The UFC returns to action tonight, Saturday, July 14th, 2018) at UFC Fight Night 133 live on FOX Sports 1 from inside the CenturyLink Arena in Boise, Idaho as mixed martial arts (MMA) veteran and former UFC heavyweight champ Junior dos Santos returns to action to take on WSOF heavyweight champ Blagoy Ivanov.
But before that goes down, we have a whole bunch of great prelims to get through on both UFC Fight Pass and FOX Sports 1. Find out what happened right here as the UFC Boise undercard recaps roll in real-time.
Alexander Volkanovski vs. Darren Elkins
Darren Elkins once again proved he’s got one of the hardest heads in the sport, but that didn’t stop him from losing to Australian rugby player turned MMA fighter Alex Volkanovski. Volkanovski was just too fast for Elkins, dodging his attacks and countering him with ease from the opening to closing bells.
So close!— UFC (@ufc) July 15, 2018
Elkins barely escapes the submission attempt by Volkanovski. #UFCBoise pic.twitter.com/6u0ubmg7MA
Round one was all Volkanovski, with a close choke submission early in the round followed up by a blistering near knockout that saw Elkins saved by the bell and barely making it back to the stool. Volkanovski clipped Elkins repeatedly across rounds two and three but was never able to put the durable “Damage” away, but that didn’t stop him from earning a criminally close 30-27, 29-28, 29-28 judge’s decision.
Shoulda been 30-26, Boise judges.
Justin Scoggins vs. Said Nurmagomedov
Said Nurmagomedov came into this fight with a lot of hype as a cousin of lightweight champion Khabib, only for us to learn he’s less of an actual cousin and more of a ... well, not real cousin. That’s okay, he fights more like Magomedsharipov than a Nurmagomedov, with lots of spinning attacks. That looked great in the first round as he wowed the crowd (and the judges) with his dynamic striking. But in round two Scoggins responded to Said’s flash with fundamentals, countering him and picking him apart.
Justin Scoggins with the LEFT! #UFCBoise pic.twitter.com/VdhNfb29kQ— UFC (@ufc) July 15, 2018
Unfortunately, Scoggins took his foot off the gas in round three, allowing Nurmagomedov to steal the round with more offense, even though he wasn’t landing very much. The finals score: 29-28 Nurmagomedov x2, 29-28 Scoggins. At just 26 years old, it’ll be interesting to see how Said evolves. Expectations are already high just off that last name. But if he manages to add some more meat and potatoes to his fancy spinning s**t attacks, he could be a real force at 125 pounds.
Kurt Holobaugh vs. Raoni Barcelos
Raoni Barcelos certainly made an impression in his first UFC fight, knocking out Kurt Holobaugh with a wild three right hand combination that involved two massive uppercuts. Barcelos and Holobaugh spent the first two rounds going back and forth on the feet with Barcelos edging Holobaugh on volume and intensity and then taking things handily when the fight hit the ground.
Getting crafty in round 2️⃣!@RaoniBarcelos #UFCBoise pic.twitter.com/SGlBCEarp9— UFC (@ufc) July 15, 2018
Raoni locked up a tight choke in the first round that Holobaugh only escaped due to the end of the round. But it was good for us as we got another round of wild swang and bang, followed by that massive finish in the third from Barcelos. The official call was Raoni Barcelos via KO at 1:28 of round 3. Can’t wait to see this kid again!
Raoni Barcelos hands out a little five-piece to get the TKO win . pic.twitter.com/fhouxFHNap— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) July 15, 2018
Liz Carmouche vs. Jennifer Maia
After a close decision loss in her flyweight debut, Liz Carmouche used her size and “Girlzilla” strength to dominate Invicta champ Jennifer Maia on the ground for a 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 decision win. Carmouche looked good early with a big takedown of Maia in the first round, landing right into side control to unleash with dangerous looking elbows. The second round turned into a bit of a staring contest on the feet before more Carmouche domination on the ground.
Clinical by @IAmGirlrilla. #UFCBoise pic.twitter.com/xMSfBbdMKx— UFC (@ufc) July 14, 2018
Round 3 saw Maia caught trying to adjust her sports bra, only to have Carmouche bull through her and control the round on the ground again.
"REVOLUTIONARY REEBOK MMA SPORTS BRAS" #UFCBoise pic.twitter.com/IAY8u6Kczx— Alex Scaffidi (@alex_scaffidi) July 14, 2018
Maia had her moments at the end of the first round as she figured out the distance, but didn’t use the time on her feet in round two to get much in the way of effective offense off. She looked good when throwing, but will need a bit more of that vaunted Chute Boxe aggression if she wants to cement her place in the UFC.
After the win, Carmouche revealed she was fighting sick. Based on what we saw in this fight, she’s settling comfortably into the women’s 125 pound division and we can’t wait to see what she can do healthy.
Mark De La Rosa vs. Elias Garcia
This was exactly the kind of scrappy, dynamic fight that makes you wish the flyweight division gets more love. Elias Garcia (a cousin of the Pettis brothers, and it shows) came out strong in the first, throwing capoeira kicks and jumping into De La Rosa’s arms, climbing into a triangle position. Not to be outdone with unusual technique, De La Rosa responded by spinning Garcia around until centrifugal force pulled them apart.
Helicopter tours at #UFCBoise courtesy of @DeLaRosa_Mark! pic.twitter.com/VSW7ty67mt— UFC (@ufc) July 14, 2018
The second round featured more fast back and forth striking, but De La Rosa ended up on Garcia’s back off a scramble, which is not where you want him to be. He quickly locked up a rear naked choke (that’s the official word, looked like a neck crank to me) and squeezed until Garcia was forced to tap, earning him a submission win 2 minutes into round 2.
RUNS IN THE FAMILY!@DeLaRosa_Mark gets the rear naked choke one week after @MontanaMarie211 does the same. #UFCBoise pic.twitter.com/03h2OfbbuE— UFC (@ufc) July 14, 2018
Jessica Aguilar vs. Jodie Esquibel
After fighting for 12 years, “JAG” finally earned her first UFC win: a decision victory over Jodie Esquibel. It was pretty clear cut with all three judges giving it to Aguilar (30-27, 29-28, 29-28), but not the kind of dominant performance that is going to have other women’s strawweights quaking in their boots.
The story of the fight breaks down to volume: Aguilar threw more in the first, Esquibel came back and took the second, and then Aguilar gutted it out with more punches and knees in the third to lock in the victory. The bout took place almost completely on the feet with barely any kicks, and only during the last minute did things start to heat up past combinations and a bit of clinchwork.
Happy to see “JAG” get the win, but hoping to see her return to her scrappy Bellator form in the future now that she’s no longer on the edge of unemployment.
BY UNANIMOUS DECISION!@Jagatt starts it off strong at #UFCBoise. pic.twitter.com/37LrDPpfPd— UFC (@ufc) July 14, 2018