Three UFC contracts were handed out on the third night of the new season of the Contender Series. But, surprisingly, Bo Nickal was not one of the recipients.
Jamal Pogues, Erik Silva and Clayton Carpenter all earned deals from UFC president Dana White, while Nickal was invited back to the UFC Apex for another appearance.
Here’s Fighters Only’s fight-by-fight rundown of the night’s action.
Bo Nickal def. Zachary Borrego via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 1:02
Three-time Division I All-American wrestler Bo Nickal came as advertised in his Contender Series appearance, but even a first-round submission wasn’t enough to convince UFC president Dana White to pull the trigger on a UFC contract for the highly-touted prospect.
Former Penn State wrestling star Nickal dominated Zachary Borrego as he immediately took his man to the mat and unloaded ground and pound on his opponent.
Borrego attempted to scramble his way out of danger, but Nickal kept the pressure on, took Borrego’s back and locked up a rear-naked choke for the win.
Despite his victory over a man who also missed weight by a pound and a half, Nickal was not given an instant UFC contract by White. Instead, he was invited to return for a second Contender Series appearance, with the promise of a UFC contract should he win again.
Jamal Pogues def. Paulo Renato Jr. via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Jamal Pogues made his second Contender Series appearance count as he earned a UFC contract with a solid unanimous decision victory over Paulo Renato Jr.
Pogues, who also took a decision in his previous Contender Series appearance as a light heavyweight, took the fight on short notice at heavyweight and won over White with a hard-earned win.
Pogues used an educated jab, mixed in with occasional leg kicks, to outpoint Renato Jr for scores of 30-27, 29-28, 29-28 from the cageside judges.
It may not have been the most spectacular performance, but it was enough to convince White to offer Pogues a UFC deal.
Erik Silva def. Anvar Boynazarov via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:32
Venezuela’s Erik Silva defeated undefeated Anvar Boynazarav via first-round TKO to earn himself a UFC deal.
Silva scored a quickfire TKO finish of Boynazaraov, taking his man down immediately, then hammering his man with strikes from top position to force referee Mike Beltran to stop the bout after just 92 seconds.
It meant Silva earned a fast, impressive victory to punch his ticket to the big stage.
Clayton Carpenter def. Edgar Chairez via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Clayton Carpenter went back and forth with Edgar Chairez in a highly entertaining flyweight scrap that ended with a unanimous decision win for Carpenter and the offer of a UFC contract.
Both men came to win and Chairez started the better of the two. But Carpenter’s more diverse skillset eventually helped him to victory as he mixed in his wrestling to help nullify Chairez’s superior height and reach in the stand-up exchanges.
Carpenter didn’t just lay and pray on the mat, either. After composing himself following takedowns, the former LFA fighter went to work on the mat with vicious elbows from top position to cement his superiority on the ground.
It proved enough for him to claim scores of 29-28 on all three scorecards and earn a contract to join the ranks of the UFC flyweight division.
Karolina Wojcik def. Sandra Lavado via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Poland’s Karolina Wojcik picked up a unanimous decision victory over Sandra Lavado, but it wasn’t enough to convince White to offer her a UFC contract.
Wojcik started slowly, but eventually started to push the pace on Lavado as she looked to close the distance to her taller, rangier opponent.
The Pole had the advantage in the clinch and against the fance, but wasn’t able to score too much in the way of eye-catching offence. Arguably her best shot at a finish came in the final round, when she looked to lock up a rear-naked choke. But her opponent managed to escape and turn the tables as the bout went the distance.
Wojcik did enough to earn scores of 30-27 across the board, but will have to hope for another opportunity to earn a UFC deal.
Dana White’s Contender Series: Week 3 Results
- Bo Nickal def. Zachary Borrego via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 1:02
- Jamal Pogues def. Paulo Renato Jr. via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
- Erik Silva def. Anvar Boynazarov via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:32
- Clayton Carpenter def. Edgar Chairez via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Karolina Wojcik def. Sandra Lavado via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)