UFC's Alexa Grasso undergoes knee surgery, still all smiles

UFC strawweight and perpetually upbeat Alexa Grasso is on the mend following a recent knee surgery.

Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) fell out of the top 15 of the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA women’s strawweight rankings following a decision loss to Felice Herrig in February. She rebounded in August with a narrow split-decision win over Randa Markos in August, and the fight was a finalist for MMAjunkie’s “Fight of the Month.”

However, the 24-year-old Mexican fighter, who missed weight for the fight, revealed she had a knee injury going into the matchup, as she wrote on Instagram:

Instagram Photo

According to Grasso, an MRI revealed a “damaged” meniscus.

Here’s a full translation provided by MMAjunkie:

“Good morning. I hope that you had a great weekend. I have two pieces of news, one good and one bad. The bad one is that I have an injury in my knee. Before my last fight, I had pain. My camp passed, and so did my teammates in Mexico City. I came back, and I went to the therapist, but the pain persisted. They sent me to take an MRI, and it ended up being that the meniscus was damaged. It’s not so bad, but it was necessary to have surgery to avoid further damage. The good news is that at SportMed, Dr. Francisco Arroyo performed a very good surgery, and now I have to keep resting and have therapy.

“This is my face after the anesthesia. I am very well taken care of and ready to recuperate myself as soon as possible. Sending big hugs. Please send me good vibes.”

Grasso hadn’t been booked for an upcoming event, and her recovery time table isn’t known.

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.

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Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured Videos, News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

MMAjunkie's 'Fight of the Month' for August: Flyweights shine in rare non-title headliner

With another action-packed month of MMA in the books, MMAjunkie looks at the best fights from August. Here are the five nominees, listed in chronological order, and winner of MMAjunkie’s “Fight of the Month” award for August.

At the bottom of the post, let us know if we got it right by voting on your choice.

* * * *

The Nominees

Alejandro Perez def. Andre Soukhamthath at UFC Fight Night 114

Andre Soukhamthath (11-5 MMA, 0-2 UFC) put Alejandro Perez (18-6-1 MMA, 4-1-1 UFC) down three times with his left hand and somehow still came out the loser.

A late rally by Perez was enough to overcome some solid early work by Soukhamthath, resulting in a split-decision win for Perez in a closely contested fight that remained fiercely competitive until the final seconds.

Alexa Grasso def. Randa Markos at UFC Fight Night 114

Alexa Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) had to dig deep to give the fans in Mexico City the win they hoped for against Randa Markos (7-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC), but she got it done by the slimmest of margins in a spirited battle that went the distance.

Thanks largely to her work in the first and the third rounds, Grasso narrowly outpointed a game Markos to win a split-decision victory with scores of 28-29, 29-28, and 29-28.

Sergio Pettis def. Brandon Moreno at UFC Fight Night 114

A new contender in the UFC flyweight division was decided when Sergio Pettis (16-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) defeated Brandon Moreno (14-4 MMA, 3-1 UFC) in the organization’s first 125-pound headliner not to feature champion Demetrious Johnson.

Pettis earned his fourth consecutive victory at 125 pounds when he defeated Moreno by unanimous decision in an exciting five-round affair.

Fernando Gonzalez def. Brennan Ward at Bellator 182

Fernando Gonzalez (27-14 MMA, 7-1 BMMA) continued to rebound from his lone Bellator loss this past year when he rallied to submit Brennan Ward (14-6 MMA, 9-6 BMMA) in the third round of their catchweight bout.

After having his offense largely thwarted over the first two rounds by Ward’s mixed game, Gonzalez capitalized on a error by his opponent that allowed him to lock in a guillotine choke for the come-from-behind victory.

Kali Robbins def. Sharon Jacobson at Invicta FC 25

Kali Robbins (5-0) was in all sorts of trouble against Sharon Jacobson (4-2). And then suddenly, it was all over.

Robbins took a barrage of punches from Jacobson before she was hip-tossed to the mat. Once there Robbins immediately went into jiu-jitsu mode, climbing her legs and grabbing a hold of an arm until she was belly down and submitted Jacobson with an armbar just 42 seconds into the first round.

* * * *

The Winner: Pettis vs. Moreno

After getting dominated in the first round, Pettis shut down Moreno’s takedown game and took over on his feet.

Pettis soundly outstruck Moreno from the second frame into championship rounds to take home a unanimous decision via scores of 49-46 and 48-46 twice.

“I definitely had to face some adversity,” Pettis said afterward. “He came out there and put me in a very dangerous position. I had four rounds to prove I was a better man, and I did it.”

Moreno came in hoping to get a big win in front of his native Mexico and gave the crowd high hopes early. A kick from Pettis allowed him to take the fight to the mat, and he quickly scrambled to back control, where he set up a choke. Unable to free himself, Pettis spent the opening frame fighting Moreno’s hands and biding his time.

Pettis had the opportunity to give Moreno the same treatment in the second round when he caught a kick. Instead, he stood back and settled in with striking. Moreno took him back down but was forced to retreat after Pettis used a triangle choke to initiate a scramble.

A little too loose for his own good, Moreno took several hard right hands as he channeled martial arts movies with his movement and left his head blatantly exposed. Pettis figured out he could land kicks as Moreno circled away, and head kicks started to land.

Pettis did his best work in the third frame, picking apart Moreno on the feet and opening a cut with a head kick. Gone was the smile on Moreno’s face as he bled and met diminishing returns with takedown attempts.

“His standup surprised me a lot,” Pettis said. “He gave me a different look. Kind of made me question my look, like an open style I had to adjust to.”

By the fourth round, Pettis no longer needed to fear the takedown. Moreno tried to make up some ground on the feet and instead caught more shots to the dome as sharp combinations cut off his wide attacks.

Told the fight was even by his corner, Moreno charged into a takedown in the final frame. He had his moment, yet he was unable to land any significant offense, and Pettis escaped to his feet, where he continued to control the stand-up action.

“I noticed he had his left hand down a lot, so I kept poking him with that jab,” Pettis said afterward. “He kept circling toward my left low kick, and I’ve got a funky switch-kick that I was catching him with. I just had to adjust my style, and it all worked out.”

Asked whom he’d like to take on next after taking out a fellow up-and-comer, Pettis deferred to the UFC in lieu of a title shot.

“I’ve got to wait for the higher powers to tell me what I want,” he said. “Obviously, I’d like a title shot, but there’s a lot of things I need to polish up to get there.”

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Top 25 finishes in Invicta FC history (Nos. 15-11): Body kicks galore

More than five years have passed since Invicta FC hosted its first event. During that time, the all-female organization has gone through a number of different incarnations.

Despite having roster members consistently plucked up by the UFC, Invicta FC frequently hosts solid fight cards to help further the growth of women’s MMA. The fighters do their part by delivering inside the cage, and with the 25th event in company history set to go down Thursday, Invicta FC has decided to highlight its young history.

Invicta FC 25 takes place at Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino in Lemoore, Calif. Ahead of the event, Invicta FC’s social media team is rolling out a countdown of the 25 best finishes in its history.

Don’t miss the countdown for finish Nos. 25-21, as well as finish Nos. 20-16. And check out the third installment below, counting down No. 15 to No. 11. Then stayed tuned to The Blue Corner this week for the top 10.

15. Andrea Lee def. Rachael Ostovich at Invicta FC 14 (Sept. 12, 2015)

Andrea Lee showed off her slick ground game against Rachael Ostovich with a third-round submission win by armbar at Invicta FC 14.

Instagram Photo

14. Alexa Grasso def. Alida Gray at Invicta FC 10 (Dec. 5, 2014)

Mexican prospect Alexa Grasso added to her undefeated record at Invicta FC 10 when she showed off the power in her hands to stop Alida Gray by first-round TKO.

Instagram Photo

13. Livia Renata Souza def. DeAnna Bennett at Invicta FC 15 (Jan. 16, 2016)

Now-former strawweight champion Livia Renata Souza made her first successful title defense at Invicta FC 15 when a brutal body kick set up her 90-second TKO of DeAnna Bennett.

Instagram Photo

12. Angela Hill def. Alida Gray at Invicta FC 15 (Jan. 16, 2016)

The dangerous striking arsenal of Angela Hill was on display at Invicta FC 15 when she overwhelmed Alida Gray with a flurry of strikes in the first round to win by TKO in a mere 99 seconds.

Instagram Photo

11. DeAnna Bennett def. Michele Ould at Invicta FC 8 (Sept. 6, 2014)

The kicking power of DeAnna Bennett stunned Michele Ould at Invicta FC 8. Bennett landed a left kick to the liver in the second round, and after a delayed reaction Ould slumped to the canvas holding her body.

Instagram Photo

For more on the Invicta FC schedule, including the upcoming Invicta FC 25, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Considering an appeal? Randa Markos may find judges' decisions are hardest results to challenge

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Randa Markos thought she deserved the win over Alexa Grasso at UFC Fight Night 114. Two of the three judges disagreed. But as she fumed both in person and on social media after the fight, Markos was already throwing around the idea of an appeal.

“I felt that I did enough to win,” Markos (7-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC) told MMAjunkie after the fight. “You need to win at least two rounds to get a victory. I thought I won two rounds, and the last was close. So I think I won that fight. … I feel I’m definitely going to try to fight that. Hopefully I get the victory.”

Obviously, there’s a big difference between talking about an appeal and actually filing one, but if Markos does challenge the result she wouldn’t be the first. Fighters all over the world have appealed to have results overturned for a variety of reasons, even if successful appeals are few and far between.

That’s not to say it can’t happen, however. Former Invicta FC bantamweight champion Tonya Evinger retained her title thanks to an appeal that overturned her submission loss to Yana Kunitskaya last year. But Evinger was successful because, while citing a referee’s misapplication of the rules, she managed to meet the very narrow requirements for a winning appeal, which isn’t so easy to do in most cases.

Most athletic commissions adhere to an appeals process that’s similar to the one laid out by the Nevada Athletic Commission, which provides only three circumstances under which an appeal might succeed. Under NAC 467.770, the commission insists that it will not overturn a result unless:

  1. The Commission determines that there was collusion affecting the result of the contest or exhibition;
  2. The compilation of the scorecards of the judges discloses an error which shows that the decision was given to the wrong unarmed combatant; or
  3. As the result of an error in interpreting a provision of this chapter, the referee has rendered an incorrect decision.

Markos’ bout was contested in Mexico City, putting it under the jurisdiction of the Mexican Federacion de Artes Marciales Mixtas Equidad y Juego Limpio. The FAMMEJL doesn’t spell out an exact appeals procedure on its website, but a UFC official confirmed that it would follow the same guidelines in use in Nevada.

That’s bad news for Markos, should she decide to appeal the loss. Challenging a judges’ decision would require proving either collusion or a mathematical error in adding up the scorecards. The former would likely be very difficult and require an exhaustive investigation, while the latter would be as simple as combing through the scorecards with a calculator in hand.

But as we’ve seen in the past, even fighters with legitimate complaints don’t always face great odds. The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation recently shot down Dustin Poirier’s appeal of a no-contest stemming from illegal knees thrown by Eddie Alvarez at UFC 211.

In 2015, the Nevada commission declined to overturn Francisco Rivera’s appeal of a submission loss to Urijah Faber that came shortly after an eyepoke at UFC 181, opting instead to stick to the rigid definition of its own statute requiring an “error in interpreting” the rules on the part of the referee. If a referee simply misses a foul – even a foul clearly evident on replay – it isn’t enough to overturn the result on appeal, according to the NAC.

So where does all this leave Markos, or any other fighter hoping to appeal a decision he or she doesn’t like? Probably with more complaints than hope. Judges may make questionable calls at times, but commissions aren’t in the habit of revisiting them.

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

10 memorable moments from UFC-Mexico, including those insane 7 first-round stoppages

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

The UFC dropped by Mexico City Arena this past Saturday for UFC Fight Night 114, and while the event was light on big-name talent, the fighters who fought on the card made up for it by delivering a UFC record-tying seven first-round finishes.

The main event was not one of the fights that ended in a hurry. The bout between fast-rising flyweight Sergio Pettis and Brendan Moreno went the five-round distance; Pettis won a unanimous decision.

The co-main event between Alexa Grasso and Randa Markos also went the distance. Grasso secured a split-decision win in the strawweight contest.

Here are 10 memorable moments from the event.

1. A win and a wish

Pettis had some trouble early. He was taken to the mat and kept there by Moreno for the majority of the first round. For the next four rounds, though, Pettis (16-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) used a smart and technical striking style to avoid Moreno’s (14-4 MMA, 3-1 UFC) takedowns and aggression. That style paid off and earned Pettis a unanimous decision victory.

The win moved Pettis to 4-1 as a UFC flyweight, and it could have set him up to call for a title eliminator fight or even the winner of the upcoming bout between champion Demetrious Johnson and Ray Borg. Instead, Pettis said he continues to pine for a fight against Henry Cejudo, the man who withdrew from their scheduled meeting at UFC 211.

“I still want to fight Henry,” Pettis said after the event. “He pulled out of a fight two days before the fight. I was three pounds away from making weight. I think he dodged a bullet and I’m ready to make that happen.”

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2. Difference of opinion

In a competitive 119-pound catchweight fight, Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC), who came in three pounds overweight for the scheduled strawweight contest, earned a split-decision victory over Markos (7-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC). She returned to the win column after tasting defeat for the first time earlier this year.

Grasso’s striking seemed to give her the first and third round, while Markos’ takedowns won the second stanza.

Not surprisingly, each woman thought she was the rightful victor.

“I felt that I did enough to win,” Markos told MMAjunkie. “You need to win at least two rounds to get a victory. I thought I won two rounds, and the last was close. So I think I won that fight…I feel I’m definitely going to try to fight that. Hopefully I get the victory.”

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“I never stopped moving,” Grasso told MMAjunkie through an interpreter. “In the second round, maybe I started getting better control, but in the third round, I got my strategy right, and I think I never stopped moving and fought very well.”

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3. No apologies needed

Niko Price took a step up in competition when he met Alan Jouban in a welterweight contest at UFC Fight Night 114. Price made the most of his first fight on a UFC main card. He knocked out the more experienced Jouban in less than two minutes.

A big right from Price (11-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC) dropped Jouban (15-6 MMA, 6-4 UFC) to the mat and brought referee Gary Copeland in for a quick, but correct, stoppage.

Price was overjoyed after the finish, the 10th of his career. He landed a cartwheel and shouted as he stalked around the cage. After the fight, Price apologized for the profane words during his celebration.

“I said ‘expletive’ a lot,” Price told MMAjunkie. “I’m sorry.”

If he does somehow end up with a fine, Price should be able to pay. He won a “Performance of the Night” bonus for his TKO.

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4. A dedication

Martin Bravo was the biggest favorite on the card, coming in at -300 against fellow featherweight Humberto Bandenay. Bandenay (14-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC), who made his UFC debut on short notice, didn’t let the odds affect him one bit. He knocked Bravo (11-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) cold in 26 seconds with a brutal knee to the chin while Bravo was changing levels.

Bandenay, whose father recently died, broke down in tears at the end of his post-fight interview with UFC commentator Brian Stann, took home a $50,000 “Performance of the Night” bonus for the knockout.

“It was one or the other – go back to Peru and see him before he passed away, or live my dream away, (which was) also his dream,” Bandenay told MMAjunkie. “Because my dad said, ‘Go live your dream. Don’t come back.’ I have my dad in my heart, and he was today with me in my corner.

“He would be super proud of me. He’s my No. 1 fan, and this victory is for him.”

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5. Smiling for vengeance

Rashad Evans’ foray to middleweight has not been a success. After dropping a split decision to Daniel Kelly in his debut, he moved to New Jersey, living Frankie Edgar’s father-in-law’s basement to prepare for his fight against Sam Alvey. Evans (19-7-1 MMA, 14-7-1 UFC) lost to Alvey (31-9 MMA, 8-4 UFC) in a lackluster affair by split decision.

The loss was Evans’ fourth consecutive defeat and second straight defeat to an unranked opponent. That skid has left many wondering what’s next for the former light heavyweight champion.

As for Alvey, who is on a 5-1 run, he knows what he wants next: a “Vengeance Tour” on behalf of his friend and teammate, retired MMA legend Dan Henderson.

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“It started with Rashad,” Alvey told MMAjunkie. “Vitor (Belfort), you’re next. I don’t care where or when. You just tell me where, and I’ll sign the dotted line tomorrow.”

Belfort sounds like he’s OK with Alvey’s proposition.

Instagram Photo

6. That plan worked

Jack Hermansson entered his middleweight fight against Brad Scott wanting to spotlight his ground-and-pound. Hermansson (16-3 MMA, 3-1 UFC) accomplished his goal and in the process earned a TKO over Scott (11-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC) at the 3:50 mark of the first round.

Hermansson used distance well early in the fight. He avoided Scott and took him to the ground when the opportunity arose. Scott did his best to secure a triangle choke, but he was never able to lock up the hold. Not long after he gave up on the submission, Scott found himself in Hermansson’s mount. From there, Hermansson unleashed elbows and punches on the ground, bringing the fight to a finish.

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Hermansson celebrated the victory by suplexing his coach in the middle of the octagon.

7. Breaking records

Heading into UFC Fight Night 114, Dustin Ortiz was known as a grinder, someone who was tough to put away and hard to get away from once the fight hit the mat and he established top control. Fifteen seconds into his flyweight fight against Hector Sandoval, he added flyweight record holder and knockout threat to his resume.

Sandoval came out aggressive, but Ortiz was well prepared for the attack. He took a step back to avoid Sandoval’s strikes and delivered a counter right that staggered him. A second right ensured the finish, the fastest in UFC flyweight history. The hammerfists that followed on the ground were academic.

The knockout earned Ortiz his first fight-night bonus in 11 UFC contests.

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8. Back to basics

Rani Yahya tried the striking route in his last fight and it didn’t work out. He dropped a decision to Joe Soto and had a four-fight winning streak snapped. Against Henry Briones, he returned to his grappling roots, and it paid off.

Yahya (24-9 MMA, 9-3 UFC) wasted little time taking the bantamweight fight to the mat. From there, he opened up his submission game. He attempted a guillotine choke, then a north-south choke, before moving into half-guard to crank a brutal kimura that left Briones (16-7-1 MMA, 1-3 UFC) with no choice but to tap at the 2:01 mark of Round 1.

After the fight, Yahya implored the crowd to follow him on social media, where he would reveal how he secured his 18th career submission. (As of Monday midday, he is yet to share his secret.)

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9. Bonus-winning debut

The UFC booked unbeaten flyweight prospects Joseph Morales and Roberto Sanchez against each other in the UFC Fight Pass featured prelim contest. The two did not disappoint.

Sanchez took the fight to the ground early. But other than landing a few strikes, he was unable to capitalize on that takedown, and Morales regained his feet. Once standing, Morales (9-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) followed a left jab with a huge right that dropped Sanchez (7-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) to the mat. Sanchez tried to recover, but by the time he had his wits about him, Morales was latched onto his back and working for a rear-naked choke. He locked it in and forced Sanchez to tap at the 3:56 mark of Round 1.

Morales remained undefeated and picked up an extra $50,000 “Performance of the Night” bonus for his efforts.

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10. Rare, but just not enough

Jordan Rinaldi was probably feeling pretty confident he was going to walk away from Mexico City with a performance bonus check in his pocket. After all, Rinaldi (13-5 MMA, 1-1 UFC) accomplished what only two other UFC fighters had ever done during his lightweight fight against Alvaro Herrera (9-5 MMA, 1-2 UFC): He earned a submission by a Von Flue choke.

Rinaldi did not get his desired bonus. Instead, he settled for footnote status on a card that tied a UFC record with seven first-round stoppages.

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For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Sean Shelby's Shoes: What's next for Sergio Pettis and UFC Fight Night 114's other winning fighters?

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UFC Fight Night 114’s main card, which aired Saturday on FS1 from Mexico City Arena in Mexico, featured a mix of brutal knockouts and hard-fought decisions.

Sergio Pettis (16-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) picked up his fourth consecutive victory in the headlining act when he delivered a superior performance to Brandon Moreno (14-4 MMA, 3-1 UFC) and was rewarded with a unanimous decision victory in the matchup of rising flyweights.

Alexa Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC), Niko Price (10-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC), Humberto Bandenay (14-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC), Sam Alvey (31-9 MMA, 8-4 UFC) and Alejandro Perez (18-6-1 MMA, 4-1-1 UFC) got their hands raised, as well. The wins ranged from highlight-reel material to competitive fights decided on the scorecards.

After every event, fans wonder whom the winners will be matched up with next. And with another night of UFC action in the rearview mirror, it’s time to look forward, put on a pair of Sean Shelby and Mick Maynard’s shoes, and play UFC matchmaker for UFC Fight Night 114’s winning fighters.

* * * *

Alejandro Perez

Joe Soto

Should fight: Joe Soto
Why they should fight: “The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America” winner Perez put on another winning performance when he edged Andre Soukhamthath by split decision in a fight in which he made a bit of history.

Perez became the first fighter in UFC history to suffer three knockdowns in a fight and come back to win on the scorecards. It’s a remarkable accomplishment, even if some believe he shouldn’t have gotten the nod in the bantamweight affair.

With just one defeat in six UFC appearances so far, Perez is putting himself in position to be someone capable of making noise at 135 pounds. Soto (18-5 MMA, 3-3 UFC) is on a solid run in his own right, with three consecutive wins. The former title challenger would be a strong test for Perez, who would benefit to fighting a name like Soto.

Sam Alvey

Vitor Belfort

Should fight: Vitor Belfort
Why they should fight: Despite a lack of action, Alvey picked up the signature win of his 40-fight career when he edged former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans by split decision.

Alvey narrowly outpointed Evans in the middleweight bout, giving him his eighth victory since he joined the UFC in 2014. After the fight, Alvey called out another former UFC champion in Belfort (26-13 MMA, 15-9 UFC), and his reasoning actually comes with a line of logic.

“Smile’n” said he wants to go on a “Vengeance Tour,” fighting those who have beaten his longtime friend, mentor and training partner, Dan Henderson. Evans beat Henderson in 2013, and Belfort actually has two victories over the former PRIDE and Strikeforce champ under the UFC banner.

Belfort is coming off a unanimous decision victory over Nate Marquardt at UFC 212 in June. “The Phenom” said he’s looking to make a run at 185 pounds once again, but he needs to beat some more middling fighters in the division before he can get there. In that case, Alvey is the perfect matchup.

Humberto Bandenay

Jared Gordon

Should fight: Jared Gordon
Why they should fight: As far as UFC debuts go, Bandenay’s win was about as good as it gets. Not only did he pick up a highlight-reel knockout courtesy of a perfectly timed knee, but he got the job done in a mere 26 seconds against Martin Bravo.

Bandenay was the biggest betting underdog on the card. However, that didn’t prevent him from stealing the spotlight for himself with a “Performance of the Night” effort. The nature of his victory instantly gives him traction as one to watch in the featherweight division, where there’s a plethora of top competition.

Gordon (13-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) is also coming off a solid UFC debut win when he stopped Michel Quinones by second-round TKO at UFC Fight Night 112 in June. “The Flash” not only owns a strong record, but his trying life story proves he’s not going to quit easily. Chances are he wouldn’t go down as quickly as Bandenay’s first opponent, and that’s when the fight would get interesting.

Niko Price

Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos

Should fight: Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos
Why they should fight: Price’s quick start to his UFC career continued when he earned what should have been his third victory in under six months (one was overturned for a positive marijuana test) with a first-round TKO over a tough UFC veteran in Alan Jouban.

Price extended his undefeated record to 10-0, but the win over Jouban easily was his most significant. It was the first time Jouban suffered a truly unexpected loss inside the octagon, and that’s proof of what Price is capable of in the welterweight division.

Zaleski dos Santos (17-5 MMA, 3-1 UFC) is hoping to break through into big fights after a “Fight of the Night” win over Lyman Good at UFC on FOX 25. With both men coming off bonus-winning performances, pitting them against each other to see who can reach the next level is the right idea.

Alexa Grasso

Angela Hill

Should fight: Angela Hill
Why they should fight: Grasso rebounded from the first loss of her career when she defeated Randa Markos, one of the most durable strawweight fighters on the roster, by split decision.

The Mexican prospect suffered a setback to Felice Herrig earlier this year, but the performance against Markos proved it was just that: a setback. Although the result was debatable, Grasso showed improvement, and now the 23-year-old has momentum back on her side in the 115-pound weight class.

Grasso still has strides to make before joining the conversation of contenders who could possibly fight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk. There are many names she can fight en route to getting there, though, and a foe like Hill (7-3 MMA, 2-3 UFC) would be a rightful fit.

Hill has faced some elite names in her division, and while she’s come up short in most of those opportunities, she’s never been embarrassed. Grasso would have a tough time being the first, but a win in itself would mean a lot.

Sergio Pettis

Should fight: Winner of Henry Cejudo vs. Wilson Reis at UFC 215
Why they should fight: Watch the video above to see why Pettis should fight the winner of Cejudo (10-2 MMA, 4-2 UFC) vs. Reis (22-7 MMA, 6-3 UFC) at UFC 215.

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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UFC Fight Night 114 post-event facts: Overlooked card proves heavy on history

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The UFC’s lone August event delivered on Saturday when UFC Fight Night 114 took place at Mexico City Arena in Mexico.

The FS1-televised card, which followed early prelims on UFC Fight Pass, was headlined by a flyweight fight that saw Sergio Pettis (16-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) defeat fellow rising star Brandon Moreno (14-4 MMA, 3-1 UFC) by unanimous decision.

Although the main event went the distance, there was plenty of action out of the gates. A record-tying seven fights ended in the first round. For more on the numbers behind the UFC’s fifth event in Mexico, check below for 45 post-event facts about UFC Fight Night 114.

* * * *

General

UFC Fight Night 114’s seven first-round stoppage results tied six other events (UFC 146, The Ultimate Fighter 1 Finale and UFC Fight Night 14, 32, 68) for the most in history.

The Reebok Athlete Outfitting payout for the event totaled $117,500.

Debuting fighters went 2-1 at the event.

Niko Price, Humberto Bandenay, Alejandro Perez and Dustin Ortiz earned $50,000 UFC Fight Night 114 fight-night bonuses.

UFC Fight Night 114 drew an announced attendance of 10,172. No live gate was announced.

Betting favorites went 8-4 on the card.

Total fight time for the 12-bout card was 1:39:13, the shortest of the UFC’s 23 events so far this year.

Main card

Sergio Pettis

Pettis improved to 4-1 since he dropped to the UFC flyweight division in March 2015.

Pettis’ four-fight UFC winning streak in flyweight competition is the third longest active streak in the division behind champ Demetrious Johnson (12) and Joseph Benavidez (six).

Pettis has earned all seven of his UFC victories by decision.

Moreno had his 11-fight winning streak snapped for his first defeat since July 2012.

Moreno has suffered all four of his career losses by decision.

Alexa Grasso

Alexa Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) has earned both of her UFC victories by decision.

Randa Markos (7-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC) has alternated wins and losses over her past 10 career bouts.

Markos has completed at least one takedown against six of her seven UFC opponents.

Price (10-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) has earned nine of his 10 career victories by stoppage.

Humberto Bandenay

Bandenay (14-4 MMA, 1-0 UFC) earned his third victory of 2017.

Bandenay has earned 11 of his 14 career victories by stoppage.

Bandenay’s 26-second victory was the third fastest debut of any featherweight in UFC history. Only Makwan Amirkhani (8 seconds) and Dooho Choi (18 seconds) had quicker debuts.

Martin Bravo (11-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) had his 11-fight winning streak snapped for his first career defeat.

Sam Alvey’s (31-9 MMA, 8-4 UFC) eight victories since 2014 in UFC middleweight competition are tied with Gegard Mousasi for most in the division.

Rashad Evans

Rashad Evans (19-7-1 MMA, 14-7-1 UFC) suffered his fourth consecutive loss, extending the longest skid of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since November 2013.

Evans fell to 0-2 since he dropped to the middleweight division in March.

Evans has suffered five of his seven career losses by decision.

Andre Soukhamthath (11-5 MMA, 0-2 UFC) has suffered all five of his career losses by decision.

Soukhamthath became the first fighter in UFC history to suffer a decision loss despite scoring three knockdowns of his opponent.

Preliminary card

Jack Hermansson

Jack Hermansson (16-3 MMA, 3-1 UFC) has earned 13 of his 16 career victories by stoppage.

Hermansson has earned both of his UFC stoppage victories by first-round knockout.

Brad Scott (11-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC) suffered the first knockout loss of his career.

Ortiz (17-7 MMA, 6-5 UFC) has earned all of his UFC stoppage victories by knockout.

Ortiz’s 15-second knockout victory was the fastest stoppage in UFC flyweight history.

Ortiz’s three knockout victories in UFC flyweight competition are tied for second most in divisional history behind John Lineker (four).

Hector Sandoval (14-4 MMA, 2-2 UFC) has suffered all four of his career losses by stoppage.

Rani Yahya

Rani Yahya (24-9 MMA, 9-3 UFC) has earned 18 of his 24 career victories by submission. He’s finished 12 of those wins in Round 1.

Yahya’s six submission victories in UFC/WEC bantamweight competition are the second most in combined divisional history behind Urijah Faber (seven).

Henry Briones (16-7-1 MMA, 1-3 UFC) suffered his third consecutive loss, extending the longest skid of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since November 2014.

Briones suffered his first submission loss since Feb. 23, 2008 – a span of 3,451 days (more than nine years) and 19 fights.

Jose Quinonez’s (6-2 MMA, 3-1 UFC) three-fight UFC winning streak in bantamweight competition is tied for the third longest active streak in the division behind champ Cody Garbrandt (five) and Jimmie Rivera (five).

Diego Rivas (7-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) had his seven-fight winning streak snapped for his first career defeat.

Joseph Morales (9-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) has earned seven of his nine career victories by stoppage.

Roberto Sanchez (7-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) had his seven-fight winning streak snapped for his first career defeat.

Jordan Rinaldi

Jordan Rinaldi (13-5 MMA, 1-1 UFC) earned just the fourth Von Flue choke submission victory in UFC history. He joins Ovince Saint Preux (two) and Jason Von Flue (one) as fighters to accomplish the feat.

Alvaro Herrera (9-5 MMA, 1-2 UFC) was unsuccessful in his UFC lightweight debut.

Herrera fell to 1-2 since he returned from a more than three-year layoff in August 2016.

Herrera has suffered all five of his career losses by stoppage.

Herrera has suffered both of his UFC losses by submission.

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

FightMetric research analyst and live statistics producer Michael Carroll contributed to this story. Follow him on Twitter @MJCflipdascript.

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Randa Markos considering appeal of UFC-Mexico loss, calls scoring 'discouraging (expletive)'

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Randa Markos is considering filing an appeal of her narrow UFC Fight Night 114 loss to Alexa Grasso.

Markos (7-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC), who lost a split decision to Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) in Saturday’s FS1-televised co-headliner at Mexico City Arena in Mexico, believes the scorecards didn’t accurately reflect how the fight unfolded. She hopes the local athletic commission will make it right.

“I felt that I did enough to win,” Markos told MMAjunkie after the loss, whic took place at 119 pounds after Grasso missed weight. “You need to win at least two rounds to get a victory. I thought I won two rounds, and the last was close. So I think I won that fight. … I feel I’m definitely going to try to fight that. Hopefully I get the victory.”

The loss was frustrating for Markos, who seemed to turn a corner in her career when she defeated former UFC champ Carla Esparza at UFC Fight Night 105 in February. However, the win-one lose-one trend of Markos’ past 10 fights continued.

Even with the loss, Markos hoped she’d at least get a $50,000 “Fight of the Night” bonus. That didn’t happen either, and she called the entire situation “discouraging” (via Twitter):

Whether Markos files an appeal remains to be seen. As history has shown, the likelihood of having the result overturned is slim to none.

Although competing at UFC Fight Night 114 was an uphill climb from the beginning, Markos said she has no regrets. She took a fight at extreme elevation in her opponent’s hometown on just six weeks’ notice. Grasso, who had the crowd on her side, then came in overweight. Markos didn’t complain through any of it, and while she’s disappointed, the Canadian is already looking ahead to what’s next.

“I love fighting in different countries,” Markos said. “Fighting here was awesome, and I was really honored to be a part of it. Coming off a loss like that, such a close loss and feeling that I won at least two of those rounds, it kind of gets you hesitant. But I’m just looking to the future, and hopefully I get a fight soon and get back in there.”

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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How did Alexa Grasso squeak by Randa Markos in UFC-Mexico City co-headliner?

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MEXICO CITY – Alexa Grasso squeaked by Randa Markos in Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 114 co-headliner, and she can point to a few reasons for the narrow victory.

Grasso (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) narrowly outpointed a tough Markos (7-5 MMA, 3-4 UFC) and earned a split-decision victory via 28-29, 29-28 and 29-28 scores.

The bout, which aired on FS1 from Mexico City Arena in Grasso’s native Mexico, was contested at 119 pounds after the 23-year-old Mexican prospect missed the strawweight limit by three pounds during Friday’s weigh-ins. In an Instagram post, she pointed to a urinary tract infection and antibiotics as the reasons she missed weight.

Despite the weight-cutting hiccup, Grasso got the victory – albeit narrowly. She said she deserved the win because of her late-fight strategy.

“I never stopped moving,” she said through an interpreter. “In the second round, maybe I started getting better control, but in the third round, I got my strategy right, and I think I never stopped moving and fought very well.”

What was the adjustment she made, especially as Mexico City’s notorious altitude seemingly became a factor in the second half of the fight?

“I had to fix the strategy with the kicks,” said Grasso, who cut down on her kicks to avoid being taken down. ” … I think that another factor that played into my favor is (Markos’) breathing. She was breathing very toughly. (I had) three weeks and Randa didn’t have the three weeks to train here.

“But she’s still a dangerous fighter, and I had to be cautious because of that.”

According to MMADecisions.com, 15 of 18 MMA media outlets scored the fight for Grasso. It was a much-needed win for the fighter, who rebounded from her first career loss – a unanimous-decision defeat to vet Felice Herrig in February. Prior to that, the former Invicta FC fighter won her first nine fights – four via knockout.

“Nervousness betrayed me (in the Herrig fight),” she said. ” … I overcame that in this fight.”

The win obviously helped matters this time around, though her health was working against her. However, she said she didn’t want to turn the opportunity to fight in front of Mexica fans, who gave her boost when Markos scored takedowns and often had her pinned against the canvas.

“I’m very happy that I fought and that I took the risk even if it was against my health, and I’m very happy with the fight,” she said.

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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UFC Fight Night 114 Athlete Outfitting pay: Program payout total passes $14 million

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MEXICO CITY – Fighters from Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 114 event took home UFC Athlete Outfitting pay, a program that launched after the UFC’s deal with Reebok, totaling $117,500.

UFC Fight Night 114 took place at Mexico City Arena in Mexico. The card aired on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass.

Leading the way was former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans (19-7-1 MMA, 14-7-1 UFC), who suffered a split-decision loss to Sam Alvey (31-9 MMA, 8-4 UFC) on the main card. “Suga” received $20,000 for his 22nd octagon appearance, the highest non-title payout possible.

The full UFC Fight Night 114 UFC Athlete Outfitting payouts included:

Sergio Pettis: $5,000
def. Brandon Moreno: $2,500

Alexa Grasso: $2,500
def. Randa Markos: $5,000

Niko Price: $2,500
def. Alan Jouban: $5,000

Humberto Bandenay: $2,500
def. Martin Bravo: $2,500

Sam Alvey: $10,000
def. Rashad Evans: $20,000

Alejandro Perez: $5,000
def. Andre Soukhamthath: $2,500

Jack Hermansson: $2,500
def. Bradley Scott: $5,000

Dustin Ortiz: $10,000
def. Hector Sandoval: $2,500

Rani Yahya: $15,000
def. Henry Briones: $2,500

Jose Quinonez: $2,500
def. Diego Rivas: $2,500

Joseph Morales: $2,500
def. Roberto Sanchez: $2,500

Jordan Rinaldi: $2,500
def. Alvaro Herrera: $2,500

Under the UFC Athlete Outfitting program’s payout tiers, which appropriate the money generated by Reebok’s multi-year sponsorship with the UFC, fighters are paid based on their total number of UFC bouts, as well as Zuffa-era WEC fights (January 2007 and later) and Zuffa-era Strikeforce bouts (April 2011 and later). Fighters with 1-5 bouts receive $2,500 per appearance; 6-10 bouts get $5,000; 11-15 bouts earn $10,000; 16-20 bouts pocket $15,000; and 21 bouts and more get $20,000. Additionally, champions earn $40,000 while title challengers get $30,000.

In addition to experience-based pay, UFC fighters will receive in perpetuity royalty payments amounting to 20-30 percent of any UFC merchandise sold that bears their likeness, according to officials.

Full 2017 UFC-Reebok sponsorship payouts:

Year-to-date total: $3,775,000
2016 total: $7,138,000
2015 total: $3,185,000
Program-to-date total: $14,098,000

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 114, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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