The Contender Series is down to just two more outings this season, and one of those came Tuesday night. Week 9 of DWCS Season 5 brought with it some international flavor — a whole lot of it, in fact.
Fighters from China, Brazil, Afghanistan, Israel, and more converged in Las Vegas, all looking to fight their way into the UFC. And during Monday’s weigh-ins, the ugly side of international relations reared its head.
Going up against top Afghani prospect Javid Basharat was Israel’s Oron Kahlon, who came in heavy for the fight. Weighing in at 139lbs for a bantamweight fight is never a good look, and when it came time to face off, Basharat opted not to shake his opponent’s hand. That, in turn, led to Kahlon calling the Afghani fighter a terrorist — an even worse look.
Given the decades of tensions between Israel and the rest of the Middle East, Kahlon’s comments are going to be picked apart, as they should be. They should also add fuel to the fire for Tuesday’s fight, where Basharat is the heavy favorite.
A full six fights are set for the penultimate episode of Dana White’s Contender Series this week, with China’s Xie Bin, a ONE Championship mainstay, also in action, and Brazil’s Jansey Silva taking on Gadzhi Omargadzhiev at middleweight in the featured fight.
Dana White’s Contender Series Season 5, Week 9 kicks off at 8PM ET, airing live on ESPN+ in the United States, and on UFC Fight Pass elsewhere. Full results from the card, at the UFC Apex, can be found below.
Things looked a little dicey for Xie Bin in the opening round of the night’s first fight, against Olivier Murad. But Bin would get the fight to the ground and appeared to be in his comfort zone. Again, to open the second, Bin was rocked, but showed some grit, fighting through it. Again, he’d land a key takedown; Murad defended with a choke that Bin easily pulled free of. In the third, it was more of the same. Bin appeared to do more with his time on top, but Murad finished the third round strong. Olivier Murad took the split decision when the scores were read.
The second fight of the evening saw Manuel Torres stop Kolton Englund, finishing the fight with strikes for the TKO victory. The only drawback, Englund indicated he’d been poked in the eye, but the ref did not see or call the foul.
Karine Silva was throwing hard to open the evening’s women’s flyweight scrap. Qihui Yan answered that by planting her on her back, but Silva proved to have a dangerous guard. The longer it went, however, the more Yan was able to create space and sneak in some damaging elbows. Silva threw up a gogoplata at the end of the round, but Yan slipped free.
Round two opened with a hard kick from Yan, who pressed forward. Silva also took some big swings but missed; she then shot for a takedown, which Yan stuffed. But moments later, Silva latched on to her opponent’s neck standing. Yan spammed Silva, but that made the guillotine worse, and she was forced to tap!
Javid Basharat caught a kick early against Oron Kahlon, and dumped the Israeli on his back. Basharat controlled the wrists, and looked for an opening to land ground n’ pound, which he soon did, opening up a cut on Kahlon. Kahlon briefly threatened with a heel hook, but Basharat escaped, and landed more ground n’ pound as the round came to a close.
As dominant as the opening round was, Kahlon managed to survive through both that and the second frame. By the third, Basharat began unleashing leg kicks, with Kahlon basically just standing there eating them. He’d finally go down, Basharat got back into guard, and landed some hard elbows to the ribs. Late in the round, Basharat would sink in a mounted guillotine to force the tap.
In the second bantamweight bout of the evening, Christian Quinonez went the distance, earning a one-sided decision against China’s Long Xiao. All three judges scored the fight 30-27.
A quick kneebar capped off the night, with Gadzhi Omargadzhiev becoming the first to land the submission on the Contender Series.
Dana White’s Contender Series Season 5, Week 9 Results
Middleweight: Gadzhi Omargadzhiev def. Jansey Silva by submission (kneebar), Round 1, 4:19
Bantamweight: Christian Quinonez def. Long Xiao by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Catchweight (139lbs): Javid Basharat def. Oron Kahlon by submission (guillotine choke), Round 3, 4:12
Women’s Flyweight: Karine Silva def. Qihui Yan by submission (guillotine choke), Round 2, 1:44
Lightweight: Manuel Torres def. Kolton Englund by TKO, Round 1, 2:10
Featherweight: Olivier Murad def. Xie Bin by split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-8)
Contract Winners: Manuel Torres, Karine Silva, Javid Basharat, Christian Quinonez, Gadzhi Omargadzhiev