Mackenzie Dern Loses Majority Decision To Yan At UFC Vegas 61 – Full Results

Mackenzie Dern fought in a classic ‘striker-versus-grappler’ fight on Saturday night when she faced Yan Xiaonan, one of the most dominant strikers in the women’s Strawweight division.

While Dern’s last few opponents have been strikers, they also held a more interdisciplinary focus in their Martial Arts than Yan, who comes from a life-long Sanda background and boasts a white belt in jiu-jitsu.

When the fight started immediately Dern is trying to stand with Yan but getting caught a lot. Yan is looking calm and relaxed. Yan is training with Urijah Faber at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, California while Dern has been working with Jason Parillo in Huntington Beach where her boxing and striking skills continue to improve.

Yan’s feints are exceptional, clearly showing the advantage in her striking. Halfway through the first round 

Dern secured a clinch and takedown toward the end of the first round, but Yan was able to end up on top and land some good ground and pound before the round ended.

Round 2 was on the ground within the first minute, with Dern electing to play guard. She attacked a leg, but after losing position, she sunk in a deep omoplata which seemed close to ending the fight. From there, she lost the omoplata but instantly transitioned to an arm triangle choke, which Yan somehow escaped yet again. Dern finished the round by taking the back and purely dominating Yan with her ground game for the last minute.

Coming into Round 3, Yan was well aware that she couldn’t let it go back to the ground. However, Dern pulled guard again and Yan was quickly back to her feet. After about 2 minutes, Yan stung Dern and wobbled her. From there, the pace of the fight changed as Dern’s energy seemed to instantly drain. Yan took advantage by heavily battering Dern’s legs with leg kicks and pulled away with the round clearly in her favor.

Round 4 started the same way that Round 3 ended, Yan had the advantage with striking and continued the leg kicks, but Dern was able to get the fight back to the ground again. Unfortunately for Dern, she spent the last few minutes of the round playing guard from her back. The only real danger that Yan saw was a late armbar attempt from Dern, but there was only about 15-seconds left and time expired before she could improve towards the finish.

In between rounds, Jason Parillo told Dern that she needed a stoppage in order to secure the win and it showed: Dern came out guns-blazing for Round 5, and got the fight to the ground within a minute, quickly improving to full mount where she threatened submissions while also landing punches.

Yan gave up her back as she defended against the strikes and Dern was all over her, landing tons of strikes. All Yan had to do was defend and avoid being finished in order to secure the victory, but Dern was relentless in her attack and set up a deep arm bar with less than 30 seconds remaining. It was an absolute nail-biter as Dern was just inches from a finish and Yan was just inches from an escape. But ultimately, Yan slipped her arm free with less than 10-seconds and finished the fight with some more ground and pound from the top.

The judges awarded Yan with a Majority Decision, one judge scoring draw. Yan showed humility and gratitude in her first UFC post-fight interview, where she sang praise to Dern’s grappling skills. She explained that her training camp was hardly focused on any striking at all, but instead was very heavy on takedown defense and submission escapes. 

The full replay of ‘UFC Vegas 61: Dern vs. Yan’ can be streamed on ESPN+.


Yan Xiaonan def. Mackenzie Dern via majority decision

Randy Brown def. Francisco Trinaldo via unanimous decision

Raoni Barcelos def. Trevin Jones via unanimous decision

Sodiq Yusuff def. Don Shainis via submission (Guillotine)

Mike Davis def. Viacheslav Borshchev via unanimous decision


Daniel Santos def. John Castaneda via KO

Ilir Latifi def. Aleksei Oleinik via unanimous decision

Joaquim Silva def. Jesse Ronson via TKO

Brendan Allen def. Krzysztof Jotko via submission (RNC)

Chelsea Chandler def. Julija Stoliarenko via TKO

Guido Cannetti def. Randy Costa via submission (RNC)


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