Burns welcomes back Woodley with five-round beatdown

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The UFC made its debut at their performance center in Las Vegas, NV. Headlined by a huge welterweight showdown between the returning former champion Tyron Woodley and rising contender Gilbert Burns, this event was one that shook up the rankings in multiple divisions.

Gilbert Burns def. Tyron Woodley via unanimous decision

After a 15-month layoff, Woodley returned to the Octagon and took on the powerful and dangerous Burns in a five-round affair. The rust would show as Burns would hurt Woodley bad in the first round and open up a cut over his left eye. From there on, it would be a dominant performance from Burns as Woodley could not find an opening to do any significant damage to Burns. Burns would nearly triple the amount of significant strikes landed as he outlanded Woodley 76-28.

Augusto Sakai def. Blagoy Ivanov via split decision

In the co-main event, Sakai continued his quick ascent up the heavyweight rankings in a back-and-forth tilt with Ivanov. While no man had a clear advantage, there was controversy in round three as Sakai blatantly grabbed the cage, which is illegal during the fight. Sakai would still hold on for the victory and remain undefeated in the UFC after five fights. Ivanov has now lost three of his last five fights.

Billy Quarantillo def. Spike Carlyle via decision

Known for being wild, Carlyle showed out in his debut with a quick, first-round knockout over Aalon Cruz. While this fight did see wild exchanges, Quarantillo would fight the smarter fight and land his shots accurately. Quarantillo is now on a seven-fight win streak with Saturday night’s bout only being his first decision win since 2016.

Roosevelt Roberts def. Brok Weaver via submission(rear-naked choke). Round 2(3:26)

There was animosity coming into this fight as both men had an intense staredown at the weigh-ins. In the Octagon, Roberts would get the better of Weaver in the first round, and in the second round, he would get Weaver down to the mat where he would sink in the rear-naked choke and score the submission victory.

Roberts improves to a record of 10-1 in his MMA career. Weaver has his eight-fight win streak come to an end.

Mackenzie Dern def. Hannah Cifers via submission(kneebar). Round 1(2:36)

After suffering her first career loss in October of 2019, Dern took the time to get in better physical shape as she showed on Saturday night and scored a quick, impressive finish over Cifers. Cifers went for a takedown of Dern, but Dern would soon get the advantage on the ground over her and lock in the kneebar.

Dern is now 8-1 in her MMA career with five submission victories to her name. Cifers has now lost two fights in a row.

Prelims:

The preliminary fights kicked off with four straight finishes. Chris Gutierrez would begin Saturday night with a rare leg TKO victory over Vince Morales. UFC veterans Louis Smolka and Tim Elliott were stunned by submissions from the up-and-coming Casey Kenney and newcomer Brandon Royval respectively. Jamahal Hill made quick work of Klidson Abreu with a first-round TKO to remain undefeated in his career.

The stunning result of the prelims was the featured bout between flyweights Katlyn Chookagian and Antonia Shevchenko (sister of FW champ Valentina). Chookagian would land three crucial takedowns and land exactly 200 strikes in the three-round affair to take a unanimous 30-25 decision from all three judges. Chookagian has won three of her last four fights and gets her name back into the women’s flyweight title picture. Shevchenko has now lost two of her last three contests.

The UFC returns to ESPN+ pay-per-view on Saturday, Jun. 6, which will be headlined by a women’s featherweight title fight between Amanda Nunes and Felicia Spencer.

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