In UFC’s 12th London installment, the card was stacked with UK-based stars and tons of great match ups, making for one of the most exciting fight nights in a while.
Out of 12 fights, there were 5 submissions(all in the 1st round) and 4 KOs, only 3 fights reaching the judge’s scorecards. Every fighter who finished their opponent received a $50,000 bonus.
The 5 submissions were an Armbar from Tom Aspinall, a Rear Naked Choke from Paddy Pimblett, an Anaconda Choke from Makwan Amirkhani, a Triangle Choke from Paul Craig, and a Guillotine Choke from Muhammad Mokaev.
Tom Aspinall finished off the night with his main event win over Alexander Volkov. Aspinall was on point as he picked Volkov apart on the feet and on the ground. The jiu-jitsu black belt was able to secure the submission(which caused a pop in Volkov’s elbow) in the first round. After the fight, he called out Tai Tuivasa for his next opponent.
Hometown favorite Paddy Pimblett showed off his submission skills for the first time in the UFC with his 1st round RNC. The submission is the 9th of his professional career. The crowd went absolutely crazy over his win, as teammate Molly McCann rushed the octagon to celebrate their victories together.
In the final fight of the prelims, Makwan Amirkhani’s Anaconda Choke put Mike Grundy to sleep just :57 seconds into the fight. Grundy’s early takedown attempt turned out to work against him, after he shot in for a single leg just 10 seconds into the fight, Amirkhani reacted by grabbing the neck with an arm in guillotine. After sitting on the ground, Amirkhani switched to an Anaconda and Grundy tried to roll out of the position, but Amirkhani was able to tie up the legs and sink in the choke until Grundy went to sleep.
Paul Craig is becoming one of the UFC’s best fighters to watch fight off of their back, as he finished his fight tonight with a swift Triangle Choke. Krylov is a formidable opponent with a record that boasts 15 submissions and 10 KOs. Krylov gained top position with an early double leg and quickly got to work landing some nasty blows from top half. Craig moved to lockdown à la Eddie Bravo and found an opportunity to retract his inside leg and recover guard, but received some more vicious punches as a reward. Craig was mostly able to maintain his guard, but continued to get hammered with heavy shots that seemed to have enough power to end the fight at any moment. As Krylov was stacking, Craig grabbed a two-on-one grip on Krylov’s and quickly locked up a triangle out of nowhere. He got some payback with a couple of strikes of his own before really squeezing and getting the tap.
Another hometown favorite, Muhammad Mokaev, kicked off the UFC London card with a guillotine finish just :58 seconds into the fight. After feeling his opponent for about :30 seconds, Mokaev surprised Cody Durden with a flying knee that put Durden down and wobbly. Mokaev was quick to jump on the guillotine and Durden reacted by grabbing a high-crotch single leg and slamming Mokaev, but Mokaev never lost his grip, came on top, and finished the guillotine from the mount.
// MAIN CARD //
Tom Aspinall def. Alexander Volkov via submission (Armbar); Round 1, 3:45
Arnold Allen def. Dan Hooker via TKO (punches); Round 1, 2:33
Paddy Pimblett def. Kazula Vargas via submission (RNC); Round 1, 3:49
Gunnar Nelson def. Takashi Sato via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
Molly McCann def. Luana Carolina via knockout (Spinning Elbow); Round 3, 1:52
Ilia Topuria def. Jai Herbert via knockout (Punch); Round 2, 1:07
// PRELIMS //
Makwan Amirkhani def. Mike Grundy via Submission (Anaconda Choke); Round 1, 0:57
Sergei Pavlovich def. Shamil Abdurakhimov via TKO; Round 1, 4:03
Paul Craig def. Nikita Krylov via submission (Triangle Choke); Round 1, 3:57
Jack Shore def. Timur Valiev via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-27)
Elise Reed def. Cory McKenna via split decision (27-30, 29-28, 29-28)
Muhammad Mokaev def. Cody Durden via submission (Guillotine Choke); Round 1, 0:58