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UFC Fight Night on ESPN+ 45: Edwards vs. Muhammad (3/13/2021) - Las Vegas, NV (UFC APEX)


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UFC Fight Night on ESPN+ 45: Edwards vs. Muhammad 
March 13, 2021
Las Vegas, NV (UFC APEX)

Leon Edwards (170.5) vs. Belal Muhammad (170) - No Contest (accidental eyepoke)
Misha Cirkunov (205) vs. Ryan Spann (206) - Spann, TKO (punches), R1 (1:11)
Dan Ige (145.5) vs. Gavin Tucker (146) - Ige, KO (punch), R1 (0:22)
Jonathan Martinez (136) vs. Davey Grant (135.5) - Grant, KO (punches), R2 (3:03)
Manel Kape (125.5) vs. Matheus Nicolau (125.5) - Nicolau, DEC (split)
Eryk Anders (186) vs. Darren Stewart (185.5) - No Contest (unintentional knee to a grounded opponent)

ESPN+ Preliminary Card:
Angela Hill (115.5) vs. Ashley Yoder (116) - Hill, DEC (unanimous)
Charles Jourdain (145.5) vs. Marcelo Rojo (145.5) - Jourdain, TKO (punches), R3 (4:31)
Rani Yahya (136) vs. Ray Rodriguez (135.5) - Yahya, SUB (arm triangle choke), R2 (3:09)
Nasrat Haqparast (156) vs. Rafa García (156) - Haqparast, DEC (unanimous)
Cortney Casey (126) vs. JJ Aldrich (125.5) - Aldrich, DEC (split)
Gloria de Paula (115.5) vs. Jinh Yu Frey (115.5) - Frey, DEC (unanimous)
Matthew Semelsberger (169.5) vs. Jason Witt (171) - Semelsberger, KO (punch), R1 (0:16)

Event Bonuses ($50,000)
Performance of the Night: Matthew Semelsberger
Performance of the Night: Davey Grant
Performance of the Night: Dan Ige
Performance of the Night: Ryan Spann

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Welterweight division is so fascinating right. It sounds like everyone not named George Masvidal is angling for a fight against Covington for a title eliminator. But I feel like this fight doesn't necessarily settle that conundrum unless Leon Edwards comes out and crushes Belal.

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1 hour ago, jaedmc said:

Welterweight division is so fascinating right. It sounds like everyone not named George Masvidal is angling for a fight against Covington for a title eliminator. But I feel like this fight doesn't necessarily settle that conundrum unless Leon Edwards comes out and crushes Belal.

Yeah, there is this weird glut in the middle of the division consisting of folks who really haven't put together signature wins. The only four notable fighters who have an active win streak of * > 1 fight: Leon Edwards, Michael Chiesa, Belal Muhammad, Wonderboy, and Vicente Luque. Two of those guys are fighting this weekend. Therefore, that would be your de facto title eliminator. If you're not fighting and winning consistently, I'm not sure how you plan to fight for a title. 

This seems like a very bad time to be turning fights down in a division that's extremely wide open.

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And it's not like there isn't fresh matchups for the champ. That's what made Usman challenging Masvidal so weird. Wonderboy stopped a Geoff Neal's 7 fight win streak. Chiesa has looked good and is maybe a win away from being an interesting challenger. Make Masvidal beat one of them and get some shine back before that money fight.

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That was a good win for Davey Grant. Had a tough time dealing with the low kicks early, but came on and put together some good looking combos that eventually made Martinez succumb.

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1 minute ago, jaedmc said:

I only caught the decision and Grant limping out of the ring a winner. Sounds like that leg got ate up.

Pretty much. He told his corner his leg (specifically his calf) hurt after the first round. He fought much better after the first though. It was probably a sense of urgency that sparked that because he wouldn't be able to walk if the fight continued on that way.

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1 minute ago, jaedmc said:

Imagine going through a whole camp and then Dan Ige happens like that.

Ige is in kinda weird spot right now. He's clearly better than most of the FW division, however, I'm not sure he is a top 5 fighter at this point of his career. The Kattar fight was clearly too much, too soon. Hopefully, he will get moved up a little slower and progressively show he has learned from that fight.

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Him vs. Zombie is a good call out. I think Zombie is a fun fighter not a great fighter. But if he wins that....who knows. It's essentially a division where everyone is fighting for third place. You're either Max or you're the champ. 

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Man, I wish I went with my brain instead of my gut and picked Spann. MMA Math basically dictated that Spann would win because he was beating Johnny Walker IIRC until Johnny Walker did Johnny Walker things. Cirkunov got absolutely smoked by Walker in like 25 seconds. Plus, Misha hadn't fought in a year and a half.

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