The Octagon action unfolds later tonight (Sat., April 21, 2018) at UFC Fight Night 128 live on FOX Sports 1 from inside Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, as former lightweight title challenger Kevin Lee looks to get back into the win column when he takes on Brazilian striking dynamo and long-time UFC veteran Edson Barboza.
Adding to the main card mix is a featherweight scrap between former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and 145-pound staple Cub Swanson, a light heavyweight clash pitting Corey Anderson against fellow wrestler Patrick Cummins, and a bantamweight matchup between New York native Aljamain Sterling and rising undefeated prospect Brett Johns.
But, before the premier bouts get underway on FS1 starting at 10 p.m. ET, UFC Fight Night 128's “Prelims” action will go down on Fight Pass starting at 7:30 p.m. ET and then FS1 starting at 8 p.m. ET.
Find out what happened right here as the UFC Fight Night 128 undercard recaps roll in real-time:
Ryan LaFlare vs. Alex Garcia
In the FS1 “Prelims” headliner, welterweight staple LaFlare (14-2) tried to rebound after a knockout loss to Alex Oliveira when he took on Tristar Gym standout Garcia (15-5). Garcia landed some early offense inside, but LaFlare pushed the action along the cage into the clinch as he aimed to take the fight to the canvas. LaFlare was able to dictate the pace of the first round and score more valuable control time. In Round 2, LaFlare gained back control before Garcia reversed and ended up on top. They broke free and Garcia pushed LaFlare into the cage for his own takedown. LaFlare was able to gain the upper hand during another transition on the ground and threatened to finish with an arm triangle choke. The third round saw a tired-armed Garcia try to land some offense before gaining top position after sweeping LaFlare’s lead leg. Garcia shot in for another takedown along the cage, but it was LaFlare who gained the upper hand with an arm lock, which is where most of the frame took place in a relative stalemate. Neither fighter did much damage in this fight, but it was LaFlare who escaped with the unanimous decision win.
Merab Dvalishvili vs. Ricky Simon
Next up was a bantamweight clash between Serra-Longo Fight Team prospect Dvalishvili (7-4) and talented 25-year-old UFC newcomer Simon (13-1). Dvalishvili opened up with a huge spinning head kick. He then caught Simon with a big right hand that stunned the Octagon newbie. Dvalishvili forced a few takedowns along the way but Simon was able to quickly get back to his feet. Dvalishvili landed a crisp combination inside, as Simon failed to do much damage with his hands. Dvalishvili then stuck another right hand through Simon’s defense and knocked the wrestler to the canvas. Simon came inside for a slick body shot. In Round 2, Dvalishvili kept the pace up and backed Simon up with strikes before securing a single-leg takedown. Simon defended nicely and landed a knee on the exit. Simon then landed his own takedown followed by a slicing elbow. Dvalishvili powered through and got back to his feet with ease. The action temporarily returned to the canvas courtesy of another Dvalishvili takedown. Big right hand landed for Dvalishvili on the feet before the round came to an end. The third frame saw Simon land a flush right hand before accidentally catching Dvalishvili with a low blow. The action resumed and Dvalishvili secured another takedown along the cage. On the feet again, Dvalishvili snapped Simon’s head back with another power right hand. Simon shook it off and took the Serra-Longo standout down again. After another transition to the canvas, Simon caught Dvalishvili in a nasty guillotine choke. It was locked in and Dvalishvili had to kick his feet for nearly one minute in order to fight through it. The referee was watching close as Simon cranked Dvalishvili’s neck and squeezed the air out, but Dvalishvili someone lasted and the final bell rang. However, Dvalishvili was slow to his feet and needed to be tended to by doctors after the fight. After much confusion, despite Dvalishvili never tapping, the final call was a TKO victory for Simon.
Somehow he didn't tap pic.twitter.com/tBk6I2db3u— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) April 22, 2018
Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Luan Chagas
The second welterweight scrap on the card pitted red-hot Afghan veteran Bahadurzada (24-6-1) against Brazilian submission specialist Chagas (15-3-1). Bahadurzada opened up with a quick leg kick. Chagas returned with a flying knee attempt. Bahadurzada came back with a huge right hand and then forced a takedown by catching Chagas’ counter kick. Bahadurzada landed hard ground-and-pound on the Brazilian before Chagas reversed and quickly took his back. Chagas peppered Siyar with short punches before going for the rear-naked choke finish. Bahadurzada fought the hands well until the bell sounded. In Round 2, Chagas aggressively plodded forward, but Bahadurzada was there to counter with looping right hands. Bahadurzada caught Chagas with a straight left hand before landing a hard knee and combination along the cage. Out of nowhere, Bahadurzada blasted the Brazilian with a nasty front kick that forced Chagas to slump over. Bahadurzada landed a flush uppercut on Chagas on the way down to the canvas that put the Brazilian out for the second-round knockout finish.
Kick to the solar plexus started it, and then the uppercut from @Siyarized finished it. Wow!#UFCAC pic.twitter.com/4xZddlWrsz— UFC (@ufc) April 22, 2018
Corey Anderson vs. Patrick Cummins
Sparking off the FS1 “Prelims” undercard was an interesting light heavyweight tilt between wrestling-based contenders Anderson (10-4) and Cummins (10-5). Anderson landed early with a lead jab. Cummins responded with a clinch along the cage, although Anderson defended the takedown nicely. Anderson caught Cummins on the feet and started to unload right hooks, body shots, uppercuts, and knees. Cummins’ right eye was busted up badly. Anderson moved in and secured a takedown of his own. After another takedown, Anderson took the back and pelted Cummins with hard ground-and-pound. In Round 2, Anderson opened up with a huge body shot. He followed that up with a flying knee into a combination. Cummins kept active with some dirty boxing inside before Anderson leaped in for another power takedown. The action returned to the canter of the Octagon and Anderson peppered Cummins with snapping jabs. He then shot in for yet another takedown on the wrestler. The third frame saw a desperate Cummins try to move inside for power shots, but he looked tired and beaten. Anderson wasted little time shooting in for a takedown and controlling Cummins along the cage. Anderson tried to work for a submission finish but Cummins fought the hands well. The action returned to the feet and Anderson easily brought it back down to the canvas for his 10th takedown. In the end, it was a fairly one-sided affair that really showcased Anderson’s striking and wrestling prowess en route to a unanimous decision win.
HUGE shots landed by @CoreyA_MMA and Cummins is opened up early! #UFCAC pic.twitter.com/Ij8EZ6NrUO— UFC (@ufc) April 22, 2018
Tony Martin vs. Keita Nakamura
The opening bout of the evening saw talented submission specialist Martin (13-4) try to capture a win in his UFC welterweight debut against fellow ground guru Nakamura (33-9-2, 1 NC). Nakamura found some offense from the outside early. Martin kept busy with high kicks attempts before catching Nakamura with a huge right hand. Martin channeled another couple right hands that snapped the Japanese fighter’s head back. Nakamura secured a timely takedown before the end of the round but Martin threatened with a tight guillotine choke. In Round 2, Nakamura found a home for a few crisp lefts, but Martin kept controlling the standup in the center of the cage. Martin started to talk to Nakamura before landing a nice one-two combination. Martin followed his efforts up with a hard body shot and then two powerful right hands. The third and final frame saw Martin really open up on his feet with aggressive head kicks and combinations on the go. Nakamura shut in for a takedown, Martin reversed positioning and nearly locked in a kimura. Nakamura finally got another takedown with 30 seconds left, but Martin once again reversed and looked for a kimura. In the end, Martin did more than enough to cruise to a unanimous decision victory.
Nice right hand from @TMartinMMA drops Nakamura in round 1! #UFCAC pic.twitter.com/UUsB9JgKqZ— UFC (@ufc) April 21, 2018
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 128 fight card, starting with the UFC Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online at 7:30 p.m. ET, followed by the FOX Sports 1 "Prelims" bouts at 8 p.m. ET, before the main card start time at 10 p.m. ET, also on FOX Sports 1.