Deiveson Figueiredo Proposes Interim Title Bout Against ‘Liar’ Joseph Benavidez

Deiveson Figueiredo has accumulated one of the better resumes in the flyweight division thus far during his Ultimate Fighting Championship tenure.

Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL

Ali Abdelaziz - Dominance MMA

Representatives of UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and light heavyweight titleholder Jon Jones were allegedly involved in a brief physical altercation at the first round of the PFL playoffs on Friday night in Las Vegas.

Sources told MMAWeekly.com late Friday that Ali Abdelaziz, whose Dominance MMA represents Nurmagomedov, Kamaru Usman, and Henry Cejudo, struck Abe Kawa. Kawa is a vice president at First Round Management, which represents the likes of Jones, Anthony Pettis, Tyron Woodley, and Jorge Masvidal, as well as clients outside the MMA space.

Las Vegas Metro Police later confirmed the incident without identifying any of the parties involved.

“LVMPD officers were on scene and temporarily detained one of the subjects during the investigation. That subject was cooperative. He was issued a citation and released. No enforcement action was taken regarding the second subject, who was also cooperative. There were no significant injuries,” a LVMPD spokesperson said in a prepared statement.


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Kawa told ESPN that Abdelaziz approached him during the event at Mandalay Bay and slapped him on the right side of his face. Pettis said, Abdelaziz slapped Kawa “like a b—-” and “was gone in 15 seconds.”

Tim Elliott looking to put a stamp on Deveison Figueiredo at UFC Tampa and land big fights

Tim Elliott UFC 219 post

It’s been nearly two years since flyweight Tim Elliott last fought. Following a win over Mark De La Rosa at UFC 219 in December of 2017, Elliott has been recovering from injury.

For Elliott it was not only recovering from multiple procedures to fix what was wrong, but also a conscious effort to take an extended time to make sure he was ready for a return that lead to such a long layoff.

“I had a layoff; the first time I’ve ever had a layoff since I started fighting for the UFC; I tore every ligament in my right knee and had multiple surgeries,” Elliott told MMAWeekly.com. “I took almost a year to recover and then have been training steadily for about a year.

“As of late I feel as good as I’ve ever felt. My weight is good. I feel strong. And I’m so anxious to get back in the cage.”

Elliott admits he had doubts he would return at times, but he was able to stay positive and keep working towards his comeback. And when he does come back, he’s not sure what the 2019 version of him is like until after he has a fight.

“I was worried that maybe I wouldn’t get a chance to fight again,” said Elliott. “I had a good support system. I was worried about it a little bit, but now that I’m back training, I feel as good as I’ve ever felt.

“The recovery road was a long one for me. There were times where I thought it had broken me, but after this I think I’ll come out stronger. I feel good about this (upcoming) fight. This is the fight and the match-up I wanted. After time we’ll figure it out, but after this fight I’ll know exactly where I stand at in the division.”

At UFC on ESPN+ 19 in Tampa, Fla., Elliott (15-8-1) will have his first fight back when he faces Deiveson Figueiredo (16-1) in a preliminary flyweight bout.

“Stylistically this is the perfect match-up for me,” Elliott. “When I got released by the UFC the first time, my first three fights for Titan FC were hard, heavy-hitting Brazilians, so I feel like I’ve fought this (type of) guy three times.


TRENDING > Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL


“If I just keep the game plan I kept with those guys, which is hit and not get hit and kind of frustrate (Figueiredo), I feel like I’ll have the same result I had in those three fights.”

Having previously gone one bout at a time, Elliott admits he has plans for both inside and outside the Octagon in the coming year.

“It used to be I just kind of fought as it came and just kind of would fight whoever whenever, but I’m getting older now and I’m trying to start a family and buy a house in Las Vegas, so I’m looking for big fights after this,” said Elliott.

“I feel like a win here puts me in the top two or three. I don’t know if Cejudo is going to defend or not, but I feel like if I beat Deiveson Figueiredo here I feel I’ll be right in the mix for that title contention and I’m definitely going to throw my hat in that ring.”

Bibiano Fernandes bringing a new Bibi into fourth ONE Championship fight with Kevin Belingon

Bibiano Fernandes - ONE Championship

Looking back on his ONE Championship featherweight title match versus Kevin Belingon this past March, Bibano Fernandes is disappointed with the outcome of the bout even though he won.

Shortly into the third round of the bout, Belingon was disqualified for using illegal strikes on Fernandes, thus awarding him the win and the featherweight title in the process.

“That fight I was very disappointed,” Fernandes told MMAWeekly.com. “Not for me, but for the fans and the corporation, too. I believe they were all supposed to get a good fight, and because I cannot control the blows to the back of my head I cannot (give them a good fight).

“That was supposed to be a great fight, but it did not go through. It was no good fight at all because he throws the elbow. I was very disappointed the fight goes that way.”

Up until the point of the illegal strikes, Fernandes feels like he was winning the fight, making the outcome even more disappointing as he was not the one to determine how the bout ended.

“I was pretty good in the fight,” said Fernandes. “I knocked him down, I take him down. He tried coming and going on me (but) I took him again. I took his back. I think I was good that fight.

“That night was my night, but I cannot control his reaction. I cannot control him throwing the elbow. If he (had) not thrown the elbow, it would have been a completely different outcome and we wouldn’t be talking about the fight now.”

On Sunday in Tokyo, Fernandes (23-4) will face Belingon (20-6) for a fourth time when the two meet in the bantamweight title co-main event of ONE: Century – Part 2, which is set to be broadcast live on TNT in the United States.

“I’m happy to fight more than three times,” Fernandes said. “I come from Jiu-Jitsu, so in Jiu-Jitsu you can compete with a guy maybe seven times if you’re really good. That’s the mentality I have. I just have to make sure my mind is good and make sure my body is good and let’s do it.


TRENDING > Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL


“I can look back (on our previous fights), but right now at this moment it’s a new fight. It’s a new fight. It’s a new Bibi. For sure (Belingon is) going to try to do something, but for sure when I step in the cage you’re going to see a new Bibiano.”

When it comes to the future, Fernandes is unsure where his road could lead to in 2020. It all depends on how he feels at any given time. What he is sure about is what’s in front of him, and that’s defending his featherweight title versus Bellington on October 13.

“How I feel, how my body feels, how the fight goes, you never know if it’s going to be a quick fight or a 25-minute fight,” said Fernandes. “I don’t know how I’m going to handle it. It’s everything about how I feel.

“If my body is not best, if my mind is not there, I don’t have to go back to fighting anymore. But my mind is still good and body is still good. There are so many things that can happen, but right now the focus is Kevin and that is the most important thing right now.”


Bibiano Fernandes ONE: Century pre-fight interview

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UFC on ESPN+ 19 Live Results: Joanna vs. Waterson

UFC on ESPN+ 19 Joanna vs Waterson live results

(Click on the fight below and then scroll down to see in-fight live stats and full results, courtesy of Fight Analytics. Full live results for the first UFC on ESPN+ 19: Joanna vs. Waterson bout from Tampa, Florida, is scheduled to begin on Saturday, Oct. 12, at 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT.)


UFC on ESPN+ 19: Joanna vs. Waterson start times

  • UFC on ESPN+ 19 main card start time: 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT on ESPN+
  • UFC on ESPN+ 19 prelims start time: 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT on ESPN+

The Ultimate Fighting Championship lands in Tampa, Florida, this week for UFC on ESPN+ 19, featuring former strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk and top contender Michelle Waterson battling it out for a title shot. The winner of the fight is likely to get the first shot at UFC strawweight champion Weili Zhang.

The UFC on ESPN+ 19 co-main event features Octagon mainstay Cub Swanson, who expects to be a proving grounds of sorts for newcomer Kron Gracie.


TRENDING > Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL


Check out the MMAWeekly.com Rumors page for more scheduled events and rumored fight cards.

NOTE: To select the appropriate fight, click on the images with the yellow name plates at the bottom of the Fight Analytics window and drag until you see the fight you are interested in. Quick results are located below the Fight Analytics window.

UFC on ESPN+ 19: Joanna vs. Waterson results from Tampa

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UFC on ESPN+ 19: Joanna vs. Waterson quick results

Main Card (8 p.m. ET on ESPN+)

  • Main Event: Joanna Jedrzejczyk def. Michelle Waterson by unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 49-46)
  • Co-Main Event: Cub Swanson def. Kron Gracie by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Niko Price def. James Vick by knockout (up-kick) at 1:44, R1
  • Amanda Ribas def. Mackenzie Dern by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Matt Frevola def. Luis Pena by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
  • Eryk Anders def. Gerald Meerschaert by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Prelims (5 p.m. ET on ESPN+)

  • Ryan Spann def. Devin Clark by submission (guillotine choke) at 2:01, R2
  • Mike Davis def. Thomas Gifford by knockout (punch) at 4:45, R3
  • Alex Morono def. Max Griffin by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 29-27)
  • Deiveson Figueiredo def. Tim Elliott by submission (guillotine choke) at 3:08, R1
  • Marlon Vera def. Andre Ewell by TKO (elbows and punches) at 3:17, R3
  • Miguel Baeza def. Hector Aldana by TKO (elbows) at 2:32, R2
  • Marvin Vettori def. Andrew Sanchez by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • JJ Aldrich def. Lauren Mueller by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Ray Cooper III and Kayla Harrison among fighters advancing to PFL Championship

Ray Cooper wins at PFL 2019 playoffs

(Courtesy of PFL MMA)

LAS VEGAS, N.V. – October 11, 2019 – The 2019 Professional Fighters League (PFL) Playoffs kicked off at MGM’s Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas with welterweight and women’s lightweight action. Two-time Olympic Judo Gold medalist Kayla Harrison remained undefeated, while #4 seed Larissa Pacheco pulled off an upset of #1 seed Sarah Kaufman. Harrison and Pacheco advance, looking to be crowned the first-ever women’s lightweight champion. Ray Cooper and David Michaud survived the toughest night in MMA, winning twice in one night. The 2019 PFL World Championship will take place on NYE at Madison Square Garden. 

“This was a historic night for the PFL and MMA. Not only was this our Las Vegas debut, it was the first time fighters fought twice in one-night in the fight capital of the world,” said Peter Murray, CEO of the PFL. “Our format is changing the game and fans around the world witnessed tonight the potential MMA has as true sport, where fighters control their own destiny. Kayla Harrison, Larissa Pacheco, Ray Cooper III and David Michaud battled through the regular season, survived the toughest night in MMA and now are headed to Madison Square Garden on NYE with the chance to win a title and a million dollars.”

“This was an amazing night of first-class MMA action,” said Ray Sefo, President of Fighter Operations of the PFL. “In the PFL, nothing is given, everything is earned. Both #1 seeds failed to move on, showing off the depth of the league. Incredible matchups are set for the 2019 PFL World Championship.” 

The top half of the welterweight playoff bracket featured #1 seed and PFL newcomer Glaico Franca. Franca continued his dominant 2019 PFL season, defeating Andre Fialho by majority decision in the quarterfinals. Franca had an unfamiliar start to the fight, taking numerous upper-cuts from Fialho. He quickly took the fight to the ground, delivering several takedowns that proved to be decisive in the win. 

#5 David Michaud defeated #4 John Howard by unanimous decision, setting up a semifinal fight against Franca. Michaud and Howard exchanged powerful punches in an electric round one. Michaud took the fight to the ground in round two, pummeling Howard with head and body shots. 

In the semifinals, Michaud defeated Franca in a battle that went the distance, booking a spot in the 2019 PFL World Championship. In the first round, Michaud stalked Franca around the cage, applying constant pressure. In the third and final round, a bloodied Michaud landed vicious combos earning him the majority decision win. 

The bottom half of the bracket featured returning champion and #2 seed Magomed Magomedkerimov. In a rematch of PFL 4, Magomed once again defeated #7 Chris Curtis by unanimous decision, controlling Curtis on the ground to remain undefeated in the PFL. He delivered devastating combos in the second round, completing his dominating win and seemingly setting up a 2018 championship rematch with Ray Cooper III. Magomedkerimov, however, was forced to withdraw before the semifinals, unable to continue. As a result, Curtis advanced to the semifinals. 

#6 Cooper III grinded out a victory over #3 Sadibou Sy. The fight ended in a majority draw, forcing a tiebreaker where all three judges chose Cooper as the fighter who had the better overall performance. Exchanging heavy punches throughout the bout, Cooper’s takedowns and impressive ground game gave the 2018 runner-up the edge. 

In the semifinals, Ray Cooper III, with 200 friends and family in the crowd, lit up Mandalay Bay Event Center, connecting with a devastating 26.4 MPH right hook 11 seconds into round two that knocked Chris Curtis out. The fastest strike of the night sends Cooper back to New York City, where he’ll battle Michaud for the title and million dollar prize.  

In the first-ever women’s lightweight playoffs, #4 Larissa Pacheco, the youngest fighter in the division, delivered a major upset, taking down #1 Sarah Kaufman by unanimous decision. From the start, Pacheco paired damaging combos with expert ground work. Pacheco was unrelenting throughout, and a bloodied Kaufman was unable to turn the tide. 

#2 Kayla Harrison made quick work of Bobbi Jo Dalziel, securing a first-round armbar submission. Harrison dominated the match from the start, taking Dalziel to ground within seconds. Once on the ground, Harrison showcased her Judo expertise, submitting Dalziel 3:32 into the first round via armbar. The women’s lightweight championship will be a rematch of PFL 3, where Harrison defeated Pacheco by unanimous decision. 

United Kingdom featherweight and rising MMA star Brendan Loughnane opened the night on ESPN+, defeating Matt Wagy by unanimous decision in a special new fighter showcase. Loughnane is signed for the 2020 PFL Season and will be competing for the featherweight title and a million-dollar prize. His fourth straight victory improves his career record to 18-3-0.


TRENDING > Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL


In the second new fighter showcase bout, welterweight Nikolay Aleksakhin defeated Jesse Ronson by first round TKO. Aleksakhin has signed with the PFL for the 2020 season and will compete in the welterweight division. Aleksakhin improves to 24-5, with 11 wins by knockout. 

PFL Playoff action continues on October 17 at Mandalay Bay Events Center, where featherweights and lightweights will fight twice in one night for a shot at the championship. The 2019 PFL Playoffs will air across ESPN2, ESPN+, the industry-leading sports streaming service and ESPN Deportes, in addition to TSN in Canada, and on a wide and diverse group of premier global distribution partner platforms reaching over 150 countries around the world.

Manager Malki Kawa rips on Ali Abdelaziz following PFL ‘physical altercation’ with his brother

Malki Kawa

Prominent MMA manager Malki Kawa ripped into fellow manager Ali Abdelaziz on Twitter on Saturday following news that Abdelaziz got into a ‘physical altercation’ with his brother at the PFL Playoffs on Friday night.

Sources told MMAWeekly.com late Friday that Abdelaziz, whose Dominance MMA represents UFC champions Khabib Nurmagomedov, Kamaru Usman, and Henry Cejudo, struck Abe Kawa, Malki’s brother. Abe Kawa is a vice president at First Round Management, which represents the likes of champion Jon Jones, Anthony Pettis, Tyron Woodley, and Jorge Masvidal, as well as clients outside the MMA space.

Las Vegas Metro Police later confirmed the incident without identifying any of the parties involved.

“LVMPD officers were on scene and temporarily detained one of the subjects during the investigation. That subject was cooperative. He was issued a citation and released. No enforcement action was taken regarding the second subject, who was also cooperative. There were no significant injuries,” a LVMPD spokesperson said in a prepared statement.

Following news of the incident lighting up the MMA web, Malki took to Twitter, where he took laser-beam aim at Abdelaziz, saying he has taken the “professional route way too long.”

Though Malki was unrelenting in his Tweets aimed at Abdelaziz, took a more tactful approach.

UFC on ESPN+ 19 results: Joanna Jedrzejczyk puts on master class, ‘bow down’

Joanna Jedrzejczyk punches Michelle Waterson at UFC on ESPN+ 19

Joanna Jedrzejczyk punched her return ticket to a strawweight title shot by dominating Michelle Waterson in the UFC on ESPN+ 19 main event on Saturday in Tampa, Fla.

Jedrzejczyk started with a smart game plan that only ramped up to new levels as the fight wore on. She used her height and reach to stay out of Waterson’s power range, while simultaneously chewing up her lead leg with a combination of kicks.

Waterson fought strong in the opening rounds, pulling Jedrzejczyk into numerous clinches. She did well in the early clinches, landing numerous elbows, while Jedrzejczyk used her knees to stay busier even when they were on the fence.

While Jedrzejczyk was running away with the fight simply by the massive disparity in the number of kicks and punches landed, Waterson finally scored a takedown in the third round and immediately took Jedrzejczyk’s back. Waterson quickly sunk a  rear-naked choke, her most significant threat of the fight, but Jedrzejczyk patiently worked her way out of the hold and lit Waterson up with punches and kicks as the round came to an end.

Rounds four and five saw Waterson slow considerably, but she also dug deep, continuing to plow forward and shoot for takedowns. 

As time ran down, Jedrzejczyk continued to ramp up her onslaught of leg kicks and maintained control of most of the clinch exchanges, driving numerous knees to the body, earning a unanimous nod from the judges.

It was a masterful performance by Jedrzejczyk, putting her next in line for a shot at UFC strawweight champion Weili Zhang, whom she immediately took aim at.

“Hell yeah, who is the real queen? Bow down, bow down. I am the real queen. Dana, call you in a minute.”

Newly minted father Cub Swanson put on a vintage performance, defeating Kron Gracie in the UFC Tampa co-main event.

The fight opened with Gracie immediately taking the center of the Octagon and stalking Swanson, but it didn’t take long for the veteran to establish control.

Swanson quickly established his jab, keeping his distance and using fluid head and foot movement to elude most of Gracie’s early power punches and debunking any takedown attempts. As the round wore on, Swanson darted in and out, lighting up Gracie with a variety of strikes, using his jab to set up body punches and kicks, several of which nearly doubled Gracie over.

By the end of the round, Gracie was chasing Swanson, trying to find a home for his punches, while eating numerous counters for his efforts.

Gracie continued to walk Swanson down in the second round, but kept eating punches as Swanson darted in an out, landing hard body shots and mixing in uppercuts and kicks to the ribs. 

Midway through the second frame, Swanson began to stand in close and trade blow for blow for longer periods. He got his shots in, but at the same time allowed Gracie room to land some heavy punches of his own. 

Gracie possibly made a mistake by attempting to jump guard instead of working his strikes more when they were in the clinch, as Swanson easily escaped his guard attempts.

While both men slowed near the end of round two, Swanson still appeared much fresher, likely because of the numerous body shots he used to sap the fuel from Gracie’s gas tank.

The third frame was much the same as round two. Both men threw everything they had into the final five minutes, Swanson simply had more gas in the tank as the minutes ticked away.

Gracie took everything Swanson threw at him and returned fire as best he could, but had no zip on his punches. Swanson didn’t have the power of earlier in the fight either, but had enough fuel left to outwork Gracie to the rate of about five to one. 

When the judges scorecards were read, Swanson swept the fight, earning 30-27 nods from all three judges, handing Gracie the first defeat of his professional MMA career. While it was Gracie’s first defeat, the victory was one of Swanson’s most important, as it ended a career worst four-fight skid.

Niko Price took out James Vick in a brief fight that provided the fireworks that most expected. After taking Vick to the canvas and a quick reversal, Price ended the fight with an upkick. Vick landed a couple big punches following the reversal, but as he stood in Price’s guard, he at an up-kick that put him out cold and ended the fight at 1:44 of the first round.

Amanda Ribas fought the perfect fight to hand new mom Mackenzie Dern the first loss of her career. Dern tried at many turns to take Ribas to the canvas, but was rarely successful. Ribas did a good job defending the takedown, out-striking Dern on the feet en route to winning all three rounds on the judges scorecards.

In a pivotal flyweight bout on the UFC on ESPN+ 19 prelims, Deveison Figueiroa made quick work of former title contender Tim Elliott, submitting him with a guillotine choke little more than three minutes into the fight.


TRENDING > Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL


UFC on ESPN+ 19: Joanna vs. Waterson quick results

Main Card (8 p.m. ET on ESPN+)

  • Main Event: Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs Michelle Waterson
  • Co-Main Event: Cub Swanson vs Kron Gracie
  • Niko Price def. James Vick by knockout (up-kick) at 1:44, R1
  • Amanda Ribas def. Mackenzie Dern by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Matt Frevola def. Luis Pena by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
  • Eryk Anders def. Gerald Meerschaert by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Prelims (5 p.m. ET on ESPN+)

  • Ryan Spann def. Devin Clark by submission (guillotine choke) at 2:01, R2
  • Mike Davis def. Thomas Gifford by knockout (punch) at 4:45, R3
  • Alex Morono def. Max Griffin by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 29-27)
  • Deiveson Figueiredo def. Tim Elliott by submission (guillotine choke) at 3:08, R1
  • Marlon Vera def. Andre Ewell by TKO (elbows and punches) at 3:17, R3
  • Miguel Baeza def. Hector Aldana by TKO (elbows) at 2:32, R2
  • Marvin Vettori def. Andrew Sanchez by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • JJ Aldrich def. Lauren Mueller by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Cub Swanson and Kron Gracie take Fight of the Night honors at UFC on ESPN+ 19

Cub Swanson victorious at UFC on ESPN+ 19

Cub Swanson was walking a thin line heading into UFC on ESPN+ 19 on Saturday in Tampa, Fla, but he exited the cage walking on a cloud.

Entering his fight with previously undefeated Kron Gracie on the only four-fight skid of his career, Swanson turned a corner in Tampa, putting on a masterful performance to defeat the famed prospect.

Swanson used his superior stand-up game to avoid Gracie’s takedowns and grappling prowess, picking him apart over the course of their three-round co-main event. Gracie never backed down, taking everything that Swanson fed him, and continuing to fire back with everything he had until the final horn.

Swanson got back on the winning track, but he and Gracie each earned a $50,000 bonus for their UFC on ESPN+ 19 Fight of the Night effort.

Niko Price and Marlon Vera earned the Performance of the Night honors.

After taking James Vick down, but accidentally pulling him to top position, Price found a moment to correct his mistake, knocking Vick out with an up-kick from his back. Vick was unconscious for several moments following the finish, but eventually walked off under his own power.

Vera earned his bonus with a TKO stoppage of Andre Ewell in a flurry of elbows and punches.


TRENDING > Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones management involved in ‘physical altercation’ at PFL


UFC on ESPN+ 19 Performance Bonuses

  • Fight of the Night: Cub Swanson vs. Kron Gracie
  • Performance of the Night: Niko Price
  • Performance of the Night: Marlon Vera

UFC on ESPN+ 19 Gate and Attendance

  • Gate: $897,805.00
  • Attendance: 10,597

Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Michelle Waterson exchange hugs, jerseys after UFC Tampa

Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Michelle Waterson exchange jerseys

Joanna Jedrzejczyk put on a  masterful striking performance against Michelle Waterson at UFC on ESPN+ 19 on Saturday in Tampa, Fla.

The former strawweight champion made a statement in bloodying Waterson en route to a dominating five-round unanimous decision victory, but the fact remains that she couldn’t put her opponent away.

While Waterson visibly slowed as early as the third round, she dug deep and weathered Jedrzejczyk’s storm to not only survive, but have her moments in the championship rounds. 


TRENDING > UFC on ESPN+ 19 results: Joanna Jedrzejczyk puts on master class, ‘bow down’


There was a strong show of respect between the two in the lead-up to their UFC Tampa headliner, but even greater expressions of their mutual admiration after the fight. In the backstage area, the two exchanged jerseys, as well as hugs and a photo op before going their separate ways.