UFC On ESPN 38: "Tsarukyan vs Gamrot" Live Play-By-Play & ResultsThe Ultimate Fighting Championship returned to UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada tonight for UFC on ESPN 38: “Tsarukyan vs Gamrot.” The card was headlined by a lightweight bout between Russia’s Arman “Ahalkalakets” Tsarukyan and fellow rising star Matuesz “Gamer” Gamrot from Poland.

In the welterweight co-main event, long-time contender Neil “The Haitian Sensation” Magny battled the undefeated Shavkat “Nomad” Rakhmonov. Elsewhere on the main card, Josh Parisian met Alan “Black Samourai” Baudot at heavyweight. MMARising.com has live play-by-play for the card.


Mateusz “Gamer” Gamrot vs Arman “Ahalkalakets” Tsarukyan

Round 1:
Tsarukyan defended well against an early takedown attempt from Gamrot and punches were exchanged on the feet. Tsarukyan took Gamrot down, but Gamrot initiated a lengthy scramble and he ultimately took Tsarukyan’s back as the fighters stood up. Tsarukyan grazed with a head kick and Gamrot threw a left-right combo in return. He caught a kick from Tsarukyan, but was not able to take him down. Tsarukyan scored with a hard kick to the body and he held Gamrot in a front choke after another brief scramble on the ground in the final 15 seconds. 10-9 Tsarukyan.

Round 2:
Gamrot jabbed and tried to set up power right hooks in the second round. Tsarukyan landed jabs of his own and a vicious body kick. A lead left hook landed for Tsarukyan and he tried to take Gamrot down. Gamrot pulled his leg free and returned to his feet. Jabs were exchanged and Gamrot landed a strong leg kick. Gamrot thwarted a takedown from Tsarukyan and the fighters stood again. Tsarukyan hurt Gamrot with a body kick, but Gamrot recovered quickly and he landed a right hook late in the round. 10-9 Tsarukyan.

Round 3:
In the third round, Tsarukyan landed a body kick and a hard right hand as Gamrot dropped levels in search of a takedown. As the round progressed, Gamrot briefly got Tsarukyan down to the mat on two occasions, but he could not keep him there. He held Tsarukyan against the cage in back control until Tsarukyan escaped from the clinch. Tsarukyan attempted a takedown and latched on to Gamrot’s leg, but Gamrot maintained his balance and pulled his leg free. Tsarukyan landed a spinning back kick to the body and he chased after Gamrot as time ticked down. Very close round. 10-9 Tsarukyan due to damage.

Round 4:
Gamrot connected with an overhand right and Tsarukyan responded with a body kick. Tsarukyan threw another body kick and followed through with a spinning backfist that dropped Gamrot to his knees. Gamrot recovered and he took Tsarukyan’s back as the fighters rose to their feet. They separated and both men landed jabs. Tsarukyan scored with another body kick and Gamrot took him down. He moved to back control and tried to secure a neck crank. Tsarukyan rolled over and Gamrot remained on top in his guard until the bell. Another close round. 10-9 Gamrot despite the knockdown.

Round 5:
Tsarukyan tried unsuccessfully to take the fight to the mat in the final round and it was Gamrot who scored a big takedown of his own. Tsarukyan was able to get back to his feet against the cage and the fighters separated. Both men landed right hooks and Gamrot blocked a body kick. Tsarukyan threw another one and he sprawled out of a Gamrot takedown attempt. Another body kick landed for Tsarukyan and Gamrot followed up on a right hand by taking him down. Tsarukyan stood and Gamrot dumped him to the ground again. In the final seconds, Tsarukyan stood up and sprawled as Gamrot shot in at his legs. Tsarukyan landed hammerfists to the side of his head until the end of the close fight. 10-9 Gamrot, barely.

Winner: Mateusz Gamrot by Unanimous Decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-47) after five rounds. He improves to 21-1-0, 1 NC.


Shavkat “Nomad” Rakhmonov vs Neil “The Haitian Sensation” Magny

Round 1:
Rakhmonov caught a body kick and tripped Magny to the mat early in the fight. He passed to half-guard and then postured up with punches. Magny landed a solid upkick when Rakhmonov stood up, but Rakhmonov dropped back down into top position and he tried to pass to mount. When that was not successful, Rakhmonov stood up and dropped punches to Magny’s ribs and face. Magny eyed a heel hook from the bottom and he threw hammerfists to Rakhmonov’s face while maintaining his grip on the ankle. He torqued on the heel hook once, but Rakhmonov escaped almost immediately and he finished the round with more punches from top position. 10-9 Rakhmonov.

Round 2:
Early in round two, Rakhmonov threw a spinning back kick to the body and he initiated a clinch. He swept out Magny’s leg and took top position in side control. Magny tried to scramble free and Rakhmonov worked to secure a Brabo choke from the top. Magny escaped from that, but Rakhmonov stayed active with punches from the top. He locked on a tight guillotine choke in the final ten seconds and Magny tapped out just before the end of the round.

Winner: Shavkat Rakhmonov by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 4:58 of round two. He improves to 16-0-0.


Josh Parisian vs Alan “Black Samourai” Baudot

Round 1:
Both fighters missed with spinning backfist attempts and time was called when Parisian was kicked in the groin. The fight continued with another exchange of punches and Baudot countered a body kick with a stiff jab. Parisian missed with another spinning backfist attempt and Baudot dropped him with a right hook to the temple. He followed with hammerfists on the ground, but Parisian recovered and Baudot worked from the top in Parisian’s half-guard. Big hammerfists scored for Baudot that forced Parisian, with his left eye swelling shut, to scramble up to his feet. He dumped Baudot to the mat and landed a series of right hands to the face of a seated Baudot until time expired. 10-9 Baudot despite Parisian’s late-round rally.

Round 2:
Parisian jabbed his way into a clinch and he took Baudot down against the cage. Parisian struck with punches and hammerfists as Baudot covered up on the ground. Baudot got to his knees once and Parisian continued to strike. Baudot returned to his back, then his knees again, and survived another series of left hands from Parisian. The fighters stood up and Baudot almost reversed a takedown, but Parisian ultimately put him on his back. Parisian mounted Baudot and Baudot rolled over to give up his back. Parisian landed right hand after right hand to the side of his head until referee Mark Smith stopped the fight.

Winner: Josh Parisian by TKO (Punches) at 3:04 of round two. He improves to 15-5-0.


Thiago Moises vs Christos “The Spartan” Giagos

Round 1:
Giagos landed a right hook as Moises closed the distance early in the fight. Moises held him against the cage, but Giagos cut him above his left eye with a right hand. Moises took Giagos’s back and then hopped into a standing body triangle on the back. Giagos fought off rear-naked choke attempts until Moises was able to get his forearm under Giagos’s chin. He wrapped his other arm around it in a modified rear-naked choke without clasping his hands. The choke was still too much for Giagos, who quickly tapped out.

Winner: Thiago Moises by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) at 3:05 of round one. He improves to 16-6-0.


Umar Nurmagomedov vs Joseph Nathan “Mayhem” Maness

Round 1:
After a cautious opening minute, Nurmagomedov took Maness down into full guard. He landed short punches from the top and kept Maness’s head pinned against the base of the cage. Nurmagomedov passed to three-quarter mount while continuing to throw short punches, but Maness got back to half-guard and Nurmagomedov continued to pepper him with short left hands. 10-9 Nurmagomedov.

Round 2:
Nurmagomedov took Maness back down in the second round and he tried to pass from side control to mount. Maness prevented him from doing so and temporarily got back to half-guard. Nurmagomedov took side control again and then moved to three-quarter mount. Maness regained half-guard each time, but he eventually gave up his back. Nurmagomedov threw punches to the side of his head and Maness turned over back into half-guard before the bell. 10-8 Nurmagomedov.

Round 3:
In the final round, Nurmagomedov landed a front kick to Maness’s face and Maness did not commit to any offence at all as he circled on the outside. Nurmagomedov knocked him off-balance with a leg kick and landed an uppercut as Maness stood up. He took Maness down and caused a large hematoma to form on Maness’s forehead by attacking it with elbows. Nurmagomedov postured up with punches from Maness’s guard and he kept Maness pinned down until the end of the fight. 10-9 Nurmagomedov. Could be another 10-8.

Winner: Umar Nurmagomedov by Unanimous Decision (30-25, 30-26, 30-27) after three rounds. He improves to 15-0-0.


Chris “The Action Man” Curtis vs Rodolfo “The Black Belt Hunter” Vieira

Round 1:
Curtis reversed an early takedown from Vieira, but Vieira got back to his feet and he held Curtis in a clinch against the cage. Time was called when Curtis was kneed in the groin. Action resumed after a minute and Vieira attempted a sloppy takedown. He latched on to Curtis’s right leg on his second try, but Curtis worked his way free from the clinch. Vieira landed a nice right cross, but time was called again when he kicked Curtis in the lower abdomen. Replays showed that the kick was legal and so action continued. Vieira landed a right cross and Curtis answered with two jabs. Close round. 10-9 Vieira.

Round 2:
Early in round two, Vieira initiated a clinch against the cage and he worked to try to take Curtis down. Curtis’s takedown defence remained solid and Vieira landed a right hand on the break. Curtis was kicked in the groin, but referee Mark Smith instructed the fighters to continue. Curtis defended against a takedown attempt and Vieira landed right hands. Curtis threw straight lefts and Vieira used his jab to set up more right hands. Vieira began to bleed from his nose and Curtis targeted it with jabs and left crosses. He flurried to Vieira’s body late in the round and Vieira began to noticeably slow down. 10-9 Curtis due to the strong finish.

Round 3:
Curtis continued to fight off Vieira’s laboured takedown attempts in the final round and he popped him with a jab-cross combo. Curtis sprawled out of two more Vieira takedowns and he landed a combination to Vieira’s body. Curtis jabbed and he landed a pair of left crosses that prompted Vieira to shoot in for two more takedowns. Curtis thwarted both of them and both men landed combinations. Curtis went to the body again with a left hook to Vieira’s liver. He sprawled out of two more takedowns and maintained a 100% takedown defence rate until the final bell. 10-9 Curtis.

Winner: Chris Curtis by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28) after three rounds. He improves to 29-8-0.


(Undercard results and play-by-play on Page Two.)