The 7th installment of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contenders Series kicked off on Tuesday with 10 new fighters looking to secure a contract with the UFC.
Anton Berzin vs Kennedy Nzechukwu:
Berzin came into the main event of the evening as a massive favorite. In the first exchange, he showed why he was the favorite, dropping Nzechukwu with the first punch thrown. Berzin was unable to capitalize on it. Nzechukwu recovered and was able to use his six-inch reach advantage. He kept Berzin at the end of his reach. He controlled his punches, working at a slower pace. Berzin struggled to get inside or land a takedown. Nzechukwu was able to pull off the upset. Kennedy Nzechukwu beats Anton Berzin by split decision.
Benito Lopez vs Steven Peterson:
Lopez and Peterson put on a war. Lopez looked unbelievable in the first round. He landed some huge kicks and flying knees on Peterson’s chin. He bloodied up Peterson. Peterson showed an unbelievable chin and heart. He continued to pressure Lopez while being tagged with huge shots.
Peterson was able to secure an early takedown and control Lopez for the entire round. Both fighters dug deep in the third round. Lopez landed nice kicks and knees from a distance, while Peterson worked to get inside and landed several flurries. The round end and the decision could have easily gone either way. Benito Lopez beat Steven Peterson by split decision.
* Lopez won a contract with the UFC.
Joby Sanchez vs J.P. Buys:
Sanchez was making his second appearance in the Contenders show He got a win in the first episode of the show but was unable to secure a contract. South African fighter, Buys came out by slamming Sanchez and taking his back. Both fighters showed great scrambling skills in a very exciting round. Buys ended the round on Sanchez back.
Sanchez could sense that Buys was slowing down, and got a takedown. He mounted Buys, who gave up his back. Sanchez started to tee off on Buys until the referee pulled him off. Joby Sanchez beat J.P. Buys by 2nd round TKO
* Sanchez won a UFC contract after the fight.
Mark Cherico vs Mike Santiago:
Mark Cherico talked a lot heading into his matchup with Mike Santiago and was unable to back up the talk. After a brief takedown from Cherico, Santiago was able to work his way to the feet. Once on the feet, Santiago made quick work of Cherico. He landed a series of shots that put Cherico down giving him the TKO win. The win pushes Santiago’s win streak to 11. Mike Santiago beats Mark Cherico by first round TKO.
Jordan Espinosa vs Nick Urso:
Flyweights Jordan Espinosa and Nick Urso kicked off the show. These two started a grudge match in 2016 with both guys talking trash on the internet. The two fought last year with the fight being stopped due to Urso landing illegal strikes on Espinosa. The fight was ruled a No-Contest.
Both guys came out fast. Urso rocked Espinosa with a front kick. Espinosa recovered and dropped Urso with a big shot. He locked on a D’Arce choke Urso and put him to sleep. Jordan Espinosa beat Nick Urso by 1st round submission (D’Arce Choke)