The Octagon touched down in Tampa, Florida this weekend, with a strawweight clash between former champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk and surging contender Michelle Waterson taking the headline. Jędrzejczyk returns to 115 pounds for the first time since her flyweight title loss to Valentina Shevchenko, while Waterson attempts to earn her first title tilt with the promotion since her move from Invicta FC in 2015.
In our co-main event feature, featherweight stalwart Cub Swanson makes his return, as he draws grappling sensation and undefeated talent Kron Gracie. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu standout Mackenzie Dern also makes her Octagon return for the first in seventeen months, as she meets prominent wrestler Amanda Ribas. In his 170 pound debut, James Vick, clashes with the popular Niko Price in a three round bout which moved to main card status earlier this week.
To kick our Preliminary card off, JJ Aldrich meets Lauren Mueller in a flyweight opener. Returning to the win column after her loss to Maycee Barber, Aldrich scored a unanimous decision triumph.
Middleweights clash next, as Italy’s Marvin Vettori pairs with The Ultimate Fighter victor, Andrew Sanchez, with the latter searching for a third straight victory. In a dominant display, Vettori snapped Sanchez’s win streak via a 30-27 all round unanimous decision.
Miguel Baeza and Hector Aldana feature next with both men making the welterweight limit. A second round ground-and-pound barrage after some punishing calf kicks from Baeza proved enough to score the stoppage, and retain his undefeated record.
Exciting bantamweight hopefuls Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera and Andre Ewell square off in our next Prelim of the night. Continuing his streaking success, Marlon Vera made it five from five via a brutal ground-and-pound display in the third and final round.
Deiveson Figueiredo looks to solidify his flyweight title intentions, as he meets former title challenger Tim Elliott.
At 170 pounds, Max Griffin throws down with prominent finisher Alex Morono. Wrapping up a guillotine early in the opening round, Brazil’s Deiveson Figueiredo will certainly move up the ranks at flyweight come Monday. In a certain Fight of The Night contender, Alex Morono edged out Griffin in a unanimous decision back-and-forth.
Thomas Gifford and Mike Davis make their lightweight claim in out penultimate Prelim of the night. In one of the most one-sided beatings in Octagon history Mike Davis eventually stopped Gifford with strikes in the third round.
Light heavyweight’s meet in our featured Preliminary bout of the night, as Ryan Spann faces Devin Clark. Failing to lock up a guillotine within the opening exchanges of the first round, Spann eventually wrapped up the choke against the fence midway through the second frame.
To get things underway on our Main Card, the always game Eryk Anders, meets with Gerald Meerschaert. Narrowly edged out Meerschaert in terms of total strikes in the opening and final round, Eryk Anders took home a close split decision on his return to middleweight.
At lightweight, Matt Frevola takes on another TUF alumni, in the form of ‘Violent Bob Ross’ Luis Pena. With an aggressive performance, Matt Frevola narrowly scored a split decision victory over Pena.
Mackenzie Dern features at strawweight after a much more comfortable weight cut, as she meets Amanda Ribas who last time out, toppled Emily Whitmire. Unable to utilize her grappling prowess, Mackenzie Dern dropped her first professional loss as Amanda Ribas scored a one-sided 30-27 unanimous decision, sticking to a diverse striking game plan over three rounds.
Niko Price welcomes striker James Vick to welterweight in our next Main Card pairing. Slashing Vick with a short elbow from the top early, Price eventually wound up on his back and while Vick attempted to lay down damage from the guard, ‘The Hybrid’ launched an up-kick, knocking the welterweight debutante out cold.
In our co-main event, one-time title challenger Cub Swanson looks to snap his unwanted losing streak, as he meets Kron Gracie who looks to make it two from two inside the Octagon. Snapping a four fight skid, Cub Swanson handed Kron gracie his first professional defeat, via a 30-27 unanimous decision in an incredible display of boxing and pressure from both men.
Former UFC strawweight queen Joanna Jędrzejczyk makes her return to her old stomping ground in our main event, as she clashes with former Invicta FC atomweight champion and #7 ranked challenger, Michelle Waterson. Returning to the win column, Joanna Jędrzejczyk picked up a rather one-sided 50-45 unanimous decision, landing more than two-hundred strikes over a twenty-five minute showcase.
Senior writer for FightBook MMA. An aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Producer of news articles, interviews, opinion features, and exclusive features such as, ‘The Fallout’, ‘The Breakdown, and, ‘This Week In MMA’.
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