UFC FIGHT NIGHT REPORT: Islam Makhachev, Miesha Tate victorious

Eric Marcotte's review of UFC Fight Night featuring Islam Makhachev submitting Thiago Moises, and Miesha Tate's successful return.

Photo Courtesy: UFC

UFC Fight Night Report: Islam Makhachev submits Thiago Moisés

By: Eric Marcotte 

On Saturday night, the UFC returned to the Apex Facility in Las Vegas, Nevada for their first Fight Night card of the month. This event was originally scheduled to be headlined by a fight between Max Holloway and Yair Rodriguez, but the bout was canceled following an injury to Holloway. In its place, Islam Makhachev and Thiago Moises stepped into the main event slot, notably marking the first five-round fight of Makhachev’s career. Makhachev has been considered one of the top prospects at 155lbs for years, but an inability to find ranked opponents has slowed his potential ascent of the division’s rankings. For Moises, three straight wins against solid opposition had quickly moved him up the ladder after a rather forgettable start to his run in the UFC. A win against Islam Makhachev would do even more to push Moises closer to title contention. Additionally, this card featured the return of Miesha Tate, who competed in her first MMA bout since 2016 against Marion Reneau.

Jon Anik provided commentary for this card alongside Paul Felder and Michael Bisping. Performance of the Night bonuses went out to Miesha Tate, Mateusz Gamrot, Rodolfo Vieira, and Rodrigo Nascimento. Fight of the Night honors were awarded to Billy Quarantillo and Gabriel Benitez.


*Rodrigo Nascimento def. Alan Baudot by TKO at 1:29 of Round 2

*Malcom Gordon def. Francisco Figueiredo by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

*Sergey Morozov def. Khalid Taha by unanimous decision (30-27 all)

*Amanda Lemos def. Montserrat Conejo by TKO at 0:35 of Round 1

*Daniel Rodriguez def. Preston Parsons by TKO at 3:47 of Round 1

*Billy Quarantillo def. Gabriel Benitez by TKO at 3:40 of Round 3

*Rodolfo Vieira def. Dustin Stoltzfus by rear naked choke at 1:54 of Round 3

*Mateusz Gamrot def. Jeremy Stephens by kimura at 1:05 of Round 1

*Miesha Tate def. Marion Reneau by TKO at 1:53 of Round 3

*Islam Makhachev def. Thiago Moises by rear naked choke at 2:38 of Round 4


After an aggressive start from Baudot, Nascimento wrapped him up in the clinch against the cage for an extended period of time. Baudot was able to land some heavy shots with his back to the cage, and landed on top of Nascimento following a failed takedown attempt, as he continued to throw down punches. Nascimento picked himself up quickly, but it felt as though every shot Baudot landed was hurting Nascimento. 10-9 Baudot.

The doctor was brought in to examine Nascimento between rounds, although the reason was not made clear on the broadcast. Shortly into the second round, Nascimento threw a kick that landed low, and the fight was paused. Nascimento went on the attack when the action resumed, busting Baudot opens with a series of punches. Nascimento gave Baudot no room to recover, and he continued to pour it on until Baudot shelled up against the cage, bringing an end to the fight.

WINNER: Rodrigo Nascimento by TKO at 1:29 of Round 2

Nascimento was a big favorite coming into this fight, but Baudot had him in a lot of trouble in the opening round. To Nascimento’s credit, he weathered the storm, rebounding strongly in the second round to pick up the finish. In his post-fight interview, Nascimento called out Chase Sherman. Nascimento is now 2-1 in the UFC.


Gordon was fighting very aggressively but was getting caught by Figueiredo on the way in. Gordon attempted to take Figueiredo down, but it was reversed and Figueiredo began to work from the top position. Figueiredo was able to control a large portion of the round from on top but lost his position after rolling for a leg lock. Gordon threw down a bit of ground and pound in the final minute, making this a much closer round. I gave the edge to Figueiredo.

Figueiredo sprawled on a double leg attempt, resulting in the fighters grappling against the cage. Gordon continued to be the busier fighter after they broke apart, with Figueiredo seeming content to counter and defend takedown attempts. Figueiredo began to push forward in the final minutes of the round but gave up a takedown with thirty seconds remaining. 19-19.

Figueiredo fell after an attempted flying attack, and Gordon capitalized on the moment, beginning to work from Figueiredo’s guard. Gordon was rather inactive from on top, and Figueiredo managed to climb back to his feet halfway through the round. With a minute remaining, Figueiredo tripped Gordon and landed on top, but gave up top position quickly and lost this round. 29-28 Gordon.

WINNER: Malcolm Gordon by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

It was a fairly close fight, but Gordon finished every round strongly, securing the fight on the judge’s scorecards. I don’t think giving the fight to Figueiredo would have been by any means a robbery, but I thought he lacked urgency at times, and that cost him with the judges. After losing both of his first two UFC fights in the opening round, Gordon desperately needed a win here, and he accomplished that goal, letting it be known in his post-fight interview that his place is with the UFC.


Taha was throwing bombs to start the fight but found himself taken down about two minutes into the round. Morozov controlled the remainder of the round from top position and ended the round with some strong ground and pound following an ill-advised heel hook attempt from Taha. 10-9 Morozov.

Morozov tagged Taha with a strong combination early in the second round, before Taha responded with a heavy left hand. Around the halfway point of the round, Morozov brought the fight back to the ground, and while Taha was able to get back to his feet this time, he was unable to create separation. In the final minute of the round, Morozov took Taha’s back, ending the round in a strong position. 20-18 Morozov.

Morozov found success on the feet to begin the third round and took Taha to the ground once again. While Taha was never in significant trouble, this was probably Morozov’s most dominant round, and he cruised to the end of the fight. 30-27 Morozov.

WINNER: Sergey Morozov by unanimous decision (30-27 all)

Morozov had the clear edge in the grappling department, a strength on which he leaned to control this fight. He held his own on the feet as well, and I would say this was a strong all-around performance for Morozov, after dropping his UFC debut in January. With this loss, Taha has fallen to 1-4 (1 NC) in the UFC, and he’ll certainly need a big performance to turn things around in his next bout.


Just a few seconds into the fight, Lemos rocked Conejo with a right hand and dropped her hard with a follow-up left hook. She threw down a vicious hammer fist, and the fight was quickly stopped.

WINNER: Amanda Lemos by TKO at 0:35 of Round 1

A quick night at the office for Amanda Lemos, who made easy work of Montserrat Conejo here. The stoppage created some disagreement, as Lemos recovered from the knockdown almost instantaneously, but I had no issues with the stoppage, as Conejo looked as though she was out on her feet as the referee tried to inform her of the stoppage. In her post-fight interview, Lemos called for a top-five opponent, preferably on “fight island” (with the help of Wallid Ismail).


Parsons shot for a takedown almost immediately and landed a solid left hand after Rodriguez defended the attempt. Parsons began to attack the lead leg, but Rodriguez was starting to get comfortable on the feet, landing a series of punches that had Parsons hurt. Parsons left eye looked damaged, and he could only take so much before he shelled up on the ground, allowing Rodriguez to finish the fight with ground and pound.

WINNER: Daniel Rodriguez by TKO at 3:47 of Round 1

Parsons took this fight on short notice and really didn’t have too much to offer Rodriguez on this particular night. Rodriguez’s takedown defense was perfect, and from the second he started turning it on offensively, you could tell that this was not going to be a long fight. Rodriguez is now 5-1 in the UFC, and I’ve been largely impressed by him throughout his run in the promotion. He’s probably still a fight or two away from ranked competition, but he certainly has the potential to crack that top fifteen.


They exchanged kicks to begin the fight before Quarantillo dropped Benitez hard with a left hand. Benitez tried to set up an armbar off of his back, but Quarantillo picked him up, before slamming him down to the ground to get out of it. Quarantillo transitioned to the back of Benitez, who was bleeding from his forehead. Quarantillo was unable to secure the finish, and Benitez got back to his feet with a minute remaining. 10-8 Quarantillo.

Quarantillo wasted little time in getting the fight back to the ground. He had a good position, but Benitez was able to get back to his feet a bit quicker this time. Unfortunately for Benitez, he was unable to stay there long, as Quarantillo dragged him right back down. The right side of Benitez’s face looked very swollen, and the commentators speculated that it may be a broken orbital. After an inadvertent groin strike paused the action, a doctor was brought in to check on Benitez, but he quickly allowed him to continue. Quarantillo landed a series of hard strikes as time expired, putting an exclamation mark on another dominant round. 20-16 Quarantillo.

Less than a minute into the final round, Benitez dropped Quarantillo with a sharp 1-2. Quarantillo was able to recover quickly and took Benitez down in the center of the octagon. He took the back of Benitez, and from that position, Quarantillo threw strike after strike until the fight was stopped.

WINNER: Billy Quarantillo by TKO at 3:40 of Round 3

It’s not too often you see a fight stopped from strikes when a fighter is controlling his opponent’s back, but Benitez had just taken so much damage that I don’t think many would argue with Mark Smith’s stoppage here. While it was (mostly) a one-sided fight, it was also a very entertaining scrap, with both men showcasing serious resiliency. After picking up his first UFC loss in his last outing, this was a strong return to form for Billy Q, who remains a solid prospect at featherweight. Quarantillo called out Charles Rosa in his post-fight interview.


Vieira opened up with a clean right hand. He tagged Stoltzfus with another one about a minute later, causing him to bleed slightly from his nose. Stoltzfus began to turn it on offensively, marching forward with a significant output. He attacked the body while Vieira continued to look for a knockout blow. A close round, but I thought Vieira landed the better strikes, and I gave him the round, despite a late knee from Stoltzfus.

Vieira immediately took Stoltzfus down to begin the second round. Stoltzfus quickly made it back to his feet, but he was getting lit up by the jab of Vieira. It felt as though the round was still very much in the air with two minutes remaining, due to the similar output offensively from both fighters. Vieira cut Stoltzfus open late, and I thought he took this one by the narrowest of margins. 20-18 Vieira.

Vieira began the final round with another takedown. Stoltzfus powered to his feet but was taken right back down. Stoltzfus attempted to climb to his feet once more, but Vieira climbed up his back, sunk in a rear-naked choke, and Stoltzfus tapped out as he fell to the ground.

WINNER: Rodolfo Vieira by rear-naked choke at 1:54 of Round 3

This was an impressive submission victory for Vieira after a hard-fought twelve minutes. Vieira’s comfort zone is no secret, with seven of his professional wins coming by way of submission, but the majority of this fight took place on the feet, and Vieira held his own against a game Dustin Stoltzfus. Vieira is now 3-1 in the UFC, with all four of those fights ending by way of submission.


Gamrot took Stephens down seconds into the fight. Gamrot transitioned to north-south position, and quickly locked in a kimura, forcing Stephens to tap.

WINNER: Mateusz Gamrot by kimura at 1:05 of Round 1

Jeremy Stephens marked the toughest test of Gamrot’s career thus far on paper, but he really just steamrolled the UFC veteran here. Gamrot was confident in his grappling ability in comparison to Stephens, and he succeeded with every move he attempted here, resulting in a masterful performance. Gamrot is now 2-1 in the UFC, with that one loss coming by split decision in his debut fight. For Stephens, this was a very tough result. He was looking to breathe some new life into his career at lightweight here, but things didn’t go his way, and he has compiled a record of 0-5 (1 NC) throughout his last six fights. He’s faced tough competition and is a long-time veteran of the UFC, but he’s really going to have to turn it around in his next outing, or else he could very well be looking at the end of his run in the promotion.  


This marked Tate’s first fight since November of 2016.

After a fairly uneventful start to the fight on the feet, Reneau was able to defend a takedown attempt from Tate but found herself with her back to the cage. Tate got more aggressive with her striking towards the end of the round and was able to take Reneau down following a series of right hands. She didn’t have enough time to do much from her position, but it may have very well be the difference in an otherwise close round. 10-9 Tate.

Tate was able to get the fight back to the ground following a pretty blatant fence grab from Reneau. Tate worked from side control, landing some hard elbows to the side of Reneau, who was attempting a kimura from the bottom with no success. This round was more dominant for Tate, and I had her up 20-18 going into the final round.

Tate was understandably confident heading into this third round, tagging Reneau on the feet before taking her back to the ground. Reneau gave up her back, and Tate poured on the ground and pound until the fight was stopped.

WINNER: Miesha Tate by TKO at 1:53 of Round 3

Miesha Tate looked to be in top form here, picking up her first win since winning the UFC Women’s Bantamweight Championship in 2016. Tate retired after her late 2016 loss to Raquel Pennington, but seemed to be rejuvenated for this return, and won in impressive fashion here, becoming the first and only fighter to stop Marion Reneau. Tate made her championship intentions known after the fight but seemed fairly open for her next fight. Personally, I think there would be significant interest in a rematch with Holly Holm, but it wouldn’t shock me if the UFC just jumped straight to the Amanda Nunes rematch.

It was known that Marion Reneau was planning on retiring after this fight, and she confirmed that in her post-fight interview. If this is indeed marked her last fight, she will retire with a professional record of 9-8-1, with 13 of those fights coming in the UFC. Her resume includes wins over the likes of Jessica Andrade and Sara McMann.


Moises wrapped Makhachev up along the cage following a slow start to the fight on the feet. Makhachev defended well before creating some separation, and he successfully defended another takedown not long after. It was Makhachev who ultimately got the fight to the ground, and ended the round in the guard of Moises. 10-9 Makhachev.

Moises was bleeding beneath his left eye following Makhachev’s offense near the end of the first. Moises took Makhachev down and was nearly able to take his back, but Makhachev shook him off, taking the back of Moises in return. He controlled the rest of the round in this position, attempting an armbar just before time expired. 20-18 Makhachev.

Makhachev continued to control the fight in the third round. Moises hunted for a takedown, but he was unable to get Makhachev back down, resulting in a prolonged period of time spent against the cage. Islam took him down towards the end of the round, and Moises responded with an attempted leg lock. Makhachev threw some hammerfists, and made it out of round without much difficulty. 30-27 Makhachev.

Makhachev lifted Moises up into the air and dumped him down to the ground to begin round four. Makhachev took his back, locked in a rear-naked choke, and Moises was forced to submit.

WINNER: Islam Makhachev by rear-naked choke at 2:38 of Round 4

This marked Makhachev’s first main event in the UFC, and he delivered a dominant performance. Moises is a strong grappler, but Makhachev had little difficulty in handling him on the ground, ultimately securing the submission finish. Islam Makhachev has been a top prospect at lightweight for a long time, and I think it’s fair to say he’s officially moved into contendership status. Makhachev has now won eight fights in a row, and he called out Rafael dos Anjos in his post-fight interview. That’s a fight that the UFC had attempted to put together before, and it would be a sensible fight to make again with both fighters now in the lightweight top ten. He also expressed his interest in fighting Michael Chandler, which would be perhaps an even more interesting fight stylistically.

About Eric Marcotte 189 Articles
A graduate of Laurentian University, Eric reports on Mixed Martial Arts at POST Wrestling.