The reigning UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is back at UFC 254 tonight, Saturday, Oct. 24.
He is set to defend his title against the current interim UFC lightweight champion Justin Gaethje in the event’s headliner in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi. The evening’s co-main event is between former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker welcomes the surging Jared Cannonier.
In an early prelim, a surging Miranda Maverick squares off against Liana Jojua in the womens’ flyweight division. Maverick (9-2) makes her UFC debut after recently signing over from Invicta FC. The jiu-jitsu and Muay Thai practitioner looks to make a name for herself in the flyweight division.
Jojua (8-3) is recently coming off her UFC debut victory against Diana Belbita back in June.
In the first minute, Jojua used her octagon experience to keep Maverick at bay. After ninety seconds, Maverick got comfortable with her footwork and her striking. From that point, the round was all Maverick once she established her distance. Maverick used a plethora of combinations to open up the Georgian fighter. A clean cross halfway through the round broke Jojua’s nose wide open.
From that point, Maverick smelled blood in the water. Successfully mixing leg kicks and strikes, Maverick frustrated Jojua who could not put any significant strikes together.
After a left elbow from Maverick, the nose was bleeding uncontrollably. It is unclear the extent of damage done to Jojua’s nose. And while Jojua’s cutman did what he could, the judge saw that Jojua’s cut could not be fixed and called an end to the fight. Jojua was clearly frustrated with the judge’s decision but ultimately the right call was made.
Maverick takes a dominate first round TKO victory. This makes Maverick’s seventh consecutive victory dating back to her fights in Invicta. It is clear that Maverick is ready for the UFC stage and even told Jon Anik she could be ready to fight as early as next month.
Miranda Maverick def. Liana Jojua via TKO (round 1; 5:00).