The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to us tonight, November 12, 2022, for perhaps the biggest event they’ve hosted this year in UFC 281, as the sport of MMA turned 29 years young today.
UFC 281 is to be headlined and co-headlined by world title fights, as UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya (23-1) aims to defend his throne for a sixth time against fellow former kickboxing champion Alex Pereira (6-1), someone he went 0-2 against in kickboxing.
UFC strawweight champion Carla Esparza (19-6) also aims to make the first defense of her newly claimed title against former champion Weili Zhang (22-3).
Our second bout on the main card tonight, just prior to our feature fight between Dustin Poirier and Michael Chandler, was a bantamweight affair between former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar (24-10-1) and perhaps the most skilled unranked bantamweight on the roster, Chris Gutierrez (18-4-2).
At 41 years of age, this was to be Frankie Edgar’s retirement fight, while his decade-younger adversary came into tonight’s bout having gone 6-0-1 in his last seven following defeat in his promotional debut.
Official Result: Chris Gutierrez def. Frankie Edgar via KO (knee) at 2:01 of round one
Both men start this fight off looking incredibly quick and sharp.
Edgar goes for a leg kick and gets caught clean with a spinning back fist, the same technique Gutierrez won his last fight with, but he eats it without trouble. He takes a nasty leg kick after that, and it appears Gutierrez has round his range.
Gutierrez beautifully times and places a knee right up the middle, landing directly on the chin of Edgar, KO’ing him on the spot not long thereafter.
— Spinnin Backfist (@SpinninBackfist) November 13, 2022
Chris Gutierrez is now 19-4-2 as a professional, as he adds the first victory over world champion to his resume tonight at UFC 281.
As for Frankie Edgar, this man is an absolute legend.
Edgar is a three-time UFC champion; he achieved a top five ranking in three divisions, fought for titles in two divisions. This is the man that took the lightweight title from a prime BJ Penn and eventually went on to go 3-0 against him across their trilogy.
We knew he was going to retire tonight going into this bout; thank you Frankie Edgar for your long, successful and illustrious career. It was a pleasure to watch.
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I became a fan of combat sports when I was 12 years old. I was scrolling through the channels and landed upon versus, where WEC was televised. Urijah Faber fought Jens Pulver for the second time that night. That’s the first fight I saw, and the fight that got me hooked on the sport. Since then, the sport has grown so rapidly, and my goal is to enlighten everyone on what’s going on in the sport today.