Undefeated Russian hands Arnold Allen second consecutive loss

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Arnold Allen suffered a second straight defeat at UFC 297.

‘Almighty’ was hoping to get back in the win column, but he ran into streaking Russian contender Movsar Evloev at Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena on Saturday night.

The fighters had nothing but respect for each other after 15 minutes of war at UFC 297


The fighters had nothing but respect for each other after 15 minutes of war at UFC 297Credit: Getty

After a bloody three-round war, all three cageside judges scored the fight 29-28 in favour of the undefeated featherweight, who improved his perfect MMA record to 18-0.

Round one began with Allen looking light on his feet and popping in with shots to the body and head. Evloev looked a little static and overwhelmed through the first two minutes.

The Russian then shot in for a takedown and got it. Allen popped back up, but the tables started to turn in his opponent’s favour as he landed strikes and several more takedowns before the horn sounded to end the round.

Evloev continued to impress with his wrestling in round two before dropping his rival and opening a massive cut that seemed to give him a commanding lead after 10 minutes.

Allen came out for the third round looking for a stoppage. The Englishman landed several eye-catching shots before opening his opponent up with a series of illegal knees.

Bloodied but unhurt, Evloev went back to his wrestling attempts and was made to pay by Allen who unleashed elbows until the final bell sounded.

Evloev, who entered the bout ranked at #9 in the featherweight division, expressed his desire to challenge for the 145lb UFC belt in his next fight.

Alexander Volkanovski will defend his strap against Ilia Topuria at UFC 298 on February 17, and there is currently no clear number-one contender waiting in the wings for the winner.

Allen gave it everything he had


Allen gave it everything he hadCredit: Getty
But Evloev impressed the judges with his well-rounded game


But Evloev impressed the judges with his well-rounded gameCredit: Getty

Allen seems a world away from challenging for a world title.

The 29-year-old was on the cusp of big things after winning 12 consecutive fights over nine years and booking a fight with former champion Max Holloway.

‘Blessed’ outpointed the Ipswich native over five rounds last April, and now his comeback fight has ended in a disappointing defeat to Evloev.

Allen will now spend the rest of 2024 reviving his UFC career.


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