- UFC 236
April 13, 2019
Atlanta, GA from State Farm Arena
Live on UFC Fight Pass (6:15 PM ET), ESPN (8 PM ET), and ESPN+ PPV (10 PM ET)
Fight Pass Prelims
(1) Brandon Davis vs. Randy Costa (Bantamweight)
Result: Brandon Davis defeats Randy Costa via Submission in Round 2
(2) Lauren Mueller vs. Poliana Botelho (Flyweight)
Result: Judges Scorecards (29-28 x3) for winner by Unanimous Decision, Polaina Botelho
(3) Montel Jackson vs. Andre Soukhamthath (Bantamweight)
Result: Judges Scorecards (30-26 x2, 30-27) for winner by Unanimous Decision Montel Jackson
(4) Curtis Millender vs. Belal Muhammad (Welterweight)
Result: Judges Scorecards (29-27, 30-26 x2) for winner by Unanimous Decision, Belal Muhammad
(5) Boston Salmon vs. Khalid Taha (Bantamweight)
Prediction: Salmon defeats Taha by Unanimous Decision
ROUND ONE: Taha gets an overhand left, followed by a right, and Salmon goes down! Salmon goes face down, and Taha unloading and THAT’S IT!
Result: Khalid Taha wins via TKO in Round 1 (0:25)
Analysis: Well that was quick. The very first punch was a fake, and the second an overhand, and that spelled the end for Salmon. Ground and pound later and the fight is over in seconds. The commentators began talking about Salmon’s resume, and were interrupted by the TKO. I don’t know if we’ll see Khalid Taha jump up the ranking anytime soon, being before this 1-2 in his last 3, but was definitely the best way to kick off a card.
(6) Max Griffin vs. Zelim Imadaev (Welterweight)
Prediction: Imadaev defeats Griffin via Round 2 TKO
ROUND ONE: Griffin lands a right quickly. Griffin a takedown. Imadaev grabs the fence to get up, and grabs the fence yet again. The ref separates them, and Imadaev docked a point already. They stand, and Griffin gets another takedown. Griffin gets the back against the cage. Griffin attempting a neck crank. Griffin lets go. Imadaev grabs the cage again and is warned. Griffin with another neck crank, but Imadaev escapes. Griffin with a 3rd neck crank, and Imadaev grabs the fence, but the ref misses it. Imadaev gets to his feet and separates. Imadaev with a spinning elbow that connects. Nice jab from Griffin. Another spinning elbow from Imadaev but this time misses. Griffin attempting a takedown but is stuffed. Imadaev takes clinch control. Griffin reverses position. A clinch stale mate, and end round 1. 10-8 Griffin due to dock.
ROUND TWO: Nice right from Griffin. Griffin goes for a takedown, and Imadaev rolls, but Griffin has the back. Imadaev reverses, and takes clinch control. They break, and a stiff jab from Imadaev. Griffin goes for another takedown but Imadaev rolls out. Good leg kick from Imadaev. Solid jabs from both. Griffin gets a takedown, but Imadaev gets up quickly. Imadaev reverses position again. HUGE spinning elbow from Imadaev just misses. Griffin shoots again, and is stuffed. Clinch breaks. spinning knee from Imadaev gets caght, and Griffin gets a takedown, but Imadaev gets right back up. Clinch break. Imadaev stuns Griffin. Imadaev goes for another spin, and misses, but clinches. Griffin gassed out, and goes for a weak takedown. Imadaev hits some huge shots. A big uppercut. Imadaev walking forward and pounding Griffin. End Round 2. 19-18 Griffin
ROUND THREE: Nice right from Griffin. Both men swinging and missing. Griffin with some weak throws. Imadaev tags Griffin again with a left. Another left stuns Griffin again. Solid left from Imadaev. HUGE combo rocks Griffin. Griffin seems out against the cage, and Imadaev grapples, but they separate. Imadaev with more solid punches. HUGE uppercut from Imadaev. Griffin lands a takedown, but Imadaev gets right up. Imadaev reverses clinch. Imadaev trying for a takedown. Imadaev goes down on a knee, and eats a knee to the abdomen. Griffin going for a takedown but is stuffed. Imadaev takes control, and they separate. HUGE shots from both. An uppercut from Imadaev wobbles Griffin, and they exchange. End Round 3. 28-28 Draw
Result: Judges Scorecards (29-27 x2, 28-28) for winner by Majority Decision, Max Griffin
Analysis: I though we saw a draw, but even though Imadaev dominated for the first 2 1/2 minutes, the takedown, and late shots may have gotten the win for Griffin. A terrific fight by both, and man does Max have a hell of a chin. A potential FOTN candidate for now, but either way, gutsy performance by both.
(7) Wilson Reis vs. Alexandre Pantoja (Flyweight)
Prediction: Pantoja defeats Reis via Unanimous Decision.
ROUND ONE: Leg kick blocked by Pantoja. Body kick from Pantoja. Pantoja with some jabs. Nice left from Reis as he shoots, and is stuffed. Reis trips Pantoja but he hop right back up. Reis drags Pantoja to the mat. Pantoja gets out and back to standing we go. Pantoja with a straight right,and DOWN GOES REIS. Ground and pound, but Reis looks like he may survive, but his guard goes out. Reis eating huge shots and that’s it!
Result: Alexandre Pantoja defeats Wilson Reis via TKO in Round 1 (2:58)
Analysis: Wow. Holy crap was that a surprise. Jussier Formiga still the obvious #1 contender, but wee could see Pantoja/Formiga for an Interim belt, or a Pantoja/Benavidez fight, but a big fight next for him. Reis seems like he hit the top of his career, and fell quickly after the DJ fight. THis could very well be Reis’ last UFC fight, but Pantoja has a bright future, whether it be in the Flyweight, or Bantamweight division.
(8) Jalin Turner vs. Matt Frevola (Lightweight)
Prediction: Frevola defeats Turner via Round 1 TKO
ROUND ONE: Nice left from Frevola, but Turner lands a stiff knee. Frevola lands a takedown. Frevola takes the back. Turner defending well. Turner rolls Frevola off, and gets up. HUGE right on the jaw from Turner, and Frevola shoots,but is stuffed. They stand. Turner rocks Frevola again, but Frevola dives for a takedown and lands it. Frevola gets into side position. Frevola rolls in to a guillotine, and its tight. Frevola rolls into top mount, and Turner might tap. But Turner escapes, and takes Frevola’s back, and stands. Nice jabs from Turner. Another stuffed takedown from Frevola, and they swing big to end Round 1. 10-9 Turner
ROUND TWO: Nice combo from Turner. Frevola shoots, and is stuffed again. Turner gets free. Good body kick from Frevola. Frevola dives for another takedown, and misses again. Huge right from Frevola. Good jabss from Frevola. Frevola is stuffed again. Nice right from Turner. Nice knee from Turner, but Frevola dives, and gets caught in a tight guillotine. Turner now is on the back. Turner tried to break away, but Frevola takes top. Frevola throw on a guillotine, but Turner escapes again. Turner in full guard, but Frevola throws an illegal up kick, and the ref stops the fight. Doctor is in to check in on Turner. Turner’s eye is hurt. Ref resumes the fight, but doesn’t take a point, and Round 2 ends. 19-19
ROUND THREE: Good body kick from Turner. Both miss combos. Combo lands for Turner. Good left from Turner. Frevola dives for a takedown, and succeeds. Turner tries for a triangle, but Frevola gets out and gets into side control. Frevola with an elbow. Turner gets up, and lands a HUGE knee that wobble s Frevola, but Frevola seems to have recovered. Spinning body kick from Turner. Huge right from Frevola. Frevola dives for a takedown, and lands one to end Round 3. 29-28 Frevola
Result: Judges Scorecards (30-27 x3) for winner by Unanimous Decision, Matt Frevola
ESPN+ PPV Main Card
(9) Ovince Saint Preux vs. Nikita Krylov (Light Heavyweight)
Prediction: Krylov defeats OSP via KO in Round 1
ROUND ONE: Nice combo from Krylov. A huge body kick from Krylov. OSP shoots and takes Krylov down. Krylov stands. OSP with another takedown. Krylov gets back up. Krylov switches positions. Krylov now has control against the cage. OSP with another takedown, but Krylov gets right back up. Krylov goes for a takedown, but OSP lands in full guard. OSP in side control. OSP in full mount. Huge elbows from OSP. Krylov stands and lands some hard knees to the body and head. A combo to the head of OSP.OSP gassed out already. Krylov grapples. Huge head kick misses for Krylov to end round 1. 10-9 OSP
ROUND TWO: OSP exhausted to start the round. Good kicks from Krylov. Nice head kick fromKrylov. Stiff jab hurts OSP, and OSP dives for the takedown, and is stuffed. OSP eating elbows. Krylov takes OSP down, and gets in full mount. OSP gives up the back. Krylov searching for a choke. Krylov gets under the jaw, and OSP about to tap, and that’s it!
Result: Nikita Krylov defeats OSP by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) in Round 2 (2:30)
Analysis: OSP gassed himself out early, and after the first 4 minutes, the result was inevitable. Krylov looked terrific, and his ground game has improved. Krylov draws a Top 15, possibly Top 10 soon, and gets back to where he left off in his first run with the company.
(10) Alan Jouban vs. Dwight Grant (Welterweight)
Prediction: Grant defeats Jouban via TKO in Round 1
ROUND ONE: Jouban goes for a jab. Jouban lands a takedown, but Grant gets right up. Jouban misses a huge head kick. Grant lands a couple haymakers. Jouban with some combos. They both throw big, but Grant wobbles Jouban. Jounban seems to have recovered. Leg kicks from both. Jab from Grant. Solid leg kick from Grant. Both men miss huge shots. Jouban lands a hook. Both men miss big again. 10-9 Grant
ROUND TWO: Both guys collide, but Grant lands some big shots. Nice straight by Jouban. Axe kick misses for Grant. Good leg kicks from Grant. Jouban with a leg kick. Nice combo from Grant. Huge right just misses for Jouban. Jouban clinches. And they break. Good body punch for Grant. Leg kick for Jouban. End Round 2. 20-18 Grant
ROUND THREE: Nice uppercut for Grant. Huge swings and misses for both. Huge combo from Grant. Crowd booing loudly. Good uppercut from Grant. Jouban with a low blow. Ref stops fight for a break. A groin strike that looked like a classic ball kick from the WWE, but here we go. Ref resumes fight. Leg kicks exchange. Jouban with a nice right. Nice left from Grant. Spinning head kick misses for Jouban. Jouban gets a takedown and takes the back. Jouban throwing hard punches to end Round 3. 29-28 Grant
Result: Judges Scorecards (29-28, 27-30, 29-28) for winner by Split-Decision, Dwight Grant
Analysis: When I first saw this card, I wondered why this fight was on the card. After the fight, I’m even more confused. A win for either didn’t mean anything, but a win in this way possibly damaged both of the fighters. The crowd was bored, the fight slowed down minute by minute, and the most amount of strikes landed in a round by 1 person was 15 strikes. It was a huge disappointment on this card, and won’t be remembered by anyone within a week.
(11) Eryk Anders vs. Khalil Rountree Jr. (Light Heavyweight)
Prediction: Anders defeats Rountree Jr. via KO in Round 2
ROUND ONE: Big leg kick from Rountree. Another big kick from Rountree. Another big kick to the leg of Anders. Anders leg getting wrecked. Huge combo for Rountree. Rountree continues to destroy the legs. Nice jab from Anders. Another kick to the leg of Anders. More leg kicks from Rountree. Big body kick to Anders. More leg kicks picking apart Anders leg. End Round 1. Anders leg is destroyed. 10-9 Rountree
ROUND TWO: Another leg kick and a kick and punch combo hurts Anders, Rountree knocks down Anders! Rountree kicking the legs on the ground. Rountree dives and smashes Anders. They stand. Rountree pounding Anders. An uppercut knocks Anders down again! Rountree lets him stand. Anders dives for a takedown and is stuffed. They clinch, and Anders eats a huge knee to the stomach. Rountree hits a hard combo. Rountree with a heavy combo, and a massive punch knocks Anders down again. Ref still isn’t stopping the fight. Anders stands. Anders hokks and misses. Rountree lands another hook and knocks Anders down AGAIN. 4 in this round. Ref STILL lets the fight go. Anders stands. Another combo lands on Anders. End Round 2. 20-16 Rountree
ROUND THREE: Corner doesn’t stop it and here we go. Oh here comes the doctor. Doctor says Anders is good. Here we go! Good combo for Rountree. More leg kicks eat up Anders leg. Rountree with a solid hook. Another leg kick. Huge hooks from Rountree. Hooks from both. Another hard leg kick. Huge shots miss for Rountree. More leg kicks. Nice combo for Rountree. Nice uppercut from Anders. Rountree stings Anders again. End Round 3. 30-25 Rountree
Result: Judges Scorecards (30-26 x3) for winner by Unanimous Decision, Khalil Rountree Jr.
Analysis: As the commentators said, prices for residencies in Thailand just skyrocketed. Rountree went from getting killed in his last fight by johnny Walker, to putting on the most one-sided round I have ever seen. Eryk Anders is a warrior, but the ref should’ve stopped it. his corner should’ve stopped it. They were just lucky he didn’t get hit in the head too many times. Rountree either found some TJ juice, or Thailand Muay Thai is the most underrated martial art out there right now.
(12) Kelvin Gastelum vs. Israel Adesanya (Interim Middleweight Championship)
Prediction: Gastelum defeats Adesanya via Unanimous Decision.
ROUND ONE: Here we go! Body kick by Adesanya. Nice jab by Adesanya. Adesanya avoids strikes. Leg kicks by both. Gastelum with a nice hook that hurts Adesanya. Adesanya rocked. Adesanya seems to have recovered. Gastelum swinging big and missing. Gastelum swings and misses. Another big swing and miss for Gastelum. Jabs miss with both. End Round 1. Gastelum 10-9
ROUND TWO: Nice body shot from Adesanya. Another huge body kick for Adesanya. Nice body hook from Gastelum. Nice body shot from Adesanya. Another hard body kick for Adesanya. Nice combo for Gastelum. Nice head kick from Adesanya. Nice leg kick from Adesanya. Adesanya with a HUGE right that knocks down Gastelum. Adesanya stands. Hard rights from Adesanya. More rights from Adesanya. Adesanya stuns Gastelum again. Spinning elbow hurts Gastelum. Nice left from Gastelum. Adesanya stuffs Gastelum. End Round 2. 19-19
ROUND THREE: Here we go! Nice leg kick from Adesanya. Body shot lands for Gastelum. Nice knee from Adesanya. Nice body kick for Adesanya. Good leg kicks from Adesanya. They exchange jabs and a headkick from Adesanya. Nice right from Adesanya. Another right that wobbles Gastelum. Nice hook hits Adesanya. Body shot to Gastelum. Big strikes from both. Gastelum lands a takedoswn. Adesanya stands. Gastelum swinging big and missing. Gastelum looks exhausted. End Round 3. 29-28 Adesanya
ROUND FOUR: Gastelum coming out aggressive. Nice right from Israel. Gastelum clinches, but they separate. Nice knee to the body of Gastelum. Nice right for Adesanya. Gastelum misses. They clinch. Adesanya separates again. Nice right from Adesanya. Nice shot from Gastelum. Nice leg kick by Adesanya. Nice left from Adesanaya. Head kick wobbles Adesanaya. Gastelum shoots but gets blocked. Adesanaya with a head kick of his own. End Round 4. 38-38
ROUND FIVE: Here we go! Gastelum charges forward. Body kick from Adesanya. Nice combos from Adesanya. Both men eating big shots. Gastelum dives but Israel has a deep guillotine. Gastelum gets out, but Adesanya goes for a triangle. gastelum gets out, and they stand. Right from Adesanya hurts Gastelum. Another hard right. Kelvin shoots. Adesanaya separates. Combos from both. Huge right snaps back Gastelums head. Combo DROPS Gastelum. Gastelum gets up and goes for a takedown. Elbows from Adesnaya. Huge comb9os for Adesanya. Adesanya with a knockdown. Gastelum gets up wobbly. Adesanya tagging him over and over. Gastelum goes down AGAIN. The ref may stop it, but the bell sounds. 48-46 Adesanya
Result: Judges Scorecards (48-46 x3) for winner by Unanimous Decision AAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNDDDDDD NNNNNNNNNEEEEEEEWWWW Interim Middleweight Champion of the world Israel Adesanya
Analysis: I’ve seen great fights. I’ve seen what I though were the best fights. This fight just took the #1 spot. If these men fought 100 times, it could easily be split. I don’t care if you had no interest in this fight whatsoever. As a fan of MMA you will do yourself the biggest disservice you could possibly do. Gastelum showed his chin. Gastelum showed his heart. Gastelum showed that Israel is human. Yet, Israel showed that he isn’t human. He can take a lot of damage, and he can be hit, but he didn’t give up. Round 5 was the most exciting round I’ve seen. These 2 both got knocked down and hurt numerous times, yet they always survived. Praise these man. That’s all I can say. PRAISE THESE MEN
(13) Max Holloway vs. Dustin Poirier (Interim Lightweight Championship)
Prediction: Holloway defeats Poirier via Unanimous Decision
ROUND ONE: Leg kick by Poirier. Body kick by Poirier. Body shots from Holloway. Poirier with a hard left. Poirier thinks Max is hurt. He charges in and Max tags him. Now Poirier is hurt. Poirier wih a HUGE left that hurts Holloway. Poirier charging forward and landing big. They separate and Poirier with another huge strike. And another. Max stunned. Maax hurts Poirier. Poirier hurts Max and wobbles him again. These 2 swinging. Both hurt, but Max gets hurt after every strike. Another solid left by Poirier hurts Holloway. They swing huge. End Round 1. 10-9 Poirier
ROUND TWO: Nice body shot from Holloway. Nice left from Holloway. Nice combos from Holloway. Constant body shots to Poirier. Poirier swinging big. Huge hook from Poirier. Nice jab from Poirier. Poirier shoots and is stuffed. Big strikes from both. Holloway with consistent jabs. Nice body kicks from Holloway. Combo from Max. Poirier hurts Max again.A hook on the cage and Holloway almost fall, but survives. Poirier with another big hook that hurts Max again. End Round 2. 20-18 Poirier
ROUND THREE: Here we go! Big jab misses for Poirier. Nice body shot from Max. Combos from both. Another nice combo by Max. Huge combo stuns Holloway again. Another huge left from Poirier. Good combo from Max. Both landing hard shots. Poirier seems to stumble a bit. Huge right by Holloway. Nice left hurts Poirier. Hollloway hurts Poirier, and he’s swinging big, but Poirier shoots for a takedown. Elbows from Max. End Round 3. 29-28 Poirier
ROUND FOUR: Nice jab for Holloway. Poirier shoots, and is stuffed. Poirier drags Max to the ground. Holloway stands. Huge knee to the body by Holloway. Nice right from Poirier. Holloway pops Poirier. Holloway landing huge combos. Big shots from both. Nice elbow from Holloway. Nice body combo from Holloway. Huge strike to the head of Poirier. Poirier gassed. Holloway with another combo. Poirier with a hard knee that busts open Holloway. Huge right from Holloway. Poirier shoots. Poirier stuffed. Poirier just sitting out the round. End Round 4. Holloway a bloody mess. 38-38
ROUND FIVE: Here we go! Body kick from Poirier. Jab by Poirier. Hard shots for Holloway. Huge left from Poirier. Nice left from Holloway. They exchange combos. Nice combos for both. Nice right for Poirier. Good body shot from Holloway. Nice combo by Max. Nice right by Holloway. Poirier shoots. Stuffed for the moment. Elbows from Max. They exchange to end the fight. End Round 5. 48-47 Poirier
Result: Judges Scorecards (49-46 x 3) for the winner by Unanimous Decision AND NEW UFC Interim Lightweight Champion, Dustin Poirier.
Now, I was rooting for Max, but this fight was incredible. These guys hurt each other so many times, and this could very well be the end of Poirier and Holloway at the top. They both took brutal damage, and Max, well I don’t know how he stood. Max got wobbled god knows how many time, got a brutal gash, and still didn’t get knocked down. Now, do yourself a favor and go buy the replay of this show. The 2 best fights of the year so far. I’m exhausted, and I’m going to bed. We’ll see you for Live Coverage next weekend at Fight Night: Overeem vs Oleinik