The UFC will be closing off 2022 with one last card in Las Vegas as the main event features a clash of top-ten middleweights.
UFC Vegas 66 Results – Main Event
Coming off a shot at the middleweight title in his most recent fight, Jared Cannonier looks to remain in the top-five of the middleweight division as he takes on seventh ranked Sean Strickland.
After years at heavyweight and light heavyweight, Jared Cannonier made his middleweight debut in 2018 and has since put together a record of 5-2. He started off his middleweight run with three straight wins, all by way of TKO, as he finished David Branch at UFC 230, former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva at UFC 237 and Jack Hermansson in Cannonier’s first UFC main event at UFC Fight Night 160. Cannonier’s three fight win streak was snapped and he suffered his first loss at middleweight in his next fight when former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker defeated him by unanimous decision at UFC 254.
Following the loss to Whittaker, Cannonier put together another win streak to earn himself a shot at the middleweight title. The first of the two wins was a unanimous decision over Kelvin Gastelum in the main event of UFC Vegas 34. The second win to earn him a title shot was a knockout win over Derek Brunson in the second round of their matchup at UFC 271. Following those two wins, Cannonier earned a shot at the title as he faced Israel Adesanya at UFC 276. He would come up short in that fight as Adesanya defended his title with a unanimous decision win. Now, Cannonier looks to rebound from the loss and make his way back to a title shot when he faces Strickland.
Strickland spent a large amount of his time in the UFC at welterweight before he moved up to middleweight, where he spent much of his early career outside of the UFC, in 2020. Coming off a TKO win over Nordine Taleb in his last welterweight fight, Strickland would go on to win five straight after moving up to middleweight. The first win that Strickland picked up in his return to middleweight was a unanimous decision win over Jack Marshman at UFC Fight Night 181. Following that win was a second round TKO finish over Brendan Allen two weeks later at UFC Fight Night 182.
His next couple wins were back-to-back unanimous decision wins over Krzysztof Jotko and Uriah Hall in his first main event at UFC Vegas 33. Strickland picked up his fifth straight win at middleweight and sixth straight overall when he defeated Jack Hermansson by split decision at UFC Vegas 47. In his most recent outing, Strickland’s win streak was snapped by the man who would go on to become UFC middleweight champion Alex Pereira. Strickland was finished by Pereira in the first round of their fight at UFC 276 by knockout. Now, Strickland looks to bounce back from that loss and climb back into the top five with a win over Cannonier.
UFC Vegas 66 Results – Co-Main Event
In UFC Vegas 66’s co-main event, top-fifteen contenders at lightweight collide as Arman Tsarukyan takes on Damir Ismagulov.
Tsarukyan made his UFC debut in 2019 and has since compiled a record of 5-2. He made his debut on a twelve fight win streak but unfortunately that was snapped in his first UFC outing. In that fight, he lost to the man who would one day become UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev by unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night 149. After the loss, Tsarukyan went on to win his next five straight fights beginnning with three straight unanimous decision wins over Olivier Aubin-Mercier at UFC 240, Davi Ramos at UFC Fight Night 172 and Matt Frevola at UFC 257. His next two straight wins both came by way of TKO as he finished Christos Giagos at UFC Vegas 37 and Joel Alvarez at UFC Vegas 49. In his most recent fight, Tsarukyan’s five fight win streak was snapped when he lost by unanimous decision against Mateusz Gamrot in his first main event at UFC Vegas 57.
As for Ismagulov, he is entering this fight on a nineteen-fight win streak including five wins since making his UFC debut at UFC Fight Night 142. In that fight, he defeated Alex Gorgees unanimous decision. He won his next three wins the same way as he defeated Joel Alvarez at UFC Fight Night 145, Thiago Moises at UFC Fight Night 157 and Rafael Alves at UFC Vegas 27. Ismagulov’s most recent fight was a split decision win over Guram Kutateladze at UFC on ESPN 37. He looks to improve his win streak to twenty wins in a row as well as improving his UFC record to 6-0 if he can get by Tsarukyan on Saturday.
UFC Vegas 66 Results – Main Card
Kicking things off on the main card for UFC Vegas 66 will be a middleweight fight between Cody Brundage and Michal Oleksiejczuk. Brundage enters this fight with two straight wins behind him as he picked up a submission win over Dalcha Lungiambula at UFC Vegas 50 and a TKO win over Tresean Gore at UFC Vegas 58. Oleksiejczuk enters this fight with just one win behind him as he comes off a first round TKO finish of Sam Alvey at UFC Vegas 59.
Following that fight will be a lightweight matchup between Drew Dober and Bobby Green. Dober has won his last two straight entering this one as he picked up back-to-back KO/TKO wins over Terrance McKinney at UFC Vegas 50 and Rafael Alves at UFC 277. As for Green, making his return from a USADA suspension, is coming off a loss in his most recent fight against Islam Makhachev in the main event of UFC Vegas 49.
The third fight on the main card will be a featherweight matchup between Alex Caceres and Julian Erosa. Caceres is coming off a loss that snapped a five fight win streak in his last fight when Sodiq Yusuff defeated him by unanimous decision at UFC Vegas 50. On the other hand, Erosa enters the fight on a three fight win streak as he has picked up a submission win over Charles Jourdain, a split decision win over Steven Peterson and a unanimous decision win over Hakeem Dawodu.
Finally, before the lightweight co-main event will be a flyweight fight between Amir Albazi and Alessandro Costa. Albazi has won four straight entering this fight including three since making his UFC debut. Two of those wins were submission finishes over Malcolm Gordon and Francisco Figueiredo plus a unanimous decision win over Zhalgas Zhumagulov. As for Costa, he is making his UFC debut on a seven fight win streak.
UFC Vegas 66 Results
MAIN CARD (ESPN+ – 7 p.m. EST/4 p.m. PST)
Jared Cannonier def. Sean Strickland via Split Decision (49-46, 46-49, 49-46)
Arman Tsarukyan def. Damir Ismagulov via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Amir Albazi def. Alessandro Costa via Knockout (Punches) at 2:13 of Round Three
Alex Caceres def. Julian Erosa via TKO (Strikes) at 3:04 of Round One
Drew Dober def. Bobby Green via Knockout (Punches) at 2:45 of Round Two
Michal Oleksiejczuk def. Cody Brundage via TKO (Punches) at 3:16 of Round One
PRELIMINARY CARD (ESPN+ – 4 p.m. EST/1 p.m. PST)
Cory McKenna def. Cheyanne Vlismas via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Matthew Semelsberger def. Jake Matthews via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Said Nurmagomedov def. Saidyokub Kakhramonov via Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 3:50 of Round Two
Rafa Garcia def. Maheshate* via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Rinat Fakhretdinov def. Bryan Battle via Unanimous Decision (30-25, 30-25, 30-27)
Manel Kape def. David Dvorak via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Sergey Morozov def. Journey Newson via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
*Maheshate missed weight at 158.5 pounds and will forfeit 20 percent of his purse.
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