Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) kept business rolling last night (Sat., June 20, 2020), staging UFC on ESPN 11 from inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. In the main event, Curtis Blaydes defeated Alexander Volkov after five rounds of Heavyweight action (see it). In the co-headlining act, Josh Emmett defeated Shane Burgos after 15 intense minutes of brutal back-and-forth blows to score his third straight win (see it again here).
Biggest Winner: Curtis Blaydes
Look, some people -- Dana White included -- weren't too thrilled with Blaydes' wrestling clinic, but you were warned before the fight by Blaydes that fans wouldn’t be getting an all-out striking brawl between he and Alexander Volkov. And Blaydes lived up to his promise, earning a unanimous decision win by rag dolling "Drago," which helped him set a UFC record of 14 takedowns in a 265-pound fight. In doing so, “Razor” secured his fourth straight win, putting him right behind Francis Ngannou in the title race. And now that Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier have signed on to take part in a trilogy fight, “The Predator” doesn’t have to wait too long to see who his next opponent will be. Blaydes, meanwhile, will have to wait a while longer, which leaves him with a big decision to make: Sit out for an extended period of time and wait for his title shot, or take another bout in the interim, perhaps against the winner of the pivotal 265-pound match up between Derrick Lewis and Aleksei Oleinik.
Runner Up: Josh Emmett
Emmett and Shane Burgos put on a show for the ages during their Featherweight scrap, which saw Emmett score a unanimous decision win after 15 minutes of action (watch highlights). That is now three straight wins for him, and he should move up a couple spots on the official UFC rankings list, maybe even crack the Top 5. To make his night even sweeter, he — as well as Burgos — collected a $50,000 bonus for “Fight of the Night.” Emmett has been pretty consistent throughout his career, only losing two fights so far. His knockout loss to Jeremy Stephens definitely slowed his momentum, but he wasted no time getting back his groove, winning three in a row in a little more than one year. Another win like tonight over a higher-ranked foe could make Emmett a serious threat for the title at 145 pounds.
Biggest Loser: Oskar Piechota
Piechota came into his fight against Marc-Andre Barriault needing a win in the worst way, as he was riding a three-fight losing streak, having not won a fight in more than two years. But things got worse for “Imadlo,” as he was knocked out by Barriault in the second round, handing him his fourth straight loss. Unfortunately for Piechota, in his three years with the promotion, he is just 2-4 and hasn’t really made a name for himself in the Middleweight division. That means once the promotion gears up to make its next round of cuts, don’t be too surprised to see Piechota on the list.
For complete UFC on ESPN 11 results and coverage click here.