The UFC’s roster has been expanded even more following the third week of Dana White’s Contender Series in 2021.
At DWCS Season 5, Week 3, five more fighters were awarded UFC contracts following Tuesday’s event at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas. There were six total fights on the card, a slight change from the typical five-fight slates the promotion typically delivers. After three events, 15 new fighters have joined the roster.
Light heavyweights took center stage in the main event as Jailton Almeida took on undefeated Russian fighter Nasrudin Nasrudinov. Almeida shot in early and was immediately put on his back by Nasrudinov, an experienced Sambo practitioner. Almeida was able to explode back to his feet and slam his opponent to the mat. The Brazilian quickly took the back of Nasrudinov and looked to cinch a rear-naked choke, but Nasrudinov got back on top, postured up and landed some big punches. Almeida quickly recovered, landed some good strikes on the feet before landing a pair of takedowns to end the opening round.
Almeida continued to surprisingly outgrapple Nasrudinov, took the back, flattened out Nasrudinov and locked in a rear-naked choke. This time, Nasrudinov tapped, and Almeida earned an upset along his ninth straight victory and a shot in the UFC.
In the bantamweight co-main event, Mo Miller improved to 6-0 when he handed Brandon Lewis his first loss via unanimous decision. Miller used a great jab and his strong wrestling pedigree to ground Lewis throughout the 15 minutes, sweeping all three judges’ scorecards. Despite a phone call from Miller’s teammate and former heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic, White did not give Miller a contract.
Albert Duraev dominates, finishes Caio Bettincourt in opening round
The most impressive and dominant performance of the night came from Albert Duraev, who landed a single takedown, 78 strikes and a neck-crank submission over his 3:29 of fight time over Caio Bittencourt.
Following the win, Duraev calmly walked over to White and the matchmakers, asking for a “very good contract” because he can “smash anybody at 185.” He will certainly get his chance to put his money where his mouth is after gaining the most no-brainer contract of the night.
Lukas Brzeski earns one-side submission win over game Dylan Potter
In a heavyweight matchup, Lukas Brzeski, a Polish standout hoping to join fellow countryman Jan Blachowicz in the UFC, took on Dylan Potter. Brzeski looked to make it a very short night, landing big shots early on, but Potter proved to be extremely durable throughout the first 10 minutes of the bout, despite being in big trouble and eating nearly 200 total strikes.
Third round saw more dominance from Brzeski, who eventually took his dominance to the mat and locked in a rear naked choke. Referee Mark Smith stepped in to stop the fight, although it didn’t look like it was a full tap from Potter. Brzeski is now unbeaten in his last seven appearances. Although White wasn’t overwhelmed with the performance, Brzeski was awarded a contract.
The first two fights of the night were tough battles. Jack Della Maddalena and Jasmine Jasudivicius earned unanimous decision victories over Ange Loosa and Julia Polastri respectively. With their victories, Jasudivicius and Della Maddalena earned contracts.
Check out full DWCS: Season 5, Week 3 results below:
Jailton Almeida def. Nasrudin Nasrudinov via submission (rear naked choke) - Round 2, 1:49
Mo Miller def. Brandon Lewis via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 20-27)
Jack Della Maddalena def. Ange Loosa via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)