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411’s UFC on EPSN+ 6 Report: Pettis KOs Thompson

March 23, 2019 | Posted by Robert Winfree

MAIN CARD (ESPN+, 8 p.m. ET)
#3 Stephen Thompson (170.5 lbs.) vs. Anthony Pettis (171 lbs.)
#4 Curtis Blaydes (262 lbs.) vs. #10 Justin Willis (266 lbs.)
John Makdessi (154 lbs.) vs. Jesus Pinedo (155.5 lbs.)
#4 Deiveson Figueiredo (126 lbs.) vs. #1 Jussier Formiga (126 lbs.)
Luis Pena (148.5 lbs.)* vs. Steven Peterson (146 lbs.)
J.J. Aldrich (125 lbs.) vs. Maycee Barber (126 lbs.)

Bryce Mitchell (145.5 lbs.) vs. Bobby Moffett (145.5 lbs.)
Frankie Saenz (135.5 lbs.) vs. Marlon Vera (135.5 lbs.)
#5 Alexis Davis (125 lbs.) vs. #11 Jennifer Maia (126 lbs.)
Angela Hill (116 lbs.) vs. #15 Randa Markos (116 lbs.)
Chris Gutierrez (135.5 lbs.) vs. Ryan MacDonald (135.5 lbs.)
#14 Jordan Espinosa (126 lbs.) vs. #11 Eric Shelton (126 lbs.)

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s coverage of UFC on ESPN+ 6, I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for this event. Tonight the UFC brings a really odd card, there’s a couple of fights that might stand out to the discerning fan but largely this card is just kind of occupying space before Gaethje vs. Barboza next week. The main event sees former UFC lightweight champion and featherweight contender Anthony Pettis tries to revitalize his career by moving up to welterweight and taking on former two time title challenger Stephen Thompson. It’s an odd fight, it could be really interesting or really boring without a whole lot of space in between those extremes. The co-main event sees Curtis Blaydes battle Justin Willis for position in the heavyweight division, though the state of that division is still a bit murky.

There’s a fight at flyweight that likely holds some serious influence of the future of the division as Jussier Formiga battles Deiveson Figueiredo, I get the feeling that if Formiga wins another lackluster decision they’ll pretend it never happened whereas if Figueiredo wins they might convince Henry Cejudo to defend the flyweight title against him. Going further down the card, the closest thing I’ve got to interesting is Frankie Saenz vs. Marlon Vera with an honorable mention to Maycee Barber taking on JJ Aldrich just because the UFC really wants to get the Barber hype train up and running.

The UFC is back in the state of Tennessee for this event, they’re at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee, USA more specifically. On commentary we have Brendan Fitzgerald and UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier. We’ll also have Trevor Wittman to provide coaching analysis. As for the rules we’re under the new rules, so you need both palms or fists flat on the mat to be considered downed (or a knee of course), extending fingers towards the face of your opponent can be a foul regardless of contact being made, and the language around scoring is more encouraging of 10-8’s. We also have the limited use of replay, in this instance once replay is invoked the fight cannot be restarted. The last thing to keep an eye on for tonight is pacing, the last event was paced badly and felt more like an FS1 card so hopefully we don’t get a repeat of that but given the start time I’m a little leery.

Eric Shelton has gone 2-3 in the UFC but is coming off of a win and looking for his first UFC winning streak, as well as likely securing his job given the UFC’s current habit of cutting flyweights who lose. Jordan Espinosa is on a four fight winning streak but is technically ranked despite this being his UFC debut, he’s trying to extend that streak and get that all important first UFC win. The odds are with Shelton at a slim -130 against +110 for Espinosa.

Flyweight Bout: #14 Jordan Espinosa (13-5 1 NC, 126 lbs.) vs. #11 Eric Shelton (12-5, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Espinosa has an inch and a half of reach on Shelton. They touch gloves to get us going. Shelton circling around, Espinosa feinting forward, and lands a spinning back kick to the body. The “woo’s” hare already started. Espinosa tries a takedown, can’t get it but he does land a bit of a head kick then a right hand. Shelton seems a little frozen. Espinosa lands a calf kick. Shelton lands a right as Espinosa was coming in. Leg kick from Espinosa. Shelton lands a counter left hook when Espinosa tried for a body kick. Another counter from Shelton, this time a right after he avoided a lunging hook. Shelton’s composure is paying off, he’s getting reads on Espinosa and his erratic movement. Espinosa lands a jab. Groin shot from Espinosa, Shelton seems good to continue quickly and Espinosa gets a warning from the ref. Leg kick from Espinosa, and another one. The punches from Espinosa haven’t done much but his kicks are solid. Espinosa tries a takedown off of a kick but they wind up hitting the fence where Espinosa lands a knee to the body then avoids a punch on the break. Shelton lands a jab then a leg kick of his own. Bit of a one two from Shelton brings the round to a close.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Espinosa

ROUND TWO: Shelton lands a right to counter an inside leg kick. Shelton seems to have a read on Espinosa now, he’s countering more this round. Leg kick from Espinosa is caught but Shelton can’t find a counter before he gets his leg back. Right then a left from Shelton to counter a body kick. Now Espinosa lands a right of his own. Bit of a leg kick from Espinosa. Shelton lands a body kick then a leg kick. Right from Shelton lands. When Shelton slides close, specifically into boxing range Espinosa isn’t comfortable and it’s visible at this point. Shelton lands a couple of punches to counter an attempted spinning back kick. Takedown from Espinosa but Shelton scrambles up immediately and is back to pressuring him. Espinosa avoids a blitz attack and that will bring the round to a close.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Shelton but could go to Espinosa, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. We get a time from the ref, there was something on the mat he didn’t like and he wipes if off and restarts the fighters. Espinosa missing the jab, trying to keep distance. Bit of a knee from Espinosa but he lands a pretty bad eye gouge and the doctor is in to check on Shelton. Shelton can continue and we’re back to fighting. That right eye of Shelton is swelling already. Bit of a jab from Shelton. One two from Shelton, Espinosa is still awkward in the pocket. Leg kick from Shelton. Espinosa leans away from a left hook, his defense is a lot of leaning and if Shelton can get a little closer with his hooks he’ll find his chin. Leg kick from Espinosa. Shelton lands a heavy leg kick. Bit of a left hook from Shelton then a counter right off of a body jab from Espinosa. Shelton catches a body kick and lands a right. Jab from Espinosa, he’s trying to keep distance. Shelton lands a body shot but misses the follow up offense. Jabs from Shelton land. Left hook then a right from Shelton land flush. Shelton coming forward, and we get just a bit of pocket brawling as the round runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Shelton, 29-28 Shelton overall but this has split decision written all over it

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

30-27 for Espinosa seems wrong. The crowd boos the decision as Espinosa gets mic time, wishes Happy Birthday to his mother and says this feels great. He puts over Shelton but felt his speed let him get the edge.

Ryan MacDonald is undefeated as a professional and making his UFC debut here, as the old saying goes you only get one chance to make a first impression and MacDonald is trying to make it a good one while remaining perfect as a fighter. Chris Gutierrez lost his UFC debut at the finale for TUF 28, now he’s trying to rebound from that setback and get his first UFC win under his belt. The odds are with Gutierrez at -275 to a +225 payout for a MacDonald win.

Bantamweight Bout: Chris Gutierrez (12-3-1, 135.5 lbs.) vs. Ryan MacDonald (10-0, 135.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: MacDonald is two inches taller and has four inches of reach on Gutierrez. They touch gloves to get us going. Calf kick from Gutierrez, MacDonald showing some stance switching. Another leg kick from Gutierrez. Both men switching their stance now. Gutierrez lands another calf kick, MacDonald lands a leg kick of his own. Body kick then a leg kick from Gutierrez. Gutierrez misses a wheel kick then lands a leg kick and a right to the body. Another right to the body from Gutierrez. Body kick from Gutierrez and he avoids the counters. This is a wipe out for Gutierrez so far. A couple of lefts from Gutierrez land then a right to the body. Calf kick then a body kick from Gutierrez. MacDonald lands a leg kick then falls short with some lefts. A right from Gutierrez leads to a clinch where the round will end.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Gutierrez as MacDonald got numerically dominated

ROUND TWO: That was a right elbow from Gutierrez at the end of the first, and it’s got blood coming from the left side of MacDonald’s head. That blood is running down towards his eye, it could be a problem for him. Calf kick from Gutierrez locks up the lead leg of MacDonald for a second. Bit of a right from MacDonald, Gutierrez lands a leg kick. Another body kick from Gutierrez, MacDonald has no answer at kicking range. MacDonald misses a few punches. Gutierrez has a head kick blocked then lands another calf kick. MacDonald is limping on his left leg, Gutierrez lands a spinning back kick to the body. More leg kicks from Gutierrez then a long right to the face. Another body shot from Gutierrez then he avoids a takedown attempt and holds a front headlock position to snap him down. MacDonald rolls out of that and gets up to his feet. Another leg kick from Gutierrez. MacDonald catches a lazy body kick and gets a clinch but they hit the fence and Gutierrez spins free. Calf kick from Gutierrez locks up the left leg of MacDonald again. Gutierrez slips to his left and lands a right to the body. Neither man will land anything over the last couple of seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Gutierrez, 20-16 Gutierrez overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Gutierrez lands a calf kick and that leg gives out for a second. MacDonald pushes into a clinch but can’t hold it and Gutierrez slips free. Calf kick from MacDonald lands. Body kick from Gutierrez lands. Bit of a long left from MacDonald lands. Spinning back kick to the body from Gutierrez. MacDonald is almost exclusively southpaw at this point to protect his left leg. Gutierrez is coasting a bit here I think. Body shot from Gutierrez lands then a stepping knee to the body. Calf kick to the right leg from Gutierrez lands. MacDonald is a visual mess between the blood and swelling/discoloration all along his body and legs. MacDonald in on a clinch, Gutierrez spins free and separates. Another leg kick from Gutierrez lands. Gutierrez tries a scissor takedown but can’t get it and winds up on bottom, MacDonald lands an elbow from guard. MacDonald nearly gives up an armbar but gets free and Gutierrez pulls for a guillotine as time runs out.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Gutierrez but could go to MacDonald, 30-25 Gutierrez overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Chris Gutierrez via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Seriously, no 10-8 for the second round? We’re under the new rules, seems perfectly justified to give him a 10-8 second if nothing else. No interview for Gutierrez.

Randa Markos has been trading wins and losses for her entire UFC run, up until her last fight that is which ended in a majority draw. Markos is now trying to get back on the winning side of the equation and defend her top fifteen ranking. Angela Hill has gone 2-3 in her second UFC stint and has traded wins and losses during that time, she’s coming off of a loss and is trying to avoid her first losing streak since 2015. The odds are with Hill at -150 while Markos’ underdog odds are at +130.

Strawweight Bout: Angela Hill (8-5, 116 lbs.) vs. #15 Randa Markos (8-6-1, 116 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Markos is an inch taller while Hill has an inch of reach advantage. Both women feinting a bit to start things off. Hill has a head kick blocked and avoids a counter right. They clinch up, Markos lands a knee then Hill drives her into the fence. They trade some knees then Markos lands an elbow on the break. Markos coming forward throwing punches, Hill clinches up and then gets hip tossed with Markos landing in side control. Hill is trying to wall walk, Markos moves towards the back and gets a hip with one hook in and lands lefts to the head. Markos is looking for full mount, gets it on the hip and lands a few more lefts. Hill gives up her back and Markos is after the choke but Hill is defending. Markos switches to an armbar, gets to spiderweb control and looks to extend the arm. A few hammer fists from Markos break the grip of Hill and she extends the arm which forces the tap.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Randa Markos via Submission, armbar, at 4:24 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Ms. Markos for her work this evening. Mic time for Markos after that, she talks a bit about the history between her and Hill and says that makes the win feel even better. She talks us through the finish and mentions it feels good to be as comfortable with herself as she is now. Asked who she’d like next she has no name but wants to be on the upcoming Ottawa card.

Here’s a look at the finish. Textbook stuff from spiderweb control for Markos, she attacks the grip of Hill until she can reach around and grab the wrist then lean back and force the tap. This was set up from the back, and armbars from the back are criminally underused in MMA so that always makes me happy to see.

Alexis Davis is a veteran of the sport and is 1-1 since dropping to flyweight, she’s coming off of a loss though and is trying to avoid her first UFC losing streak. Jennifer Maia just had a six fight winning streak snapped when she dropped a decision to Liz Carmouche in her UFC debut, now she’s also looking to avoid a losing streak and take out a fighter ranked above her. Davis is your -140 favorite to +120 for Maia.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: #5 Alexis Davis (19-8, 125 lbs.) vs. #11 Jennifer Maia (15-5-1, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Davis is two inches taller and has four inches of reach on Maia. Both women feinting with the hands early. Neither woman has a feel for the distance just yet, Maia is countering kicks with punches and distance crashing. Stiff jab from Maia but Davis gets a clinch and drives her into the fence. Knees from Davis while they jockey for position. Maia lands a few knees of her own, Davis lands an elbow as they break. Maia lands a right then a knee from a Thai clinch before Davis pushes her into the fence. They trade knees again but Davis’ superior head position is keeping Maia out of sorts along the fence. More knees from Davis then they trade on the break and Maia gets the better of that with more combination work. Davis is hurt, Maia lands some punches then avoids a takedown. Hard right and combinations from Maia, the lack of head movement from Davis is leaving her vulnerable to these punches. Davis gets a clinch and has Maia back on the fence but Maia spins her into the fence this time. Some rights from Maia as now she’s the one with superior head position and is keeping Davis in a bad spot. Knees from Maia now then a left. They trade a few more knees as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Maia

ROUND TWO: Maia lands a flurry to start the round, and avoids a kick. Body kick from Davis lands. Davis lands a leg kick but eats a couple of counters. Long right lands for Maia. Another right from Maia lands, Davis lands a left body kick. Maia lands a right to the body then tries a body kick but Davis catches it and trips her down into side control. Davis moves to full mount very quickly and lands rights while securing the position. Maia shrimps to half guard. Davis is fishing for an arm but loses the grip and lands a few punches instead. A few rights and elbows from Davis land. Davis lands a few knees to the body. Davis gets a few more punches off before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Davis, arguable 10-8, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Maia lands a left hook to get the round going. Right then a left from Maia lands. Davis lands a jab, Maia digs the body and lands a follow up to the head. Leg kick from Davis then a body kick. Maia lands a left hook to counter a leg kick. One two from Maia then a body shot behind it. Davis lands a right of her own then a left body kick. Maia lands a right. Another body shot from Maia and she avoids a kick. Four punches land for Maia, Davis lands the body kick again. Stiff jab from Maia. Another left from Maia lands, she gets off balanced but is back up before Davis can get on top of her. Right then a left from Maia land to counter a leg kick. A couple of hooks then a right straight from Maia, Davis keeps walking into these. Davis lands a leg kick then her left body kick. Hard right from Maia lands. Davis is kicking the leg of Maia a lot this round. They split jabs then Maia checks a leg kick. They clinch up and hit the fence, Maia lands a couple of punches on the break. A body kick from Davis will run the clock all the way down.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jennifer Maia via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Not a bad brawl, Davis’ adjustment to kick boxing range in the second round helped her a lot but she couldn’t deal with the pocket work of Maia in the third. Mic time for Maia and her translator, she’s happy to get her first UFC win and plans to keep moving up through the division now. She puts over Davis as a tough opponent and mentions she knew she needed to win the third round and came out fighting like she knew she needed it.

Frankie Saenz is on a two fight winning streak, though he’s still rebuilding from that three fight losing streak he had from 2015 to 2017. Saenz has shown promise but needs to extend this current winning streak if he’s going to make good on that potential and move up in the division. Marlon Vera is on a two fight winning streak as well and is looking to climb towards an official ranking, or at least a ranked opponent, with his third consecutive win here. Vera is your -170 favorite while Saenz’s odds sit at +145.

Bantamweight Bout: Frankie Saenz (13-5, 135.5 lbs.) vs. Marlon Vera (12-5-1, 135.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Vera is two inches taller and has four and a half inches of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Vera coming forward, lands a couple of leg kicks then a body kick. Saenz lands a body kick of his own, he’s looking more to crash distance and land punches. Vera lands a jab. Hard leg kick then a left hook from Vera. Saenz lands an uppercut in close, Vera lands a right leg kick then a straight left, this one wobbles Saenz. Saenz takes a bad shot on a takedown, Vera smashes him as he’s holding the low single leg and forces the stoppage.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Marlon Vera via TKO, punches, at 1:25 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Vera for his work this evening. That’s three finishes in a row for Vera, who’s on the mic now and says he’s putting everything on the line to provide for his family and he’s constantly looking to evolve. He puts over his coaches for all of their work, puts over Saenz as a tough wrestler but he was prepared for the sequence he used, but mentions that even on the mat he’s a handful. Asked who’s next for him he says he just stays ready, he doesn’t talk trash because he thinks the sport is about respect, but does mention that since Nathaniel Wood wants to fight him he’d be down for that.

Here’s the finish. Vera lands a good leg kick, Saenz tries to crash distance as a result but walks into a solid left from Vera and when he grabs the desperation single Vera is ready to punish him for it.

Bryce Mitchell is undefeated and won his UFC debut on the finale of the season of TUF that he competed on, now he’s looking to prove he can win consistently at the UFC level instead of only fighter guys related to TUF. Bobby Moffett is on a four fight winning streak that includes a successful UFC debut when he defeated Chas Skelly, he’s looking to extend that streak and continue moving through the ranks at featherweight. The odds are with Moffett at -140 while Mitchell’s comeback sits at +120.

Featherweight Bout: Bryce Mitchell (10-0, 145.5 lbs.) vs. Bobby Moffett (14-3, 145.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height but Moffett has three inches of reach on Mitchell. Mitchell fighting southpaw, lands a side kick to the body then an inside leg kick. Moffett blocks a high kick and lands a right. Mitchell lands a left to the body. Straight left from Mitchell drops Moffett for a moment, Moffett is back up and after a single leg against the fence and gets Mitchell down. Mitchell rolls through and is up, looking for a guillotine but bails on that. Moffett after a low single leg and gets Mitchell down but Mitchell nearly has a crucifix position and is trying to slide around for the back. Moffett clears the arm and gets on top in the rubber guard of Mitchell. Fast triangle from Mitchell, it’s up and pretty tight then he looks to move for a triangle armbar as he’s rolling Moffett belly down. Moffett breaks the triangle lock and is on his feet again. Moffett lands a right. Mitchell after a single leg, switches towards a double leg when they hit the fence then decides to bail on it and separate. Moffett lands a straight right. Mitchell avoids a clinch attempt. Moffett lands a right, Mitchell returns it and is after a single leg but they hit the fence and stall out. Moffett looks for a double leg after spinning Mitchell around. They wind up chest to chest trading some knees as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Mitchell

ROUND TWO: Moffett coming forward this round, eats a leg kick. Mitchell lands a body kick. Single leg from Moffett is successful, Mitchell trying to counter and scoot to the fence but he can’t get anything going before Moffett moves to half guard. Lefts from Moffett, he’s fighting for wrist control to keep Mitchell down and land punches. Moffett into a ride position, Mitchell back up and they separate. Calf kick from Moffett. Mitchell lands a left. Mitchell is landing some lefts to the body and angling when Moffett is coming forward. Bit of a right from Moffett, Mitchell lands a left but looks to be fading a bit. They trade knees to the body in close. Moffett into a body lock and rides Mitchell down into half guard. Mitchell was fishing for a kimura lock to trap the arm of Moffett. Moffett gets his arm free and postures up then locks of a d’arce choke and starts turning into him to try and finish it. Mitchell’s right arm being in a safe spot under the body of Moffett prevented the choke from really sinking in and Moffett bails on the choke. Mitchell steps over him and gets a crucifix then tries to transition to the armbar but decides to keep the crucifix. Moffett picks the ankle and gets on top in side control and lands an elbow as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Moffett, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Moffett is coming forward, lands a leg kick. Mitchell tries a rush but can’t find much off of it. Moffett after a takedown, can’t get it and they separate. Another double leg attempt from Moffett and he’s got Mitchell down against the fence in half guard. Mitchell after an armbar now, but he doesn’t have the grip and Moffett is on top in leg drag position now. Mitchell is able to escape from that position and is back up. Moffett coming forward still, Mitchell avoids a knee tap attempt. Overhand right from Moffett lands and he gets a takedown against the fence and lands in half guard. Some body shots from Moffett but Mitchell is controlling his posture with a body lock. Lefts to the body and head from Moffett, now he’s after a d’arce again as Mitchell tried to roll onto a hip. Mitchell is up after a takedown of his own and gets the back with one hook in. Moffett gives up both hooks, Mitchell gets the arm under the neck and flattens him out but he can’t finish the choke. Another choke attempt from Mitchell but Moffett is defending now. Moffett scrambles up but Mitchell holds a rear waist lock as the clock runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Mitchell but could go either way, 29-28 Mitchell overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Bryce Mitchell via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Moffett gave that away in the last minute when he gave up his back like that. Mitchell on the mic now, he sends some love to his family, tells everyone that he stayed in Arkansas and he’s going to put over his state every time he gets a chance and then tells Reebok that he told them he wanted camo shorts and still wants them.

Maycee Barber is undefeated and won in her UFC debut, now she’s taking a step up in competition and looking to prove she can make a run towards the top of the division. JJ Aldrich is on a three fight winning streak and is similarly looking to make a move towards competing with ranked opposition with a win. Barber is a hefty -260 favorite against +210 for Aldrich.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: J.J. Aldrich (7-2, 125 lbs.) vs. Maycee Barber (6-0, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Aldrich has two and a half inches of reach advantage. Both women fighting southpaw, Barber lands a body kick and eats a counter punch. Leg kick from Barber but Aldrich knocks her off balance with a counter left and Barber is down but Aldrich isn’t interested in going into her guard and Barber regains her feet. Both women miss some punches. Aldrich lands a jab and eats a counter. They trade power hand punches, Barber landed better there. Aldrich lands a right hook to counter a body kick. Leg kick from Barber lands. Another leg kick from Barber but Aldrich lands a couple of counter punches. Aldrich lands a straight left and has to pull away from a clinch. Body kick from Barber lands. Aldrich avoids a high kick and lands a stiff jab. The forward pressure and distance management of Aldrich have Baber out of sorts. Another left from Aldrich that off balances Barber and she’s down but again Aldrich doesn’t want to follow her down. They wind up staring away the final few seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Aldrich

ROUND TWO: Barber’s lack of foot movement during combinations is letting Aldrich read her and land counters. Barber lands a body kick. Aldrich lands a straight left to counter a kick. Aldrich has a great read on Barber for that counter left, it’s landing basically whenever Aldrich wants to. They clinch up and trade knees then Aldrich lands a right as they break. Jab from Aldrich lands, Barber lands a left. They trade power hand punches, Barber landed the better right. Aldrich lands a couple of right hooks while circling. Elbow from Barber in close as they clinch, then another and Aldrich misses a right as they break. Barber lands a left that wobbles Aldrich and she’s backing up. Forward pressure from Barber and she’s looking to swarm but Aldrich clinches up and slows things down to give herself time to recover. Barber gets free and tees off along the fence and Aldrich just covers up standing until the ref saves her.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Maycee Barber via TKO, punches, at 3:01 of Round 2

Barber had to turn that around after the first round, credit to her for doing so. Mic time for Barber, she says she doesn’t quite and knew that despite being knocked down she wasn’t going to stop. She talks us through the finish, mentioning specifically that she knew she needed to stay striking instead of falling into a grappling exchange when her opponent was hurt. She plans on avoiding getting dropped next time and wants to fix her game, says this is her time.

There were a few elbows in the clinch that isn’t on this clip that started Aldrich circling instead of pressing forward. Here Barber’s power is on display, she lands a left that hurts Aldrich then she never lets her off of the hook.

Luis Pena missed weight for this fight, never a good thing, in his attempted debut at featherweight. Pena is coming off of a loss and is trying to avoid his first losing streak. Steven Peterson has gone 1-1 in the UFC but is coming off of a win and trying for his first winning streak since 2016. Pena is your -250 favorite against +200 for Peterson.

Featherweight Bout: Luis Pena (5-1, 148.5 lbs.) vs. Steven Peterson (17-7, 146 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pena is a whopping five inches taller and has five inches of reach on Peterson, and of course he missed weight yesterday. Southpaw for Pena. Peterson coming out forward, lands an inside leg kick and bullies Pena into the fence. Peterson is after a double leg, switches to a body lock attempt but Pena is pummeling to stop him. Single leg now for Peterson, goes to a high crotch and gets Pena down as Pena thought about a kimura roll. Pena is back up still after the kimura roll, he uses it to get on top but Peterson spun under for an armbar. Pena has to try and slam free, gets his elbow out of danger and lands a couple of rights. Peterson rolls for a leg lock, Pena keeps top position and moves from leg drag into side control. Peterson gets guard, lands a couple of kicks as Pena stands then Pena moves into his guard. Elbows from Peterson. Pena looking to pass, Peterson back up but is wobbled by a right and has to clinch up. Peterson is looking to recover, Pena lands an elbow. A few knees go back and forth, Peterson lands a right and they break on a failed throw from Pena. Peterson lands a leg kick. Right to the body from Peterson. Another inside leg kick from Peterson, Pena tries a flying knee that’s mostly ineffective. More leg kicks from Peterson and a body shot. Pena lands a left. They clash and clinch up, Peterson lands a few knees from the clinch as he’s got Pena on the fence. Peterson is cut under the right eye, looks for a high crotch but can’t secure it and Pena lands a left as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Pena

ROUND TWO: Peterson coming forward again, walks into an uppercut but is still coming forward. Pena avoids a few punches but Peterson backs him into the fence then double legs him. Peterson gets the back standing when Pena stands, now he’s got backpack position. Pena is trying to shuck him off, and does so then lands a combination along the fence. Peterson lands an inside leg kick and walks into a right hook. Right from Peterson lands and they clinch but Pena has control and pushes him into the cage. They jockey for position, Peterson gets Pena on the fence and gets him down again. Pena trying to wall walk but again gives up a rear waist lock to Peterson. Another double leg for Peterson and Pena rolls him over but Peterson is back on him and has his back again when Pena gets to his feet. Peterson is attack the cardio of Pena more than anything at this point. Pena is fighting to break the grip of Peterson, does so but Peterson still has the clinch. Pena circles free and lands a few punches but Peterson is still coming after him. Jumping knee from Pena lands. Body shot from Pena, Peterson with a weak spinning back elbow. Bit of a right from Peterson and he’s after another takedown against the fence. Pena is after a kimura grip to counter, Peterson lands elbows to the kidney as they jockey for position. A bit of a combination from Pena on the break will bring the round to a close.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Peterson but could go either way, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Peterson comes forward again, walks into a jab but gets a clinch. Pena is able to land a knee and break free. Left uppercut from Pena, then a right uppercut and a head kick. Peterson is stumbling forward and Pena is picking him apart as long as he can maintain distance. Double leg from Peterson along the fence, switches to a single leg but Pena hits a switch and gets the rear waist lock on the reset. Knee from Peterson but he can’t keep the clinch and they break. Leg kick from Peterson, that lead leg of Pena is a little off. Peterson is after another double leg against the fence, Pena looks for a kimura counter again and sits for it in full guard but loses the grip and Peterson is on top. Hammer fists from Peterson as Pena tries to get his guard in play, he tries an omoplata and uses it to sweep into top position. Peterson has full guard but doesn’t have the length or flexibility to work much of a guard. Elbows from Peterson, and he goes for an armbar but loses the grip. Pena looking to pass, Peterson is fishing for a heel hook and Pena just punches him until he can spin free and get back on top. Peterson back up but eats a head kick and dives on a double leg to recover. They hit the fence and Pena is defending the double leg. Peterson gives up a duck under for Pena who gets him against the fence and that’s where the fight will close.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Luis Pena via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Mic time for Pena, he says the win feels good and apologizes for missing weight. He planned to keep distance and work with his range, he puts over his coaches and mentions he didn’t stick to the game plan but still got the win. Asked about the lack of kicks he says he knew that boxing would be more important for this match up.

We get a video package for a serviceman who returned from his tour of duty and had a video of his reuniting with his son go viral. The family in question is cage side and get a pretty nice ovation from the crowd. Touching moment.

Jussier Formiga is one of the better flyweights in the world and is currently on a three fight winning streak, he’s trying for number four in a row and hoping to either make a bid for a title fight if the division sticks around or at least secure his job for the immediate future. Deiveson Figueiredo is undefeated including being 4-0 in the UFC with three stoppages to his name, now he’s looking for the biggest win of his career and could likewise secure at least his future in the promotion for one more fight if he wins. Figueiredo is your -140 favorite while the number one contender Formiga is a +120 underdog.

Flyweight Bout: #4 Deiveson Figueiredo (15-0, 126 lbs.) vs. #1 Jussier Formiga (22-5, 126 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Figueiredo has an inch of reach on Formiga. Southpaw for Figueiredo, and they touch gloves to get things going. Body kick from Figueiredo lands. Some stance switching from Figueiredo, Formiga is just bouncing not even really feinting yet. Formiga lands a bit of a jab. My feed stutters, not Comcast this time. My feed comes back as Figueiredo avoids a bad takedown attempt. There’s a lot of staring. They clinch up, then break without incident. Formiga avoids a leg kick then walks into a jab to the body. Double leg into a knee tap from Formiga is successful and he’s in the guard of Figueiredo. Formiga knee slices to pass to half guard then moves to side control. Figueiredo is able to wall walk though they’re still in the clinch. Formiga has a body lock, Figueiredo tries a judo throw but Formgia retains a whizzer and maintains the clinch. Formiga gets an outside reap and moves to full mount immediately. Some offense from Formiga, an elbow being the most prominent of them, and the round comes to a close.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Formiga

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Leg kick from Formiga, Figueiredo lands a jab. Formiga ducks under a left hook and Figueiredo avoids a wild right return. Bit of a right from Figueiredo. They clinch up, Figueiredo lands an elbow as they break. Left to the body from Figueiredo, Formiga lands a body kick. Figueiredo avoids a double jab and lands a right. Formiga is after a single leg, can’t get it on the first effort but when Figueiredo tries to limp leg he’s able to off balance him then get on top in the full guard. Short elbows from Figueiredo from the bottom. Formiga lands an elbow to the body but Figueiredo is throwing a lot from his back. A few more short elbows from Figueiredo and Formiga is bleeding. Formiga is able to pass but Figueiredo catches him in half guard. That cut is around the temple and is pretty long but doesn’t look like a fight ending type of cut. Figueiredo hip escapes to full guard, Formiga passes to half guard again. That’s where the round will end.

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

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Figueiredo coming forward looking for the finish, he knows he needs it. Left from Figueiredo lands but Formiga is able to clinch up off of it. Figueiredo puts Formiga on the fence and separates. Uppercut from Figueiredo lands. Formiga avoids a right and clinches again, he lands a short uppercut of his own as they break. Formiga avoids a lunging left. Figueiredo lands a jab, then a right to the body. A lot of circling from Formiga, he knows he’s winning and isn’t going to do anything stupid. Glancing uppercut from Figueiredo. Formiga get a body lock takedown into half guard. Formiga isn’t even really trying to pass, then Figueiredo gives him an opening and just like butter he passes to full mount. Figueiredo bucks and gets half guard back then fights to his feet but Formiga has his back standing in the clinch. They break without incident and Figueiredo is chasing Formiga now. Formiga avoids some punches. Figueiredo avoids a spinning back fist. Formiga lands an elbow, Figueiredo avoids a single leg attempt and lands a bit of a right as the fight winds down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Formiga, 30-27 Fromiga overall

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

No issues with Figueiredo winning the third round. Formiga does get an interview with his translator, he says he stuck with the strategy and wants to fight Cejudo for the flyweight title. Asked about how he can get Cejudo to stay at flyweight he says Cejudo is running from him and says again he wants that rematch with Cejudo, this time for the title.

John Makdessi is on a two fight winning streak, his first winning streak since way back in 2013, and if he can get to three in a row he could earn a shot at a bigger name for his next bout. Jesus Pinedo is on a seven fight winning streak that includes a successful UFC debut, he’s trying to keep that streak alive and prove his consistency within the ranks of the UFC. The odds are with Makdessi at -275 to a +225 payout for Pinedo.

Lightweight Bout: John Makdessi (16-6, 154 lbs.) vs. Jesus Pinedo (16-4-1, 155.5 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pinedo is an inch taller, has six inches of reach advantage, and is eleven years younger than Makdessi. Southpaw for Pinedo, and they touch gloves to get us going. Circling from Pinedo, Makdessi showing the lead leg kick as a range finder. Makdessi lands a leg kick. Pinedo has a high kick blocked, Makdessi lands a side kick to the body. Makdessi avoids a high kick. A few leg kicks go back and forth, Makdessi lands a side kick to the body. Both men land lefts in close. Leg kick from Pinedo lands. Pinedo avoids a spinning back kick. Leg kick from Makdessi. Makdessi lands a left in close. Pinedo misses a few kicks. Leg kick from Pinedo but he ate a right and that will end the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Makdessi

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Makdessi lands a leg kick. Pinedo was warned between rounds about not engaging. Bit of a left from Pinedo, Makdessi lands another leg kick. Body kick from Pinedo lands. More leg kicks from Makdessi. Makdessi lands a side kick to the body. Pinedo blocks a high kick then takes a side kick to the body and a leg kick. Makdessi blocks a couple of high kicks. Pinedo lands a left then a right but nothing comes after that. Makdessi lands another leg kick. More leg kicks from Makdessi then a straight right. Pinedo comes forward and lands a couple of punches then a body kick that Makdessi catches and lands counters. Pinedo has come alive for a moment, he tries a high kick that’s mostly blocked but definitely surprised Makdessi a bit. Makdessi lands a right, then Pinedo slips trying a jumping knee and that will end the round.

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

ROUND THREE: Makdessi comes out landing a leg kick. Pinedo blocks a high kick then takes a couple of leg kicks. Makdessi slips a left. Pinedo eats a leg kick and misses the counter. Pinedo has some offense blocked and Makdessi lands a leg kick. Bit of a left from Pinedo and he avoids a spinning back kick. Pinedo lands a left after taking a leg kick. A few more kicks at range are traded. Pinedo lands a counter left, Makdessi lands a right. Makdessi catches a kick and avoids a counter wheel kick. Left hook from Makdessi lands. Pinedo lands a heavy body kick but can’t follow up. Left from Pinedo lands and Makdessi is bleeding from the nose. A few more leg kicks from Makdessi, Pinedo lands a body kick. Another body kick from Pinedo, they get close and trade punches as time runs down.

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

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

I know that was kind of slapped together when their other opponents fell out but man that wasn’t good. No mic time for Makdessi.

Curtis Blaydes has only lost to Francis Ngannou but he’s coming off of his second loss to Ngannou and is trying to both defend his ranking and avoid his first ever losing streak. Justin Willis is on an eight fight winning streak that includes four wins in the UFC, he’s coming off of a win over Mark Hunt and is trying to build on that by taking out a top five opponent here. Blaydes is your -250 favorite while Willis’ underdog status is at +200.

Heavyweight Bout: #4 Curtis Blaydes (10-2 1 NC, 262 lbs.) vs. #10 Justin Willis (8-1, 266 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Blaydes has three inches of height and two of reach on Willis. Willis fighting southpaw. Bit of a jab from Blaydes as he circles around. Inside leg kick from Blaydes. Double leg from Blaydes, Willis defends as they hit the fence. Blaydes settles for a clinch and lands knees then starts looking for a body lock takedown. Outside reap from Blaydes and down goes Willis, Blaydes in side control looking for mount. Blaydes moves to the hip along the fence and looks to land offense. Lefts from Blaydes, he’s in that ride position and is stripping the posts of Willis. Willis looking to wall walk, Blaydes with knees to the thigh as he does so and Blaydes moves to the back then hits a low angle German suplex. Blaydes with some more punches as Willis looks to wall walk but Blaydes still has a rear waist lock and hits another mat return. Another ride position for Blaydes, he lands a few punches then knees to the thigh as Willis gets to a knee against the fence. Blaydes rides Willis back to his belly, Willis back to a knee while Blaydes fights for position or lands short punches. Knees to the thigh again from Blaydes. Willis is back up but Blaydes is still on him with a rear waist lock and hits another mat return. Willis again looks to wall walk, Blaydes punches him a few times and the round will run down in that position.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Blaydes

ROUND TWO: Blaydes lands a straight right that staggers Willis, he follows up into the clinch and gets a high crotch takedown despite Willis blatantly grabbing the fence. Blaydes nearly has full mount, he’s going to knee slice into it but he’s on the hip of Willis as Willis is looking to get to his feet. Now Blaydes has full mount, Willis trying to shrimp but Blaydes is riding him and lands a couple of elbows. Willis to his knees and gets to the fence, Blaydes is back to landing knees to the thigh/butt of Willis. Blaydes stripping the posts of Willis to keep him on the mat, Willis tries to roll for a kimura bu the doesn’t have the grip and Blaydes has his back again. A few lefts from Blaydes as Willis gets to a knee again. Willis has nothing at this point offensively, Blaydes is rag dolling him. Blaydes hits a mat return to the back again. A few punches from Blaydes land. A few more punches land for Blaydes as Willis is just stuck against the fence.

SCORECARD: 10-8 Blaydes, 20-16 Blaydes overall

ROUND THREE: Blaydes still bouncing around a bit, Willis is much more flat on his feet at this point. They get close and both men miss punches. Blaydes reaches for a single leg, Willis defends this one then eats a jab. Blaydes shoots Willis into the fence and starts looking for a takedown. Willis is kind of stuck on the fence, Blaydes gets a body lock and is looking to get him down again. A knee from Blaydes as they break apart. Double leg from Blaydes this time into side control in the middle of the cage. Willis rolls to a hip, Blaydes fighting for wrist control and lands some lefts as he moves to the ride position. Willis moves to the fence, Blaydes keeps a rear waist lock and lands knees to the thigh as time runs down.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Blaydes, 30-25 Blaydes overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Curtis Blaydes via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-25)

Mic time for Blaydes after that domination. He says it feels great to shut up Willis and calls him “big titty” as opposed to “big pretty”. He says he knew Willis couldn’t wrestle and that he could. Asked what’s next, he wants Junior dos Santos, Derrick Lewis, or Stipe Miocic next.

Stephen Thompson is coming off of a somewhat controversial loss to Darren Till, he’s trying to avoid his first ever losing streak and re-establish himself as a player in the welterweight division. Anthony Pettis has been trading wins and losses while going 3-4 in his last seven fights, he’s coming off of a loss to Tony Ferguson and is now hoping to get some life back in his career by moving up to welterweight. Thompson is your -350 favorite while Pettis’ comeback sits at +270.

Welterweight Bout: #3 Stephen Thompson (14-3-1, 170.5 lbs.) vs. Anthony Pettis (21-8, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Thompson is two inches taller and has two and a half inches of reach on Pettis. Both men do a lot of stance switching, they touch gloves to get us going. Pettis blocks a high kick then eats a side kick to the body. Body kick from Pettis. Thompson lands a jab and evades a few counters. Pettis lands another body kick. Thompson with some jabs while circling. One two from Thompson and Pettis blocks the follow up high kick. Pettis is following Thompson rather than cutting him off so far, he lands a leg kick. Another side kick to the body from Thompson lands. Pettis eats a body kick and lands an inside leg kick. Thompson lands a left then a body kick. They trade body kicks then Pettis misses a wheel kick. Side kick to the body from Thompson then a couple of punches. Bit of a blitz from Thompson then a leg kick. Thompson leans away from a right hand. Another couple of punches from Thompson and Pettis is bleeding from the nose. Stiff jab from Thompson then a wheel kick that’s blocked. Straight left from Thompson lands. Thompson lands another body kick. Both men miss power hand punches, bit of a spinning back kick from Pettis who’s now bleeding from the bridge of the nose as well will close the round.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Thompson

ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Bit of a right from Thompson and he’s back to circling and bouncing. Pettis blocks a couple of high kicks and lands a leg kick, this time Thompson returns the leg kick. Thompson lands a body kick and a jab. Pettis has a high kick blocked. Bit of a hook kick from Thompson, Pettis lands a leg kick. Thompson lands a straight left, the nose of Pettis is bleeding again. Side kick to the body from Thompson lands, and another one. Pettis lands a right to the body to counter a body kick then Thompson lands a leg kick. They trade some leg kicks then Thompson tries a side kick to the face that falls a little short. Leg kick from Thompson. Thompson lands a body kick and avoids a counter right. Pettis lands a leg kick but that’s basically been his only offense this round. A couple of lefts land for Thompson. Left to the body then a right hook and a body kick from Thompson. Pettis lands a body kick but the volume from Thompson is getting to him a bit. A few jabs from Thompson land then a bit of a left. Pettis lands a jab after landing a leg kick, Thompson returns the jab. Thompson checks a couple of leg kicks then has a leg kick checked. A few jabs from Thompson split the guard of Pettis, who’s now busted up in the lips as well. Pettis kicks off of the cage and lands a right that absolutely KO’s Thompson with just seconds left in the round.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Anthony Pettis via KO, PUNCH, at 4:55 of Round 2

OK, he didn’t actually kick off of the cage but he thought about it. Heck of a KO especially considering how much he was getting picked apart until then. Mic time for Pettis, he says the weight cut was tough and he expects to be in the top ten at welterweight now. He talks us through the finish, calls it a Superman with a hook. And my feed cuts out again, again this wasn’t Comcast and I missed the close to his interview.

Here’s the finish. That will finish high when we talk about KO of the year I’m sure.

On that somewhat surreal note, UFC on ESPN+ 6 comes to a close. Thanks for reading everyone, it’s always appreciated. The 411 Ground and Pound Radio Show this week will be a big one, we’re talking about this event, previewing next weeks insanity when Justin Gaethje and Edson Barboza try to kill each other for five rounds, and all the news of the week including fight announcements, the UFC moving their American PPV’s to being only on ESPN+, and the now vacant bantamweight championship. If you’ve got a question or comment feel free to leave it below.

I’ll be back next week for UFC on ESPN 2 when Barboza and Gaethje will fight. MMA, I don’t ask for much, but please let that fight hold together. I hope you’ll be back for that event. Until then thanks again for reading, stay safe out there, and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.

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UFC on ESPN+ 6, Robert Winfree