Brian Ortega will try to remain undefeated later tonight (Sat., Dec. 8, 2018) at UFC 231 live on pay-per-view (PPV) from inside Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, when he takes on reigning UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway, who has won his last 12 Octagon appearances.
In addition to the 145-pound main event, former women’s bantamweight title challenger Valentina Shevchenko will meet former women’s strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk for the vacant women’s flyweight title, streaking Brazilian finisher Thiago Santos will test his luck against perennial light heavyweight contender Jimi Manuwa, and the always entertaining Alex Oliveira will try to ward off a returning Gunnar Nelson.
But, before the premier bouts get underway on PPV starting at 10 p.m. ET, UFC 231’s “Prelims” action will go down on Fight Pass starting at 6:00 p.m. ET and FOX Sports 1 starting at 8 p.m. ET.
Find out what happened right here as the UFC 231 undercard recaps roll in real-time:
Claudia Gadelha vs. Nina Ansaroff
Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Gilbert Burns
Katlyn Chookagian vs. Jessica Eye
Elias Theodorou vs. Eryk Anders
Anders tried to load up early but Theodorou was able to secure clinch and land good knees inside. Theodorou followed his efforts up with a few crisp leg kicks as Anders struggled to find his own range and score some offense. Anders finally opened up with a knee inside that briefly slowed his Canadian counterpart. Theodorou gained the upper hand when he grabbed a hold of Anders’ back along the cage and scored more knees in the clinch. In Round 2, Theodorou kept busy with short leg kicks and constant movement. Anders finally found his window of opportunity and leveled Theodorou with a left hand. The Canadian stumbled around the Octagon but somehow survived, even after more punishment from Anders. In the third and final frame, Anders took his time not to exhaust himself trying to finish Theodorou. Theodorou remained difficult to hit with dipping movement and escapes, but he still looked out of it. A right hand by Anders temporarily lifted Theodorou off his feet. Theodorou remained calm and responded with his own shots before trying to take Anders down. That didn’t work and the round eventually came to an end. When the scores were tallied, it was Theodorou who walked away with the split-decision win.
Brad Katona vs. Matthew Lopez
Lopez landed some really good punches in the early going as Katona tried to utilize movement to make up for a reach disadvantage. Lopez followed his efforts up with a crisp combination minutes into the first round that whipped Katona’s head back. Katona responded with a brutal hook to the body. Lopez then changed level and secured his first takedown of the fight. In the second round, Lopez caught a Katona kick and again ended up in top position. However, Katona was quickly able to get back to his feet. Once there, Katona was able to find his range and landed some good strikes inside to the body and head. Lopez responded with another takedown off a Katona leg kick. Katona got back to his feet again and started to stick Lopez with straight punches and high kicks. In the third and final frame, an energetic Katona bounced around the Octagon and picked his shots at will. Lopez remained dangerous with heavy counters, but his attacks looked visually labored. Lopez never went away, but Katona was too precise and too sharp with his hands to let the tides turn. In the final moments of the fight, Katona was able to secure a rear-naked choke during a transition to the ground and started to squeeze. Lopez didn’t tap, but seemed to go out as timed expired. It could have been ruled a submission finish for the Canadian, but the referee sent it to the scorecards and Katona earned the unanimous decision win.
Chad Laprise vs. Dhiego Lima
Laprise pressed the action early and pushed Lima’s back against the cage. After a few back-and-forth exchanges Lima came out of nowhere and blasted Laprise with a nasty left hook inside that instantly put “Disciple” out. The Brazilian walks away with the memorable first-round knockout finish.
Carlos Diego Ferreira vs. Kyle Nelson
Nelson threw the harder punches in the early going, catching Ferreira with a plethora of counter shots. Ferreira was in trouble and fell to the ground. Nelson let him up. Ferreira regained some momentum with combinations to the body and right hands before landing a takedown. The Brazilian then worked for a kimura but Nelson defended nicely. In Round 2, Ferreira quickly gained top control and worked into full mount. Nelson defended the best he could but Ferreira was relentless with punches in bunches. The referee had no choice but to step in for the TKO stoppage.
Devin Clark vs. Aleksandar Rakic
It took Clark two seconds to land a huge punch that put Rakic on his butt. Rakic regrouped and started to score with whipping leg kicks. Clark found another home for a powerful left hook that dropped Rakic again. Clark followed his efforts up with countless knees in the clinch. Some were illegal, though, as both of Rakic’s hand were on the ground but the referee issued no warning. Rakic once again weathered the storm and ended up catching Clark with a flush back fist that sent the Jon Jones training partner to the canvas. Rakic capitalized with ferocious ground-and-pound before the referee stepped in for the first-round TKO stoppage.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 231 fight card, starting with the Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on FOX Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET.