Kicking off the UFC 294 main card in Abu Dhabi on Saturday were bantamweights Said Nurmagomedov and Muin Gafurov.
The fight, which found both men coming in off single losses, was over before it really got going.
Gafurov, a former ONE Championship athlete, went in on a takedown early on in the fight, and it wasn’t long after that that things went sideways. Nurmagomedov locked up a guillotine in defense, and soon enough, Muin Gafurov was tapping! Unfortunately for Gafurov, he tapped on the side of Nurmagomedov that was towards the fence, meaning the ref couldn’t see. Nurmagomedov actually released the hold before ref Marc Goddard was even aware the fight was over, though Gafurov appeared to go out regardless.
On a night with some questionable officiating, there was no fault on the part of the ref in this one. Just some bad luck for Gafurov, who might have been overly aggressive on his takedown attempt, and paid for it.
Nurmagomedov, who saw a four-fight win streak snapped by Jonathan Martinez last time out, now returns to the win column and improves his record in the promotion to a very respectable 7-2.
Official Result: Said Nurmagomedov def. Muin Gafurov by submission (guillotine choke), Round 1, 1:13