UFC Fight Night Results: Vicente Luque defeats Rafael dos Anjos by decision

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UFC Fight Night Results: Vicente Luque defeats Rafael dos Anjos by decision

On Saturday evening, the UFC held a Fight Night event from the Apex Facility in Las Vegas, Nevada. The card was headlined by a welterweight bout between former UFC Lightweight Champion, Rafael dos Anjos, and Vicente Luque. Despite losses in his last two fights, Luque remains the 10th-ranked welterweight in the world, and after a year of inactivity, Luque was looking to regain his status as a genuine contender at welterweight with a win here against dos Anjos. While dos Anjos’s days as a top contender are likely behind him, he remains one of the most well-rounded fighters in the sport, and a win over Luque would add yet another impressive win to his remarkable resume. In the co-main event, Cub Swanson fought Hakeem Dawodu, as both men looked to climb back into the featherweight rankings.

Brendan Fitzgerald provided commentary for this card alongside Paul Felder and Daniel Cormier. Performance of the Night bonuses were awarded to Da’Mon Blackshear, Marcus McGhee, Iasmin Lucindo, and Khalil Rountree.



  • Luana Santos def. Juliana Miller by TKO at 3:41 of Round 1
  • Da’Mon Blackshear def. Jose Johnson by twister at 3:47 of Round 1
  • Jaqueline Amorim def. Montserrat Ruiz by TKO at 3:41 of Round 3
  • Martin Buday def. Josh Parisian by Kimura at 4:11 of Round 1
  • Isaac Dulgarian def. Francis Marshall by TKO at 4:48 of Round 1
  • Terrance McKinney def. Mike Breeden by TKO at 1:25 of Round 1
  • Marcus McGhee def. J.P Buys by TKO at 2:19 of Round 1


  • Josh Fremd def. Jamie Pickett by unanimous decision (30-27 all)
  • J. Dobson def. Tafon Nchukwi by unanimous decision (29-28 all)
  • Iasmin Lucindo def. Polyana Viana by arm triangle at 3:42 of Round 2
  • Khalil Rountree def. Chris Daukaus by TKO at 2:40 of Round 1
  • Cub Swanson def. Hakeem Dawodu by unanimous decision (29-28 all)
  • Vicente Luque def. Rafael dos Anjos by unanimous decision (49-46, 48-47, 48-47)


Miller brought the fight to Santos early, applying heavy pressure to put Santos onto the backfoot. Santos cracked Miller with an overhand right on her way in, and the fighters started trading shots wildly, with Miller seemingly hurt from the overhand right, backing herself against the cage. Miller continued to swing back at Santos despite being hurt, and while this bought her time, Santos’s onslaught of offense eventually started to overwhelm Miller, and while Miller never left her feet, referee Jason Herzog was eventually forced to step in and stop the fight when it became clear that Miller was too hurt to improve her position. 

WINNER: Luana Santos by TKO at 3:41 of Round 1

Miller’s strategy seemed to be to push a heavy pace and overwhelm Santos on the feet, and while she caught Santos off guard in the opening minute, it did not take long before Santos composed herself, stood her ground, and started firing back. Santos immediately rocked Miller with a heavy overhand right, and from this point onward, Santos just pressed forward, throwing bombs at the rocked Miller until the fight was finally stopped. It was a strong performance from Santos in her UFC debut, picking up the first TKO finish of her professional career.


Blackshear came out swinging but opted to take Johnson down when Johnson began to return fire. Johnson quickly worked his way back to the feet but was dragged back down by Blackshear, who transitioned to the back of Johnson. Blackshear was a bit low on the back of Johnson, and it became apparent that Blackshear was not in fact looking for a rear naked choke, but a twister. Johnson did his best to fight the hands, but Blackshear locked the submission in and cranked it until Johnson was forced to submit.

WINNER: Da’Mon Blackshear by twister at 3:47 of Round 1

This marked the third twister finish in UFC history, with Blackshear joining Bryce Mitchell and the Korean Zombie as the only fighters to pull off the submission in the promotion’s history. It was an impressive finish, and given the rarity of the submission, one that will certainly remain in the minds of fight fans whenever Blackshear fights from this point onwards. In his last fight, Blackshear showcased his striking, but he got back to his bread and butter here, out grappling Johnson with ease before picking up his ninth career submission finish. Blackshear’s UFC record improved to 2-1-1 following this win.


Amorim wasted little time in taking the fight to the ground, where she began to work from half-guard. Amorim quickly passed the guard of Ruiz, taking full mount with three and a half minutes remaining in the round. Amorim postured up and started throwing down brutal ground-and-pound strikes, before locking in a body triangle and taking the back of Ruiz. Amorim opted to commit to an armbar, and she came very close to securing the submission, but Ruiz was able to roll out of it, and ultimately made it out of the round despite eating some more heavy ground and pound strikes as the horn sounded. This was a 10-8 round for Amorim.

Ruiz ate a clean head kick in the opening minute of the second round but powered through it and took the fight to the ground. It did not take long for Amorim to take top position, however, and she took the back of Ruiz with well over three minutes to work. Much like the previous round, Amorim worked her way into full mount, where she landed solid ground and pound strikes while looking for submissions whenever the opportunities presented themselves. Once again, Ruiz was able to make it out of the round, but this was another 10-8 round for Amorim.

Amorim effectively pulled guard in the third round, with complete confidence in her ability to sweep her way into top position. Ruiz was able to maintain top position, however, and kept Amorim trapped beneath her a considerable portion of the round. Just when it looked as though Ruiz might be able to keep the position until the fight’s conclusion, Amorim scrambled into top position, immediately mounted Ruiz, and threw down ground and pound shots until the fight was stopped.

WINNER: Jaqueline Amorim by TKO at 3:41 of Round 3

Aside from Ruiz’s brief period of success in the third round, this was about as one-sided of a fight as you will see in the sport of mixed martial arts. Amorim absolutely dominated this fight on the ground, transitioning from dominant position to dominant position at will, constantly throwing down damaging ground and pound strikes, while threatening the occasional submission. There were multiple moments throughout this bout when referee Chris Tognoni was on the verge of stopping the fight, but Ruiz was able to do just enough defensively to stay alive, at least until the final round, where Tognoni had finally seen enough and waived the fight off as Amorim teed off on Ruiz with another ground and pound flurry. Amorim improved to 1-1 in the UFC with this win.


Parisian tagged Buday with a lengthy combination of strikes to start the fight, but Buday immediately rocked him with a shot in return, and Buday went on the attack as he looked to secure the quick finish. Parisian shelled up against the cage as Buday did his best to overwhelm him with strikes, but Parisian was able to weather the storm and eventually clinched Buday up to relieve the pressure. By the mid-way point of the round, Parisian already looked exhausted, and Buday started chipping away at that gas tank further by attacking the body of Parisian with knees as well. Buday took Parisian to the ground, and quickly locked in a kimura, forcing Parisian to submit.

WINNER: Martin Buday by Kimura at 4:11 of Round 1

Buday came out swinging and quickly overwhelmed Parisian here. Parisian was rocked early and never seemed to completely recover, as Buday just poured it on until he ultimately secured the submission finish in the round’s final minute. It was a dominant win for Buday, and easily his most impressive performance since making his UFC debut in April of last year. Buday is now 4-0 in the UFC, and he has won twelve consecutive fights since dropping his second professional fight to Juan Espino in 2017. After the fight, Daniel Cormier asked Buday if he was ready for ranked competition, and while Buday admitted that ranked opposition would mark a considerable challenge for him, he also stated he was ready for the task.


Dulgarian was able to take the fight to the ground in the bouts opening minute, where he began to work from the guard of Marshall. Dulgarian controlled Marshall with ease from top position throughout the round, throwing down short ground and pound strikes while trying to improve his position. In the round’s final minute, Dulgarian postured up and really began to do significant damage with his ground and pound strikes, cutting Marshall open with sharp elbows, and Dulgarian just continued to throw down those heavy elbows until the fight was finally stopped.

WINNER: Isaac Dulgarian by TKO at 4:48 of Round 1

Dulgarian is a strong wrestler, and he quickly got this fight to the ground, where he absolutely dominated Marshall. Dulgarian’s pressure on the ground was suffocating, giving Marshall no room to work from his back, and when he began to attack Marshall with ground and pound strikes, he was not just throwing to stay busy, but to end the fight, and that finish came quickly, picking up the first-round finish in his UFC debut. Dulgarian has finished all six of his professional bouts in this first round, with this being his longest fight to date, and he will certainly be a prospect to keep your eye on as he works his way up the featherweight ladder.


McKinney caught Breeden with a pair of head kicks in the opening minute of the fight, and he pressed forward early, looking to secure the quick finish. A body shot from McKinney seemed to hurt Breeden, and Breeden covered up as he attempted to defend himself, but McKinney went back to the head with a series of heavy hooks, rocking Breeden repeatedly. Breeden did his best to escape McKinney’s onslaught but was unable to create the distance he needed, and the fight was quickly stopped as McKinney teed off on Breeden against the cage.

WINNER: Terrance McKinney by TKO at 1:25 of Round 1

This had been an undercard full of quick finishes, and McKinney kept that theme alive by finishing Mike Breeden in less than ninety seconds. Win or lose, McKinney’s fights are always action-packed affairs that tend to end in quick finishes, and a six-fight streak of first-round finishes seemed to have him primed for a big fight in the lightweight division back in 2022, where Drew Dober put an end to McKinney’s win streak with an impressive first-round finish of his own. Since the Dober fight, McKinney had compiled a total record of 1-2 in the promotion, and a loss here would have marked three straight for McKinney, so this was a much-needed win for McKinney to keep himself from falling too far down the ladder at 155lbs. For Breeden, this did mark his third consecutive loss, and with a total record of 0-3 in the promotion, I would not be surprised it this marked his final fight in the UFC for the time being.


Roughly two minutes into the fight, McGhee caught Buys with a step-in right hand, and Buys fell forward to the ground, rocked badly. McGhee knew that Buys was out of it, and opted not to follow Buys to the ground, as the fight was waived off.

WINNER: Marcus McGhee by TKO at 2:19 of Round 1

The trend of quick finishes on this preliminary card continued here, with yet another first-round finish. There is not much to break down from the action, as the fight itself did not play out for long before the knockout, but it was certainly an impressive finish from McGhee, who caught Buys with a well-timed right hand as Buys stepped in, dropping him hard, before effectively calling the fight off himself, knowing that Buys was done. McGhee is now 2-0 in the UFC following this win, and he has secured finishes in both of those fights.


Fremd missed weight by 3 lbs and was fined a percentage of his purse.

Fremd began the fight with a solid kick to the body. Fremd attacked the lead leg of Pickett with some heavy kicks before pressing him against the cage, where they spend a considerable portion of the round. Fremd was inactive from the clinch, as was Pickett, and neither fighter accomplished much from the position, although the exchange certainly drained the gas tank of both fighters. In the round’s final minute, Pickett reversed the positioning but did not find any offense success from this position before time expired in the round. 10-9 Fremd.

Fremd looked sharp on the feet early in the second round, utilizing his reach well to attack from distance. Much like the previous round, Fremd eventually opted to engage Pickett in the clinch, where Fremd landed a heavy elbow as he continued to press Pickett against the cage. Eventually, Pickett opted to shoot for a double leg, and while Fremd attempted to counter with a guillotine, Pickett escaped the submission and began to work from top position. Fremd escaped to his feet and threatened a standing guillotine, which allowed him to take top position once the fight returned to the ground. Fremd threw down a few ground-and-pound shots before time expired in the round. 20-18 Fremd.

Pickett took the fight back to the ground in the third round, but Fremd was able to reverse the positioning before Pickett could do much from top position. Pickett used the cage to get back to his feet but was unable to create separation, and Fremd continued to press him against the cage, doing very little offensively. They were eventually separated due to inactivity, but when the action resumed, Fremd brought Pickett right back into the clinch, and the fight went the distance. 30-27 Fremd.

WINNER: Josh Fremd by unanimous decision (30-27 all)

Fremd missed weight by a considerable amount going into this fight, but despite whatever circumstances led to that weight miss, he was able to show up tonight and win every round of this fight. The fight was far from entertaining, putting an end to the lengthy streak of finishes that began this card, and I cannot say this was an especially impressive performance from Fremd, who held Pickett against the cage throughout the vast majority of the fight without doing much offensively, but ultimately, it falls to the fighter in the disadvantageous situation to improve their positioning, and Pickett was unable to do that throughout this fight. Josh Fremd is now 2-2 in the UFC following this win, and he has won two consecutive fights.

A.J. DOBSON (6-2, 1 NC, 185.5) VS TAFON NCHUKWI (6-3, 189.5) – MIDDLEWEIGHT

Nchukwi missed weight by 3.5 lbs and was fined a percentage of his purse.

Nchukwi was packing a lot of power behind his punches to start this fight, but Dobson was doing a good job of avoiding Nchukwi’s bigger shots. Dobson was actively attacking the body with kicks, while finding a home for his jab whenever Nchukwi stepped forward, taking an early lead in this fight. Nchukwi certainly had the edge in terms of power however, and whenever he did land one of his heavier shots, they seemed to be more impactful, especially Nchukwi’s leg kicks. Dobson caught a kick and took Nchukwi to the ground in the round’s final seconds, landing some ground and pound strikes to the body before time expired. 10-9 Dobson.

The fighters continued to exchange leg kicks in the second round. Dobson was doing a good job of mixing up his attack to the head and body as well, but Nchukwi was having a hard time finding a home for his offense outside of those leg kicks, and I thought he was falling behind in this fight as a result. That is not to say that Nchukwi was taking heavy damage, and he was fighting soundly defensively, typically getting his guard up in time, but I did not think his offensive output was troubling Dobson, and Dobson was likely up on the scorecards heading into the fights final round. 20-18 Dobson.

Dobson caught a kick from Nchukwi and brought him to the ground roughly a minute into the third round. While Dobson was not terribly active from top position, he managed to maintain the positioning for the vast majority of the round, staying just busy enough to keep the referee from standing the fighters up. Nchukwi scrambled to his feet in the fight’s final seconds, but there was not enough time remaining for him to pursue a late finish. 30-27 Dobson.

WINNER: A.J. Dobson by unanimous decision (29-28 all)

Nchukwi has fought at light heavyweight for the vast majority of his career but has experimented at middleweight before, to mixed results. He missed weight by a considerable amount here and did not seem to be at one hundred percent throughout the fight, although that may have been a result of Dobson’s activity more so than his own physical condition after the weight cut. I thought Dobson did a good job of staying active and mixing up his offense to pull ahead on the scorecards and was able to outwrestle Nchukwi throughout the third round to secure the victory. Dobson’s UFC record improved to 1-2 in the UFC following this win, with this marking his first win in the promotion.


Lucindo cracked Viana with a left hook in the opening seconds of the fight. Viana flurried forward with a lengthy combination of strikes, before taking Lucindo to the ground with about four minutes to work. Viana began to work from top position, but was unable to advance her position, and was eventually stood up due to inactivity. Lucindo secured a takedown of her own moments later, but much like Viana, she was inactive from top position, and did not accomplish much offensively before time expired in the round.

A right hook from Lucindo caused Viana to stumble at the start of the second round but did not follow up on the moment, and allowed Viana to recover. Lucindo eventually opted to take the fight to the ground, where she eventually locked in an arm triangle, forcing Lucindo to submit.

WINNER: Iasmin Lucindo by arm triangle at 3:42 of Round 2

Viana is a skilled grappler, and she showcased some genuine power by knocking out Jinh Yu Frey in under a minute, but Lucindo managed to rock her on the feet before submitting her here in impressive fashion. At only twenty-one years of age, Lucindo is very young for a fighter but has already competed twenty times professionally and that experience was on display here, rebounding strongly from a first-round in which Viana seemed to have the slight edge. Lucindo is now 2-1 in the UFC following this win, with her one loss coming in her UFC debut to Yazmin Jauregui, in what was a very competitive fight.


The fighters wasted little time before they started trading strikes, with both fighters throwing with considerable power. Eventually, Daukaus shot for a takedown, but Rountree was able to keep the fight on the feet. Once they separated, Rountree marched forward and cracked Daukaus with a brutal straight left hand, sending Daukaus crashing to the ground, hard. Rountree quickly finished the fight with ground-and-pound strikes, picking up the first-round knockout victory.

WINNER: Khalil Rountree by TKO at 2:40 of Round 1

Rountree is always an entertaining fighter, and he added another big knockout to his highlight reel here. Daukaus had fought at heavyweight since his professional debut in 2013, but a trio of tough losses against ranked opponents resulted in Daukaus opting to make the move down to light heavyweight, and this marked his first fight in the weight class. Physically, I thought that Daukaus looked good here, and it did not look as though he destroyed himself cutting down to 205lbs, but Rountree is a tough fight for anyone coming off of three consecutive knockout losses, and unfortunately, Daukaus was knocked out in brutal fashion for a fourth consecutive time here. After the fight, Rountree acknowledged that he has now won four consecutive fights, and the next time in which he steps into the octagon, he would like to test himself in a five-round fight. Rountree may not be a huge name in the sport, but he is certainly an entertaining fighter, and given the state of a lot of these recent Apex main events, I would not be opposed to a ranked, exciting fighter on a winning streak like Rountree headlining a card in the near future.


Swanson caught Dawodu with a right hand through his guard after an early exchange of strikes between the two. Dawodu attacked the lead leg of Swanson with kicks, promoting Swanson to respond with some leg kicks of his own. Dawodu tagged Swanson with a sharp jab on his way in, and Dawodu continued to work that jab throughout the round, finding success with it. Swanson seemed to get frustrated, and he attempted to turn the fight into a brawl, but Dawodu was getting the better of these lengthier exchanges, and I thought Swanson was having trouble dealing with Dawodu’s awkward rhythm. 10-9 Dawodu.

Dawodu engaged Swanson in the clinch in round two but ate a series of uppercuts from Swanson on his way in. Swanson attacked the body and head of Dawodu with knees from the clinch, before Dawodu started firing back with knees of his own, catching Swanson with several body shots. Swanson seemed to be landing the heavier shots to the head, but the leg kicks from Dawodu were arguably the most consistent weapon for either fighter, and they were allowing him to catch Swanson in the clinch repeatedly, with Swanson’s movement somewhat compromised. Swanson started brawling wildly with Dawodu towards the end of the round, landing some of his best shots of the fight right before time expired. 20-18 Dawodu.

If Dawodu was rattled at the end of the second round, he had composed himself by the start of round three, and as doing a good job of attacking Swanson from range throughout the final round’s first minute. Dawodu brought Swanson back into the clinch, but they were separated after an unintentional low blow to Swanson. Dawodu brought Swanson right back into the clinch after the action resumed, but caught Swanson low yet again, resulting in yet another separation. Dawodu partially caught Swanson with a head kick as the action resumed, before the fighters traded hard hooks. Swanson’s body shots were very effective, and he seemed to have the edge in terms of power whenever the fighters started trading hooks, but he eventually opted to take the fight to the ground, where he began to work from top position with just over a minute remaining in the fight. Swanson worked his way to Dawodu’s back before the end of the fight, but time expired before he could make the most of the position. 29-28 Dawodu. 

WINNER: Cub Swanson by unanimous decision (29-28 all)

Swanson was clapping for Dawodu as the decision was read, and was quite surprised by the result, going as far as to admit that he thought he lost the bout in his post-fight interview, but it was certainly a competitive fight, and there is a case to be made for giving Swanson two of the three rounds. With that being said, I did score this fight for Hakeem Dawodu, as I thought he generally did the better work on the feet throughout the first two rounds, out landing Swanson on the feet while avoiding Swanson’s heavier shots in return. In the end, I think Swanson’s work from the clinch was probably the difference maker to the judges in terms of awarding him one of those earlier rounds, as his bodywork was indeed effective whenever Dawodu brought him into the clinch. Regardless of any potential scoring controversies, I thought this was a fun fight, and Swanson really brought the fight to Dawodu in a way in very few other fighters have managed to do, forcing Dawodu to break from his typical measured style. Swanson has now won four of his last six fights, and gave an emotional post-fight interview, discussing the stresses of living up to the expectations that are placed on him now that he is such a highly regarded fighter.


RDA punched his way into the clinch in the fights opening minute, trapping Luque against the cage. They spent a considerable portion of the round against the cage, where dos Anjos racked up some control time, but was unable to do much damage. When the fighters separated, dos Anjos landed a strong left hand down the middle, and the fighters traded hard shots to the body. Luque opted to take the fight to the ground in the round’s final minute, but dos Anjos countered with a guillotine attempt, which allowed him to return to his feet before the end of the round. 10-9 RDA.

RDA hit Luque with a hard kick to the body at the start of the second round. Luque defended a takedown attempt from dos Anjos, before attempting to engage him in the clinch, an exchange in which dos Anjos escaped without taking damage. A right hook from Luque caught RDA on his way in, but dos Anjos powered through and secured a takedown. Luque escaped to his feet quickly, and later secured a takedown of his own, controlling RDA against the cage, before attempting to catch him with a standing arm triangle on his way up. RDA escaped the submission but ate an elbow on the break, and I thought this was a good round for Luque. 19-19.

Luque worked his jab throughout the opening minute of the third round, and the face of dos Anjos was showcasing Luque’s success, with some notable bleeding from his nose. RDA shot for another takedown, but once again, the attempt was defended, and Luque secured a takedown of his own, which led to dos Anjos escaping to his feet yet again. RDA caught Luque with a right hand on Luque’s way in back on the feet, but Luque was able to eat the shot and he continued to press forward, as dos Anjos held his ground and fired back. As the round progressed, dos Anjos seemed to be getting the better of Luque with his combinations, but continued to search for takedowns, and Luque was getting the better of him on the ground. This was a very close round, but I gave the slight edge to dos Anjos. 29-28 RDA.

Luque pressured forward at the start of the fourth round, landing some strong strikes in combination before pressing dos Anjos into the cage. Luque secured another takedown, and while RDA was able to pick himself up yet again, he was in need of a big moment offensively to slow Luque’s momentum. Luque was able to control dos Anjos against the cage for the vast majority of this round, and when they finally broke apart, dos Anjos shot for another unsuccessful takedown, resulting in another lengthy clinch exchange against the cage. 38-38.

The fighters touched gloves to start the fight’s final round, and while I had the fight tied going into the final round, it seemed that most, including the corner of dos Anjos, thought that he was in need of a finish if RDA was going to win this fight. Luque’s takedown defense continued to hold up in the fight’s final round, and the fight remained on its feet despite dos Anjos’s best attempts. RDA partially landed a head kick when the fighters separated, but was taken down by Luque moments later. The fighters separated in the fight’s final minute, and RDA flurried forward as he attempted to finish the fight, but Luque shot for a takedown, resulting in RDA sprawling and ending the fight in top position. 48-47 RDA.

WINNER: Vicente Luque by unanimous decision (49-46, 48-47, 48-47)

To be clear, my scorecard for dos Anjos was definitely not the consensus opinion coming out of this fight. Luque certainly controlled a far greater percentage of this fight, repeatedly getting the better of RDA whenever dos Anjos attempted to take him down, but I thought that Luque was fairly ineffective offensively from these positions, and I thought that dos Anjos’s moments of offensive success on the feet outweighed all that control time from Luque in three of the five rounds. Still, most saw this fight for Luque, and that is completely understandable given how much of this fight was spent with Luque in dominant positions against the cage and on the ground. RDA is a very well-rounded fighter, but his typical gameplan of pummeling opponents into takedown attempts failed him here, and if he simply kept this fight on the feet, I think he likely would have won this one fairly decisively. RDA’s speed was giving Luque a lot of problems throughout their exchanges on the feet, but dos Anjos ended each of his flurries with a takedown attempt, and Luque repeatedly out-grappled dos Anjos after every attempt. This was a solid performance from Luque against a tough opponent after a year away from the sport, and in his post-fight interview, Luque asked for a top-five ranked opponent in his next fight.

About Eric Marcotte 188 Articles
A graduate of Laurentian University, Eric reports on Mixed Martial Arts at POST Wrestling.