A flyweight doubleheader will main event Saturday night’s UFC 255 pay-per-view, as both UFC Flyweight Champions will be in action.
In the main event of the show, which is taking place at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, Deiveson Figueiredo will attempt to defend his belt for the first time when he fights Alex Perez.
UFC Flyweight Champion Valentina Shevchenko will return in the co-main event to face Jennifer Maia.
Follow along throughout the evening for live updates on the show.
Early Prelims (6:30PM EST / 3:30PM PST) (ESPN 2 / UFC Fight Pass)
Preliminary Card (8:00PM EST / 5:00PM EST) (ESPN 2 / TSN 5)
Main Card (10:00PM EST / 7:00PM PST) (PPV)
Bout 12: Deiveson Figueiredo (19-1) vs. Alex Perez (24-5) (UFC Flyweight Championship)
Figueiredo Earns Submission Win In The Second Minute To Retain
Deiveson Figueiredo had a quick win in the main event, catching Alex Perez in the second minute of action with a guillotine choke to force a tap out. The win was Figueiredo’s first defence of the belt since claiming it earlier in the year.
The fight went to the ground when Figueiredo grabbed a hold of a leg of Perez. He lost the grip of Perez’s leg when his back was taken, although he found the choke by turning around and putting Perez on top in full guard.
Figueiredo called out Brandon Moreno after the fight.
“I want to face Brandon Moreno. Dana [White], make this happen,” said Figueiredo through a translator in his post-fight interview.
Figueiredo earned the vacant flyweight belt in July, defeating Joseph Benavidez with a rear naked choke to finish a dominant one-round fight. He has won his last four fights.
Perez entered the fight with three-straight wins. His most recent fight was in June, where he stopped Jussier Formiga with leg kicks.
Bout 11: Valentina Shevchenko (19-3) vs. Jennifer Maia (18-6-1) (UFC Flyweight Championship)
Shevchenko Defends Flyweight Belt With Decision Victory Against Maia
Valentina Shevchenko was successful in her return to the cage on Saturday, putting together a strong 25-minute performance against Jennifer Maia to retain her UFC Flyweight Championship.
Most of the rounds saw Shevchenko use a variety of striking and clinch takedowns to defeat Maia.
Maia’s best round was the second, where she was able to score a takedown and keep Shevchenko on the ground until the round ran out of time. The second round was the only that Maia won on scorecards.
While Shevchenko wasn’t able to ever land a knockdown on Maia, the striking she landed throughout the fight accumulated visibly on Maia’s face by the end.
Shevchenko has now defended her 125-pound belt four times. Her previous victories came against Jessica Eye, Liz Carmouche and Katlyn Chookagian.
Maia earned the title shot in August, catching Joanne Calderwood within a round with an armbar.
Bout 10: Mike Perry (14-6) vs. Tim Means (30-12-1) (Welterweight)
Means Wins Decision Over Perry
Tim Means put together damaging strikes on the feet throughout three rounds to defeat Mike Perry on the scorecards.
While Perry was able to land hard shots on the feet, Means was able to land a higher volume and cause a visible amount of damage on Perry’s face by the end.
Perry showed his ability on the ground in the first round, taking the back of Means to look for a rear naked choke.
The fight was Perry’s first since being accused of domestic violence by his ex-wife.
Perry missed weight for the fight, coming in four-and-a-half pounds over the 171-pound limit for the bout. He won in his last fight, defeating Mickey Gall on scorecards back in June.
Means won a decision in his previous fight as well, winning over Laureano Staropoli in August.
Bout 9: Katlyn Chookagian (14-4) vs. Cynthia Calvillo (9-1-1) (Flyweight)
Chookagian Wins Decision, Gives Calvillo First Loss At Flyweight
Katlyn Chookagian put together a strong performance on the feet to defeat Cynthia Calvillo via decision after 15 minutes of action. The fight, which was nearly a pure striking battle throughout, saw Chookagian land the better strikes throughout.
The fight was a quick turnaround for Chookagian, who was stopped within a round by Jessica Andrade in October.
“The best way to get over a loss is to get a win,” said Chookagian in her post-fight interview.
Calvillo won her flyweight debut in June, defeating Jessica Eye via unanimous decision after five rounds of action.
Bout 8: Mauricio Rua (27-11-1) vs. Paul Craig (13-4-1) (Light Heavyweight)
Craig Wins Rematch Over Rua, Finishes Him In The Second With Strikes
Paul Craig won a rematch over Mauricio Rua on the main card, finishing the fight in the second round with strikes. Craig took the back of Rua, throwing hooks to the head until Rua tapped out in the second round.
The fight was a rematch from a 2019 bout between the light heavyweights that was ruled a draw after three rounds.
“Fighting him a year ago gave us the confidence that we can stand and bang with him, [and that] we can take him down,” said Craig in his post-fight interview.
Craig won the fight after a strong performance on the ground, landing numerous takedowns and controlling Rua on the ground.
Both fighters picked up a win since they met in 2019.
Bout 7: Brandon Moreno (17-5-1) vs. Brandon Royval (12-4) (Flyweight)
Injury Takes Royval Out of Fight Late In The First Round
A shoulder injury took Brandon Royval out of action late in the first round, giving Brandon Moreno a win and continuing his second UFC campaign at flyweight.
The fight was called late in the round, as Royval was clearly injured while Moreno was on his back on the ground. The referee stopped the fight with a second left in the round while Royval was in lots of pain.
Moreno had control for most of the round, spending a large portion of it on the back of Royval on the ground.
“I’m ready for a title now,” said Moreno in his post-fight interview.
Moreno entered the fight after two consecutive wins in the flyweight division. His last fight before Saturday was in March, defeating Jussier Formiga via decision.
Royval made a quick ascension up the UFC rankings in 2020, defeating Tim Elliott and Kai Kara-France to get placed sixth in the flyweight division. The former LFA Champion was given a “Fight of the Night” award for his September win against Kara-France.
Bout 6: Joaquin Buckley (11-3) vs. Jordan Wright (11-0) (Middleweight)
Buckley Stops Wright With Punches, Ends His Undefeated Run
Joaquin Buckley ended Jordan Wright’s 11-fight undefeated streak on the prelims, stopping him early in the second round with punches.
Buckley finished the fight by scoring two hooks to the head that floored Wright, causing the referee to step in and stop the fight.
The finish came only moments into the second round after a first-round where Wright almost got stopped.
Buckley had Wright in trouble late in the opening round, dropping him with a flurry of punches. Wright stayed on the ground and survived the closing moments of the rounds.
Buckley earned his first UFC win in October, stopping Impa Kasanganay with a spinning back kick that later went viral. The knockout has been viewed millions of times on social media.
Wright won his UFC debut in August, winning over Ike Villanueva in the first round due to a doctor stoppage. All 11 of his fights as a pro ended within six minutes each.
Bout 5: Antonina Shevchenko (8-2) vs. Ariane Lipski (13-5) (Flyweight)
Shevchenko Shows Skills On The Ground To Earn Win
Antonina Shevchenko showed her skills on the ground on Saturday, stopping Ariane Lipski with ground and pound in the second round.
The finish came after nearly two rounds of work from Shevchenko on the ground.
The finish in the second round came when Shevchenko started to let hammerfist punches go while on the back of Lipski. The referee stopped the fight after a series of unanswered shots.
Shevchenko’s sister, Valentina Shevchenko, will be competing in the evening’s co-main event against Jennifer Maia.
“The perfect performance would be if two sisters would win, so of course I had to do my part,” said Shevchenko in her post-fight interview.
Shevchenko bounced back from a loss with the bout, as her previous fight was a decision loss to Katlyn Chookagian. Shevchenko now has an even UFC record of two wins and two losses.
Lipski’s two-fight win streak was snapped with the fight. Her last fight was in July, where he stopped Luana Carolina early with a kneebar.
Bout 4: Nicolas Dalby (18-3-1) vs. Daniel Rodriguez (13-1) (Welterweight)
Dalby Wins Decision Over Rodriguez
Nicolas Dalby won a fight on the prelims, taking a unanimous decision victory against Daniel Rodriguez. The close fight concluded Rodriguez’s nine-fight win streak which included three wins in the UFC.
Rodriguez had success earlier in the fight, putting together a higher volume of strikes than Dalby.
Keeping the fight at a distance, Dalby had a better performance in the latter half of the competition.
Dalby failed to score a takedown in the fight, with numerous attempts blocked throughout.
Dalby’s last fight was originally a loss to Jesse Ronson in July, although it was overturned to a no-contest this month after Ronson took a 20-month USADA suspension.
Dalby’s fight before then was his UFC debut, where he defeated Alex Oliveira on the scorecards.
Rodriguez entered the fight after 2020 wins against Tim Means, Gabe Green and Dwight Grant.
Bout 3: Alan Jouban (16-7) vs. Jared Gooden (17-4) (Welterweight)
Jouban Wins In Return To Action, Defeats Gooden Via Decision
Alan Jouban won in his return to action on Saturday, defeating Jared Gooden via decision after three rounds.
Jouban controlled most of the fight with his strikes. While Gooden would often be the advancing fighter on the feet, Jouban would connect with most strikes.
Jouban’s best round was the second, where he rocked Gooden numerous times on the feet.
The fight had tense final moments in the third round, as Jouban looked for a guillotine choke on the ground as the clock ran out of time.
The fight was Jouban’s first since early 2019, where he lost a split decision to Dwight Grant.
Gooden made his UFC debut on Saturday after a trio of wins on the regional scene.
Bout 2: Kyle Daukaus (9-1) vs. Dustin Stoltzfus (13-1) (Middleweight)
Daukaus Earns First UFC Win, Defeating
Kyle Daukaus earned his first UFC win on the prelims, taking a unanimous decision victory over Dustin Stoltzfus.
The win for Daukaus came after three rounds where clinches and explosive combinations of punches allowed him to sweep scorecards.
Daukaus lost his UFC debut in June, losing a decision to Brendan Allen. He was a CFFC Middleweight Champion prior to his UFC run.
Stoltzfus was signed to the UFC after a win on “Dana White’s Contender Series” over the summer.
Bout 1: Louis Cosce (7-0) vs. Sasha Palatnikov (5-2) (Welterweight)
Palatnikov Wins UFC Debut, Stops Cosce After Damaging Back-and-Forth Brawl
Sasha Palatnikov won his UFC debut to start the prelims, finishing Louis Cosce in the third round after a damaging back-and-forth battle on the feet.
The finish in the third round saw Palatnikov stop a takedown, landing a series of punches on the ground after to end the fight. The moment came shortly after Palatnikov landed a right cross on the feet that stunned Cosce.
Both fighters were rocked by shots frequently in all three rounds. Palatnikov made a comeback in the fight, as he nearly got finished in the opening round.
“If I get hit I get woken up,” said Palatnikov in his post-fight interview.
The first round of the fight was a hectic striking battle where both fighters got clipped with shots numerous times.
Cosce nearly closed the fight early in the round, hurting Palatnikov and dropping him with punches. Palatnikov was able to work back to his feet and start to hurt Cosce with shots of his own later in the round.
As fatigue started to become a factor in the second round, Palatnikov started to out-strike Cosce on the feet.
Palatnikov made history in the fight, being the first UFC fighter to represent Hong Kong.
Cosce earned a UFC contract in the summer after defeating Victory Reyna on “Dana White’s Contender Series” in the second minute with strikes.