Alexa Grasso’s flawless run at flyweight earned its biggest win yet Saturday, as she went five rounds against Viviane Araujo to win a unanimous decision.
Grasso’s win headlined a UFC “Fight Night” card from the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA this weekend.
Grasso earned the victory through a tough 25-minute stand-up performance. While the number of strikes landed between the flyweights was close on paper, Grasso pulled ahead on scorecards early by landing the better shots.
Grasso also stopped numerous takedown attempts from Araujo, keeping the fight in a position where she was finding success.
The fight was the first UFC main event appearance for either fighter.
Grasso has yet to lose since moving up to flyweight. She has scored four consecutive wins since 2020, including a submission victory over Joanne Wood from earlier this year.
Araujo entered this fight with a UFC record of five wins and two losses. Her previous bout came against Andrea Lee, who she beat via unanimous decision in May.
Martinez Drops Swanson Numerous Times, Earns Stoppage To Keep Winning Streak Alive
Jonathan Martinez spoiled the UFC bantamweight debut of Cub Swanson in Saturday’s co-main event, putting on a stellar stand-up performance that forced a finish in the second round.
Martinez constantly put pressure on Swanson, hurting him in both rounds.
Martinez first dropped Swanson in the opening round with a knee to the head. Another knee in the clinch brought Swanson to the canvas again later in the frame, nearly causing the referee to end the bout before the round expired.
Leg kicks started to become an issue for Swanson in the third round, causing him to fall to the ground numerous times. After being dropped by a kick to his lead left leg for the third time, referee Herb Dean stepped in to end the fight.
Martinez has now strung together four consecutive wins at bantamweight. He already appeared twice earlier this year, beating Vince Morales and Alejandro Perez on scorecards.
Martinez called for a fight against veteran Dominick Cruz in his post-fight interview.
Swanson, a veteran of more than a decade, was making his first bantamweight appearance in the UFC cage. His previous appearance was up at featherweight, where he scored a stoppage victory over Darren Elkins in late 2021.
Todorovic Makes Comeback Against Wright
Dusko Todorovic survived a tough first round to put away a tiring Jordan Wright in the second round.
Todorovic stopped Wright in the second frame with a long stretch of ground and pound shots. This moment concluded a one-sided frame from him, where he lit Wright up both on the feet and on the ground with strikes.
This successful round for Todorovic only came after a strong opening five minutes for Wright.
Wright clearly took the opening round through his ability to significantly out-land Todorovic
The victory put Todorovic back into the win column after getting stopped by Chidi Njokuani in May.
Wright has now lost three consecutive fights in the UFC cage. His previous two losses saw him get finished in the first round by his opponents.
Assuncao Ends Losing Streak
Raphael Assuncao picked up his first victory since 2018 on Saturday night, going three rounds against Victor Henry to win a unanimous decision.
Assuncao landed the better shots against Henry during a three-round battle that was primarily on the feet. He often strung together combinations by catching kicks of Henry, then holding onto his leg while unloading with punches.
Assuncao snapped a four-fight losing streak with his performance this weekend. Previous fights came against high-level names at bantamweight, like Marlon Moraes, Cody Garbrandt and Cory Sandhagen.
“I want to thank everybody who stuck by me during these tough times in my career,” said Assuncao after his win on Saturday.
Henry, also a veteran of MMA, was coming off a UFC debut win against Raoni Barcelos from January.
Menifield Stops Cirkunov Early With Punches
Alonzo Menifield strung together a slick combination of punches to stop Misha Cirkunov in the first round.
Menifield stunned Cirkunov in the second minute of their bout with a left hook. He was then floored by a right uppercut that followed.
Menifield then landed a few hard hammerfist punches before the referee stepped in to end the fight.
There was some concern after the fight, as Cirkunov remained on the canvas for an extended period of time after the finish.
Menifield has now picked up two wins this year. His previous victory came against short-notice opponent Askar Mozharov, who he finished within a round as well.
The loss for Cirkunov extended a rough stretch as a pro. He has now lost five of his last six bouts, with four of those appearances coming via finish.
The Rest of the Card
An all-out brawl on the feet at bantamweight saw Mana Martinez walk away with a razor-thin split decision over Brandon Davis. The performance from Martinez included a strong moment late in the second, dropping Davis with strikes and nearing a finish before running out of time.
An early leg injury to Nick Maximov significantly hurt his mobility during a middleweight bout against Jacob Malkoun, in part contributing to a unanimous decision result that didn’t go his way. Along with the injury that hurt Maximov, Malkoun was able to connect with punches that gave him a solid lead on scorecards.
Joanderson Brito stopped short-notice UFC newcomer Lucas Alexander in just over two minutes, getting him to the ground and applying a rear naked choke from the back for a submission.
Piera Rodriguez had a hard-fought performance for her second UFC victory, working to a unanimous decision against Sam Hughes.
Undefeated flyweight prospect Tatsuro Taira scored his second UFC win on the prelims, catching CJ Vergara with an armbar in the second round.
Pete Rodriguez picked up his first UFC victory in a one-sided mauling, piecing together combinations of strikes against Mike Jackson and eventually knocking him out in the first round.
Main Card (7:00PM EDT / 4:00PM PDT) (ESPN+ / TSN 5)
Bout 11: Alexa Grasso def. Viviane Araujo via Decision, Unanimous
Bout 10: Jonathan Martinez def. Cub Swanson via TKO, Strikes (RD 2, 4:19)
Bout 9: Dusko Todorovic def. Jordan Wright via TKO, Strikes (RD 2, 3:12)
Bout 8: Raphael Assuncao def. Victor Henry via Decision, Unanimous
Bout 7: Alonzo Menifield def. Misha Cirkunov via TKO, Strikes (RD 1, 1:28)
Preliminary Card (4:00PM EDT / 1:00PM PDT) (ESPN+ / TSN 5)
Bout 6: Mana Martinez def. Brandon Davis via Decision, Split
Bout 5: Jacob Malkoun def. Nick Maximov via Decision, Unanimous
Bout 4: Joanderson Brito def. Lucas Alexander via Submission, Rear Naked Choke (RD 1, 2:02)
Bout 3: Piera Rodriguez def. Sam Hughes via Decision, Unanimous
Bout 2: Tatsuro Taira def. CJ Vergara via Submission, Armbar (RD 2, 4:19)
Bout 1: Pete Rodriguez def. Mike Jackson via TKO, Strikes (RD 1, 1:33)