UFC on ESPN+ 24: Blaydes vs. dos Santos Preview

Going head-to-head with Bellator this weekend, UFC will travel to Raleigh, North Carolina, USA for a card on ESPN+. Headlining the show will be heavyweights Junior dos Santos and Curtis Blaydes. Both high ranked, the winner of this fight could move themself ahead in the line to challenge for Stipe Miocic’s UFC Heavyweight Championship.

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Bout 1: Nate Landwehr (13-2) vs. Herbert Burns (9-2) (Featherweight)

Kicking off the preliminary card on ESPN+ at 5PM EST will be a featherweight battle between Nate Landwehr and Herbert Burns. The matchup is a double debut, with Burns getting a contract from Dana White’s Contender Series back in August. Burns had a 5-2 record in ONE FC and a 2-0 run in Titan FC prior ot the signing. Landwehr is on a seven-fight winning streak, with most of those wins from Russian MMA promotion M-1 Challenge.

Bout 2: Brett Johns (15-2) vs. Tony Gravely (19-5) (Bantamweight)

Another debuting Contender Series fighter is on this card in Tony Gravely, being put up against Brett Johns. Gravely stopped Ray Rodriguez in the third round on the show to earn his UFC contract and extend his winning streak to seven. Johns could be fighting for his future in the UFC on Saturday, as he is currently on a two-fight losing streak, his only two losses as a pro. He made his UFC debut in 2016, picking up three wins before losing to Aljamain Sterling and Pedro Munhoz.

Bout 3: Sara McMann (11-5) vs. Lina Lansberg (10-4) (Bantamweight)

Making her return after maternity leave, Sara McMann will challenge Lina Lansberg on the prelims. McMann’s last fight was in early 2018, losing to Marion Renau via triangle choke. After a late 2018 loss to Yana Kunitskaya, Lansberg has bounced back by getting scorecard wins over Tonya Evinger and Macy Chiasson. It’s safe to say that McMann will have a challenge in her comeback bout.

Bout 4: Montel Jackson (8-1) vs. Felipe Corales (9-1) (Bantamweight)

The next preliminary fight will see two more bantamweights compete. Montel Jackson and Felipe Corales, who are both coming off of wins in their short UFC careers thus far will be put against each other. Despite having similar records, Vegas heavily favours Jackson as a -600 favourite. Jackson was picked up via the Contender Series, going 2-1 since then. Corales is 1-1 in the UFC, recently going the distance for a unanimous decision win against Domingo Pilarte.

Bout 5: Justine Kish (6-2) vs. Lucie Pudilova (8-5) (Flyweight)

Justine Kish and Lucie Pudilova will both attempt to break their losing streaks on Saturday, but only one will prevail. Kish hasn’t been super active, with her last two fights taking place over the last two years, being losses to Felice Herrig and Ji Yeon Kim. Pudilova has been more active, with her last three fights, all losses, within the last year and a half. Most recently, Pudilova was stopped in the second round via rear naked choke against Antonina Shevchenko.

Bout 6: Arnold Allen (15-1) vs. Nik Lentz (30-10-2) (Featherweight)

The seemingly unstoppable Arnold Allen will be put against the much more experienced Nik Lentz in what should be an interesting matchup on Saturday. Allen has been undefeated since 2014, currently with six wins in his UFC run. His most recent win was easily his biggest challenge, being a decision win over Gilbert Melendez. Lentz is coming off of a loss to Charles Oliveira, however, there’s no doubt his advantage in this fight is having more octagon time, over doubling the number of professional fights that Allen has.

Bout 7: Bevon Lewis (6-2) vs. Dequan Townsend (21-9) (Middleweight)

The preliminary part of the card will be headlined be Bevon Lewis and Dequan Townsend. Lewis was signed to the UFC through the Contender Series but has yet to get a win in the octagon, falling to Uriah Hall and Darren Stewart before. Townsend made his UFC debut in 2019, having an unsuccessful outing against Dalcha Lungiambula.

Bout 8: Jamahal Hill (6-0) vs. Darko Stosic (13-3) (Light Heavyweight)


The main card will kick off with the sole undefeated fighter on the card, Jamahal Hill, fighting Darko Stosic. Hill impressed UFC brass in the fifth episode of the 2019 Contender Series season, stopping Alexander Poppeck in the second round with elbows. This fight will be his debut on the big stage. Stosic has something to prove as well, currently chasing the feeling he had when he had his one and only UFC win, back in July of 2018. He has since failed to prevail over Devin Clark and Kennedy Nzechukwu.

Bout 9: Hannah Cifers (10-3) vs. Angela Hill (10-7) (Strawweight)

Angela Hill was a busy fighter in 2019. After a run of taking four fights in seven months, Hill took an understandable break for the final quarter of 2019. She returns to the octagon on Saturday, fighting Hannah Cifers. Cifers is riding a two-fight winning streak, last winning over Jodie Esquibel at UFC 241.

Bout 10: Jordan Espinosa (14-6) vs. Alex Perez (22-5) (Flyweight)

In late 2018, Alex Perez tasted defeat in the UFC for the first time, taking many unanswered shots by Joseph Benavidez before the referee fully stepped in. That didn’t stop his momentum however, as he bounced back by beating Mark De La Rosa. Riding that momentum, Perez will fight Jordan Espinosa high up on this card. Espinosa sees himself in Perez’s position, attempting to come off his first loss in the UFC, which was also a first-round stoppage. On Saturday, another fighter will likely see their second loss in the big leagues.

Bout 11: Rafael dos Anjos (29-12) vs. Michael Chiesa (15-4) (Welterweight)

Michael Chiesa has been undefeated since making the switch from lightweight to welterweight back in 2018. He has defeated Carlos Condit and Diego Sanchez, and now eyes to beat Rafael dos Anjos in the co-main event slot of this card. “RDA” has lost quite a bit recently, however it’s worth noting his losses have come to notable names in the division. He lost an interim Welterweight Championship fight to Colby Covington in 2018 at UFC 225. He then lost to current champion Kamaru Usman, going to decision. He has most recently lost to Leon Edwards, defeating Kevin Lee before then. While Chiesa is being pitted against someone who has lost more than they have won recently, dos Anjos is the biggest welterweight challenge he has gotten so far.

Bout 12: Curtis Blaydes (12-2) vs. Junior dos Santos (21-6) (Heavyweight)

Main eventing in Raleigh will be Curtis Blaydes and Junior dos Santos. The battle is one between one of the division’s rising stars and a more experienced veteran. Of course the star is Blaydes, with the more experienced being Santos. Blaydes holds an impressive 12-2 record, with the two defeats coming via fights against Francis Ngannou. He is on a two-fight winning streak, going through Justin Willis and Shamil Abdurakhimov. 

Santos’ last win gives him a way to relate to Blaydes, as he lost to Ngannou back in June. He failed to fight Alexander Volkov in November, falling victim to a bacterial infection. Santos is most known for his 2011 UFC Heavyweight Championship run, which saw him dethrone Cain Velasquez. After a defence against Frank Mir, Santos lost the belt in a rematch against Velasquez. Both Blaydes and Santos are highly ranked in the division, and a win could put them in closer reach to Stipe Miocic’s Heavyweight belt. With that being said, there are a lot of bidders for that title shot at the moment.

UFC will take next weekend off, returning on the 8th with UFC 247 in Houston, Texas, USA. Headlining that card will be Jon Jones putting his UFC Light Heavyweight Championship on the line against undefeated Dominick Reyes.

Nik Lentz vs. Arnold Allen Matched Up For UFC on ESPN+ 24

After both losing their original opponents on the UFC Raleigh show, Arnold Allen and Nik Lentz will be booked against each other.

Allen was originally meant to face Josh Emmett, and the original opponent of Lentz was scheduled to be Nad Narimani. Both opponents pulled out from their fights due to injury.

Lentz, who celebrated 10 years in the UFC recently, will look to bounce back after a loss to Charles Oliveira.

Allen has still yet to lose in the UFC, with a six-fight winning streak ongoing. He fought twice in 2019, going to decision against Jordan Rinaldi and Gilbert Melendez.

Currently scheduled to main event the January 25th card is heavyweights Curtis Blaydes and Junior dos Santos.

Here’s the full card of UFC on ESPN+ 24, which will take place at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina, USA:

Bout 1: Curtis Blaydes (12-2) vs. Junior dos Santos (21-6) (Heavyweight)

Bout 2: Rafael dos Anjos (29-12) vs. Michael Chiesa (15-4) (Welterweight)

Bout 3: Jordan Espinosa (14-6) vs. Alex Perez (22-5) (Flyweight)

Bout 4: Hannah Cifers (10-3) vs. Angela Hill (10-7) (Strawweight)

Bout 5: Jamahal Hill (6-0) vs. Darko Stosic (13-3) (Light Heavyweight)

Bout 6: Justine Kish (6-2) vs. Lucie Pudilova (8-5) (Flyweight)

Bout 7: Bevon Lewis (6-2) vs. Dequan Townsend (21-9) (Middleweight)

Bout 8: Montel Jackson (8-1) vs. Felipe Colares (9-1) (Bantamweight)

Bout 9: Sara McMann (11-5) vs. Lina Lansberg (10-4) (Bantamweight)

Bout 10: Brett Johns (15-2) vs. Tony Gravely (19-5) (Bantamweight)

Bout 11: Nate Landwehr (13-2) vs. Herbert Burns (9-2)

Bout 12: Arnold Allen (15-1) vs. Nik Lentz (30-10-2) (Featherweight)

UFC on ESPN+ 10: Dos Anjos vs. Lee Full Report

In UFC’s sixth consecutive weekly show, they returned to Rochester, New York for a Welterweight clash between Rafael Dos Anjos and Kevin Lee. Both fighters are coming off main event losses, going all 25 minutes in their respective bouts. Will they see another scorecard showdown, or will they see a stoppage? We’ll find out, but first let’s look at the other 12 bouts on the card.

Preliminary Card

Bout 1: Julian Erosa (22-8) vs. Julio Arce (15-3) (Featherweight)

The first fight was a Featherweight showdown between Julian Erosa and Julio Arce. The first few minutes of the bout were slow with neither fighter really showing their skills. They started to heat up in the final minute, with Erosa seemingly falling after getting hit with a left jab. It was hard to score the round. Erosa’s punches proved effective in the second round. Erosa was the one walking down his opponent, but he was the one getting hit as well. The fight seemed to speed up as it progressed. At the start of the third round, both fighters were doing some good striking exchanges. Arce landed a left leg kick to the head after a two punch combo which dropped Erosa and ended the bout. What seemed like a potentially dull bout became a fun one near the end.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 2: Trevin Giles (11-0) vs. Zak Cummings (22-6) (Middleweight)

The next bout of the evening was Middleweights Trevin Giles and Zak Cummings competing. Similar to the fight before, the first round was very slow and methodical striking. Cummings got a cut above his right eye in the first. The was a pause in the second after Giles accidentally got Cummings in the groin with a kick. Giles’ striking continued to work for him through the second round. In the final round, Cummings tried to bring the fight to the ground for the first time. He wasn’t successful in doing so. In the final two minutes of the fight, a left hook made Giles fall. Cummings used this chance to bring the fight to the ground, putting in a rear naked choke that made Giles tap out.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 3: Ed Herman (24-14) vs. Patrick Cummins (10-6) (Light Heavyweight)

Moving up even further in weight classes, Ed Herman and Patrick Cummins fought in the Light Heavyweight division. From the very start of the fight both of these guys were landing hard blows. Cummins was stunned by a knee in a clinch and then was finished on the ground by Herman.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 4: Grant Dawson (13-1) vs. Michael Trizano (9-0) (Featherweight)

In the fourth preliminary bout, Michael Trizano put his undefeated streak on the line against Grant Dawson. Dawson fought for a takedown up against the cage shortly after Trizano was showing his speedy stand-up. Dawson wasn’t able to land the takedown, despite trying for nearly a minute. Halfway into the round Dawson scored a takedown. He took Trizano’s back while Trizano was standing up. They eventually went back to stand-up. Dawson landed a second takedown as the round came to a close. Dawson had a cut near his right eye after the first round. Dawson got a takedown in the first minute of the second round. He tried for a rear naked choke, with Trizano tapping out after a short amount of time. Dawson extended his record to 14-1, and put the first blister on Trizano’s.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 5: Michel Pereira (22-9) vs. Danny Roberts (16-4) (Welterweight)

The next fight had debuting fighter Michel Pereira face Danny Roberts. Pereira had an emotional walkout, crying on the way to the octagon. He’s Road FC alumni, making the rounds online in the past when he has done moonsaults off of a cage. He did breakdancing when announced. Pereira landed a strong overhand right in the first seconds. He jumped off the cage with one foot but didn’t connect anything off of it. He tried to do a front roll kick, but didn’t land it. After doing a weird foot movement, he tried for a superman punch. The fight came to a close after Pereira landed a flying knee and then a right jab which dropped Roberts. This was a real fun one to watch. Pereira seemingly is a perfect mix between goofy and intelligent.

My Scorecard:

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Bout 6: Charles Jourdain (9-1) vs. Desmond Green (22-8)  (Lightweight)

In the next bout, Desmond Green fought in front of his home crowd against Canadian promotion “TKO” alumni fighter Charles Jourdain. The crowd was very alive for when Green landed strikes. Green landed a takedown with a minute and a half left in the first round. He landed some strikes from above until Jourdain got up and ran away. Both fighters slowed down their speed significantly in the second round. They hugged at the start of the third round. Green landed a final takedown in the second half of the final round. Jourdain tried getting up but was thrown back down. This happened again, with Jourdain finally separating on the third attempt. The fight went to the judges scorecards, with all three judges giving it to Desmond Green (30-27, 30-27 & 29-28).

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total

Bout 7: Sijara Eubanks (5-2) vs. Aspen Ladd (7-0) (#6)  (Bantamweight)

Finishing off the preliminary portion of the show was Sijara Eubanks and Aspen Ladd battling in a rematch of a Bantamweight bout. Ladd went into the fight undefeated with a 7-0 record. In the first minute of the fight Eubanks slammed Ladd to the ground. Eubanks found herself in a guillotine after trying for a single leg takedown. Ladd was completely dominant in the second half of the round until Eubanks landed a good combo of punches at the end. Ladd landed a takedown after clinching against the cage in the second round. She put in a rear naked choke but couldn’t secure it. Ladd was consistently on the attack for this round. The final round showed nearly four straight minutes of striking, with Ladd putting Eubanks up against the cage during the final minute. They traded strikes for the final time as the bout came to a close. The judges gave to Aspen Ladd in quite dominant fashion (30-26, 29-27 & 29-28).

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total

Main Card

Bout 8: Justin Hubbard (10-2) vs. Davi Ramos (9-2) (Lightweight)

The main card started with Lightweights Justin Hubbard and Davi Ramos competing. A rare moment happened in the first round where seemingly both guys got kicked in the groin. There was also an eye poke from Hubbard later. Ramos looked like he was doing more damage in the stand-up between these two. He landed a takedown in the final minute, trying for a rear naked choke before the bell went. Ramos was the better grappler on the cage and on the ground throughout the second round. After being on the ground for quite some time in the third, both fighters were stood up. This did not please Ramos. A knockdown landed in the final minute of the fight, with Hubbard landing a punch after dodging a spinning kick. The fight went all fifteen minutes. The judges gave Davi Ramos the win, all with matching scorecards (30-27, 30-27 & 30-27).

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 9: Nik Lentz (30-9-2) vs. Charles Oliveira (26-8) (#15) (Lightweight)

In their trilogy fight, Nik Lentz battle Charles Oliveira. The first round had close striking. Oliveira landed a front kick in the final two minutes of the first round which opened a big cut on Lentz’s head. Lentz landed a takedown right after taking the kick. Oliveira tried for a guillotine but couldn’t fully get it. The first round ended with both fighters landing punches. At the start of trhe second round, Oliveira landed a few good strikes and then took the fight to the ground, trying for the guillotine once again. He let go and get fighting but was stopped by the referee after Oliveira did a kick from to the head from the bottom position. Lentz opted to not lose the position, so they went back to the ground. They stood up almost right after the fight resumed. Oliveira dropped Lentz with a right hook, ending the fight with hammerfists on the ground right after. This makes Oliveira up 3-0 in his rivalry against Lentz.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 10: Derrick Krantz (24-10) vs. Vicente Luque (15-6-1) (#15) (Welterweight)

Despite the extensive record, Derrick Krantz made his UFC debut in this bout against Vicente Luque. Krantz came out swinging, but found himself in a standing guillotine shortly after. The brought the fight to the ground and escaped the hold. Krantz tried for a rear naked choke and transitioned into a guillotine, but didn’t find success with either. At the halfway point of the round, they went back to stand-up. Luque landed some punches that had Krantz backing up. He was hit more and more, on all fours until the referee stepped in the end it.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 11: Felicia Spencer (6-0) vs. Megan Anderson (9-3) (Featherweight)

In what was touted as a long-awaited clash between to former Invicta FC Champions, Felicia Spencer battled Megan Anderson next. In the first round, Spencer was dominant, being on Anderson’s back for a long time. She put in a rear naked choke and eventually got a tap from Anderson to end the bout.

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total


Bout 12: Ian Heinisch (12-1) vs. Antonio Carlos Junior (11-2) (#12) (Middleweight)

In the co-main event slot of this fight night was Ian Heinisch and Antonio Carlos Junior. After some striking, Carlos Junior landed a takedown in the first round. When Heinisch tried getting up, Carlos Junior made sure he would go back to the ground shortly after. Heinisch was out-wrestled for the whole first round. Carlos Junior took it the to the ground in the second and stayed in control once again, though Heinisch was landing more strikes. Heinisch did land some strikes on the ground in the final minute of round two. There was a stop in the third round after Carlos Junior landed a knee to the groin. A USA chant broke out during this. The third round was Heinisch’s best, showing off better grappling and utilizing striking on the ground. The fight went it’s allotted time, with all three judges giving Ian Heinisch the win (29-28, 29-28 & 29-28).

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Total
Carlos Junior1099

Bout 13: Kevin Lee (17-4) vs. Rafael Dos Anjos (28-11) (#3) (Welterweight)

In his Welterweight debut, Kevin Lee faced Rafael Dos Anjos in the main event of the fight night. In the first minute of the scheduled five round fight, Lee got a takedown after dropping Dos Anjos with strikes. Dos Anjos stood up, but Lee was on his back. They went back to stand-up where both guys landed good strikes. Lee tried for another takedown but did not get it. Instead, they fought against the cage in a clinch for a couple of minutes. Dos Anjos landed a takedown in the final minute of the first round. Lee tried for a takedown in the first minute of the second. Dos Anjos tried for a guillotine against the cage, with Lee doing a slam before escaping the hold. Lee was working way harder than Dos Anjos in the first two rounds. This would be a good thing if he got a finish, but since he didn’t it was just rough pacing. Dos Anjos kept trying for a kimura when standing up against the cage. Dos Anjos landed a flying knee at the very start of round three. He landed a takedown attempt in the first minute of the third round too. When Dos Anjos was trying for another takedown, Lee did a good reversal that gave him Dos Anjos’ back on the ground. Lee accidentally kicked Dos Anjos in the groin in the first minute of the fourth round. Shortly after they resumed, Dos Anjos kicked Lee’s left leg, making him drop to one knee. Lee made a face downplaying the strike afterwards. Dos Anjos got top position off of Lee’s sloppy takedown attempt in the final two minutes. He put in a arm triangle choke which made Lee tap out. He did not call out anyone in particular after the fight

My Scorecard:

FighterRound 1Round 2Round 3Round 4Round 5Total

Dos Anjos999

UFC takes a week off next weekend, but returns on the first of June with a card from Stockholm, Sweden, with Alexander Gustafsson facing Anthony Smith in a five round bout. A week after that, UFC will host UFC 238, with Bantamweights Henry Cejudo and Marlon Moraes fighting for the Championship of the weight class. Under them on the card will also be Valentina Shevchenko defending her Flyweight Championship against Jessica Eye. Although there is not a show next week, there is many big matchups on the horizon for MMA’s top promotion.