Good Morning Folks, MMA India brings you live updates from today’s upcoming main card of the inaugural ESPN on UFC debut card featuring a heavyweight fight between former UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and Former title challenger Francis Ngannou from the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, Arizona.
Today’s main card will air on Sony Sports Network from 7:30 am onwards and we have six main card fights starting with Andre Fili vs Myles Jury. Also on the main card son of MMA legend Rickson Gracie, 30-year old Kron Gracie makes his UFC debut against Alex Caceres.
Follow the play-by-play and live action below:
In the first fight of the main card, Andre Fili takes on Myles Jury.
ROUND 1: Both fighters started cautiously in the opening round with Andre Fili getting the better of the both in striking and punches landed. Fili landing straight jabs on Jury and busts open his nose.
ROUND 2: In the second round, Jury is more active and both fighters are landing kicks. Although Fili dominating with his jabs and a nice punch to the body. He then follows it by hard combinations, but then Jury ends the round with a spinning back fist when knocks down Fili.
— Kyle Johnson (@VonPreux) February 18, 2019
ROUND 3: This round is a carbon copy of the first round, but with Jury dominating with his jabs. Fili then follows up with a kick and both fighters trade jabs. Fili follows up with more jabs.
Result: Andre Fili def. Myles Jury via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28).
Fight 2: Bryan Barberena vs. Vicente Luque
ROUND 1: Insane first round between Barberena and Luque. Initially, Luque dominates the fight on his feet with hard combinations. Barberena proves that he has a great chin. Suddenly, Luque gets dropped by Bryan’s hard punch and tries to finish it off, but Luque escapes and somehow manages to get on Barberena’a back and tries to choke him out, but Bryan escapes and Luque goes straight to a D’Arce. Barberena then goes for elbows as Luque is on his back.
ROUND 2: The second round starts with both fighters trading huge blows. Barberena lands a combination and then Luque follows it up with a crushing hard elbow but Barberena simply walks through it. Both guys trade elbow in close range. The crowd is up on its feet. Kick from Barberena followed by a head kick from Luque. Luque then ends the round with a pressing hard knee.
ROUND 3: The third started with Barberena landing a huge left to Luque’s body which followed by Luque returning the favour. Barberena keeps throwing volume punches, but Luque is blocking most of it. Luque then follows up with a knee and Barberena is down and he is done with less than 10 seconds left on the clock.
Result: Vicente Luque def. Bryan Barberena via TKO (strikes) – Round 3, 4:54
Fight 3: Alex Caceres vs. Kron Gracie
Up next, BJJ black belt Kron Gracie, son of MMA legend Rickson Gracie is all set to make his UFC debut.
ROUND 1: Kron Gracie makes a big statement in his UFC debut as she gets a read naked choke victory over Alex Caceres in the first round.
Gracie in the post-fight octagon interview: “I was always expecting a really tough match. I’m lucky I got it done in the first.”
“Whoop there it is! This is what I do every day. This is pretty basic for me. I’d like to thank my team and Nate Diaz. This is my first fight. Everybody else better watch their f—ing neck.” Gracie said.
Fight 4: Courtney Casey vs. Cynthia Calvillo
This is a special fight for the UFC, as this upcoming female’s bout between Courtney Casey and Cynthia Calvillo is the 5000th fight in UFC history.
ROUND 1: The fight started with two back to back inside kicks from Cynthia followed by a kick from Casey. Cynthia follows up with low kicks but Casey fires back with counters and kicks. Casey keeps countering Cynthia while Calvillo follows up with body shots
ROUND 2: Short left hook from Calvillo, she is boxing well and dominating on her feet. Meanwhile, Calvillo attempts a body triangle but gets cut off by Courtney Casey. A two-punch combo landed by Casey, but Calvillo hits her with a counter right.
ROUND 3: Going into the third round, it’s a very close fight and judges are going to have a nightmare scoring this one. Big left hand late from Casey. Calvillo answers with a big right hand! They brawl in the closing seconds.
Result: 29-28, 29-28 and 30-27 for Cynthia Calvillo. The crowd is not happy with the result as they boo the decision.
FIGHT 5: Paul Felder vs. James Vick
ROUND 1: The fight starts with Vick using his long legs to kick to Felder’s body. He then follows up with a big overhand right. Felder keeps eating jabs from Vick as he has trouble closing the distance on 6’3 lightweight James Vick. Felder follows up with an inside kick and few more low kicks. Then Felder uses spinning back fist and straight jab.
ROUND 2: Paul Felder throws a left hook but misses, and Vick takes advantage of this and grabs Felder’s neck and he nearly had a guillotine, but Felder manages to break free. Then Vick switches stance, but Felder catches him with an overhand right to the hand and Vick follows up with a big right hand of his own.
ROUND 3: Felder starts the round with a spinning kick to the body and a big left look caught Vick coming forward. Felder forces the clinch as Vick misses with two rights. Flying knee from Vick to the face at the horn.
Result: Paul Felder def. James Vick via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Paul Felder gets emotional during the post-fight octagon interview, he says, “It has been a long layoff. I broke my arm and I lost my father last year. This one is for my daughter and my mom; my mom doesn’t get enough credit. Mom, you raised three crazy sons and this one is for you.”
FIGHT 6: Francis Ngannou vs. Cain Velasquez
Here we go with the main event. Cain Velasquez back in the Octagon after 2 and a half years. He last fought against Travis Browne where he won via TKO. Ngannou is coming off of a TKO win against Curtis Blaydes.
ROUND 1: Francis Ngannou brutally knocks out Cain Velasquez in 26 seconds. It was Cain’s knee which gave up and not the actual punch.