1. Khabib Nurmagomedov: After a triangle choke against Justin Gaethje, Nurmagomedov has called it a career with a gleaming record of 29-0. Owing it to his mother’s wish after the passing of his father, Khabib surprised all of us who thought he’d fulfill he and his father’s plan of getting to 30. Nevertheless, Dana and Co. will back up the Brinks truck and talk about legacy fights against Georges St. Pierre and the like, but for a man who such strong beliefs as Khabib, this is one combat sports retirement which actually might hold.
2. Juan Francisco Estrada: For the second time, Estrada put Carlos Cuadras down on the canvas, but this time, he stopped him in the 11th round to retain his WBC World Junior Bantamweight championship Friday on DAZN.
3. Robert Whittaker: Derailed the Jared Cannonier Middleweight War Wagon, stopping Cannonier’s destruction of 185ers promotion-wide since he dropped down. I was wrong about Bobby Knuckles, who still has some ass-kicking left to do and to stay in contention, or at the very least, the final boss before you get to fight Izzy.
4. Roman Gonzalez: Chocolatito thwarted Israel Gonzalez’s third attempt at a world title in a loaded Matchroom card on Friday night in Mexico. Next up, a rematch with Estrada.
5. Alexander Volkov: If I can go the rest of my life without taking a front kick to the solar plexus like Walt Harris received from Volkov, I’m considering that a win.
6. Xavier Martinez: Was dropped twice in the eighth round, but battled back to take a win over Claudio Marrero in the co-main event of PBC on Showtime.
7. Grace Gundrum: The teenage 10th Planet black belt is now a F2W champion, slapping an armbar on Pati Fontes, a world champion in her own right. Gundrum looks to be the real deal and future of BJJ, mens or womens.
8. Josh Barnett: Made a successful debut in the bare-knuckle boxing game, winning in the main event of KSW’s inaugural Genesis series over KSW stalwart Marcin Rozalski.
9. Danielle Kelly: Earned quite the fellow in her cap, submitting Roxanne Modafferi to win Submission Hunter gold in the main event of Submission Hunter Pro 60 in the promotion’s UFC Fight Pass debut.
10. Fabio Turchi: On DAZN’s Friday lunchtime offering from Italy, Turchi claimed a vacant International IBF title at cruiserweight. Cruiser is always looking for new blood.
11. Magomed Ankalaev: Finished the job against Ion Cutelaba after their first bout was stopped too soon. This time, Ankalaev made sure there was no debate, putting Cutelaba DOWN.
12. Devhonte Johnson: In the co-main of Fight To Win 155, Johnson earned a decision win over ADCC silver medalist Vinicius Ferreira.
13. Phil Hawes: It took just eighteen seconds for Hawes to make a big impact in his UFC debut, knocking out a woefully overmatched Jacob Malkoun on the UFC 254 main card.
14. Subriel Matias: It wasn’t a massive upset by any means, but it was the biggest of the weekend, with Matias overcoming a pretty rough opening few rounds to earn a win over Malik Hawkins on Showtime Saturday night.
15. Andrei Ostrovanu: In the makeshift main event of Colosseum Tournament 20, the best kickboxing offering of the weekend, it was Ostrovanu getting the best of Flavius Boiciuc by UD.