There were knockouts, submissions, grappling contests and slugfests as the latest event by Khabib Nurmagomedov’s Eagle FC set an array of fearless fighters against each other.
Brutal finishes dominated on the stacked card as the EFC 40 event visited the city of Almetyevsk, where UFC icon Nurmagomedov was in attendance to watch the vicious action.
Ilnur Akhmetvaleev and Leonid Malozemov began the pummeling proceedings, with professional debutant Akhmetvaleev admitting he was “dissatisfied” with himself after earning a points victory over three rounds in a learning fight for the relative novice.
Vladikavkaz lightweight Tamerlan Kabulov beat Azamat Markabaev before Rashid Kurbanov strangled Gadir Muslunzade to claim a first-round win that was the third of his career.
In a war that left the canvas a bloody mess, Shamil Yamilov beat Ismail Israilov in a showdown that left the winner with a deep gash visible on his left cheek in the medical room afterwards.
“To the delight of the audience, there was a lot of blood and very serious, powerful blows,” the championship commentated on the epic contest as the drama unfolded.
Barnaul, Siberia brawler Sergei Ignatenko strangled Ravshan Akhmedov in the third round of their fight, and Magomedrasul Sheikhmagomedov suffered the first defeat of his career when injuries left him unable to continue against Mavlid Muradov.
“He is a very strong guy,” unbeaten Muradov said afterwards. “Apparently I was destined to win. I am glad that I implemented my coach’s game plan and won.”
Bantamweight Alexander Yanyshev collected his first win since 2017 in style, pinning Khasan Esmurziev to the floor and strangling him before he tapped out.
There were wins on the cards for Khabib Nabiyev over Alexander Verevkin and Renat Ondar in his featherweight fight against Abdulmalik Mugidinov.
Uzair Abdurakov beat Victor Romero courtesy of a wild finish, chasing his opponent across the cage and stunning him with a series of huge shots.
Romero looked eager to continue after bravely recovering, by which time the referee was already holding him after stepping in when he saw Abdurakov’s hammer blows connect.
Towards the top of the bill, Amin Ergashev knocked out Alan Makitov in an action-packed battle that left Makitov face down on the deck and set the winner up for a title shot.
Nurmagomedov applauded from the seats as Vladimir Daineko pounded his way to victory against the grounded Anthony Hamilton, a veteran of the UFC who once fought that promotion’s current heavyweight champion, Francis Ngannou.
Elsewhere on the card, home fighter Rasul Mammaev beat Brazilian Eduardo Ramon, Ramazan Amaev ended Umar Kunakbiev’s winning streak and grapplers Yusuf Raisov and Murad Machaev shared a draw.