UFC delivers another action-packed card at UFC APEX in Las Vegas, headlined by a bantamweight thriller that will see No. 2 ranked contender Cory Sandhagen take on returning former champion TJ Dillashaw.
UFC FIGHT NIGHT: SANDHAGEN vs. DILLASHAW will take place Saturday, July 24 from UFC APEX is Las Vegas. All bouts will be available on ESPN, ESPN+ and ESPN Deportes beginning with the prelims at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT and continuing with the main card at 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT.
Sandhagen (14-2, fighting out of Aurora, Colo.) is coming off consecutive Performance of the Night-earning knockouts over former lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and Marlon Moraes. Among the most diverse and entertaining strikers at bantamweight, he also holds wins over Raphael Assuncao, John Lineker and Iuri Alcantara. Sandhagen now looks to add another former UFC champion to his resume to stake his claim for a title shot.
Former two-time bantamweight champion Dillashaw (17-4, fighting out of Denver, Colo.) returns to action for the first time in over two years. Throughout his UFC career, he has utilized his dynamic striking and grappling to secure memorable victories over Cody Garbrandt (twice), Renan Barao (twice) and John Lineker. Dillashaw now has his sights set on making a statement against one of the division’s top contenders while positioning himself for an opportunity to reclaim the belt.
What time is UFC Fight Night: Sandhagen vs Dillashaw?
- Main Card: 7pm ET / 4pm PT
- Prelims: 4pm ET / 1pm PT
UFC Fight Night: Sandhagen vs Dillashaw Results
UFC Fight Night: Sandhagen vs Dillashaw Prelims
Diana Belbita vs Hannah Goldy
Strawweights Diana Belbita and Hannah Goldy both left it all in the Octagon in search of their first UFC win, and it was Belbita getting the unanimous decision win in a fight a lot closer than the final scores would indicate.
Scores were 30-27 across the board for Belbita, now 14-6. Goldy falls to 5-2.
Goldy’s kicks served her well in the early stages of the fight, but a right hand by Belbita turned everything around just before the midway point as she dropped her opponent. Goldy rose quickly but was on the receiving end of several more hard punches until a takedown by Goldy stopped the onslaught.
Back on level footing to start the second stanza, both fighters scored well on the feet, but Goldy had an edge in the grappling exchanges, which slowed down the busy attack of Belbita.
Goldey came out aggressively for round three, only to get staggered again by the right hand of Belbita, who got in some more shots before getting locked up against the fence by the Floridian, who cleared her head and got back to work with a minute to go. And work she did, scoring a late takedown that was followed by a barrage of ground strikes before the final horn sounded
Official result –Diana Belbita def. Hannah Goldy via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Eubanks (8-6) needed only 15 seconds to get the fight to the mat, and after patiently getting into the mount position, she made her move, throwing hard strikes while also looking for an armbar. Reed (4-1) was able to fight out of being mounted briefly, once “SarJ” got back there, a series of unanswered strikes brought in referee Mark Smith to stop the bout at the 3:49 mark of the opening round.
Official result: Sijara Eubanks def. Elise Reed via TKO (strikes) at 3:49 of round one
The combatants fought at a measured pace in the opening five minutes, Arce (17-4) holding the edge by landing the harder shots, particularly a left hand that rattled Ewell (17-8) briefly with 1:40 left.
The left was on target again in the second, and this time, when he stunned Ewell, he unleashed a few more on his hurt opponent until referee Chris Tognoni stepped in and halted matters. The official time was 3:45 of round two.
Official result: Julio Arce def. Andre Ewell via TKO (strikes) at 3:45 of round two
Mickey Gall vs Jordan Williams
Mickey Gall's first bout since June 2020 was a victorious and dominant one, as he submitted Jordan Williams in the opening stanza.
Gall dropped Williams early with a right hand and nearly locked in a fight-finishing choke, but Williams got free and back to his feet. Williams looked for a takedown just before the midway point of the round, but Gall fought it off and worked his way into the rear naked choke that forced a tap out at 2:57 of the first round.
Gall moves to 7-3 with the win. Williams falls to 9-5, 1 NC
Official result: Mickey Gall def. Jordan Williams via submission (rear naked choke) at 2:57 of round one
There was good back-and-forth action in the first round, highlighted by Heinisch (14-5) battering Imavov’s leg with kicks while Imavov cut Heinisch with a lightning-fast series of jabs.
Imavov (10-3) kept the heat on in round two, and after a knee put the Colorado native on the deck, a barrage of unanswered blows ended the bout, with referee Mark Smith’s stoppage coming at 3:09 of the second stanza.
Official result: Nassourdine Imavov def. Ian Heinisch via TKO (strikes) at 3:09 of round two
The first round was fun to watch, as each fighter gave and took hard shots. Allen was more effective with his combinations from distance and knees at close range, but the thudding power of Soriano was always an equalizer, making it a tough round to call.
The pace stayed high in the second, but Allen began pulling away thanks to a series of kicks and knees to the body that started draining the gas tank of Soriano. The Hawaiian didn’t stop throwing when in range, though, and he remained one shot away from turning things back in his favor.
Soriano landed that left hand early in round three, but Allen took it well and stuck with the game plan. Soriano wasn’t out of the fight, as he kept pressing his foe, but Allen was right there with him the whole way, leading to a win for “All In.”
Official result – Brendan Allen def. Punahele Soriano via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Getting right after it, the fighters wasted no time looking to get the upper hand, with Costa taking an early lead behind a busy punching attack and hard kicks to the head. Soon, Yanez was bloodied and finding a hard time catching Costa, whose jab was on target. Yanez did start getting a rhythm late in the round, sending him into the next round on a positive note.
And in the second stanza, Yanez upped his work rate and began tagging Costa repeatedly with punches from all angles. The bloodied New Englander then got drilled with an uppercut that put him on the canvas, and after a barrage of punches, referee Chris Tognoni stopped the fight at the 2:11 mark of round two.
Yanez moves to 14-3 with the win. Costa falls to 6-2.
Official result: Adrian Yanez def. Randy Costa via TKO (strikes) at 2:11 of round two
Miranda Maverick vs Maycee Barber
Scores were 29-28 twice and 28-29 for the No.14-ranked Barber, now 9-2. The No.13-ranked Maverick falls to 11-3.
There was throwing, but not much significant scoring in the first round, but Maverick was the busier fighter as she stalked Barber around the Octagon, and she began finding her range in the late stages of the frame.
Maverick added to her lead in the second as she added grappling to her attack, pinning Barber to the fence for a spell. Barber responded with a takedown attempt and a clinch as she got on the board with her own grappling. Maverick got a takedown in the final minute and looked for a rear naked choke after taking her opponent’s back, and though she didn’t get it, it allowed her to take the round.
Barber got a takedown two minutes into the final round, but Maverick refused to stay grounded for long and it was back to the feet. Barber kept pushing the pace late, and it was enough to turn things around for “The Future,” who snapped a two-fight losing streak.
Official result – Maycee Barber def. Miranda Maverick via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)
Minner looked to secure a choke early in the fight, but Elkins got loose as the two tumbled to the mat. Minner remained in control, nearly getting a triangle, yet again, it was Elkins fighting his way out of trouble. Minner wasn’t discouraged, though, as he kept working, and now it was a series of ground strikes that had “The Damage” back in trouble until the horn.
Minner got off to another fast start in round two, but the bloodied Elkins showed off his veteran grit once again as he weathered the storm and pinned his foe on the mat, where he let loose with a barrage of strikes until referee Mark Smith stopped the fight. The official time was 3:48 of the second round.
Elkins moves to 27-9. Minner falls to 26-12.
Official result: Darren Elkins def. Darrick Minner via TKO (strikes) at 3:48 of round two
Co-Main Event: Kyler Phillips vs Raulian Paiva
Scores were 29-28 twice and 28-28 for Paiva, now 21-3. The No.14-ranked Phillips falls to 9-2.
Phillips was on the attack from the start, and he struck paydirt early with a left hand that dropped Paiva just past the 30-second mark. Paiva recovered quickly and didn’t shy away from any subsequent exchanges as he attempted to land the equalizer. A right hand by Phillips rattled Paiva again midway through the frame, but as the fight went to the mat, it allowed the Brazilian to clear his head and work from the top position. Soon, though, it was Phillips in control on top until he decided to get back to his feet, where he drilled Paiva with a trio of right hands, the third putting the bout back to the canvas, where Paiva took more shots until the horn sounded.
Paiva recovered between rounds and took the fight to Phillips in the second stanza, scoring a flash knockdown in the second minute. Phillips scored a takedown just before the midway point of the round, but Paiva didn’t stay on the mat for any length of time, and he landed some hard shots as the two battled along the fence. Phillips got the fight back to the mat in the final minute, and once standing, the two traded flush right hands.
The bantamweights kept battling in the final round, Phillips holding a slight edge standing before Paiva controlled matters on the mat for nearly two minutes until a final exchange on the feet finished off a memorable battle.
Official result – Raulian Paiva def. Kyler Phillips via majority decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-28)
Main Event: Cory Sandhagen vs TJ Dillashaw
Returning to active duty for the first time since serving a two-year suspension for a failed drug test, former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw didn’t skip a beat in pounding out a grueling five-round split decision victory over Cory Sandhagen.
Scores were 48-47 twice and 47-48 for Dillashaw, now 18-4. The No.2-ranked Sandhagen falls to 14-3.
Dillashaw, who hadn’t competed since January 2019, opened the scoring with a couple kicks, but it was Sandhagen coolly responding with a flying knee that was followed by a triangle attempt when it missed. Dillashaw got free from the submission attempt and landed some ground strikes before working his grappling attack as they battled against the fence. Once separated, the exchanges picked up, Dillashaw using his strikes to implement his grappling. With a little over a minute left, Dillashaw got the fight to the mat, but Sandhagen stayed busy while his foe fired off strikes.
Sandhagen’s grappling work late in round one may have injured Dillashaw’s left knee, but the former champ was right on the attack as the second opened. Sandhagen was busier with his strikes than he was in the first five minutes as he settled into the fight, and just before the midway point, he dropped Dillashaw with a short left. Now bloodied, Dillashaw tried to even the score, but the bout was briefly halted for the doctor to examine the cut over the Californian’s eye. Once the bout resumed, Sandhagen landed a flying knee and kept landing, with Dillashaw trying to get the fight to the mat to turn things around.
The cut was giving Dillashaw issues in the third round, but he kept working, eventually getting the fight to the mat with a little over two minutes left after a missed spinning kick by the Coloradan. Sandhagen got up quickly and went back to a more traditional striking attack, but Dillashaw was right there with him every step of the way, and he ended the round with some hard strikes as he pinned Sandhagen to the fence.
Working his punches and leg kicks, Dillashaw had momentum on his side in the fourth round, but after a spell locked up against the fence, Sandhagen went on the offensive, landing some shots that reopened Dillashaw’s cut. Dillashaw was having success in clinches against the fence, but at range, Sandhagen was holding the edge heading into the final frame.
Dillashaw played the aggressor to begin the fifth round, throwing punches to the head and kicks downstairs. Sandhagen countered well, but he did get taken down briefly in the second minute. Once on his feet, Sandhagen landed with a sniper’s accuracy, even though Dillashaw was getting in his shots while mixing in stints in control against the fence. As the seconds ticked away, there was more back and forth action before the judges got to decide the fight, and it wasn’t an easy task, but the final nod went to the former champ.
Official result – TJ Dillashaw def. Cory Sandhagen via split decision (48-47, 48-47, 47-48)