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The UFC Vegas 21 results were dotted with several spectacular knockouts. They were overshadowed, however, by two bouts ending in a no contest, including the main event.
UFC Vegas 21 results: Leon Edwards eye poke stops bout with Belal Muhammad
Leon Edwards was out of the fight game for almost two years, but was poised to earn a title shot at UFC Vegas 21 on Saturday night. The fight didn't go anywhere near the way he hoped, and likely left his bid for a shot at welterweight champion Kamaru Usman unfulfilled.
Edwards and Muhammad were both throwing with intent straight out of the gate. It was Edwards that landed the first hard shots. But it was a couple head kicks midway through the round that rocked Muhammad, who was briefly on wobbly legs.
He clinched Edwards on the fence long enough to recover, but was bleeding around his right ear, likely from one of the head kicks.
Edwards landed with several more hard punches in the final minute of the first frame, keeping Muhammad on the defensive.
The fight was stopped when Edwards, who had landed a minor eye poke in the first round, landed an accidental, but much more severe eye poke in round two.
Muhammad's eye immediately swelled from the poke, leading referee Herb Dean to quickly wave off the fight.
Before the official result was read, Edwards met Muhammad in the middle of the Octagon, immediately apologizing
"First of all, I apologize to Belal. I'd rather a loss than that. I was heartbroken," Edwards reiterated in his post-fight interview.
"What now? It's been a long year and a half. To come back to that, I'm just heartbroken."
Misha Cirkunov vs. Ryan Spann
Ryan Spann made quick work of Misha Cirkunov in the UFC Vegas 21 co-main event.
The two fighters exchanged some heavy punches before Cirkunov landed a kick to the groin that caused a brief pause in the action. Once they started up again, Spann ate a shot before cracking Cirkunov, sending him to the canvas.
Spann followed him to the canvas, but when it wasn't clear he could finish there, he forced Cirkunov to return to his feet. A short time later, Spann dropped Cirkunov again, this time finishing him with an onslaught of hammerfists.
Following the fight, Spann called out the winner of the upcoming bout between Anthony Smith and Jimmy Crute.
Dan Ige drops Gavin Tucker with one punch
Calvin Kattar may have stopped Dan Ige's six-fight winning streak, but he was quick to start a new one with his 22-second finish of Gavin Tucker at UFC Vegas 21.
The bout had only just gotten underway when Ige stepped forward with a right hand that landed on the first exchange, dropping Tucker to the canvas.
After the fight, Ige called out Chan Sung Jung, the Korean Zombie.
Davey Grant builds momentum with second consecutive knockout
Davey Grant is now on a three-fight winning streak after scoring his second consecutive knockout with a blistering finish of Jonathan Martinez.
The fight was back and forth through the first round, Martinez landed brutal low kicks, while Grant was blasting away with heavy punches. Just as the round wore down, Martinez landed a huge punch that sent Grant to the canvas, though he couldn't find a way to finish.
In round two, Grant landed a left hook that put Martinez on the canvas and followed with a couple right hands before the referee stopped the fight.
Matheus Nicolau returns with a narrow victory
Matheus Nicolau left the UFC following a loss to Dustin Ortiz in 2018. At that time, the flyweight division was on life support. Having won two fights outside the promotion, he returned with a narrow victory over Manel Kape.
Nicolau had a solid first round, threatening with a guillotine choke. Kape, however, showed shades of the skills that made him a Rizin FF champion in Japan, lighting Nicolau up with blazing fast hands in the second round.
The third frame was a close one. Though Kape continued with his punching attack, he mixed in several hard knees that had Nicolau rocked. The Brazilian somehow dug deep and answered back, doing enough in the eyes of two of the judges to earn a split-decision nod.
Eryk Anders illegal knee results in no contest
Petr Yan landed an illegal knee on Aljamain Sterling at UFC 259 and it cost him the UFC bantamweight championship. Eryk Anders did the same to Darren Stewart at UFC Vegas 21, but it resulted in a no contest.
How can that be? Simple, referee Mark Smith ruled Yan's illegal knee an intentional act. Herb Dean, the referee on Saturday night, ruled that Anders's knee strike, though illegal, was unintentional.
As such, with the fight still being within the first round, it was ruled a no contest. If they had completed two of the three rounds, they could have gone to the scorecards to see if one or the other fighter was ahead when the bout was stopped.
Matthew Semelsberger opens UFC Vegas 21 with a blistering knockout
Matthew Semelsberger opened the UFC Vegas 21 prelims with this brutal knockout of Jason Witt.
UFC Vegas 21 Results
UFC Vegas 21 Main Card
Welterweight Bout: Leon Edwards vs Belal Muhammad ruled a no contest (illegal eye poke) at 0:18, R2
Light Heavyweight Bout: Ryan Spann def Misha Cirkunov by TKO (punches) at 1:11, R1
Featherweight Bout: Dan Ige def Gavin Tucker by knockout (punch) at 0:22, R1
Bantamweight Bout: Davey Grant def Jonathan Martinez by knockout (punches) at 3:03, R2
Flyweight Bout: Matheus Nicolau def Manel Kape by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Middleweight Bout: Eryk Anders vs Darren Stewart ruled a no contest (illegal knee) at 4:37, R1
UFC Vegas 21 Prelims
Women’s Strawweight Bout: Angela Hill def Ashley Yoder by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Featherweight Bout: Charles Jourdain def Marcelo Rojo by TKO (punches) at 4:31, R3
Bantamweight Bout: Rani Yahya def Ray Rodriguez by submission (arm triangle choke) at 3:09, R2
Lightweight Bout: Nasrat Haqparast def Rafa Garcia by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Women’s Flyweight Bout: JJ Aldrich def Cortney Casey by split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Women’s Strawweight Bout: Jinh Yu Frey def Gloria de Paula by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Welterweight Bout: Matthew Semelsberger def Jason Witt by KO (punch) at 0:16, R1
Eryk Anders addresses his illegal knee at UFC Vegas 21
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