It appears like perpetually ago that Season 3 of Dana White’s Contender Sequence purchased off to a slower than frequent commence with neutral appropriate a single stoppage within the first two weeks and only four athletes being awarded contracts to compete within the UFC.
Since the one-week hiatus for Worldwide Fight Week in early July, enterprise has picked up significantly throughout the UFC Apex.
Over the final five weeks, 18 fighters were awarded contracts, in conjunction with final week’s recipients Omar Morales, Andre Muniz, and Herbert Burns, who kicked off a banner week for the Burns family with a first-spherical submission recall on Tuesday night sooner than his immense brother Gilbert ventured to Montevideo, Uruguay and handed Aleksei Kunchenko the first lack of his official profession.
Heading into Tuesday night’s action, there had been 22 contracts handed out in Season 3, one unnerved of the total decision of UFC provides awarded on Season 2, and a brand fresh document became once established as three extra fighters earned the resolution to the Octagon on Week 8.
Bantamweights Tony Gravely and Sarah Alpar, and welterweight Brok Weaver, all impressed Dana White sufficient to advantage an opportunity to compete on the immense stage, while light heavyweight William Knight became once awarded the first developmental deal of the season.
Right here’s a secret agent at what transpired.
What started as a one-sided affair grew to change into precise into a fight of attrition within the sunshine heavyweight predominant occasion.
On the ft within the early going, the Swedish upstart purchased the upper of the exchanges, burying knees into Knight’s midsection in cease and snapping his head again with orderly jabs in rental. After tossing him to the canvas, Alacabek moved into again mount, threatening with a rear-bare choke. When Knight shucked him off and moved into high attach, Alacabek attacked with an armbar from his again sooner than getting again to his ft.
Early within the 2d, Alacabek went again to work within the clinch, landing a stream of shots to the midsection as Knight spoke back with single shots. Halfway via the spherical, the unbeaten Swedish fighter scored one more impactful takedown, spirited moral into aspect control.
Nonetheless Knight purchased again to his ft and grew to change into the tables, using a deep overhook to disclaim a takedown try and land in stout mount, raining down unanswered blows and attacking an Americana at the discontinue of the 2d.
Alacabek came ahead to commence the third, but Knight exploded into the air and linked with a jumping knee that landed square on the chin. To his credit, the Swedish prospect cleared the cobwebs and went again on the offensive, but Knight all over again managed to stuff the takedown and land extra laborious shots.
Down the stretch, Knight successfully extinct Alacabek’s aggression against him, ducking under for takedowns and denying others, opening up with hammerfists and elbows sooner than rock climbing into mount, opening up Alacabek and forcing referee Jason Herzog to call a conclude to the action and not using a longer as a lot as 30 seconds final within the combat.
Smyth slithered into the cage like his godfather, fresh UFC Hall of Famer Rashad Evans, and showed his explosiveness to commence, landing a kick straight sooner than securing a pair of high amplitude takedowns within the early going. Nonetheless halfway via the frame, Weaver purchased again to his ft, and though he wasn’t in a attach to land valuable offense, the extra seasoned competitor did an glorious job of stuffing Smyth’s takedown makes an strive and making him work.
It became once extra of the identical to commence the 2d, as Smyth once all over again pressed ahead seeking the takedown, only to have Weaver stuff him along the fence. Halfway via the frame, the roles had been reversed, with Weaver taking the control attach and making an strive for takedowns, forcing Smyth to defend. Late within the spherical, Smyth became once in a attach to win Weaver to the bottom, connecting with a knee as the Alabama resident rose to his ft.
Smyth started the third making an strive for one more takedown, finally elevating Weaver and sweeping out his leg as he plunged him to the canvas. Weaver became once in a attach to win up and win off some offense, swarming with short flurries of punches, while Smyth countered with the occasional elbow and knees to the body.
With neutral appropriate under a minute left, Smyth momentarily dumped Weaver to the bottom all over again, landing a short shot at he purchased again to his ft and holding Weaver from getting loose with his palms as the ideal horn sounded.
In the discontinue, the judges preferred Weaver’s short bursts of offense and skill to place up issues standing throughout valuable of the ideal two rounds.
Younger and Alpar came out of the gate weapons blazing, each swinging wildly and getting themselves off steadiness as they regarded to land something basic. Nothing crisp stumbled on a dwelling, but Alpar climbed onto Younger’s again, only to be reversed, leading to the Knoxville MMA product controlling the the rest of the spherical along with her grappling and work from the clinch along the fence.
In the 2d, the roles had been reversed, with Younger connecting with the single blow early, only to have Alpar raise issues to the bottom and hunt for the win. With one hook in, the LFA titleholder fished her forearm under Younger’s chin, sunk in her 2d hook and squeezed out the faucet.
These bantamweights purchased after it moral from the leap, with Rodriguez connecting with a kick virtually straight and Gravely flippantly returning fire, environment the tempo for this wildly intriguing, action-packed affair.
Gravely managed the bulk of the opening five minutes, stinging Rodriguez with a collection of spirited left palms and hitting a couple nicely-timed takedowns. To his credit, Rodriguez remained aloof on the canvas, stifling Gravely’s makes an strive to wander and put together submissions sooner than getting again to his ft and straight firing off punches and kicks sooner than finishing the spherical with a takedown of his like.
While the CES champ started the 2d with a spirited head kick, Rodriguez regarded as if it might possibly possibly actually presumably flip the tables soon after, taking Gravely down and landing in again mount, looking out to lock up a body triangle. Nonetheless sooner than he might possibly possibly presumably resolve into the attach, Gravely grew to change into into his guard, purchased again to his ft and promptly scooped Rodriguez into the air, using him again off into the mat.
Late within the frame, Gravely meticulously worked his potential onto Rodriguez’s again, momentarily threatening with a rear-bare choke, nonetheless “The Decide” became once in a attach to squirm out, sending this one to the third.
Vivid that he wished a win, Rodriguez rushed right via the cage to commence the ideal spherical, elevating in hopes of landing a flying knee moral out of the chute. Nonetheless Gravely noticed it coming, linked with a left hand and when Rodriguez fell to the canvas, the 27-365 days-venerable from Virginia took revenue, finally pounding out a win neutral appropriate over two minutes into the frame.
This became once a dominant performance from one in all basically the most UFC-ready competitors to grace the Contender Sequence this 365 days and he did it against one more seasoned, talented fighter.
(Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)
The night kicked off within the sunshine heavyweight division with a conflict between evenly matched 6-1 fighters who each have Cameron Olson to thank for the lone blemish on their resumes.
In every of the first two rounds, Reed and Anglickas spent the first half of of the frame grinding issues out along the fence and on the bottom, neither man in actuality gaining a basic revenue or doing any precise crash. Late in every frame, the duo opened issues up a diminutive, Anglickas getting looser with his palms and Reed having larger success on the canvas.
Early within the third, Anglickas regarded to effort a fading Reed, connecting with a collection of orderly shots in rental, but he promptly pushed ahead into the clinch, the attach Reed became once at the muse in a attach to unhurried issues down. Undaunted, the reigning LFA light heavyweight champion dumped Reed to the canvas and persisted grinding, finally latching onto a rear-bare choke and forcing Reed to tap.
It wasn’t flashy, but Anglickas stayed patient, persisted pressing ahead and took revenue of the opportunity to win when it became once point out, submitting Reed and pushing his a success amble to 5.