.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Talbott, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: One of those last elbows from Talbott last round opened up a cut on the side of Aguirre’s head, they got it under control but it bled for sure. Both men swing punches then Aguirre tries a takedown but can’t finish it. Talbott lands a body kick. Aguirre ties up but Talbott pushes him over and gets on top in full mount. Back mount for Talbott, he gets the choke and forces the tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Payton Talbott via Submission, rear naked choke, at :58 of Round 3

The Final Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Talbott for his work this evening. Mic time for Talbott despite this event feeling incredibly long already, he feels pretty good but felt sloppy in the first round before he woke up and did his job. He admits to being frustrated after the first round but after the second round he knew he’d get the finish. He says he didn’t feel any extra pressure this time around, he’s hardest on himself so external pressure doesn’t matter.

Chase Hooper has traded wins and losses while going 4-3 in the UFC but he’s coming off of a win when he returned to lightweight back in May and now looks for his first UFC winning streak. Jordan Leavitt has gone 4-2 in the UFC and he’s coming off of a win, now he’s looking for another winning streak while also trying to prove he’s finding his footing in the UFC and can perform more consistently. The odds are with Hooper at -205 while +170 for Leavitt might be a decent little value bet.

Lightweight Bout: Chase Hooper (12-3-1, 155.5 lbs.) vs. Jordan Leavitt (11-2, 155.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Hooper is four inches taller with three inches of reach advantage. Southpaw for both men and they touch gloves to get us going. Hooper with some punches but Leavitt clinches him up and drags things down. Leavitt tries to get the back but Hooper spins into him and gets on top, they fight up into another clinch though. Both men with some knees, then Leavitt with a duck behind and rolls for a leg only to wind up on his back in full guard. Omoplata from Leavitt, Hooper defends but gets swept and Leavitt is on top now and lands an elbow. Bit of a can opener from Leavitt, Hooper grabs at an armbar and uses that to get to spider web and tries to extend the arm but Leavitt is defending so far. Leavitt stacks Hooper up and gets on top again. Some short elbows from Leavitt as Hooper tries to hit a curo curo sweep but Leavitt hurts him with an elbow. They fight into a 50/50 position and trade leg lock attempts. Hooper spins to the back, grabs a choke in transition and gets the tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Chase Hooper via Submission, rear naked choke, at 2:58 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Hooper for his work this evening. Mic time for Hooper he expected a full war and to get hurt more, then puts over Leavitt and notes both of their wives are about to give birth and he needed to make the money. He expected a little more stand up but was happy with lots of grappling and asks for a post fight bonus which again doesn’t go well recently.

Michael Morales is undefeated including three wins in the UFC, he’s trying to remain perfect here while also scoring the most high profile win of his career and proving he’s deserving of another step up in class. Jake Matthews has gone 2-2 in his last four fights but he’s coming off of a win and is trying to get his first winning streak since 2020 up and running here by turning back the highly regarded prospect that is Morales. Morales closed as your -310 favorite to +250 on Matthews.

Welterweight Bout: Jake Matthews (19-6, 170.5 lbs.) vs. Michael Morales (15-0, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Morales is half an inch taller but has a significant six inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get the fight going. Both men show the jab, just probing early. A few more feints from Matthews overall. Morales lands an inside leg kick. Calf kick from Morales. Bit of a right from Matthews. Clubbing right hook from Morales partially lands. Morales lands a jab to stifle some forward motion from Matthews. Stiff jab from Morales. Inside leg kick from Morales. They trade lefts, then Morales follows up with a couple of rights, he’s got the power edge it seems. They trade calf kicks. Matthews is trying to work his way in but misses a left to the body. A left from Matthews off balances Morales for a second. Morales lands a right hand. Every time Matthews tries to double jab in close Morales is kicking the lead leg out and it’s stifling him when he tries that combination. Morales lands a right hand. Matthews lands a jab while backing up. Morales tries a jab but eats a counter right. Matthews lands a left hook. Jumping knee from Morales then he punches in close and tries a takedown but Matthews defends and they wind up resetting. Bit of a body kick from Morales. They’ll feint away the final seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Morales

ROUND TWO: Both men get back to probing with leg kicks and trying to set up the power hand. Morales lands a calf kick. Some jabs from Morales then they trade rights. Morales lands an uppercut then lands a flurry of punches in close along the fence before Matthews gets free. Inside leg kick from Morales. Matthews blocks a one two then lands a couple of counters. Left hook then a right hand from Matthews, he’s starting to find openings for his offense. Morales lands a jab. Bit of a superman punch from Morales. Matthews lands a left hook in close. Right hand from Matthews lands. Matthews lands a right to the body then a left hook. They trade rights. Body kick from Morales, Matthews didn’t like that but let’s see if Morales can recognize that. Morales bulls forward with a flurry, Matthews blocks most of them but eats a body kick to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Matthews but Morales might have stolen it at the end there, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Both men get back to jabbing as the round starts. They both miss left hooks. Matthews tries a low kick but it hits the groin of Morales so we’ve got a time out. Replay shows there was some contact to the groin but Morales only needs about 30 seconds before we’re back to work. Morales is playing around with southpaw on occasion now and lands an inside leg kick. Matthews avoids a flying knee but then Morales lands a jab. Bit of a right hook from Morales. Morales lands a calf kick, then another one. They clash and general physicality of Morales is starting to wear on Matthews just a bit when they’re in close. Bit of a right from Matthews, didn’t land clean though. Morales fires an inside leg kick that goes low and we’ve got another time out. Replay shows again some groin contact but not bad as Matthews only takes 20 seconds or so. Morales comes out landing a couple of punches. Matthews avoids an uppercut and lands a left hook. Another left hook from Matthews in close. Morales lands a right hand. Short uppercut from Morales as he’s begun stalking forward. Matthews grabs a front headlock to avoid a takedown and they both men swing punches, Matthews lands a right hand to close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Morales but another competitive one, 29-28 Morales overall

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

I’m not mad at that 30-27 but Morales feels like he needs a lot of refinement still. Mic time for Morales and the translator, he thanks his team and fans then calls this a tough fight as he took a step forward. He puts over Matthews and knew he had to keep the distance rather than fight in the pocket, and thanks his coaches for all of their work with him.

Brendan Allen is on a five fight winning streak with four of those being finishes, now he’s trying to both defend his top ranking while also earning a shot at someone ranked above him for his next fight. Paul Craig scored a win in his middleweight debut back in July that immediately saw him get ranking, now he’s trying to climb the ranks of the division and make a move towards the title picture. It’s not too surprising to see Allen as a favorite but at -440 it feels a little heavy and a +340 payout on Craig has to tempt a few bettors out there.

Middleweight Bout: #10 Brendan Allen (22-5, 186 lbs.) vs. #13 Paul Craig (17-6-1, 186 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Craig is an inch and a half taller with an inch of reach advantage, but Allen is eight years younger. Both men come out and feint some kicks. Calf kick from Allen. Allen with a right hand. Craig avoids an overhand right. Allen lands a right to the body. They tie up, Allen lands a knee before Craig gets things to the fence. Craig looks for a takedown, Allen defends then lands a knee to the body and hits a hip toss into full mount. Allen with some punches from top position but Craig is able to shrimp to half guard. Craig is trying to off balance Allen but Allen is staying heavy on top, but Craig has set up a calf slicer and cranks on it but Allen slips free and Allen grabs at a heel hook and they trade some leg locks before getting up and Allen hits a mat return from the back. Craig tries to roll for a leg but Allen stays on top and lands an elbow. Full guard for Craig but Allen is able to elbow him and again and split him open before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Allen

ROUND TWO: Allen comes out jabbing and backing up Craig. A right hand from Allen staggers Craig and Craig pulls guard when they get close. Allen gets back to working elbows then a few rights. Craig is trying to work his guard but Allen passes to half guard. Full mount now for Allen, easy pass there, and Allen starts locking up an arm triangle position. Arm triangle is locked in for Allen but Craig rolls to break the grip as Craig has regained half guard to stop the offensive threat. Allen lands another elbow. Craig gets to full guard but eats another elbow for his trouble. Craig’s right eyebrow is leaking again as Allen has been getting damage in there constantly. Allen with some rights then avoids a triangle attack. Another elbow from Allen lands. More elbows from Allen then a left hand as Allen passes towards side control. Allen goes for a guillotine position from the top but Craig is hip to it and gets to his knees but Allen is on his back looking for a choke as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Allen as that last choke attempt was close, 20-17 Allen overall

ROUND THREE: That cut on Craig’s right eyebrow is pretty bad, not a fight stopper yet but if it gets worse it might be. Allen comes out jabbing again and backing up Craig. Hard right from Allen crumples Craig then he jumps for a guillotine, he loses it but he moved to top position with the attempt and he’s in half guard now. Allen grabs a choke as Craig tries to wall walk and that’s deep which forces Craig to tap after a few seconds.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Brendan Allen via Submission, rear naked choke, at :38 of Round 3

Mic time for Allen after that win, he’s a man of his word and then says he wants a number one contender fight next against whoever the UFC thinks should be opposite him. Next he asks for a teammate to get into the UFC, and puts over Craig as a tough guy but his teammate Joe Pyfer wants Craig next. He believes in himself and is finally performing like himself, he doesn’t even think he’s in his prime yet and will be a problem for the division. To close he expresses love to his family.

Well on that note UFC on ESPN+ 90 comes to a close. It was certainly a card, there were ups and downs but it could have been worse. We’ll be unpacking all the fallout from this event tomorrow on the 411 Ground and Pound MMA Podcast. There’s no UFC event next Saturday, but I will be covering WWE’s Survivor Series because I have no life, but in the interim I hope the Americans have a happy Thanksgiving. I know the Canadian contingent celebrate that in October that’s why I’m being more region specific here. In two weeks we’ll have UFC on ESPN 52 with Beneil Dariush vs. Arman Tsarukyan and Dan Hooker vs. Bobby Green, it’s a pretty good card and I hope you’ll be back to follow along. Until then thank you all for reading, stay safe out there, and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.