Askar Askarov is a Dagestani-based flyweight who fights in Khabib Nurmagomedov’s brawling style, and he was making his UFC debut.
Brandon Moreno is an all-heart Mexican brawler who was fighting in his homeland’s capital city.
Those elements combined to make for one heck of an exciting scrap Saturday on the main card of UFC on ESPN+ 17.
The fight was such a back-and-forth, tightly contested affair, in fact, that the judges had a hard time agreeing on who won. With scores of 28-28, 29-28 for Askarov, and 30-27 for Moreno, the bout was ruled a split draw.
Askarov (10-0-1 MMA, 0-0-1 UFC), who came into the bout with 10 finishes, seven of which were inside two rounds, immediately went into Khabib mode, shooting a single, getting a takedown and pounding his opponent while looking for a submission. Moreno (15-5-1 MMA, 3-2-1 UFC) got back to his feet and fended off triangle attempts. After Askarov got back to his feet, Moreno foreshadowed the final two rounds by landing big shots.
The second round was an exciting, back-and-forth affair, as Askarov attempted to re-implement his grappling game to varying levels of success, while Moreno continued to keep his opponent honest with heavy shots. By round’s end, when Moreno dropped Askarov with a head kick, it appeared Mexico City’s high elevation was starting to affect Askarov.
That became fully evident in a third round, which Moreno, who was making his UFC return after a one-fight stint in LFA, dominated nearly bell to bell, scoring an early takedown and nearly submitting Askarov with a rear-naked choke.
Over the course of the fight, Askarov landed four takedowns to Moreno’s one, while Moreno outlanded Askarov in significant strikes 37-26.
The flyweight bout was part of the UFC on ESPN+ 17 main card at Mexico City Arena. The event streamed on ESPN+.
Up-to-the-minute UFC on ESPN+ 17 results include:
Askar Askarov vs. Brandon Moreno ends in split draw (28-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Irene Aldana def. Vanessa Melo via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)
Steven Peterson def. Martin Bravo via knockout (spinning backfist) – Round 2, 1:31
Jose Quinonez def. Carlos Huachin via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Kyle Nelson def. Marco Polo Reyes via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 1:36
Angela Hill def. Ariane Carnelossi via TKO (doctor’s stoppage) – Round 3, 1:56
Sergio Pettis def. Tyson Nam via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Paul Craig def. Vinicius Moreira via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 3:19
Bethe Correia def. Sijara Eubanks via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Claudio Puelles def. Marcos Mariano via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-25, 30-25)
- Steven Peterson felt remorse for hitting Martin Bravo after spinning backfist KO at UFC on ESPN+ 17
- UFC on ESPN+ 17 results: Irene Aldana's volume overwhelms newcomer Vanessa Melo
- Nearly simultaneous spinning backfists gave us a brutally spectacular KO at UFC on ESPN+ 17
Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: UFC on ESPN+ 17 results: Askar Askarov, Brandon Moreno battle to hard-fought draw