UFC Vegas 71: Merab Dvalishvili Dominates Petr Yan

The main event at UFC Vegas 71 features a bout between Petr Yan and Merab Dvalishvili. This fight was significant since Merab spoke a lot about the conflict between Russia and Georgia. It is widely known that this fight had a lot of meaning for Georgian MMA fans, who were cheering for Merab that night. In the arena, there were many Georgian flags, and there was a lot of activity from fans on social media during this period.

Merab has been considered an underdog since his only chance was through takedown attempts, and Petr Yan was opened as a favorite due to his boxing skills and power. However, Merab not only broke the record for the most takedown attempts in the UFC, with 49 attempts, but also beat Yan in standing by mixing his striking with wrestling. He landed almost twice as many significant strikes, and Yan’s face showed the damage. Finally, Merab earned a unanimous decision victory, with the judges’ scorecards reading 50-45. The Machine is now the #1 ranked contender in the bantamweight division and will most likely wait for his brother Aljamain Sterling to change weight categories, so he can have his shot at winning the belt too.

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Alexander Volkov destroyed Romanov in the first round, serving a TKO loss to the Romanian fighter. Romanov is famous for his great grappling skills, but his striking and takedowns are not as good as his ground game. Volkov earned another great victory and remains in his top spot in the division. Nikita Krylov also earned a submission victory, defending his spot in the rankings. Ryan Spann had the opportunity to climb to the top, but he decided to wrestle with Krylov and ended up in his opponent’s triangle.

At the beginning of the Nurmagomedov vs. Martinez match, Nurmagomedov started with a variety of kicks aimed at Martinez, and one of them appeared to momentarily drop him. Nurmagomedov then wasted no time in taking Martinez’s back and attempted a rear-naked choke, which Martinez managed to escape from and return to his feet. Nurmagomedov continued to exhibit flashy striking skills, causing Martinez to clinch up against the cage.

In the second round, Nurmagomedov managed to secure a takedown within a minute, but Martinez impressively returned to his feet using a break-dancing move. Martinez then pressed Nurmagomedov against the cage, and after being freed, Nurmagomedov appeared exhausted while Martinez launched leg kicks. Martinez slipped in the final round, resulting in Nurmagomedov obtaining the top position. After a brief scramble, Nurmagomedov secured Martinez’s back and threatened with a rear-naked choke. Martinez worked to stand up, and Nurmagomedov disengaged. Throughout the remainder of the round, Martinez engaged in clinch work against the cage, similar to what was seen in the second round.

Alexander VolkovAlexandr RomanovMartinezMerab DvalishviliNurmagomedovPetr YanUFC Vegas 71