Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will finally pull the trigger on UFC 253, which takes place inside Flash Forum on Yas Island — also known as “Fight Island” — in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, TONIGHT (Sat., Sept. 26, 2020) streaming live online via ESPN+. The pay-per-view (PPV) main event will feature reigning middleweight champion Israel Adesanya defending his 185-pound strap against undefeated title contender Paulo Costa. UFC 253 also hosts the light heavyweight showdown pitting Dominick Reyes against Jan Blachowicz, a battle of top contenders at war for the 205-pound belt recently vacated by Jon Jones.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 253 fight card below, starting with the ESPN+/ESPN2 “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on ESPN+/ESPN2 at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+.
Keep in mind that we will also be the spot for the latest news, recaps, and post-fight analysis following “Adesanya vs. Costa.” Without further delay, see below for the latest UFC 253 results. (Note: This will go from the bottom up; therefore, scroll toward the bottom for the latest detailed round-by-round action.)
UFC 253 QUICK RESULTS:
Israel Adesanya vs. Paulo Costa — Adesanya def. Costa by TKO (punches) at 3:59 of Round Two — HIGHLIGHTS
Dominick Reyes vs. Jan Blachowicz — Blachowicz def. Reyes by TKO (punches) at 4:36 of Round Two — HIGHLIGHTS
Kai Kara-France vs. Brandon Royval — Royval def. Kara-France by submission (guillotine choke) at 0:48 of Round Two
Ketlen Vieira vs. Sijara Eubanks — Vieira def. Eubanks by unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Hakeem Dawodu vs. Zubaira Tukhugov — Dawodu def. Tukhugov by unanimous decision (28-29, 30-27, 29-28)
Brad Riddell vs. Alex Da Silva — Riddell def. Da Silva by unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Diego Sanchez vs. Jake Matthews — Matthews def. Sanchez by unanimous decision (30-26 x3)
Ludovit Klein vs. Shane Young — Klein def. Young by KO (head kick and punches) at 1:16 of Round One — HIGHLIGHTS
Aleksa Camur vs. William Knight — Knight def. Camur by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27 x2)
Juan Espino vs. Jeff Hughes — Espino def. Hughes by submission (scarf hold neck crank) at 3:48 of Round One — HIGHLIGHTS
Khadis Ibragimov vs. Danilo Marques — Marques def. Ibragimov by unanimous decision (29-28 x2, 30-27)
UFC 253 LIVE PLAY-BY-PLAY:
185 lbs.: UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya vs. Paulo Costa
Round 1: Low kicks from Adesanya to start. Costa being uncharacteristically patient to start. Low kick lands for him. One minute in. Adesanya staying at range, takes a body kick. One from the other side. Adesanya comes back with a leg kick. Another. He catches a body kick, lands a right to the body two minutes in. Another low kick. Costa tries a head kick, eats a jab. Inside leg kick. They both mimic Yoel Romero. Two minutes to go.
Stiff jab from Adesanya. Costa tries to blitz. More low kicks from the champ. Head kick attempt. Brazilian kick misses with a minute to go. Body kick from Adesanya. Costa backs him to the fence, takes a 3-2, lands a body kick. Counter left by Adesanya. 10-9 Adesanya.
Round 2: More low kicks from Adesanya punishing the lead calf. Inside low kick, tries to follow up with a head kick. Costa head kick falls short, leg kicks land. One minute in. Straight left and head kick just miss for the champ. Another low kick connects, then a jab behind it. Body kick from Adesanya, catches one from Costa and lands a left hand two minutes in. Another low kick, then a clean head kick. Stiff jab, low kick. Two minutes to go.
Adesanya now advancing, avoids a 1-3. Low kick and jab. Body kick by Costa, takes a body shot and jab in return. Counter left hook and down goes Costa! Adesanya starts pounding and here comes the ref.
Final result: Adesanya def. Costa by TKO (punches)
205 lbs.: Dominick Reyes vs. Jan Blachowicz
Round 1: Blachowicz orthodox, Reyes southpaw. Low kick from the Pole. Trading leg kicks. Reyes fires a body kick, catches him with a straight left and avoids a flurry. One minute in. Blachowicz with a solid body kick. He checks a low kick. Two minutes in. Blachowicz tries a combo, falls short. Reyes tries a body kick. Two minutes to go.
Blachowicz advancing, clips Reyes with a left hook and body kick. Another body kick amid a flurry. One minute to go. Very few strikes from Reyes this round. Body kick lands for him at the bell. 10-9 Blachowicz.
Round 2: Reyes tries an uppercut-straight left, lands a low kick. Blachowicz tries a blitz. Overhand right falls short. Reyes tries a head kick. One minute in. Body kick from Reyes, avoids one in return. Blachowicz low kick. Good uppercut in combination. Reyes low kick. Two minutes in. Low kick exchange. Good exchange in the center, Blachowicz gets the better of it. Reyes head kick falls short. Two minutes to go.
Quick exchange in the center. Counter left from Reyes. Body kick connects, low kick behind it. Blachowicz tries a body kick, avoids a 1-2. Blachowicz 3-2, good flurry with a minute to go. Another Blachowicz blitz. Nice close-quarters exchange. 1-2-3 and down goes Reyes! Blachowicz follows him down and a few more shots seal the deal.
Final result: Blachowicz def. Reyes by TKO (punches)
125 lbs.: Kai Kara-France vs. Brandon Royval
Round 1: Royval tries a high kick, knocked over by a low kick. Looking aggressive early, gets dropped by an overhand right. Royval responds by dropping him with a spinning elbow as he eats another overhand, then lands an uncalled illegal knee as Kara-France tries to rise and starts looking for a gogoplata. Now an omoplata. One minute in. Royval sweeps into top position, taking side control. Now mount, back to half guard. Royval looking for the back, Kara-France manages to land on top and separate. Spinning back fist lands for Royval after missing a high kick. Tons of aggression from Royval, lands a knee.Two minutes to go.
Big knee and down goes Kara-France against the fence. Royval looking for a guillotine. He falls back for it, loses position, immediately tries a triangle and switches to a sweep. Kara-France gets his leg free and separates. Kara-France body kick, both land low kicks. Low kick knocks Royval over with a minute to go. Big swings by Kara-France as Royval puts together combinations. Bit punches by Royval, who walks into a pair of overhand rights that he somehow tanks before tying up. 10-9 Royval.
Round 2: Royval back on the attack to start. Kara-France swinging big in return. Low kicks from Royval. Kara-France shoots and gets caught in a guillotine. Royval wraps up his guard and there’s the tap.
Final result: Royval def. Kara-France by submission (guillotine choke)
135 lbs.: Ketlen Vieira vs. Sijara Eubanks
Round 1: Vieira hauls her to the fence in the opening few seconds. Eubanks reverses and separates. Vieira tries a combo a minute in, takes a right hand in return. Exchanging in the center. Eubanks low kick, body kick, counter left. Vieira tries a 1-2. Big right hand by Eubanks. Another right hand prompts Vieira to tie up. Trip attempt denied and Eubanks lands on the way up two minutes in. Eubanks leg kick. Vieira tries to tie up again, denied and they slug in the center. Left hook by Eubanks. Two minutes to go.
Eubanks overhand met by a right cross. Counter body shots. Vieira digs a hook downstairs. Good 1-2. Uppercut appears to connect. Eubanks with a right downstairs, eats a counter right. One minute to go. Vieira shoots, denied. Eubanks low kick and right hand. They trade in the center, right cross by Vieira. Nice combination by Vieira and she trips her down in the waning seconds. 10-9 Vieira.
Round 2: They trade until Vieira outside trips her into guard. One minute in. Vieira staying heavy. Two minutes in. Ref stands them up. Eubanks looking to jab, both fire right hands. Eubanks to the body, eats a counter right with two minutes to go.
Jab exchange, left hook by Eubanks. Side kick lands. Hard 1-2 from Vieira with a minute to go. Eubanks lands a lead right. Low kick met by a right hand. Left hook from Vieira. Good exchange at the bell. 10-9 Vieira.
Round 3: Eubanks coming out aggressively. Good body shots met by a Vieira jab. Vieira ties up briefly. Jabs from the Brazilian. One minute in. Left hook lands for Eubanks. Low kick. Head kick lands, then a right behind it. Exchange in the center. Eubanks leg kick and side kick. Two minutes in. Eubanks body kick as Vieira works her jab. They trade right hands. Both land hard in the center. Two minutes to go.
Eubanks lands to the body, avoids a clinch. Left hook from Vieira. Clinch denied. Eubanks body shot. Vieira right cross upstairs. Low-high goes Eubanks. Vieira shoots, denied, doesn’t land the uppercut. One minute to go. Vieira 1-2 met by a body kick. Right cross lands for her. Viera ties up, avoids a trip. Eubanks gets teh rear waist lock. Veira rolls for a kneebar, eats punches at the bell. 10-9 Eubanks.
Final result: Vieira def. Eubanks by unanimous decision
145 lbs.: Hakeem Dawodu vs. Zubaira Tukhugov
Round 1: They meet in the center and start feinting. Dawodu looking for kicks. One minute in. Jumping front kick downstairs. 1-2 falls short. Good left hook lands for Tukhugov. Two minutes in. 1-2 from Tukhugov. Dawodu leg kick on the counter. Jab connects. Good lead right by Tukhugov. Two minutes to go.
Sharp right splits Dawodu’s guard. Dawodu comes back with a body shot. Counter body shot, stiff jab. Tukhugov looking for punches. One minute to go. Dawodu to the body once again. Tukhugov right hand. Left hook falls short. Good exchange in the center. Trading jabs. 10-9 Tukhugov.
Round 2: Dawodu fires a front kick downstairs, lands a spinning back kick and low kicks. Brief collision in the center. Tukhugov lead right met by a 1-2. Both men looking more aggressive this round. One minute in. 1-2 from Tukhugov. Dawodu to the body. Trading jabs, 1-2s from Tukhugov. Uppercut met by a jab and low kick. Left hook catches Dawodu throwing, Dawodu comes back with a counter right. Two minutes in. They’re trading in the center. Tukhugov right hand met by a calf kick. Dawodu body kick, right hand exchange. Jab exchange, Dawodu body shot. Tukhugov tries a trip, eats a low kick. Two minutes to go.
Counter body shots from Dawodu. Tukhugov shoots after eating a jab, denied. Dawodu goes high-low with a 2-3. Low kick. Body punch. Tukhugov steps into the clinch, shoots, takes him down against the fence. One minute to go. Right hands from Tukhugov. Dawodu working to stand, dragged back down. 10-9 Tukhugov.
Round 3: Dawodu fires another front kick downstairs. Tukhugov slipping out of range. One minute in. Counter right from Dawodu. Hard low kick. Tukhugov hasn’t thrown this round. Dawodu head kick attempt, denies a takedown. Tukhugov shoots again, denied again. Two minutes in. Check hook lands for Dawodu. Tukhugov tries another double-leg. Great defense from Dawodu and they separate with tow minutes to go.
Dawodu motions for Tukhugov to trade with him, then cracks with a two-piece. Body kick from Dawodu. Double jab. Brief clinch. One minute to go. Tukhugov in full retreat as Dawodu marches forward, swearing at him with his hands down. Tukhugov spends the rest of the round running away. 10-9 Dawodu. Second round decides it.
Final result: Dawodu def. Tukhugov by split decision
155 lbs.: Brad Riddell vs. Alex Da Silva
Round 1: Da Silva coming out aggressively, lands a nice left hook in combination. Both men throwing heat already. Low kick from Riddell, jab exchange. Da Silva ducks a hook and takes him down into half guard. One minute in. Not much from Da Silva on top. Two minutes in. There’s a nice right hand. Riddell working to stand against the fence. Back down, back up with two minutes to go.
Da Silva with some knees to the thigh. Riddell unable to break his grip but avoids a back take. They separate. One minute to go. Da Silva flicks out some kicks. Combination from Riddell, who changes levels under a right hand and gets caught in a guillotine. He rolls to his knees. 10-9 Da Silva.
Round 2: They open the round slugging in the center. Riddell ties up, gets put on the fence. Da Silva looking for a single-leg. One minute in. Riddell manages to separate 30 seconds later. Oblique kick from Da Silva, 1-2 after taking a low kick in return. Knee catches Riddell leaning two minutes in. 1-2 connects for him. Tight uppercut in combination. Da Silva fakes a level change. Leg kicks land. Riddell lands an overhand right and an elbow on the break. Two minutes to go.
Riddell tries a single-leg, denied. Good combinations. Right hand to the body, 3-2, body kick. Da Silva tries a jumping knee after landing a body shot, taken down for it. Da Silva pops back up and separates with a minute to go. Nice exchange in the center. Da Silva shoots, sprawled on. Calf kick knocks Da Silva back. He lands a counter uppercut, eats a tight right cross. 10-9 Riddell.
Round 3: Quick hug to start the round. 3-2 from Riddell. Trading low kicks. Da Silva with a lead right, combo comes back at him. Riddell to the body against the fence. 1-2 by Riddell. Low-high combos. Da Silva tries a jumping knee and eats more punches for his trouble. one minute in. Riddell denies a takedown. Right hand connects. Nice combinations. Body shots. More combinations. Continuing to land, sneaks in an elbow. Two minutes in. Da Silva still going for it, shoots, denied on the fence. Riddell separates 30 seconds later. Lead right connects. Da Silva claims an eye poke, but replays show that it was a legal hook that did the damage. Back to exchanging. Two minutes to go.
Da Silva times a takedown attempt, ends up slung to the mat by a whizzer. Back to the feet. Big left hook rattles Da Silva and Riddell looks to tear into him on the fence. Big right hand, who walks through a counter. One minute to go. Riddell separates from a clinch on the fence. Silva right hand, Riddell left hook. Riddell shoots, dumps him against the fence. Da Silva slips out and looks for the back. 10-9 Riddell.
Final result: Riddell def. Da Silva by unanimous decision
170 lbs.: Diego Sanchez vs. Jake Matthews
Round 1: Sanchez charges out of the gate and eats some right hands. Briefly has a kick caught. Sanchez tries a leg kick, ducks a 1-2. Combo from Matthews, uppercut connects a minute in. Sanchez tries a combo, lands a leg kick. Matthews nearly catches him leaning with a head kick. Two minutes in. Sanchez coming up short with most of his shots so far. Right hands, jab from Matthews. Continuing to pressure and land patiently. Two minutes to go.
1-2 from Matthews after taking a glancing leg kick. Counter left by Sanchez, his best punch of the fight. Right cross comes back at him soon after. Check hook catches him coming in. Matthews continuing to land his right hand. Sanchez flurry falls well short with a minute to go. He shoots, sprawled on. Matthews takes him down in return and starts chipping away from guard. Sanchez looks for a heel hook, then eats some massive right hands to his unprotected face. 10-9 Matthews.
Round 2: Sanchez tries to rush, nothing comes close. Right hand from Matthews. Low kicks land for Sanchez. Matthews backs him to the fence, catches him rushing in with a heavy uppercut a minute in. Another counter uppercut, then a 1-2. Matthews continuing to advance. Two minutes in. Body kick from Sanchez, blocks a 1-1-2 in return. Matthews right hand appears to split the guard. Counter left. Straight right. Another uppercut by Matthews, then a 2-3. Two minutes to go.
Sanchez tries to open up near the fence, eats a series of counters. Check hook from Matthews once again. Another. Sanchez lands a low kick and eats a left hook for his trouble. One minute to go. 2-3 from Matthews knocks Sanchez back. Another check hook, uppercut, left hook. Low kick from Sanchez. 10-9 Matthews.
Round 3: Sanchez walks into another counter combo on the fence. 1-2 puts Sanchez on his butt and Matthews blasts him with some heavy follow-ups. Sanchez manages to tie him up in half guard. Nasty cut on Sanchez’s brow. Short shots from Matthews. Sanchez regains guard. He looks for a guillotine, nothing doing. Matthews stands over him, dives back in. Right hand lands for him. Two minutes to go.
Heavy hammerfists and punches from Matthews, who snuffs out an armbar attempt. Sanchez turns for another armbar. Matthews defending with a minute to go. He gets his arm out. Late ground-and-pound flurry. 10-8 Matthews.
Final result: Matthews def. Sanchez by unanimous decision
145 lbs.: Ludovit Klein vs. Shane Young
Round 1: Young orthodox, Klein southpaw. Body kicks from Klein. Young looking for low kicks a minute in. Klein suddenly unleashes a monstrous combination, rocking Young with a jab, following up with a head kick, and crumpling Young with an uppercut that puts him to sleep.
Final result: Klein def. Young by KO (head kick and punches)
205 lbs.: Aleksa Camur vs. William Knight
Round 1: Knight looking for low kicks early. Jab lands for Camur. Low kick knocks Camur off-balance and Knight shoots. Camur defending with a whizzer a minute in. Camur with a couple knees as he takes a right hand and reverses. Jockeying for position. Camur threatens a trip. Two minutes in. Trading knees inside, ref wants more action. More twirling around. Two minutes to go.
Shoulder strike from Camur, looking for trips. More fighting for underhooks. One minute to go. Ref separates them. Both men flick out kicks. Good low kick from Knight. Camur lands a jab, eats a combo at the bell. 10-9 Camur.
Round 2: Low kicks from Knight. Counter 1-2 from Camur. Sending out more kicks. 1-3 into the clinch. Camur trips him down and looks for the back. One minute in, both hooks. Knight turns into guard. Camur gets an underhook and returns to his feet, pressing him against the fence. Two minutes in. Knight hits an outside reap into side control, lands punches as Camur turns to his knees. Camur returns to his feet, stays in the clinch. Two minutes to go.
Knight takes him down into side control. Camur holding him close. right hands form Knight with a minute to go. Camur gives up his back. He turns to half guard. Knight takes mount and tries to isolate the left arm, bearing down on an americana at the bell. 10-9 Knight.
Round 3: Knight lands some hard low kicks. Left hook by Camur, who takes Knight to the fence again. Knight outside trips him into half guard. Now side control. Camur spins to his knees, gives up the back against the fence. Camur tosses him off the back and tries to establish top control against the fence. Two minutes in. Knee from Camur on the way up. Knight puts him on the fence again. Two minutes to go.
Knight changes levels and dumps him to the mat. On top in half guard. One minute to go. Now looking for mount or the back. Good lefts by Knight and he flattens him out. 10-9 Knight.
Final result: Knight def. Camur by unanimous decision
265 lbs.: Juan Espino vs. Jeff Hughes
Round 1: Espino mobile early. Lots of feints on both sides. Espino with some big swings, tries a takedown and gets denied. He shoots again a minute in, looks for the inside trip, gets him down. He pulls Hughes away from the fence and sets up in side control. Some left hands land for him as Hughes gets to his knees. Hughes up, dragged back to his knees two minutes in. Back up, now on one knee against the fence. He manages to turn and face Espino, only to get pulled down to his rear. Two minutes to go.
Back to one knee. Up to his feet, slammed into half guard. He takes mount, ends up too high, and Hughes slips out the back door. He’s not fast enough to stay off his back, though, and Espino immediately retakes top position, moving from mount to scarf hold and cranking for the tap.
Final result: Espino def. Hughes by submission (scarf hold neck crank)
205 lbs.: Khadis Ibragimov vs. Danilo Marques
Round 1: They spend a few seconds jittering at each other in center cage. Marques lands a jab, then shoots. Ibragimov holding onto a guillotine grip, drops it after being taken to the fence. He nearly lands on top, back to the feet. One minute in. Short lefts by Ibragimov as he defends. He grabs the fence and lands in top position, but Marques scrambles out and looks for the back. Ibragimov breaks his grip and separates two minutes in. Overhand right falls short. Marques tries a front kick. Good low kick. Ibragimov tries a blitz with two minutes to go.
Right cross lands for Marques, then he shoots. Ibragimov defending on the fence. Marques brings him to the mat and latches onto his back with a minute to go. Both hooks in. Ibragimov tries to stand straight up and nearly gives up the RNC. 10-9 Marques.
Round 2: Ibragimov winging some ugly right hands to start. Marques sporting a bloody nose, lands a leg kick. One minute in. Not much being thrown at all this round. Jab by Marques. Two minutes in. Ibragimov whiffs on a combo. Marques looks for a single-leg and jumps onto his back after spinning him down. Both hooks in. Two minutes to go.
Still looking for the choke. One minute to go. Ibragimov tries to turn into guard in the waning seconds. 10-9 Marques.
Round 3: Ibragimov looking dead on his feet at this point. Counter attempts. 1-2 lands for him. Marques shoots, denied by a fence grab. One minute in. Marques body kick. 1-2 from Ibragimov. Marques jabs the body. This is terrible. Flurry by Ibragimov, who stings Marques with a counter right. Now looking for a guillotine as he defends. He uses a fence grab to deny a takedown, then gets wrangled down anyway. He sweeps into guard. Two minutes to go.
Ibragimov just chilling on top. Now he passes to half guard. He lands a couple punches, then tries to grab a guillotine as Marques sits up into a takedown. Planted on his back, loses the choke. Marques looking for the back again. Both hooks. 10-9 Ibragimov.
Final result: Marques def. Ibragimov by unanimous decision
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