UFC Vegas 59 got whittled down to 10 fights on Saturday, but all of them delivered! The light heavyweight headliner was scrappy, and the welterweight co-headliner ended in violent fashion.
The preliminary portion of the card began oddly after Mayra Bueno Silva submitted Stephanie Egger with an armbar that went unseen by referee Chris Tognoni. ’Sheetara’ was adamant she felt a tap, hence her immediate release of the armbar on Egger. Upon reviewing the replay and polling the judges (judge Ron McCarthy said he “absolutely 100 percent” saw a tap), Tognoni declared Silva the winner. Cory McKenna returned to the win column with a second-round Von Flue choke of Miranda Granger. ‘Poppins’ also etched her name in UFC history as she became the first female fighter to win by that submission. Nice! Bryan Battle starched Takashi Sato with a brutal head kick in less than a minute. The Ultimate Fighter 29 winner then gave one of the best post-fight interviews of the night and challenged either Ian Garry or Bryan Barberena for his next fight. Michal Oleksiejczuk was successful in his debut at middleweight, dropping Sam Alvey twice and finishing him before referee Herb Dean waved off the action. With that loss, ‘Smilin’ is now on a nine-fight winless streak, the longest in UFC history.
The main portion of the card saw Terrance McKinney add another first-round finish to his resume, snatching up a standing rear-naked choke on Erick Gonzalez. ’T. Wrecks’ told Michael Bisping that he wants to fight again either at UFC 280 or UFC 281 and against a fellow up-and-coming name in the lightweight division: Paddy Pimblett. Serghei Spivac dominated Augusto Sakai on the ground and got a second-round TKO. The ‘Polar Bear’ would prefer a top-ten opponent for his next appearance. Juliana Miller became the first TUF 30 winner after punishing Brogan Walker-Sanchez on the ground with punches and elbows. Mohammed Usman slept Zac Pauga with a sickening left hook and follow-up hammerfist to win the heavyweight crown of TUF 30. Fun fact: Mohammad and his older brother Kamaru — current UFC welterweight champion — are the first pair of brothers to win The Ultimate Fighter! Geoff Neal showed off his ‘Handz of Steel’ with a stunning third-round TKO of Vicente Luque, who had never been finished by strikes in his professional career. The No. 13 welterweight used his time on the microphone to ask for another contender in Gilbert Burns.
Jamahal Hill scored a fourth-round TKO of Thiago Santos in a back-and-forth affair. ‘Sweet Dreams’ was tested by ‘Marreta,’ but he ultimately overwhelmed the Brazilian and got his third straight finish.
Performance of the Night: Bryan Battle, Geoff Neal, and Mohammed Usman
Mayra Bueno Silva def. Stephanie Egger by submission (armbar) at 1:17 of Round 1
Cory McKenna def. Miranda Granger by submission (Von Flue choke) at 1:03 of Round 2
Bryan Battle def. Takashi Sato by KO (head kick) at :44 of Round 1
Michal Oleksiejczuk def. Sam Alvey via TKO (punches) at 1:56 of Round 1
Terrance McKinney def. Erick Gonzalez by submisison (standing rear-naked choke) at 2:17 of Round 1
Serghei Spivac def. Augusto Sakai by TKO (punches) at 3:42 of Round 2
Juliana Miller def. Brogan Walker-Sanchez by TKO (strikes) at 3:57 of Round 3
Mohammed Usman def. Zac Pauga by KO (punch) at :36 of Round 2
Geoff Neal def. Vicente Luque by KO (punches) at 2:01 of Round 3
Jamahal Hill def. Thiago Santos by TKO (strikes) at 2:31 of Round 4
Fight of the Night: Thiago Santos vs. Jamahal Hill