We’re closing in on the end of Season Five of Dana White’s “Contender Series,” but we’re not done by a long shot, as another dozen mixed martial arts (MMA) hopefuls are set to show their stuff on ESPN+ tonight (Tues., Oct. 26, 2021).
Four more hopefuls joined the world’s largest fight promotion last week. Pedro Falcao and Armen Petrosyan scored brutal knockouts, Caio Borralho made it 2-0 on the show with a first-round finish off a three-week turnaround, and Jonny Parsons scored a sizable split decision upset in the main event.
As has become tradition for this series, we’re looking at an almost entirely international cast this week. Brazil’s Jansey Silva (7-1) meets Russia’s Gadzhi Omargadzhiev (12-0) in the Middleweight main event, while the Mexico vs. China co-feature pits UWC Bantamweight champ Christian Quinonez (15-3) against WLF veteran Xiao Long (16-6). Down at Bantamweight, Javid Basharat (10-0) takes on Oron Kahlon (16-0), who hit the scales three pounds heavy yesterday.
The evening’s sole women’s fight sees Yan Qiqui (11-3) square off with Karine Silva (13-4). 30 pounds north, Manuel Torres (11-2) faces Kolton Englund (9-3), and Olivier Murad (5-0) fights Xie Bin in the Featherweight opener.
‘Contender Series’ Quick Results:
Jansey Silva vs. Gadzhi Omargadzhiev — Omargadzhiev def. Silva by submission (kneebar) at 4:19 of Round One
Christian Quinonez vs. Xiao Long — Quinonez def. Xiao by unanimous decision (30-27 x3)
Javid Basharat vs. Oron Kahlon — Basharat def. Kahlon by submission (guillotine choke) at 4:12 of Round Three
Yan Qihui vs. Karine Silva — Silva def. Yan by submission (guillotine choke) at 1:44 of Round Two
Manuel Torres vs. Kolton Englund — Torres def. Englund by TKO (punches) at 2:10 of Round One
Olivier Murad vs. Xie Bin — Murad def. Xie by split decision (28-29, 29-28 x2)
‘Contender Series’ Play-By-Play Results:
185 lbs.: Jansey Silva vs. Gadzhi Omargadzhiev
Round one: Silva orthodox, Omargadzhiev switching. Low kick lands for Silva. Omargadzhiev fires a right hand and hits a takedown behind it. One minute in. Silva trying to regain guard, gets butterfly hooks in. Elbow form Omargadzhiev. Two minutes in. Landing the occasional ground-and-pound. He dives in with a right hand, snuffs out a submission attempt. Two minutes to go.
Silva throwing elbows off his back. Omargadzhiev falls back for a a heel hook, and as Silva tries to slam home right hands in return, he switches to a kneebar that draws an agonized tap.
Final result: Omargadzhiev def. Silva by submission (kneebar)
135 lbs.: Christian Quinonez vs. Xiao Long
Round one: Low kick from Quinonez to start as he circles. Jab and leg kicks. Counter right from Xiao, who shrugs off a low blow. One minute in. Low kick from Xiao, who gets stung by a straight right. Quinonez using his range well. Xiao waving him on. Quinonez catches a kick for a takedown two minutes in. On top in side control. He tries to spin to the back as Xiao stands, can’t do so and separates. 2-3 lands for Xiao, eats a low kick in return. Two minutes to go.
Quinonez misses on a wheel kick. Right hand misses on the break. There’s some nice right hands and he stuffs a takedown in return, grabbing the Thai clinch and landing knees. Right hand on the exit. Xiao really struggling with the range. Leg kick lands for him. One minute to go. Right cross wobbles Xiao, who stiff-arms Quinonez away. They trade knees, then Xiao cracks him with a right cross. Hard exchange to end the round. 10-9 Quinonez.
Round two: Xiao pushing forward, lands a low kick in combination. Quinonez fires a combo. Jab and body shot land for Xiao. Right cross upstairs a minute in. Quinonez not throwing enough at the moment, takes a body shot. They trade low kicks. More leg kicks from Xiao. Good right hand, gets denied on a shot. Two minutes in. Nice jab from Quinonez, who catches a body kick and kicks off an exchange. Counter right catches Quinonez coming in. Two minutes to go.
Quinonez just isn’t throwing. There’s a nice combo and Xiao waves him on. Starting to pick up the pace late. One minute to go. Xiao’s nose is bothering him and he eats a jab right to it. Body shot from Xiao, who leans into an uppercut and gets floored by a right cross. He goes for a single-leg, can’t get it. Stiff jab by Quinonez. 10-9 Quinonez.
Round three: Xiao continuing to advance, lands an overhand right. Quinonez low kick answered in kind. Left hook by Xiao after absorbing a right hand. Hard right hands from Quinonez and some stiff jabs with them a minute in. Xiao falling short. Quinonez body kick, Xiao low kick and body kick. Two minutes in. Counter right from Quinonez. He eats a leg kick, lands a right cross. Another heavy right, denies a level change. Two minutes to go.
They trade leg kicks. 1-2 from Xiao. Heavy right cross comes back at him. They exchange in the center. One minute to go. Quinonez answers a head kick with a right hand, eats one in return. Body kick from Xiao, who absorbs a spinning back kick to the body. Xiao shoots, can’t get the single-leg. He tries his own spinning attack and Superman punch. 10-9 Quinonez.
Final result: Quinonez def. Xiao by unanimous decision
135 lbs.: Javid Basharat vs. Oron Kahlon
Round one: Both land low kicks to start. Kahlon tries a head kick. Jab lands for Basharat, who catches a body kick and eats a right hand as he drags him down into half guard a minute in. Basharat looking tp pass, lands heavy elbows. Nice punches as well two minutes in. More good elbows cut Kahlon open. Side control now for Basharat. Continuing to bash away. Two minutes to go.
Basharat looking for mount, continues to drill Kahlon with heavy punches. One minute to go. More elbows. Kahlon spins for a leg, knee isn’t in. Basharat stands over, moves to half guard. Another broadside before the bell. 10-8 Basharat.
Round two: Early right hand from Kahlon. Straight left by Basharat, who absorbs another right hand and rips an evil-looking liver shot. Knee to the head soon after. Body knee a minute in. He slips and a scramble ensues. Basharat with one hook in, looking to fully take the back. Kahlon returns to his feet, grabs the fence to defend a takedown. Two minutes in. Basharat drags him down to a low mount against the fence. Half guard, side control. Two minutes to go.
Back to half guard. Basharat staying heavy. One minute to go. There’s some elbows. Side control. Pins down an arm, lands some elbows at the bell. 10-9 Basharat.
Round three: Calf kick from Basharat to start. Spinning back kick. Kahlon looking a bit spent, stuck near the fence. Basharat takes a low blow, shrugs it off and continues to pressure. One minute in. Snap kick lands for Basharat. Hard low kicks. Kahlon falls short with a two-piece. Another calf kick drops Kahlon and Basharat follows him down into guard. Two minutes to go. Half guard for Basharat. Patient GnP. Two minutes to go.
Now Basharat opens up a bit more. Hard elbows, diving right hand into side control. Basharat grabs a guillotine as Kahlon tries to turn into him. He mounts with it and there’s the tap.
Final result: Basharat def. Kahlon by submission (guillotine choke)
125 lbs.: Yan Qihui vs. Karine Silva
Round one: Front kick and right hand land for Silva to start. Body kick and flurry by Yan against the fence. Silva lands a clean right cross in the center. Yan catches a kick and muscles her to the mat a minute in. Silva trying to work a high guard. Hard right hands from Yan two minutes in. Silva using that rubber guard but not generating much offense from her back. Looking for upkicks as Yan stands. Hard low kicks from Yan in return, then back to guard with two minutes to go.
Short punches for Yan. One minute to go. Sneaky elbow. Silva suddenly has a gogoplata locked up, but Yan pops her head free, then postures up for some more punches. 10-9 Yan.
Round two: High kicks from Silva, low kicks from Yan. Silva lands a counter right. Silva shoots, gets sprawled on, continues to drive. One minute in. Left hand from Yan. They tie up, Yan shoves her away. Left hook from Yan, but Silva locks up a guillotine as Yan slams her down. It’s in deep and there’s the tap.
Final result: Silva def. Yan by submission (guillotine choke)
155 lbs.: Manuel Torres vs. Kolton Englund
Round one: Torres lands an early front kick. Potshotting at range. Solid teep, low kick. Jabs connects a minute in. Heavy hook lands for him, glancing head kick. Englund shoots against the fence. Torres reverses, lands knees downstairs. Englund backs off, claiming an eye poke, but Herb Dean doesn’t intervene. Torres jumps on him as he reels back and smashes him into oblivion.
Final result: Torres def. Englund by TKO (punches)
145 lbs.: Olivier Murad vs. Xie Bin
Round one: Murad eats a 1-2, tries to blitz. They trade knees near the fence and Murad starts sprinting after him with wild punches. Another knee lands. Things slow back down after a moment. Awkward slip puts Xie on top in guard a minute in. Xie on top, periodically punching. Not letting Murad get anything going. Two minutes in. Now Murad gets a bit of space and stands. Good left hand lands for him, then another on the counter. Continuing to charge, another left cross. Two minutes to go.
Xie digs a nice knee to the body. Another left from Murad stings him. Another. Knee upstairs. Another left hand. Xie lands a counter right and hits a reactive shot into side control with a minute to go. Looking for the crucifix. Brief americana attempt. Two hammerfists before the bell. 10-9 Murad.
Round two: Low kicks from Murad, who drops him with a straight left and stuffs a takedown. Elbow up top before they separate. Straight right by Xie. One minute in. 1-2-2 from Murad, who looks for a guillotine as Xie takes him down into guard. No dice. Looking to pass. Murad sweeps just over two minutes in and they reset on the feet. Combo from Murad, brief clinch. 1-2 by Xie with two minutes to go.
Another right cross lands for Xie. Body shot. Murad lead left. Xie tries a Superman punch into a takedown attempt, drags him down into side control with a minute to go. Staying tight on top, brief attempt to pass. He tries to drop elbows at the bell. 10-9 Xie.
Round three: Murad hits his own takedown behind a straight left, then lets him up. Well-timed knee by Murad nearly catches Xie leaning. He lands a left hand, succumbs to an aggressive shot into guard. One minute in. Short shots from the top. Two minutes in. Brief scramble, back to the same position. Murad holding overhooks but not doing much else. Two minutes to go.
Now Xie postures up for some heavier shots, uses the threat of the d’arce to keep Murad down. Murad sweeps and separates. One minute to go. Solid right hand from Murad behind a low kick. Xie body kick, blocks a head kick, eats a series of heavy punches. Another huge left by Murad. Brief clinch. 10-9 Xie.
Final result: Murad def. Xie by split decision
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