SAN DIEGO – MMA Junkie is on scene and reporting live from Saturday’s UFC on ESPN 41 event, and you can join us for live play-by-play and official results beginning at 4 p.m. ET (1 p.m. PT).
UFC on ESPN 41 takes place at Pechanga Arena in San Diego. The card airs on ESPN and streams on ESPN+.
In the main event, former bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz (24-3 MMA, 7-2 UFC) takes on Marlon Vera (21-7-1 MMA, 13-6 UFC). In the featherweight co-feature, Nate Landwehr (15-4 MMA, 2-2 UFC) meets David Onama (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC).
Follow along with our round-by-round updates and official results beginning at approximately 4 p.m. ET for the prelims on ESPN/ESPN+ and 7 p.m. ET for the main card on ESPN/ESPN+.
To discuss the show, be sure to check out our UFC on ESPN 41 discussion thread. You can also get behind-the-scenes coverage and other event notes from on-site reporters Simon Samano (@SJSamano) and Ken Hathaway (@kenshathaway) on Twitter.
Enjoy the fights, everyone.
Da’Mon Blackshear vs. Youssef Zalal
Round 1 – Here we go with the first fight of UFC on ESPN 41. Blackshear with a kick heavy attack right off the bell. He’s chewing up Zalal. And Zalal shoots for a takedown a minute in and gets it. He’s working to pass Blackshear’s guard now. Nice elbows from the bottom by Blackshear. Zalal unable to get meaningful offense on top. Blackshear is working on a triangle, and gets some promising positions, but Zalal is able to get out. Two minutes left. Zalal opening up a bit more with ground-and-pound. And Blackshear goes for a leg lock, looks promising. Zalal escapes, but he ends up on the bottom during the exchange. Blackshear secures the back mount and keeps control until the bell. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Blackshear.
Round 2 – Nice right hand starts things here in the second round for Blackshear. He then shoots for a takedown and pins Zalal against the cage. He gets the takedown and is able to get back mount. The back control was very brief, as he was too high. Zalal now on top and immediately gets the back in a scramble. Zalal threaten with a choke, but doesn’t get it. Zalal now loses the back and ends on bottom. What a wild sequence. They scramble and are now against the cage with Zalal doing the pressing. Two minutes left. these two are very even in the grappling. Blackshear reverses the position and he’s now the one pressing Zalal against the cage. Blackshear gets the back mount while standing. He’s looking for a rear-naked choke. One minute left. Oh, it looks tight. It looks tight. The bell rings as Blackshear had a tight rear-naked choke. The bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Blackshear.
Round 3 – Zalal looking more active here than the prevous rounds. He lands a couple of good leg kicks and combinations. Blackshear fires back with a few shots of his own. Zalal doing the pressuring here. Nice jab by Zalal. And Blackshear connects with a solid right. Zalal onloading on Blackshear. Zalal in a groove now. Blackshear looks tired. He shoots for a takedown, but Zalal defends and keeps the fight standing. Relentless pressure by Zalal. Blackshear with another failed takedown. Man, Zalal is on fire right now. Two minutes left. Nastly body kick by Zalal hurts Blackshear. Blackshear looks in trouble. Good combination followed by anothet nastly body kick drops Blackshear. Zalal on top now landing ground-and-pound. He’s now on mount. Blackshear doing a good job at surviving, but this is a one-way beating. What a round. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-8, Zalal. Overall a tie, 28-28.
Result: Da’Mon Blackshear vs. Youssef Zalal declared majority draw (29-28, 28-28, 28-28)
Photos: Youssef Zalal vs. Da’Mon Blackshear at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Da’Mon Blackshear (12-4-1 MMA, 0-0-1 UFC), Youssef Zalal (10-5-1 MMA, 3-3-1 UFC)
Referee: Herb Dean
Judging: Sal D’Amato, Michael Bell 28-28, Chris Crail 28-29.
Josh Quinlan vs. Jason Witt
Round 1 – Both fighters a bit tentative here. They swing hard, but nothing lands flush. Witt shoots for a power double and gets it. In a matter of a few seconds, Quinlan scrambles back to his feet and the fight resumes standing. And bam! What a shot! Quinlan flattens Witt with a brutal right hook. No follow-up shots needed. Witt is still out on the canvas. What a debut by Quinlan.
Result: Josh Quinlan def. Jason Witt via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 2:09
Recap: Josh Quinlan melts Jason Witt with one-punch knockout
Photos: Josh Quinlan def. Jason Witt at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Josh Quinlan (6-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC), Jason Witt (19-9 MMA, 2-4 UFC)
Division: 180-pound contract weight
Referee: Frank Trig
Tyson Nam vs. Ode Osbourne
Round 1 – Osbourne with a couple of kicks to the middle to start things off. And a nice right hand by Osbourne. Nam staying patient on the outside. Good jab by Nam. Good right hand to the body by Nam. Fun little stand up fight now. We’re halfway through the round. Oh! Massive right hand by Nam. Osbourne went for a flying knee and Nam caught him in midair. What a shot by Nam. He followed up with an extra shot on a downed Osbourne and the referee waives off the fight.
Result: Tyson Nam def. Ode Osbourne via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 2:59
Recap: Tyson Nam counters Ode Osbourne’s flying knee with nasty KO
Photos: Tyson Nam def. Ode Osbourne at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Tyson Nam (21-12-1 MMA, 3-3 UFC), Ode Osbourne (11-5 MMA, 3-3 UFC)
Referee: Jason Herzog
Gabriel Benitez vs. Charlie Ontiveros
Round 1 – Ontiveros comes out hot and lands an axe kick on Benitez. The Mexican fighter closes the distance and pushes Ontiveros against the cage. Control is brief and they break away. Man, Ontiveros connecting hard kicks to the body and legs of Benitez. Three minutes left. Benitez having a tough time finding a target. Good leg kicks by Benitez. He now presses Ontiveros against the cage and lands some good shots from clinch. Ontiveros is cut below the eye. A low blow from Benitez halts the action. The fight resumes. Benitez with a huge right hand! Ontiveros is wobbled. Benitez hits a power double and mounts Ontiveros. He’s now pouring shots on Ontiveros. It’s bad. And the referee has seen enough, the fight is over.
Result: Gabriel Benitez def. Charlie Ontiveros via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 3:35
Photos: Gabriel Benitez def. Charlie Ontiveros at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Gabriel Benitez (23-10 MMA, 7-6 UFC), Charlie Ontiveros (11-9 MMA, 0-3 UFC)
Referee: Mike Beltran
Cynthia Calvillo vs. Nina Nunes
Round 1 – And they touch gloves. Nunes takes the inside of the cage, while Calvillo floats on the outside. Good leg kick by Nunes. Another one. Nice right by Calvillo. A leg kick gets caught by Calvillo, and it pushes Nunes to the canvas, but she gets immediately back up. Man, another bog calf kick by Nunes. These are adding up and Calvillo is feeling it. Two minutes left. Very little action happening besides Nunes’ occasional leg kicks. Calvillo attempts a takedown, but fails. Fans are starting to boo. Calvillo with a nice jab to close out the round. A clean 10-9 round for Nunes.
Round 2 – It looks like this is going to be a stand-up battle. Both fighters testing range and connecting here and there, but nothing significant. Fans are getting restless. Calvillo pressuring a bit more here. Calvillo doing a better job here at getting her lede leg out of the way when Nunes attacks with leg kicks. A good leg kick connects by Nunes, but Calvillo shoots for a double and gets it. Calvillo now sitting in Nunes’ guard. Two minutes left. Nunes attempts to get up by pushing away on Calvillo, but is unable to get back to her feet. Calvillo landing some shots here and there from top, but nothing impactful. Oh and a nice up kick from Nunes, as Calvillo stands over Nunes. Nunes finds her way back to the feet. Nice leg kick by Calvillo. The bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Calvillo.
Round 3 – It looks like it’s a one round fight now, at least on MMA Junkie’s book. Calvillo comes out more active here, attacking often with leg kicks and combinations. Nunes with a nice leg kick. Nice straight right by Calvillo. Calvillo shoots for a takedown and misses. Good shot to the body, follow by a hook upstairs by Nunes. Calvillo gets a takedown, but Nunes fights it off and ends up standing, pressed against the cage. Nunes breaks free. Two minutes left. Another leg kick by Nunes. The fans are not happy here, very little action. Nunes keeps finding a home to the leg kicks. Good right hand by Nunes. Nunes turning it up here at the end. A few good shots connect for Nunes. The bell rings. MMA Junkie sores the round 10-9, Nunes. Overall, 29-28, Nunes.
Result: Nina Nunes def. Cynthia Calvillo via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 30-27)
Recap: Nina Nunes wins split decision against Cynthia Calvillo, announces retirement from MMA
Photos: Nina Nunes def. Cynthia Calvillo at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Nina Nunes (11-7 MMA, 5-4 UFC), Cynthia Calvillo (9-5-1 MMA, 6-5-1 UFC)
Division: Women’s flyweight
Referee: Herb Dean
Judging: Junichiro Kamijo 28-29, Derek Cleary 29-28, Chris Crail 27-30
Lukasz Brzeski vs. Martin Buday
Round 1 – Big shots from the big boys right off the bat. Buday connects with a big shot. And Brzeski fires back with a combination that lands flush. Nice jab by Brzeski followed by a leg kick. Another beautiful jab by Brzeski. He’s connecting often here. Massive right hand lands for Brzeski and wobbles Buday. Buday is now against the cage and signals Brzeski to come and attack. Brzeski pacing himself here, lets him off the hook. It seems Buday recovered. Buday is bleeding from the bottom of his left eye. Brzeski getting the better of these exchanges. One minute left. Buday is tough as hell, he’s taking big shots, but still standing and firing back. The bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Brzeski.
Round 2 – Buday with a couple of hard leg kicks here. Brzeski still seems to be a step ahead in the striking, though. Buday having a tough time connecting on Brzeski. Meanwhile, Brzeski landing good jabs and leg kicks. Brzeski appears to be taking big breaths here. Buday looks a little fresher. Either way, Brzeski getting the better of the exchanges. Nice jab by Brzeski. A big left hook connects for Buday. Good leg kick buckles Brzeski. One minute left. Buday performing a little better here towards the end of the round. Pretty high paced fight for a heavyweight contest. The bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Brzeski.
Round 3 – The pace has slowed down a bit here in the third. Good leg kick by Buday. Brzeski putting solid combinations together, but Buday doing a nice job at shelling up well or rolling with the shots. Buday is walking down Brzeski and attacking a bit more than previous rounds. Brzeski still ahead with the output and landed shots. Two minutes left. Brzeski turns the tide and he’s now doing the pressing. Good combos by Brzeski. And a good left hand connects by Buday. Both men swing hard in the final seconds, but neither connect cleanly. The bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Brzeski. Overall 30-27, Brzeski.
Result: Martin Buday def. Lukasz Brzeski via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Photos: Martin Buday def. Lukasz Brzeski at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Martin Buday (11-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC), Lukasz Brzeski (8-2-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC)
Referee: Frank Trigg
Judging: Sal D’Amato, Eliot Kelly 29-28, Michael Bell 28-29
Loopy Godinez vs. Angela Hill
Round 1 – And the last fight of the prelims is on. No touch of gloves here. Big right hook connetcs for Godinez. Hill is hurt. Another one. And another one. Godinez’s right hook having an immediate impact here. Nice jab by Hill. Godinez with another good combo in close quarters. Amazing start for the Mexican. Three minutes left. And another right hook lands by Godinez. Hill throws a good combo and ends it with a right hook that connects flush. It seems Hill is getting a little more comfortable here. Nice left hook by Godinez. One minute left. Hill shoots for a takedown, but fails. Oh and a running knee connects for Hill. What a chin by Godinez. The bell rings. What a fight. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Godinez.
Round 2 – Godinez open things up with a hard left hook. Hill responds with a big left hook. Godinez shoots for a takedown, but Hill snatches a guillotine and uses it to get back to her feet. The fight resumes on the feet. Hill goes for a takedown, but fails. Godinez clearly with the power advantage here. Hill now tagging up Godinez. She’s finding a lot more success now on the feet. Big right hook by Godinez. The pace has slowed down a bit. Hill appears to be the fresher fighter. Hill now closes the distance, pins Godinez against the cage and gets the takedown. She stays on top for the final seconds of the round. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Hill.
Round 3 – Hill hits a nice combination on Godinez. Nice jab by Hill. And then Hill connects with an uppercut. The tide here has turned quite significantly. Hill doing most of the pressure and attacking. Godinez doesn’t seem to have the same pop as she used to. She did take the fight on 10 days notice. Both Godinez and Hill are bleeding from their face. Godinez looks tired. Hill shoots for a single-lg takedown, but doesn’t get it. Godinez defends well. One minute left. Nice one-two by Godinez. Oh, and now they’re swinging wild. What a fight. Amazing stuff from both ladies. And the bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Hill. Overall 29-28, Hill.
Result: Angela Hill def. Loopy Godinez via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Recap: Angela Hill rebounds from early scare to outlast Loopy Godinez in hard-fought battle
Photos: Angela Hill def. Loopy Godinez at UFC on ESPN 41: Best photos
Records: Angela Hill (14-12 MMA, 9-12 UFC), Loopy Godinez (8-3 MMA, 3-3 UFC)
Division: 120-pound contract weight
Referee: Jason Herzog
Judging: Derek Cleary, Junichiro Kamijo, Chris Crail 29-28
Gerald Meerschaert vs. Bruno Silva
Round 1 – Meerschaert taking the outside of the octagon. Silva pressing him and attacking with all kinds of shots, but plenty misses. Meerschaert staying patient. Two minutes left. Meerschaert with nice level change and takedown. He’s now working from the guard. Not much action. Meerschaert stays in control until the final bell. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Meerschaert
Round 2 – Once again, Meerschaert on the outside while Sliva looks to pressure him and close the distance. Good body kick by Meerschaert. Big misses by Silva. The Brazilian just can’t connect. Another big miss by Silva. Good leg kick by Meerschaert. Three minutes left. So far, reckless performance by Silva. Not much action here. A head kick almost connects for Meerschaert. Two minutes left. And Meerschaert with a clean body kick. A leg kick buckles Silva. And again, Meerschaert connects with a leg kick. Now Meerschaert looks to do a bit of pressing. Silva’s output has dropped dramatically. The bell rings. MMA Junkie scores the round 10-9, Meerschaert.
Round 3 – Same dynamic here in the third. Meerschaert backs up and stays on the outside while landing some shots here and there, and Silva chases while missing many shots. Good jab by Meerschaert. Meerschaert shoots for a takedown, but fails. Oh! And a big left-hand drops “Blindado.” Meerschaert immediately jumps on him and sinks in a guillotine choke. It’s tight. And there’s the tap! Meerschaert stops Silva in the third.
Result: Gerald Meerschaert def. Bruno Silva via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 3, 1:39
Recap: Gerald Meerschaert drops, stops Bruno Silva to add to submission record
Records: Gerald Meerschaert (35-15 MMA, 10-7 UFC), Bruno Silva (22-8 MMA, 3-2 UFC)
Referee: Mike Beltran
Priscila Cachoeira vs. Ariane Lipski
Round 1 – And therse two are swing hard early. Big left hook connects for Cachoeira! And now they’re both swining wild, going all out. Lipski gets dropped and Cachoeira is all over her. Nasty ground-and-pound. The fight over. Brutal win by Cachoeira.
Result: Priscila Cachoeira def. Ariane Lipski via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:05
Records: Priscila Cachoeira (12-4 MMA, 4-4 UFC), Ariane Lipski (14-8 MMA, 3-5 UFC)
Division: Women’s flyweight
Referee: Herb Dean
Devin Clark vs. Azamat Murzakanov
Round 1 –
Records: Devin Clark (13-6 MMA, 7-6 UFC), Azamat Murzakanov (11-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC)
Division: Light heavyweight
Yazmin Jauregui vs. Iasmin Lucindo
Round 1 –
Records: Yazmin Jauregui (8-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC), Iasmin Lucindo (13-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC)
Division: Women’s strawweight
Nate Landwehr vs. David Onama
Round 1 –
Records: Nate Landwehr (15-4 MMA, 2-2 UFC), David Onama (10-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC)
Dominick Cruz vs. Marlon Vera
Round 1 –
Records: Dominick Cruz (24-3 MMA, 7-2 UFC), Marlon Vera (21-7-1 MMA, 13-6 UFC)