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411’s UFC on ESPN 4 Report: Edwards Wins

July 21, 2019 | Posted by Robert Winfree

Main Card (ESPN, 9 p.m. ET)
#4 Rafael Dos Anjos (171 lbs.) vs #12 Leon Edwards (171 lbs.)
#9 Aleksei Oleinik (236 lbs.) vs #14 Walt Harris (256 lbs.)
Greg Hardy (266 lbs.) vs Juan Adams (266 lbs.)
#15 James Vick (156 lbs.) vs Dan Hooker (155 lbs.)
#13 Alexander Hernandez (155 lbs.) vs Francisco Trinaldo (156 lbs.)
Andrei Arlovski (246 lbs.) vs Ben Rothwell (265 lbs.)

Preliminaries (ESPN, 6 p.m. ET)
Alex Caceres (146 lbs.) vs Steven Peterson (145 lbs.)
#6 Raquel Pennington (136 lbs.) vs #10 Irene Aldana (135 lbs.)
Sam Alvey (205 lbs.) vs Klidson Abreu (205 lbs.)
#5 Roxanne Modafferi (125 lbs.) vs #6 Jennifer Maia (129 lbs.)*
Ray Borg (136 lbs.) vs Gabriel Silva (134 lbs.)
Mario Bautista (136 lbs.) vs Jin Soo Son (136 lbs.)
Domingo Pilarte (136 lbs.) vs Felipe Colares (136 lbs.)

*Jennifer Maia missed weight and will forfeit 30 percent of her purse. The bout will proceed as scheduled

Hello everyone and welcome to 411mania’s LIVE coverage of UFC on ESPN 4. I’m Robert Winfree and I’ll be your host for the evening, relaying all of the information to you just as I see it. The UFC has a solid line up for this card, though it might lack bit of the sizzle required to draw in the casual audience. In the main event top contenders Rafael dos Anjos and Leon Edwards will be battling for position near the top of the welterweight ladder, a spot getting crowded again with guys like Jorge Masvidal making his run and the upcoming fight between Colby Covington and Robbie Lawler, we might have the makings of a genuine log jam. If this card has a drawback it’s that there are three heavyweight fights on the main card, Aleksei Oleinik will battle Walt Harris, ESPN’s fixation on having former football player Greg Hardy on their shows continues when Hardy fights Juan Adams, and in a rematch eleven years in the making Andrei Arlovski battles Ben Rothwell. There’s also a darn good lightweight scrap between James Vick and Dan Hooker.

There’s a 3-0 soccer game running a bit long, so apologies for the delay.

UFC on ESPN 4 comes to the world from AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas, USA. On commentary we have Jon Anik and former UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz, also Trevor Wittman will be chiming in from time to time.. As for the rules we are under the old rules, so anything besides the soles of your feet on the mat means you’re considered downed and the language around scoring is less clear and refined. Also no instant replay is in effect tonight.

Domingo Pilarte is making his UFC debut here on the back of a win on Dana White’s Contender Series a little over a year ago. Pilarte brings a five fight winning streak with him and is looking to extend that in his official UFC debut. Felipe Colares lost his perfect record when he lost his UFC debut in February, now he’s looking to rebound and get that all important first UFC win. As for the odds they’re with Pilarte at a hefty -330 to a +260 payout for Colares.

Bantamweight Bout: Domingo Pilarte (8-1, 136 lbs.) vs Felipe Colares (8-1, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Pilarte has four inches of height and reach on Colares. They touch gloves, Pilarte fighting southpaw. Pilarte lands a leg kick, and the crowd “woo’s”. It’s gonna be a long night. A hard body kick from Colares and he gets a clinch off of it. Colares slips around to the back standing and lands knees to the thigh. Foot stomps from Colares now as well, Pilarte throws a few back elbows but isn’t really getting much effective off. Colares lands some elbows of his own and a knee to the face. Pilarte finally winds up chest to chest, but eats a few more knees. They break and Pilarte misses a kick. Colares with a body kick into another clinch position, and he’s got Pilarte on the fence again. Hard knee to the body from Colares. Colares finally gets the body lock takedown and lands in side control but winds up in leg drag rather quickly. Back to side control for Colares and he lands an elbow. Pilarte gets half guard back, but eats another elbow. Colares moves to side control, he avoids an armbar attempt and stacks Pilarte then lands a series of powerful rights. Pilarte is able to fight to his feet and thy’re back in the clinch trading elbows. Colares with a knee near the bell, very nearly illegal but I’m not sure where it landed on the chest or face.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Colares

ROUND TWO: Pilarte is trying to circle more as this round starts, Colares lands an inside leg kick and is backing Pilarte towards the fence. Another body kick to a clinch from Colares. This time they’re chest to chest and fighting for position. Knees from Colares to the body and face, Pilarte hits a kimura roll but loses the grip and has to scramble back up. Pilarte gets the back standing this time, Colares might be fading in terms of his cardio. Colares spins into Pilarte and smothers another kimra roll attempt, this time he gets the back with one hook in. Pilarte uses the kimura grip to roll through and they’re back up, again Pilarte has the back standing. Now it’s Colares locking up the double wrist lock, he bails on that and tries a hip throw but Pilarte whizzers down and hits him as they scramble then gets a takedown. Colares is back up but still in the clinch, he lands a couple of elbows. They break on an elbow from Pilarte. Another body kick from Colares then a takedown attempt but this time Pilarte defends and Colares has to hit an armdrag and gets on top in the guard of Pilarte. Elbow from Colares. Colares postures up and lands a few rights as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Pilarte but Colares might have stolen it, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Colares tries the body kick, but they clash on the kicks and Pilarte took that kick to the groin so he’ll get time to recover. Pilarte is good to continue and Colares apologizes on the restart. Colares lands a body kick, Pilarte tries a double leg and they wind up on the fence again. Pilarte is after a double leg, winds up moving to the back standing then jumps to get his hooks in and drags Colares down. Pilarte goes for a body triangle and is looking for the choke. Colares is hand fighting to defend the choke. Pilarte is still trying for the choke. Colares is really struggling to get free of this body triangle but Pilarte isn’t having any success fishing for the choke. Colares gets sloppy tossing punches and Pilarte tries the choke again, Coalres seems utterly unconcerned by the arm around his neck and punches over his shoulder a few more times as the round ends.

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

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

All came down to the second round, and I mentioned Colares might have stolen that one. No interview for Colares. Under the new rules that third round might have been a 10-8 for Pilarte, but alas for him we’re under the archaic rules.

Mario Bautista suffered his first professional loss when he was submitted by Cory Sandhagen in January, he’s trying to bounce back from that and score his first UFC win. Jin Soo Son lost a four fight winning streak when he stepped up on short notice to fight rising contender Petr Yan last year, now he’s trying to make the most of the generally positive impression he left even in loss and get his first UFC win. The odds are with Son at -190 to +160 on Bautista.

Bantamweight Bout: Mario Bautista (6-1, 136 lbs.) vs Jin Soo Son (9-3, 136 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Bautista is three inches taller but they have the same reach. They touch gloves to get us going. Son lands a right. Bautista misses a few kicks, both men still looking for an angle of attack. Another nice counter right from Son, this time Bautista gets closer and lands a knee. Bautista is doing some stance switching, he lands an inside leg kick but eats a jab. Bautista lands a right, neither man is terribly sophisticated defensively. Decent right from Bautista, he’s moving well so far. They tie up and Son lands a few uppercuts before they break. Leg kick from Bautista. Son lands a jab and a right then eats a counter left. A couple of calf kicks land for Son. Another clinch, Bautista with knees before they break. Son’s left eye is swelling a bit, he punches close but can’t get much going. Jumping knee from Son to counter a leg kick then a solid leg kick of his own that staggers Bautista for a second. Bautista lands a body kick and they clinch again, this time Son gets him on the fence. They jockey for position, Son lands a knee to the head. They break, then knee and clinch again and Son lands an uppercut as they break. Each man lands a calf kick. Bautista lands a body kick. Son with a bit of a counter left hook after a kick glanced his face, then Bautista blocks a few hooks as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Bautista but could go either way

ROUND TWO: Son is coming forward more this round, he lands a bit of a left but Bautista forces a clinch. Son gets Bautista on the fence and is looking for a takedown. They jockey for position, Son lands a few knees. Each man lands some short uppercuts, Son gets a brief mat return then gets the back standing. Bautista is after a kimura roll, they spin a few times and Son gets the back standing. Bautista lands a knee as he gets chest to chest, they break as Bautista misses an elbow. Son lands a leg kick. Double leg from Son, Bautista gets back up immediately and they resume clinch fighting. They trade elbows as they break. Both men land left hooks in close. Bautista lands a left in close after eating an uppercut, this is breaking down in the clinch and Bautista lands elbows then wobbles Son with a left hook. We’re getting some RoadHouse exchanges, Bautista drops Son with a left hook for a second, they’re still fighting in the clinch but Son seems a step behind at each turn. A couple more elbows from Bautista as they break but Son is still here. Son is cut around the right eye now, they both land in close but Bautista is at least aware of his defensive responsibilities whereas Son seems to be relying on his chin. Another clinch will bring the round to a close.

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

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Bautista lands a right then a left, Son is coming forward. Body kick then a right from Bautista land. Son with a bit of a left. Bautista lands a few jabs. Son digs a left to the body then a right, Bautista lands a left hook. Son digs the body again but this time Bautista lands a right hook to counter. They tie up again, both land elbows then they break. Another clinch, Bautista lands elbows after taking a knee to the body. Son lands a couple of body shots then a bit of an uppercut. Bautista sprawls away from a double leg attempt, they stay clinched though and Son hits a foot sweep into side control. They fight back up to their feet and resume landing in close. Bautista is working the body, Son lands a left hook. Right from Bautista lands then a knee to the body. More body work from Bautista as they break. Son whiffs on a few hooks and Bautista lands a right. Both men dig the body but Bautista is out working him, then they both land left hooks. Bautista is digging the body every time they tie up close, he’s also making Son miss a fair bit. Son lands an uppercut to the body, Bautista lands an elbow. Both men miss kicks at the head and Bautista lands a left hook. Another tie up, they trade knees then break just as the clock runs down.

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

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

Fun little brawl, if we get something better than that later it’ll be a real banger of a fight. Mic time for Bautista, he says he felt good and confident after his showing against Sandhagen. He says he was surprised that Son wasn’t stronger in the clinch and he got to use his striking from there more than he expected, then reiterates that he feels good.

Ray Borg is on a two fight losing streak, the first of his career, though I thought he should have won his last fight. In his prior outing Borg missed weight at bantamweight to compliment two different instances of missed weight at flyweight, now he’s likely fighting for his job. Gabriel Silva is undefeated coming into his UFC debut and has a chance to take out a recognized veteran and former title challenger. The odds lean towards Borg at -170 to a +140 comeback on Silva.

Bantamweight Bout: Ray Borg (11-4, 136 lbs.) vs Gabriel Silva (7-0, 134 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Silva is two inches taller and has a whopping eight inches of reach on Borg. Circling to start, both men looking for an angle. Bit of a counter right lands for Silva, he punches into a Thai clinch and is looking for knees but Borg gets a Greco clinch and drives him to the fence. Borg is after takedowns, Silva is defending so far. A few elbows to the shoulder blade from Silva as they jockey for position. Now it’s Silva after the takedown, Borg tries for a guillotine or a guillotine roll but loses the grip and Silva is on top in full guard. Borg wall walks, Silva drags him back down but Borg scrambles back up immediately. Silva is stuck on the fence, Borg gets a bit of a high crotch, Silva tries to spin to his back but can’t get hooks in before they’re back up. Silva gets the ride position, Borg shakes him off and lands a couple of punches then is after a double leg as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Silva

ROUND TWO: Borg hits a quick takedown this round out in open space and is in half guard. Silva looks for a half guard sweep, Borg tries to spin around but Silva gets on top, Borg is after an arm in guillotine though and sits for it. Silva is able to get mostly safe and then gets his head free. Borg has full guard, though he’s not doing much yet. Silva with a few short elbows, Borg forces scramble to the cage but Silva gets the back with a body triangle. Silva is after the choke but Borg is defending. Borg looks to turn into Silva, he gets there and unloads from top position for a few seconds then gets the back of Silva as Silva was trying to get up. Both hooks in for Borg and now he’s the one after the choke. Silva is able to break the body triangle and get up but he eats a knee on the way. Borg lands a punch and is after another takedown, he’s looking to break down the cardio of Silva. Silva winds up sitting on the fence, Borg lands a few punches as he fights all the way back up, then Borg jumps to his back again and has the body triangle again. The round will wind down in that position.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Borg, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the final round. Silva shoots a single leg, Borg defends and they wind up clinched on the fence. Borg spins Silva to the fence and gets an elevated double leg. Silva tries to get up along the fence but Borg moves to the back with one hook in. Silva moves to half guard, Borg with a few elbows as Silva gets back up. Borg is defending a single leg, then gets a double leg of his own along the fence. Silva is back up but Borg is on his back and hits a mat return then lands a few punches from side control. Rights from Borg as Silva gets to his knees then back up. Borg jumps for the back but only gets one hook and has to settle for driving Silva back down. Both hooks in now for Borg as Silva stands and Borg is in the backpack position. Borg rides Silva down to a knee, Silva back up but with Borg still on his back. Borg bails on that position for another double leg along the fence and gets Silva down again. A few rights land for Borg, now lefts as well as he swarms while Silva looks to wall walk. Silva is back up along the fence, Borg rides him down and gets on top in half guard. Another wall walk attempt, it stalls out on the knees and Borg tees off, Silva is up and they trade just as the round ends.

SCORECARD:</b 10-9 Borg, 29-28 Borg overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Ray Borg via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)

Borg’s pace and scrambling just wore Silva down as the fight went on. Mic time for Borg, he’s very emotional and given all that’s happened to him over the last 18 months or so it who wouldn’t be. He says it’s been a long road and knows his son is in the building, he says he’s back and loves his job then dedicates the fight to his recently passed grandfather and a friend who’s daughter recently passed away. He further dedicates it to the parents of children in the NICU or who’s children have hydrocephalus.

Roxanne Modafferi is coming off of a win in her last fight and is 2-2 in her second UFC run now, she’s trying to get her first UFC winning streak up and running, position herself in the title picture, and avenge an earlier career loss. Jennifer Maia missed weight rather badly for this fight, she’s gone 1-1 in the UFC but is a top ranked contender and could find herself in the title scene with a win if she can get beyond the weight issues. Maia is a slight -145 favorite to +115 for Modafferi.

Women’s Flyweight Bout: #5 Roxanne Modafferi (23-15, 125 lbs.) vs #6 Jennifer Maia (16-5-1, 129 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Modafferi is three inches taller and has five inches of reach advantage. Both women showing the jab early, Modafferi lands a right and Maia responds in kind. Maia lands a body shot then a bit of a right uppercut. Modafferi keeps walking into a check left hook, she needs a different angle when she enters. They clinch up, Maia defends a takedown and they trade knees tot he body while hitting the fence. Maia fights for double under hooks but Modafferi is keeping her on the cage. Maia spins Modafferi and lands a couple of short punches. They trade uppercuts while moving around then separate. Modafferi with a double leg that stalls out on the fence. Maia with a body lock to break that attempt then gets Modafferi on the fence again. Knees from Maia and a few rights as she avoids a throw attempt. Modafferi tries that throw again but loses her grip and they separate. Jabs from Maia land and they clinch again. Maia gets another body lock and lands some short lefts then a knee. Punches from Maia, Modafferi tries a double leg but wont get it as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Maia

ROUND TWO: Both women working one twos now. Both women land rights. Bit of a one two from Maia, then another one. Modafferi lands a right but eats an uppercut. Maia cracks Modafferi with a right that stuns her for a second. Modafferi is bleeding from the bridge of her nose. They clinch up again and hit the fence and Maia spins Modafferi then punches her as they break. They split a few jabs then Maia lands a right. Clubbing left from Maia to counter a leg kick. Maia lands an uppercut as Modafferi pushes close then Maia lands a right as they break and Modafferi is wobbling. Modafferi gets close and Maia tosses her down then makes her regain her feet. More uppercuts from Maia in close but Modafferi seems to have her wits back about her and forces another clinch. Maia spins Modafferi into the fence and lands a few rights. Modafferi drops for a single leg and gets Maia on the fence with it. A few knees from Modafferi, Maia punches her a few times as the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: Bit of a right from Modafferi, Maia responds with an uppercut. Another bit of an uppercut from Maia as she’s circling. Modafferi’s pressure is relentless but Maia is starting to angle on her and land counters. Maia lands a right. Left then a right uppercut land for Maia. Modafferi gets Maia to the fence and is after a takedown but Maia is defending. Uppercut from Maia as they break that clinch. Maia lands a counter right. Modafferi is coming forward but keeps walking into punches and can’t reliably close the distance. They finally clinch up and Maia gets Modafferi on the fence and lands a knee to the body. More knees from Maia and a few lefts as well. Maia lands a knee to the head. Modafferi tries another throw but can’t get anything really going, Maia is neutralizing all of her attempts. They break and Maia lands a couple of punches. Maia slips a jab and lands an uppercut. They brawl a bit and then clinch, Maia puts Modafferi on the fence and takes her down then swarms from top position for a few seconds as the clock runs down.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Jennifer Maia via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Pity that there’s the weight miss hanging over that for Maia, but a solid performance.

Sam Alvey is on just his second UFC losing streak, he was finished with strikes in his last fights and is trying to arrest the free fall his career is heading towards. Klidson Abreu lost his five fight winning streak in February when he lost his UFC debut against Magomed Ankalaev, now he’s trying to avoid his first ever losing streak while securing his first UFC win. Abreu is your -170 favorite while Alvey’s comeback sits at +140.

Light Heavyweight Bout: Sam Alvey (33-12 1 NC, 205 lbs.) vs Klidson Abreu (14-3, 205 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Alvey is two inches taller and has an inch and a half of reach advantage. Both men fighting southpaw. Alvey doing his usual circle away routine. Abreu with a front kick to the body. Both men miss some kicks. Abreu lands a right and forces a clinch, Alvey is able to spin him. They spin a few times, one of the few knees thrown hits Alvey in the groin so they break and he’s good to continue after a second or two. Alvey blocks a high kick. Abreu pushes to a clinch and is after another takedown but Alvey defends and lands an elbow as he separates. Counter left from Abreu lands but Alvey just eats it. Abreu lands a body kick. Inside leg kick from Abreu. Alvey comes forward for a second or two, but nothing comes of it. They get close and both men miss punches, Abreu lands a right hook. Alvey misses some punches, Abreu engages with him for a second or two and looks to flurry along the fence just as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Abreu

ROUND TWO: Abreu is coming forward again, Alvey eats a right hook. Inside leg kick from Abreu. Alvey manages to avoid a bit of a flurry and misses a right. Abreu with more inside leg kicks. Alvey lands a bit of a left. Abreu lands another leg kick. They clinch and Abreu gets a takedown then gets the back with one hook in and is after the choke. Both hooks now for Abreu, Alvey looks to get on top and does but gives up an arm triangle from the bottom. Alvey gets free of the grip, the angle wasn’t really there for Abreu, and solidifies top position. Abreu wall walks and they separate. They clinch again after both men miss punches. Alvey gets a body lock and lands a couple of knees then separates. They just circle away the final seconds.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Alvey I guess, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Leg kick from Abreu to get the last round going. Body kick from Abreu now then an inside leg kick. Alvey misses a left. Alvey blocks a high kick. Abreu lands an inside leg kick. Very uneventful fight so far. Jumping knee from Abreu is mostly successful and they trade rights. Alvey lands a jab, Abreu responds in kind. Alvey pushes close and they both land rights along the fence. Abreu lands a leg kick. They clinch up again and Abreu winds up on the cage. They break without too much happening. Abreu comes forward and swings some rights that land. Abreu lands a right. They both miss kicks as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Abreu I guess, 29-28 Abreu overall but probably a split

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

Alvey seems stunned by that, but shouldn’t be. No interview for Abreu.

Raquel Pennington is on a two fight losing streak that includes a lopsided beating in a title effort against Amanda Nunes then a listless outing against Germaine de Randamie where she missed weight, now Pennington is trying to get her career back on track with a win. Irene Aldana had a rough introduction to the UFC but is currently on a three fight winning streak, now she’s looking to take out her second former title challenger and continue making a case for herself as one of the elite fighters in the division. Aldana is the -135 favorite to +105 for Pennington.

Women’s Bantamweight Bout: #6 Raquel Pennington (9-7, 136 lbs.) vs #10 Irene Aldana (10-4, 135 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Aldana is two inches taller and has an inch of reach on Pennington. They touch gloves to get us going. Aldana is circling early and looking to jab. Bit of a body kick from Pennington. Aldana lands a counter right as Pennington missed a jab. Pennington lands a right. Jabs to the body from Aldana now, Pennington lands an inside leg kick. Aldana lands a leg kick. Bit of a right from Aldana, she’s backing Pennington towards the fence. Another jab from Aldana lands. Pennington avoids a one two and lands a right. Bit of a leg kick from Aldana. Sharp jab from Pennington lands. Counter right lands for Aldana. Aldana lands an inside leg kick, both women have some swelling around the eyes. Aldana lands a combination then a leg kick. Left hook from Aldana lands, Pennington tries a takedown but is stuffed. Things pick up for the final couple of seconds and both women find success before the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Aldana

ROUND TWO: Aldana back to circling, and lands a jab. Pennington lands an inside leg kick. Aldana lands a right then a couple of leg kicks. Pennington lands an inside leg kick then an outside one. Stiff one two from Aldana lands. Pennington is backing up a lot, and Aldana seems to be coming on strong now. Jab from Aldana lands. Pennington with a right. Aldana lands a counter right. Straight right lands for Aldana and she avoids a takedown attempt. Pennington eats some punches then lands a right that gets Aldana backing up. Both women land with the lead hand then Aldana lands a right to the body. Pennington gets a clinch and has Aldana on the fence. Aldana lands a couple of knees to the face and body, Pennington starts firing to the body. Aldana is bleeding from the nose, she defends a takedown from Pennington and spins her. More knees go back and forth then they split rights as they break. Another exchange of rights and Pennington tries another double leg and Aldana defends along the fence. Pennington is looking to transition to a single leg, Aldana lands to the body and they wind up punching in close as the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: They touch gloves for the last round. Pennington looking to kick, she eats a jab. Aldana lands a couple of one twos and is pushing forward more consistently. Aldana lands a left hook and avoids a takedown attempt. Right lands for Aldana. Leg kick from Aldana is caught and Pennington gets a trip to land on op. Aldana spins under for a heel hook, no control over the knee line and she tries to spin further through and get a calf slicer going. There’s not a lot of weight on the knee of Pennington, which is kind of key for that, and Pennington is looking to untangle the legs. Aldana technically has the back, Pennington grabs the fence to try and get motion going. Pennington to her knees, Aldana pulls her back to try and get more torque on the knee but Pennington lands some hammer fists, her knee is mostly out of danger. Aldana tries to switch to a knee bar but loses the scramble and Pennington gets an arm triangle attack. Aldana up on a hip, and Pennington moves to the other side for control rather than the submission attempt. Pennington now lands punches as Aldana to her knees, Aldana tries to roll under for a knee bar, this one might develop into something but there’s short time and Pennington lands hammer fists as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Pennington, 29-28 Aldana overall, gonna come down to the second

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

I don’t really agree, but it hinges on a single round and that round was a close one. Mic time for Pennington, she sucks up to the crowd and wishes happy birthday to her nephew. She says this means a lot to her as she continues proving things to herself and thanks her coaches, and her family. She got the fight she expected mostly, and felt letting her hands go a bit was important for her.

Alex Caceres has gone 2-4 in his last six fights and is coming off of a loss to Kron Gracie, now he’s looking to avoid yet another losing streak. Steven Peterson has gone 1-2 in the UFC, he’s also coming off of a loss though he’s trying to avoid his first UFC losing streak. The odds lean towards Caceres at -120 to -110 for Peterson.

Featherweight Bout: Alex Caceres (14-12 1 NC, 146 lbs.) vs Steven Peterson (17-8, 145 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Caceres has three and a half inches of reach on Peterson. Southpaw for Caceres, and he lands a body kick early. Peterson lands an inside leg kick. Caceres lands a straight left. Another straight left for Caceres lands. Peterson has no head movement, Caceres is sticking him when he closes distance. Both men miss kicks. Caceres lands a short right then a leg kick. Peterson is very linear when he comes forward, Caceres is doing a good job of slipping just to the outside and finding a better angle to counter from. Caceres lands a left to the body and tosses Peterson aside when he tries to clinch. Another left lands for Caceres, Peterson just eats it. Again that check right hook for Caceres lands. Caceres lands another body kick but gets a little off balanced by a right hook and they wind up clinched. Peterson gets a takedown and jumps to the back with a body triangle and is after the choke. Caceres is trying to hand fight, Peterson is bleeding from the head somewhere and he’s really after the choke. Caceres is back up, Peterson rides him back down and is still after the choke but can’t finish it. Peterson bails on the choke to land a few punches as the round ends.


ROUND TWO: They touch gloves for the second round. Caceres lands a side kick to the body. Right uppercut from Caceres lands. Apparently Caceres broke his left hand in the first round, so we’ll have to keep an eye on that. Caceres lands a right high kick. Peterson eats a combination and misses a right hook. Caceres with some rights to the head in close, Peterson is getting tuned up on the feet technically. With that left hand compromised Caceres is leaning on the check hook more heavily this round and he’s slipping and countering well so far. Left to the body from Caceres lands. Body kick from Caceres lands. Peterson lands a bit of a right. Caceres avoids a series of rights and lands a counter. Caceres lands a left in close and takes a knee to the body. Another right lands for Caceres, then a combination but Peterson is still coming forward. Peterson tries to close distance but can’t secure it and eats another right. Caceres lands a left. Caceres avoids a few punches and lands another right. Bit of a left elbow from Caceres. Caceres with a side kick to the face then a leg kick. Peterson misses some kicks. That will bring the round to a close.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Caceres, 20-19 Caceres overall

ROUND THREE: Caceres opens with a body kick. Peterson is still struggling with the movement of Caceres. Caceres lands a right uppercut then another body kick. Peterson is trying to work a left hook into his arsenal to corral Caceres but it’s not working too well. Caceres lands a right to the body in close. Bit of a jab from Peterson and he lands a leg kick. Jabs from Caceres as he’s circling. They split jabs, Peterson walks into a left and a right hook. Peterson is trying to switch his stances to help mitigate the movement of Caceres. More rights from Caceres as he’s moving then a series of body shots. They trade lead hand punches again and Caceres then lands a hook while exiting the exchange. Caceres lands a body kick but Peterson trips him up and gets on top in half guard. Peterson is trying to get elbows going but Caceres is defending and gets full guard. A few strikes land for Peterson and that’s where the fight will end.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Caceres, 30-28 Caceres overall

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

Mic time for Caceres, we’re so far over I guess it doesn’t matter. He says he broke his hand on the first punch of the first round then puts over Peterson as a tough guy. He puts over his team for getting him ready and then yells out “Remember the Alamo”. Mick Foley even cringed a little bit at that cheap pop.

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

Andrei Arlovski hasn’t won a fight since the beginning of 2018 when he managed to out point Stefan Struve. Arlovski is trying to halt a four fight skid and prove he’s still a UFC level fighter. Ben Rothwell is on a two fight losing streak and only recently returned from a suspension, he’s trying to get his career back on track with a win. These two fought previously at Affliction: Banned a little over eleven years ago (I’m so old, I remember that event) where Arlovski stopped Rothwell with strikes in the third round. Rothwell closed as a -190 favorite to +160 for Arlovski.

Heavyweight Bout: Andrei Arlovski (27-18 2 NC, 246 lbs.) vs Ben Rothwell (36-11, 265 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Rothwell is an inch taller and has an inch and a half of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get things going. Arlovski circling, Rothwell looking to cut him off. Bit of a body kick from Arlovski. Arlovski lands a right, Rothwell clips him with a left hook and they wind up clinched. They break without incident. Arlovski lands a left hook. Rothwell still pushing forward, Arlovski swings a right to the body. Arlovski lands a right. Rothwell keeps plodding forward but his guard is wide open down the middle and Arlovski is finding the target when he gets too close. Rothwell with a bit of a right. Arlovski lands a lunging right uppercut then an inside leg kick. Glancing left from Rothwell, both men have small cuts under their left eyes. Rothwell lands a right. When Aarlovski punches straight he lands, he’s looping his punches more now and isn’t having the same success. Jabs from Arlovski and Rothwell lands an elbow in close. Arlovski tries a spinning back fist, it lands and Rothwell is bleeding from the nose. Hook kick from Arlovski, Rothwell pushes close and lands a short right. They trade rights. A couple of clubbing rights from Arlovski land on the shoulders as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Arlovski

ROUND TWO: Both men miss some kicks. Rothwell is coming forward, they both land in close. Arlovski lands to the body. Jabs from Arlovski then a right to the body. Straight right lands for Arlovski, Rothwell’s defense is shot at this point and he’s eating a lot of shots. Rothwell lands a right hook, and Arlovski clinches up off of that punch. They jockey for position along the fence. Rothwell gets Arlovski on the fence and is digging short shots to the body. They break and separate without incident. Arlovski lands a couple of jabs then body shots and they clinch again. They break without incident then Arlovski misses a spinning back fist. Spinning back kick to the body from Arlovski. Bit of a right from Rothwell. They trade rights. Arlovski lands a right then a body kick. Rothwell pushes forward, walk into a few punches as the round ends.

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

ROUND THREE: Arlovski comes out jabbing. A couple of body shots land for Arlovski. Arlovski lands a leg kick then they clash on leg kicks. Right lands for Arlovski. They trade left hooks. Now Arlovski pushes into a clinch. Bit of a takedown from Rothwell but Arlovski fights back up immediately. More clinch work, Rothwell can’t get a takedown and Arlovski gets free. Rothwell lands a left, then walk into a couple of punches. They split jabs, both men are done in terms of cardio. Rothwell lands a combination, Arlovski is hurt but is backing up. Both men land a couple of punches, they’re too tired to actually move around and wind up hugging. They break a clinch and Rothwell lands a couple of punches. Arlovski lands a right and they clinch up again. They’re just dead tired and hang out in the clinch as time runs down.

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

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Andrei Arlovski via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)

Arlovski gets mic time, he’s dead tired, and puts over Rothwell, thanks his team and family and declares himself to be back. He says he wanted to beat the record from Jorge Masvidal in terms of quick finish but jokes that he didn’t even get to the middle of the cage in the time it took Masvidal to end that fight. He thanks his coaches again and again believes himself to be back.

For what it’s worth, Arlovski now has the most wins in UFC heavyweight history with 17 passing Frank Mir.

Alexander Hernandez lost his eight fight winning streak in his previous fight when he was stopped by Donald Cerrone, now he’s trying to defend his ranking and prove he can adapt and overcome from that setback. Francisco Trinaldo is one of those battle tested veterans that rarely seems to get the credit he’s due, he’s been trading wins and losses while going 3-2 in his last five fights but those losses are to Kevin Lee and James Vick. Trinaldo is trying to get back into the top fifteen as well as get another winning streak up and running. Hernandez is your -220 favorite to a +180 payout for Trinaldo.

Lightweight Bout: #13 Alexander Hernandez (10-2, 155 lbs.) vs Francisco Trinaldo (23-6, 156 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Hernandez has two inches of reach. Hernandez is also fourteen years younger. Trinaldo fighting southpaw. Trinaldo lands a left. Hernandez is circling, has a high kick blocked. Trinaldo avoids a few punches. Trinaldo lands a knee to the body as Hernandez was coming forward. Hernandez showing stance switching now, he lands a body kick and eats a bit of a counter right. Bit of a body kick from Trinaldo. Harnandez lands a right to the body, Trinaldo lands a counter right hook. Both men still trying to find the range and timing. Leg kick from Hernandez but Trinaldo lands a counter left. A lot of circling from Hernandez right now, and Trinaldo is trying to draw him out with feints. Another counter right from Trinaldo. They trade front kicks but Hernandez caught one in the groin so we’ve got time out. Hernandez is good to continue quickly though, we didn’t even get a replay to confirm the shot. Jumping knee to the chest/chin lands for Trinaldo as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Trinaldo

ROUND TWO: Hernandez misses a spinning back kick. Glancing head kick from Trinaldo. There’s a cut on the right shin of Hernandez, not bad but bears watching. They posture, then Hernandez misses a kick. Hernandez gets a clinch of a Trinaldo clinch but can’t get a takedown and they separate. Hernandez has some swelling around his left eye now. That’s actually a bit of a cut and swelling under the eye. More circling, they both miss on a clash. Trinaldo avoids a high kick, then misses a wheel kick. A few jabs fall short for Trinaldo. Knee to the body from Trinaldo lands and he’s got Hernandez backing up again. Trinaldo lands a left to counter e right. Hernandez lands a body kick as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Trinaldo but a much more difficult round to score, 20-18 Trinaldo overall

ROUND THREE: Hernandez is coming out kicking, Trinaldo is avoiding them so far. Leg kick lands for Trinaldo. Hernandez pushes forward and they clinch up. Knees go back and forth then Hernandez pulls free. Head kick lands for Trinaldo but he slips, and is back up before Hernandez can capitalize on the error. Trinaldo blocks a high kick. Bit of an uppercut from Trinaldo as Hernandez was closing distance. They trade body kicks. Trinaldo is trying to get Hernandez to engage, he lands a high kick. They get close and both swing a little wild and miss. Trinaldo lands a counter left. Another left lands for Trinaldo and he waves Hernandez on. Bit of a knee from Trinaldo. Trinaldo slips on a kick attempt as the clock runs down.

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

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

I certainly think 30-27 is BS, but on the whole I can’t complain about a 2-1 score for Hernandez given how the fight played out. On the mic he says it was a dogfight and feels the fight could have gone either way and notes that he got cut and reiterates that the fight could have gone either way. Credit to him for honesty about that. He’s from San Antonio and puts over the city then puts over his team.

I’m not sure on the specifics of this record, but this is the most decisions in a row to start a UFC event as we’ve had 9 in a row. There might be another event with more overall decisions but had a finish within the first 9 fights. The prior record was 8 held by UFC Fight Night 134: Shogun vs. Smith.

James Vick is on his first losing streak, he was violently knocked out by Justin Gaethje then lost to Paul Felder. Now Vick is trying to halt that losing streak and prove he’s still a top level lightweight. Dan Hooker just lost a four fight winning streak when he was abused and then stopped in the third round by Edson Barboza, he’s trying to avoid his first UFC losing streak and take out a ranked opponent. Hooker is your -140 favorite to +110 for Vick.

Lightweight Bout: #15 James Vick (13-3, 156 lbs.) vs Dan Hooker (17-8, 155 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Vick is three inches taller but has just one inch of reach advantage. They touch gloves to get us going. Vick is circling around the outside, Hooker stalking forward. Bit of a calf kick from Hooker. They trade leg kicks. Both men miss some kicks, Vick doing some stance switching. Hooker gets close and lands a couple of punches, Vick lands a couple of counters. Hooker kicks the calf again. Right then a left from Hooker and a calf kick again. Vick lands a couple of punches and now Hooker is the one circling. Hooker ducks under a high kick and lands a left hook. Hooker lands a left hook that drops Vick and he pounds him out on the mat.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Dan Hooker via KO, punches, at 2:33 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club, on behalf of everyone watching, thanks Mr. Hooker for his work this evening. Mic time for Hooker, he puts over Vick and says he trained as hard as ever because he knows you don’t mess with Texas. More cheap pops. He puts over his coaches then puts over the city for being welcoming and calls it his favorite American city that he’s been to thus far. Asked who he’d like next he wants on the October 5th card when Israel Adesanya will be fighting Robert Whittaker, he doesn’t care who but demands to be on that card.

Here’s the finish. Hooker shows the shift to right hand, Vick reacts. Hooker then does the same set up and when Vick reacts the way he just showed Hooker has a read on it and switches to a left hook to the jaw that basically ends things.

OK, the record for most decisions ever on a UFC card is 10, and that’s happened six times. This one could set the record, there’s 4 fights left and we only need 2 to go the distance.

Greg Hardy has gone 1-1 in the UFC but is coming off of a win when the UFC brought in a can for him to beat, now he’s trying to get his first UFC winning streak up and running. Juan Adams has also gone 1-1 in the UFC, he’s coming off of a loss to Arjan Bhullar and is trying to avoid his first losing streak while notching a fairly high profile win. The odds here closed at a -115 pick ’em.

Heavyweight Bout: Greg Hardy (4-1, 266 lbs.) vs Juan Adams (5-1, 266 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: These two are the same height while Hardy has half an inch of reach advantage. Hardy lands a jab. Both men land jabs now. They’re just splitting jabs, then Hardy stuffs a takedown and starts landing rights while Adams is holding a single leg. Hardy keeps landing rights and Adams isn’t moving so the ref stops it.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Greg Hardy via TKO, punches, at :45 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Hardy for his work this evening. Hardy on the mic now, he says he feels great and expresses love to Texas no matter how they feel about him and thanks Adams for the fight and offers to run it back. He wants everyone to know that calling him out comes with consequences, and that trying to take him down has consequences, then expresses gratitude for the fight and the sport. Asked about what’s next he says he loves this all so much, boos or cheers, that he’ll come back tomorrow if he can.

Here’s the finish. Adams doesn’t really find an angle on the single leg and when Hardy puts pressure on the back of his shoulder/head he winds up dropping to a hip. Being on a hip on a single leg is pretty bad unless you’re pulling under for a sweep, in this case Adams just hangs out and gets hit a lot, by the time he gets to his knees he’s too wobbled to actually drive either forward or up to find an advantageous position. Given the volume of blows Adams absorbs I don’t hate the stoppage.

Aleksei Oleinik is coming off of a loss to Alistair Overeem that broke a two fight winning streak, now he’s trying to avoid his first UFC losing streak and defend his top ten ranking. Walt Harris hasn’t lost since 2017 when he got himself disqualified, he’s looking to take out a top ten opponent and move closer to the title picture. The odds are with Harris at -180 to a +150 payout for an Oleinik win.

Heavyweight Bout: #9 Aleksei Oleinik (57-12-1, 236 lbs.) vs #14 Walt Harris (12-7 1 NC, 256 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Harris is three inches taller while Oleinik has three inches of reach advantage. Both men fighting southpaw though Oleinik switching his stance. Harris times a jumping knee as Oleinik was ducking down then a follow up left and Oleinik crumples, this one is over.

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Walt Harris via KO, flying knee and punch, at :11 of Round 1

The First Round Finish Club thanks Mr. Harris for his work this evening. Mic time for Harris, he’s just happy to have won. He talks us through the finish, notes he worked a lot on sequences like that and calls his left hand a monster. Asked what the future holds for him he says he wants on the Abu Dhabi or Vancouver cards but doesn’t care who his opposition is.

Here’s the finish. Oleinik is a little off balanced by that knee and he’s not defending himself so the follow up left lands cleanly.

Rafael dos Anjos is one of those forgotten greats, a former lightweight champion and now successful welterweight contender. Dos Anjos just broke a two fight losing streak by submitting Kevin Lee and is now looking to build another winning streak and maintain his top contender status. Leon Edwards has rather quietly built a really outstanding UFC resume, he’s on a seven fight winning streak that includes wins over Vicente Luque, Donald Cerrone, and Gunnar Nelson. Edwards is trying to break into the top ten with his eighth consecutive win here and make a case for a title shot. Edwards closed as a -135 favorite over +105 for dos Anjos.

Welterweight Bout: #4 Rafael Dos Anjos (29-11, 171 lbs.) vs #12 Leon Edwards (17-3, 171 lbs.)

ROUND ONE: Edwards is six inches taller and has four inches of reach on dos Anjos. Both men southpaw, just feinting to begin with. Dos Anjos stalking forward early, they clinch up and Edwards gets a body lock takedown into full butterfly guard. Edwards moves to half guard, dos Anjos uses that to start looking to wall walk. Elbow from Edwards, dos Anjos now looking for a deep half sweep, he lands a few elbows from his back. Edwards gets his leg back and thwarts the attempt. A couple lefts land for Edwards, and a knee to the body. Dos Anjos back up, Edwards holding a rear waist lock. They break and Edwards has a head kick blocked. Dos Anjos lands a calf kick then a jab as they clinch again. They break without incident, dos Anjos then lands another calf kick. Dos Anjos lands a leg kick and a body shot, then Edwards lands an elbow. Dos Anjos kicks the leg again. Another clinch, Edwards does not like those leg kicks. Edwards looks for a single leg, dos Anjos lands elbows then knees to the body. They break without anything really landing and the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Edwards

ROUND TWO: Edwards opens with a leg kick. Dos Anjos is pressuring forward again, he lands a glancing left. Another left lands for dos Anjos, Edwards lands a right hook. Dos Anjos lands a right to the body, then a bit of a leg kick. Edwards with a knee to the body in close then he’s after a takedown but dos Anjos defends against the fence. They settle into the clinch, dos Anjos spins Edwards and lands a knee to the body. Elbow from dos Anjos as they break then a leg kick and he blocks the counters. Edwards with a head kick, dos Anjos lands a leg kick then a body kick. Now it’s dos Anjos forcing the clinch, he gets Edwards to the fence and they clinch up again. They break and Edwards misses an elbow. Edwards lands an elbow at distance. Dos Anjos lands to the body again, but he’s now cut around the right eye. Leg kick from dos Anjos, and another that takes Edwards down the dos Anjos gets on top in half guard. Elbows from dos Anjos as Edwards looks to come up on a single leg or hit a sweep. Some blows to the body from dos Anjos, Edwards gets up on a hip and is back up at distance. Edwards lands a leg kick. Jabs from Edwards, the left eye of dos Anjos is messed up now. They trade some leg kicks. Dos Anjos lands a left but the range of Edwards is giving him a few problems now. The round will end right about in the middle of the cage.

SCORECARD: 10-9 dos Anjos, 19-19 overall

ROUND THREE: Yeah, that’s a pretty bad cut right on the eyebrow of dos Anjos. If it gets much worse that could be a fight stopper. Those elbows on the break from Edwards are nasty. They get the doctor in to check the cut on dos Anjos, he can continue and wants to so we’re going to get a third round. They split some jabs, dos Anjos lands a body kick. Edwards lands a jab but takes another hard leg kick. Dos Anjos avoids a few kicks, then he’s after a single leg against the fence. Edwards is defending well and they wind up clinched. Bit of a knee from Edwards and they break, then dos Anjos lands a leg kick. Edwards lands a one two. Another clinch, another elbow from Edwards as they break. Dos Anjos lands a leg kick, and eats a counter left. They clinch up again, dos Anjos with a knee to the body and Edwards lands an elbow on the break. Another left lands for Edwards, he’s keeping dos Anjos at the end of his punches and most of dos Anjos’ counters are falling short. Double leg from dos Anjos hits the fence and stalls out. Edwards is able to slip around behind dos Anjos, dos Anjos gets back chest to chest. A few body shots from Edwards land. More body work from Edwards, he’s committed to that. The ref isn’t happy with the activity, or Edwards grabbing the fence, and separates them. Edwards lands an uppercut, dos Anjos lands a counter. Dos Anjos lands to the body again and clinches up. Edwards spins dos Anjos into the fence, and lands an elbow as they break. Dos Anjos misses a leg kick as the round closes.

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

ROUND FOUR: Some circling as the round starts, Edwards lands a jab. Bit of a right hook lands for dos Anjos, Edwards responds with a counter left. Dos Anjos lands a hard body kick. Edwards lands a left in close then takes a leg kick. Some stance switching for Edwards now. Leg kick from Edwards. Dos Anjos with a bit of a left but that distance management for Edwards is causing all kinds of problems. Dos Anjos lands to the body in close. Edwards with an elbow in close. Dos Anjos with a right to the body then a right hook to the head. Jumping knee from dos Anjos is caught and Edwards gets a takedown into half guard. Dos Anjos looking to wall walk, Edwards is keeping him down though. Now dos Anjos scrambles back up but Edwards is all over him as they get to the clinch. They trade in the clinch as the round ends.

SCORECARD: 10-9 Edwards, 39-37 Edwards overall

ROUND FIVE: They touch gloves for the final round. Dos Anjos is pushing forward, he knows he needs a finish. Edwards lands a leg kick. Left to the body from dos Anjos. Dos Anjos punches into the clinch and gets Edwards on the fence. Edwards is able to spin him and land a few knees before they break. Dos Anjos lands a heavy leg kick. One two from Edwards lands. Dos Anjos is pressuring forward, lands a bit of a right hook. They clinch up in space, Edwards pushes them to the fence. Double leg from Edwards, and he moves to the back standing while they regain their feet. Dos Anjos uses a kimura grip to break the position and reset. Leg kick from dos Anjos then a left uppercut. Edwards lands an elbow while circling away from dos Anjos. Dos Anjos lands a one two. Leg kick from dos Anjos. Bit of a right hook from dos Anjos lands. Body kick from dos Anjos but Edwards clinches up off of it and is looking to ice the round. Edwards gets a double leg, and the back while standing again. Dos Anjos breaks the grip, Edwards lands an elbow as they break. A flying knee from dos Anjos is caught again and the clock runs down with dos Anjos on his back.

SCORECARD: 10-9 dos Anjos, 48-47 Edwards overall

OFFICIAL RESULT: †WINNER – Leon Edwards via unanimous decision (50-45, 49-46 x2)

Not sure at all about Edwards getting the 5th, but he could have taken the second without issue. Mic time for Edwards now, he says he feels great and plays with the crowd a bit. He notes he’s on an eight fight winning streak and calls out Jorge Masvidal. He says he’s still growing and learning, and puts over RDA and says he wants to prove you can stay in the UK and become successful in the UFC. Asked about his strategy he knew that dos Anjos struggles to come from behind and he wanted to put him behind early and keep that rolling. He reiterates that he wants Masvidal before the end of the year or a rematch with Usman, who beat him four years ago and was his last loss.

That will bring UFC on ESPN 4 to a close. With 10 decisions that’s now the sixth or seventh UFC event to hit double digit decisions. The 411 Ground and Pound MMA Podcast will review all of the action from this card, such as it was, and look ahead to UFC 240 next week when Max Holloway tries to defend his featherweight title against Frankie Edgar. I’ll be back next week for that card, until the stay safe out there and keep checking 411mania for all of your pop culture needs.