The week’s installment of Dana White’s Contender Series Season 6 includes a Cage Warriors champion, a rising Invicta FC talent, and an LFA and Fury FC alum making his second appearance on DWCS.
The Cage Warriors champ in question would be bantamweight champion Jack Cartwright, taking on the aforementioned LFA/Fury FC alum Jose Johnson. Johnson last appeared on the Contender Series in 2020, losing a decision against Ronnie Lawrence. Lawrence is now in the UFC, while Johnson is hoping to finally break in after an appearance on Dana White’s Lookin’ for a Fight also went south.
As for Cartwright, many felt he could have gone straight to the UFC proper, but instead he’ll battle it out Tuesday.
So too will Hailey Cowan, another talent that arguably could have gone direct to the UFC. She’s been paired up with Brazil’s Claudia Leite.
Dana White’s Contender Series 50 gets underway at 8PM ET, airing on ESPN+ in the U.S., and UFC Fight Pass internationally. Full results from the event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada can be found below.
In the opening fight of the evening, Nazim Sadykhov got the fight down early, then opened up Ahmad Suhail Hassanzada with some nasty ground n’ pound. Sadykhov was dominant on top, and Hassanzada couldn’t seem to get out from under him. Things were looking back when Sadykhov passed to mount, but Hassanzada was able to reverse, with just over a minute left in the opening round.
In the second, it was Hassanzada getting the fight down early, albeit after eating at least one solid punch. Sadykhov didn’t stay down long, and late in the round would drop Hassanzada with a body shot. In the third. Sadykhov landed a spinning back kick up top and stayed on the offensive early. Both men began swinging, but it was Sadykhov dropping Hassazada with a right hand for the KO midway through the third!
The second fight of the evening saw another fighter cut opened, as Hailey Cowan landed an elbow early against Claudia Leite while they were grappling along the fence. The cut was bad enough that the ref brought in the doctor, but the action was allowed to continue. In the second, Leite pursued a takedown. Cowan answered with a knee, but Leite stayed on it and landed the attempt. Cowan soon pushed Leite off her, but didn’t get back up; Leite got back on her and took the back, hunting a rear-naked choke. Cowan would try to shake Leite off; Leite transitioned to top, took mount, and came close to a finish with an arm-triangle choke. But they’d head to the third with the fight likely tied, and that third round was close.
Johnson landed a takdown in the opening 30 seconds, but Cartwright reversed just as quickly. Cartwright locked up an anaconda, but Johnson fought it off for some time and eventually escaped out and up, only to be taken back down. Late in the round, Johnson would get on top and make it to count, but Cartwright survived. An active second round led to an early triangle attempt from Johnson in the third. Cartwright would get on top after that, but the transitions would continue, with Johnson briefly getting to mount only to willingly go to his back for another triangle attempt. They’d go the distance, with Johnson serving up the first loss of Cartwright’s career.
Claudio Ribeiro wasted no time at all in finishing Ivan Valenzuela in the penultimate fight of the evening. Ribeiro landed a left hook off a poorly conceived spinning back fist from Valenzuela, scoring the KO finish.
Esteban Ribovics didn’t take much longer, knocking out Thomas Paull in the night’s final fight in just 90 seconds.
Dana White’s Contender Series Season 6, Week 4 Results
Lightweight: Esteban Ribovics def. Thomas Paull by knockout, Round 1, 1:30
Middleweight: Claudio Ribeiro def. Iván Valenzuela by knockout, Round 1, 0:25
Bantamweight: Jose Johnson def. Jack Cartwright by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Women’s Bantamweight: Hailey Cowan def. Cláudia Leite by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Lightweight: Nazim Sadykhov def. Ahmad Suhail Hassanzada by knockout, Round 3, 1:59
Contract Winners: Nazim Sadykhov, Hailey Cowan, Jose Johnson, Claudio Ribeiro, Esteban Ribovics