UFC 288 Results

Welcome to UFC 288, a thrilling night of mixed martial arts action! We invite you to join us for live play-by-play coverage and the latest official results from this electrifying event.

UFC 288 is set to take place at the prestigious Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. The anticipation is building as the main card will be broadcast on pay-per-view, with the preliminary bouts airing on ESPN and the early prelims exclusively on ESPN+.

In the highly anticipated main event, the bantamweight champion, Aljamain Sterling (22-3 MMA, 14-3 UFC), will square off against the former two-division champion, Henry Cejudo (16-2 MMA, 10-2 UFC), who is making a spectacular return to the octagon after a retirement of nearly three years. This clash promises to be a showdown for the ages.

The co-feature bout will showcase the incredible talents of Gilbert Burns (22-5 MMA, 15-5 UFC), who is stepping into the cage for the third time in 2023 and the second time in just five weeks. He faces off against the formidable Belal Muhammad (22-3 MMA, 13-3 UFC) in a pivotal welterweight contest that is sure to keep fans on the edge of their seats.

Our live round-by-round updates and official results will begin at approximately 6:30 p.m. ET for the early prelims on ESPN+, followed by the prelims on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET, and culminating with the main card on pay-per-view at 10 p.m. ET.

Join us in the discussion thread for UFC 288 as we dissect the action, and follow our on-site reporter Mike Bohn (@MikeBohn) on Twitter for exclusive behind-the-scenes coverage and event insights.

Get ready for an unforgettable evening of exhilarating fights. UFC 288 promises to deliver excitement, drama, and unforgettable moments. Enjoy the show, fight fans!

Joseph Holmes vs. Claudio Ribeiro

Round 1:

The opening round saw Holmes initiate an early takedown attempt, which unfortunately fell short. Ribeiro capitalized on this, pressing Holmes against the cage. However, Holmes managed to reverse the position and take control. There was no significant damage, but it did lead to some discontent from the crowd, resulting in boos. They eventually separated, with two minutes remaining.

A pivotal moment occurred when Ribeiro unleashed a massive leg kick that sent Holmes to the canvas, but Holmes swiftly bounced back to his feet. Ribeiro was successful in taking Holmes down, though, with just one minute left in the round. While Ribeiro landed some shots, they didn’t cause substantial damage. Ribeiro managed to mount Holmes and then secured the back mount, delivering significant shots in the final moments of the round before the bell rang.

Round 2:

The second round began with Ribeiro landing significant strikes early on. He closed the distance and pinned Holmes against the cage. Holmes, however, managed to reverse the position. The pace of the fight slowed considerably, prompting the crowd to express their disapproval with boos. They eventually disengaged.

Ribeiro then delivered a powerful leg kick and followed it up with a good jab. The fight remained slow-paced with three minutes remaining. Ribeiro landed a big right hand, putting him in control. He pressed Holmes against the cage once again and managed to knock him down with a shot. Ribeiro wasted no time with ground-and-pound, leading to a decisive victory for the Brazilian.

Result: Claudio Ribeiro secures the win over Joseph Holmes via TKO due to ground-and-pound in Round 2, at 3:21.

Ikram Aliskerov vs. Phil Hawes

Round 1:

The first round saw a high-paced exchange of action, with Hawes aggressively targeting Aliskerov with body kicks, creating an intense pace in the fight. Hawes seemed to be in control, continuously pressing Aliskerov.

However, the fight took a sudden and dramatic turn when Aliskerov countered Hawes with a powerful right hand that connected squarely. The impact was devastating, resulting in Hawes being knocked out cold by this brutal shot.

Result: Ikram Aliskerov secures a stunning victory over Phil Hawes via KO, achieved with a devastating punch in Round 1, at 2:10.

Parker Porter vs. Braxton Smith

Round 1:

The opening round kicked off with a bang as Smith landed a big right hand, setting the tone for a high-intensity exchange. Both fighters were swinging hard right from the start, and Smith connected with another significant shot. Porter attempted a couple of takedowns but couldn’t secure them.

The fight continued with both fighters trading huge shots. Porter showcased his skills with a well-executed jab. In a significant turn of events, Porter managed to snap Smith down and transitioned to his opponent’s back. Then, Porter secured the mount position and began to unleash a relentless barrage of ground-and-pound strikes.

The onslaught proved to be too much for Smith to handle.

Result: Parker Porter emerges victorious, defeating Braxton Smith via TKO due to ground-and-pound in Round 1, at 2:10.

Virna Jandiroba vs. Marina Rodriguez

Round 1:

In the opening round, Jandiroba wasted no time and secured an early takedown against Rodriguez. She managed to get Rodriguez in a position reminiscent of Khabib Nurmagomedov’s signature style. Jandiroba advanced slowly and steadily, ultimately gaining Rodriguez’s back. Rodriguez rolled onto her back, and Jandiroba found herself in half guard with three minutes remaining. Although there was little damage, Jandiroba had complete control, prompting some boos from the fans. Jandiroba attempted a kimura, but Rodriguez defended it well, leading to a bit of a stalemate. Eventually, Jandiroba abandoned the submission attempt and delivered some good elbows. Jandiroba maintained top control until the end of the round.

Round 2:

In the second round, Jandiroba continued with her game plan, aiming to close the distance on Rodriguez. She pursued a takedown and pinned Rodriguez against the cage. Rodriguez defended the takedown effectively but found herself controlled against the cage. Jandiroba succeeded in taking Rodriguez down and began working from half guard. Despite some ground-and-pound from the top, Jandiroba wasn’t inflicting significant damage. The pace of the fight remained slow, with one minute left. Jandiroba transitioned to side control and finished the round with big elbows, causing some blood to flow from Rodriguez’s right eyebrow.

Round 3:

The final round saw Rodriguez land a few shots as they exchanged early. Jandiroba appeared to be more willing to engage in striking in this round. Rodriguez nearly connected with a flying knee. Jandiroba went for a takedown and pressed Rodriguez against the cage, successfully executing it. With three minutes remaining, Rodriguez displayed some good elbows from the bottom while Jandiroba controlled her. The lack of action led to boos from the crowd. Jandiroba attempted an arm triangle, but Rodriguez managed to escape. Jandiroba maintained top control until the final bell.

Result: Virna Jandiroba secures the victory over Marina Rodriguez via unanimous decision, with the judges’ scores of 29-28, 29-28, and 30-27.

Rolando Bedoya vs. Khaos Williams

Round 1:

The first round started with Bedoya unleashing powerful leg kicks to set the pace. Williams, on the other hand, walked Bedoya down and engaged in a series of significant exchanges. Williams pressed Bedoya against the cage and attempted a takedown, but Bedoya managed to escape. Bedoya showcased precision and volume, landing a clean one-two combination. Williams replied with a right hand. With two minutes remaining, Bedoya continued to score with good leg kicks. Both fighters exchanged heavy shots, making it a highly competitive round, and the action culminated as the bell rang.

Round 2:

The second round carried on the excitement from the first. Bedoya landed a solid leg kick early on. Bedoya seemed to have the edge in precision and volume, while Williams’ strikes appeared to have more power behind them. Bedoya connected with a good right hand and added another leg kick to his arsenal. Clean jabs followed by a low kick came from Bedoya, displaying his striking skills. Williams once again pressed Bedoya against the cage, but Bedoya managed to break free. With two minutes remaining, Bedoya’s leg kicks were visibly affecting Williams. Bedoya showcased solid defensive skills as Williams attempted to land shots but missed. The round ended with both fighters still in the thick of the action.

Round 3:

As the final round kicked off, Williams attempted to press Bedoya against the cage, but Bedoya managed to slip away. Bedoya continued to attack with hard leg kicks and a well-placed elbow. Bedoya’s jab and a clean jab-leg kick combination showcased his striking prowess. Williams appeared to be struggling to land clean shots. Bedoya shifted the momentum and began pressing forward, while Williams found himself on the defensive. Another leg kick from Bedoya caused trouble for Williams. With two minutes left, Bedoya tried to take Williams down but was unsuccessful, leading to a return to the feet. Williams had a bloody mouth but managed to land a good right hand. Bedoya responded with a big right hand that snapped Williams’ head back, and the round concluded, capping off a thrilling fight.

Result: Khaos Williams secured a hard-fought victory over Rolando Bedoya via split decision, with judges’ scores of 27-30, 29-28, and 29-28.

Devin Clark vs. Kennedy Nzechukwu

Round 1:

The opening round began with Clark attempting an early takedown, but his efforts were thwarted by Nzechukwu. Clark found himself on the defensive as Nzechukwu applied pressure. Both fighters engaged in numerous feints, but not many significant strikes were thrown. Clark later tried for a takedown, coming close but ultimately pushing Nzechukwu against the cage. However, Nzechukwu reversed the position, taking control and pressing Clark against the cage. With two minutes remaining, Nzechukwu continued to assert dominance by controlling Clark against the cage. When they separated, Nzechukwu delivered some impactful elbows. The fight returned to striking, and the tide suddenly shifted when Clark landed a nasty right hand that wobbled Nzechukwu. Clark went on the attack, looking to finish, but Nzechukwu managed to recover and responded with a right hand of his own. The round was marked by a series of nasty elbows from Nzechukwu as he continued to press Clark against the cage, delivering a brutal knee to the body before the bell rang, ending an intense round.

Round 2:

The second round commenced with Nzechukwu immediately putting pressure on Clark and pressing him against the cage. Nzechukwu continued to deliver nasty elbows, and the fight transitioned back to striking. Nzechukwu maintained his relentless pressure on Clark, pushing him against the cage once more. In the midst of the action, Nzechukwu landed a good knee. Another knee followed. Clark managed to land a solid hook as they separated. Clark attempted a takedown, but it proved to be his downfall as he got caught in a front choke (guillotine choke) by Nzechukwu. Clark struggled to escape, but it was to no avail. Nzechukwu secured the submission, and Clark was rendered unconscious.

Result: Kennedy Nzechukwu emerged victorious, defeating Devin Clark via submission with a guillotine choke in Round 2 at 2:28, bringing an end to an eventful fight.

Drew Dober vs. Matt Frevola

Round 1:

The first round promised excitement right from the start as Frevola initiated with a body kick, setting the tone for what was to come. He followed up with a powerful right hand, while Dober struggled to find his rhythm. Frevola landed a significant left hand and continued to work with body kicks. Frevola displayed an aggressive approach, not giving Dober much room to breathe. However, Dober eventually started to unleash his strikes.

Dober connected with a body shot, and his offensive momentum began to build. He pressed Frevola, forcing him to retreat. Dober landed some good body shots, and the exchange left Dober with a bleeding nose. With two minutes left in the round, Frevola managed to partially connect with a head-kick and attempted a Superman punch. The fight took a dramatic turn when Frevola delivered a huge right hand that sent Dober crashing to the canvas. Frevola wasted no time and swarmed Dober with ground-and-pound strikes.

Result: Matt Frevola secured a thrilling victory over Drew Dober via TKO due to ground-and-pound in Round 1, at 4:08, concluding a high-intensity bout.

Kron Gracie vs. Charles Jourdain

Round 1:

The opening round witnessed Gracie coming out with a forward pressure, seeking to close the distance on Jourdain. Jourdain, however, remained cautious and stayed on the outside. He employed good jabs to keep Gracie at bay. Gracie managed to close the distance, pressing Jourdain against the cage momentarily, but Jourdain broke free swiftly. Jourdain showcased his striking skills with a well-executed uppercut. He continued to pick apart Gracie from the outside. Gracie then decided to pull guard, attempting to set something up from the ground. Jourdain remained patient and eventually got back to his feet with one minute left in the round. Gracie pressed Jourdain against the cage once more, but Jourdain broke free again before the round concluded.

Round 2:

The second round mirrored the first, with Gracie applying pressure, and Jourdain staying on the back foot while carefully selecting his strikes. Gracie once again pulled guard near the cage. From the bottom, Gracie attempted some shots, but the crowd began to express their dissatisfaction with boos. With three minutes left, not much was happening on the ground. Jourdain managed to get back up. Gracie continued to chase for a takedown, but Jourdain skillfully picked him apart with his striking. One minute remained in the round, and Gracie once more closed the distance and pulled guard. This time, short punches were exchanged before the bell rang.

Round 3:

In the third and final round, Jourdain became more active with his striking, throwing punches with greater frequency. He showed his power with a good body shot and a nasty knee strike. Gracie, on the other hand, wasn’t offering much on the feet. Once again, Gracie opted to pull guard, and Jourdain was cautious but unthreatened by Gracie’s ground game. Gracie attempted some arm shots but wasn’t making significant progress. With two minutes left, Jourdain managed to get back up. He then started targeting Gracie’s legs with kicks as Gracie was butt scooting on the ground. The referee eventually stood them up with one minute remaining. Gracie tried to tie up Jourdain but was unsuccessful. Jourdain landed a big right hand before the final bell rang.

Result: Charles Jourdain emerged victorious with a unanimous decision, as all three judges scored it 30-27 in his favor, following a bout that primarily played out on the feet.

Movsar Evloev vs. Diego Lopes

Round 1:

The first round started with Lopes delivering some good leg kicks and a powerful right hand. He managed to tag Evloev, causing him to wobble briefly. However, Evloev quickly responded by taking Lopes down, and he began working from the top position. Lopes attempted to go for a leg lock, but Evloev escaped. Evloev continued his ground-and-pound from Lopes’s guard. Lopes tried to land an elbow from the bottom. There was an armbar attempt by Lopes, but it was a close call as Evloev managed to escape. With two minutes left, Evloev maintained top control, landing good shots from the top. In the final seconds of the round, Lopes locked in a triangle, but the round ended before he could secure it.

Round 2:

The second round saw Evloev land a good right hand and Lopes respond with a left hook. Both fighters traded hooks, making the stand-up exchange fairly even. Evloev was walking forward and utilized a jab effectively. With three minutes remaining, Lopes seemed to be getting tired. Lopes continued to engage with Evloev, landing a good left hook. However, Evloev decided to shoot for a takedown, and Lopes pulled guard. Evloev worked from Lopes’s guard, landing a few shots from the top. As the round progressed, Lopes appeared to be slowing down, and Evloev maintained top control and engaged in ground-and-pound. In the final minute, Evloev landed some significant shots from the top until the bell rang.

Round 3:

The final round began with Lopes landing some good hooks, while Evloev responded with a right hand. Evloev showcased his boxing skills with a clean right hook. Lopes answered back with a right hook of his own. Evloev was visibly the fresher fighter at this point in the bout. Evloev pressed Lopes against the cage, working to control the position. He eventually took Lopes down, and Lopes managed to get back up, but Evloev continued to tie him up against the cage. Lopes attempted a kimura, which looked tight for a moment, but Evloev rolled over and ended up on top. Evloev escaped and scrambled back to his feet, resuming his pressure against Lopes along the cage. With one minute left, Lopes attempted another kimura, but Evloev once again managed to get out. Lopes then transitioned to a kneebar attempt, which also looked threatening, but the round ended before he could secure it.

Result: Movsar Evloev emerged victorious with a unanimous decision, as all three judges scored it 29-28, 29-28, and 30-27 in his favor. The fight featured multiple submission attempts and a competitive stand-up battle, making it an exciting contest.

Jessica Andrade vs. Yan Xiaonan

Round 1:

The first round commenced with both fighters exchanging leg kicks. Xiaonan landed a significant left hand early in the round. Andrade, on the other hand, was advancing and pressuring Xiaonan. Xiaonan showcased her mobility, looking to counter Andrade’s aggressive approach. Xiaonan displayed precision with her striking, outstriking Andrade with accurate shots. With three minutes left in the round, Xiaonan landed a big shot, demonstrating her superior accuracy in the exchanges.

However, Andrade suddenly rushed in, attempting to close the distance, but she ran into a massive right hand from Xiaonan. The right hand proved to be devastating, and Andrade was unable to recover from the blow.

Result: Yan Xiaonan secured the victory over Jessica Andrade via TKO due to a punch in Round 1, at 2:20, culminating a quick and decisive bout.

Gilbert Burns vs. Belal Muhammad

Round 1:

The opening round featured both fighters engaging with hard leg kicks, and they carefully timed each other in what was a slow-paced start to the bout. Muhammad delivered a good left, and both fighters had moments of pressing forward. With three minutes left, Burns launched a hard leg kick, but Muhammad responded with a powerful body kick. It seemed that Muhammad managed to stun Burns with a jab, and Burns had a bit of bleeding from his nose as a result. The round concluded without any significant damage.

Round 2:

The second round began with Burns delivering a good leg kick, and Muhammad retaliated with a hard body kick. Burns connected with a big right hand, and Muhammad pressed forward, keeping the tension high. Burns landed another significant right hand, briefly stunning Muhammad. Leg kicks were exchanged by both fighters, and they engaged in wild exchanges, but no significant strikes landed. Muhammad showcased his constant pressure. The round ended in a closely contested manner.

Round 3:

Muhammad continued his pressure into the third round, relentlessly pushing Burns. The action was relatively slow, with Burns delivering hard leg kicks and Muhammad throwing body kicks, but many of these strikes were blocked. Muhammad managed to land a couple of clean jabs. It became apparent that Burns had an injury on his left arm, as he kept shaking it and refrained from using it for strikes. The round concluded without significant damage.

Round 4:

The fourth round commenced with Burns delivering hard leg kicks, followed by a powerful body kick from Muhammad. Muhammad exhibited clean jabs and continued to press Burns, while Burns attempted a couple of hard right hooks. Muhammad increased his striking output in this round, displaying constant pressure. Burns seemed to be favoring his injured left arm. Both fighters exchanged leg kicks, and Burns landed a nasty right hand.

Round 5:

In the final round, Muhammad started with a hard body kick, followed by a leg kick from Burns. Burns refrained from using his left hand. Both fighters traded kicks, but neither was able to do significant damage. Muhammad recognized Burns’ compromised left arm and began targeting that area with kicks. Burns responded with leg kicks. Muhammad displayed a combination of leg and body kicks as the fight came to a close.

Result: Belal Muhammad secured a unanimous decision victory, with the judges scoring it 50-45, 49-46, and 49-46 in his favor. The fight was characterized by careful striking and a notable injury to Gilbert Burns’ left arm, which limited his offensive capabilities.

Aljamain Sterling vs. Henry Cejudo

Round 1:

Aljamain Sterling came out aggressively, putting pressure on Henry Cejudo from the start. Sterling attempted a high kick, but it missed its target. Cejudo secured the first takedown of the bout, with about 3 minutes and 45 seconds left in the round. Sterling then closed the distance but found himself in a body lock from Cejudo, who secured another takedown near the fence. Sterling spent about a minute on the mat before he managed to stand up. Once back on their feet, they engaged in a striking exchange, but no significant strikes landed. With around 2 minutes left in the round, they clinched near the cage. Cejudo briefly took Sterling down, but Sterling quickly escaped, showcasing his wrestling skills. Now it was Sterling who managed to take Cejudo down. Sterling delivered some knees to the body while in the clinch. Sterling ended the round with Cejudo’s back, and despite the limited time, it was a strong finish for the champion. Sterling did more with his takedowns, earning him a 10-9 score in the round.

Round 2:

Sterling continued his aggressive approach in the second round, pressuring Cejudo. Cejudo landed a nice high kick that clipped Sterling, but it had more style than substance. Sterling remained active with kicks to both the legs and the body. Sterling attempted a takedown with 3 minutes left, but it was successfully stuffed by Cejudo. It wasn’t a particularly good takedown attempt. They continued to stand and exchange strikes. Cejudo began to swell under his right eye. Sterling showcased his versatility by switching stances frequently. Cejudo landed another clean high kick while Sterling was bent down. In the final seconds, Cejudo landed a big right hand. The round was closely contested, but it leaned slightly in favor of Cejudo, earning him a 10-9 score. After two rounds, it was tied at 19-19.

Round 3:

Sterling started the third round with a flurry of kicks, targeting both the legs and the body. Cejudo attempted a flying knee that appeared to land, but Sterling responded with a takedown attempt that Cejudo successfully defended. Cejudo then welcomed Sterling back to his feet. Cejudo was the one stalking Sterling in the opening 90 seconds. Sterling tried to take Cejudo down again, but he was stuffed near the cage, leading to a battle for position in the clinch. Both fighters displayed high-level wrestling skills. Sterling eventually secured a takedown with 2 minutes and 50 seconds remaining, and he nearly took Cejudo’s back. Sterling landed a knee to Cejudo’s face as Cejudo stayed on his feet. They clinched again, with Cejudo’s back against the fence, and Sterling weighed heavily on him. The two separated peacefully with about 2 minutes remaining, but Sterling quickly attempted another takedown in the middle of the cage, which Cejudo defended well. Sterling landed a one-two combo followed by two strong knees to the body in the clinch during the final 30 seconds. The round concluded with Cejudo executing a trip takedown with 10 seconds left. It was another close round, but Sterling secured a 10-9 score based on his striking.

Round 4:

The fourth round started at a slower pace, but Cejudo landed a nice right hand. Cejudo also delivered a hard knee that narrowly missed Sterling’s head as Sterling ducked into him. The fighters again found themselves in a clinch near the fence, but Cejudo successfully shucked Sterling off. Cejudo began to apply more pressure to Sterling. Sterling landed a jab, and the two engaged in a wild scramble in the clinch. Sterling’s striking started to shine in this round, and he delivered a knee to Cejudo’s body. A high-level wrestling display was on full display as they grappled near the cage. Sterling managed to secure a takedown to close the round and ended with a couple of strong punches. Sterling won the round 10-9, bringing the overall score to 39-37 in his favor after four rounds.

Round 5:

Cejudo came out in the fifth round with constant pressure, heeding his corner’s advice. Sterling may have believed he was ahead on the scorecards. Sterling landed a nice left hand, but Cejudo responded with a sharp left hook. Cejudo then delivered a big right hand, followed by a low kick. Cejudo’s corner encouraged him to throw punches. Sterling attempted a takedown that Cejudo defended, but it was not a successful attempt. Cejudo welcomed Sterling back to his feet. Cejudo was the one pressing forward in the opening moments of the round. Sterling unleashed a series of kicks early in the round, targeting Cejudo’s legs and body. Sterling landed a couple of clean jabs. However, moments later, Cejudo landed a big right-hand followed by a low kick. Cejudo began to find his rhythm, and both fighters exchanged strikes in the final half-minute, slugging it out. Cejudo secured the round with a 10-9 score.

Result:

The fight concluded with a split decision victory for Aljamain Sterling, with scorecards of 47-48, 48-47, and 48-47 in his favor. It was a closely contested battle that showcased high-level wrestling and striking skills from both fighters.

Main Card

  • Bantamweight Title Bout: Aljamain Sterling def. Henry Cejudo by split decision (47-48, 48-47, 48-47)
  • Welterweight Bout: Belal Muhammad def. Gilbert Burns by unanimous decision (50-45, 49-46, 49-46)
  • Women’s Strawweight Bout: Yan Xiaonan def. Jessica Andrade by TKO (round 1, 2:20)
  • Featherweight Bout: Movsar Evloev def. Diego Lopes by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
  • Featherweight Bout: Charles Jourdain def. Kron Gracie by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Preliminary Card

  • Women’s Strawweight Bout: Virna Jandiroba def. Marina Rodriguez by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
  • Middleweight Bout: Kennedy Nzechukwu def. Devin Clark by TKO (round 2, 2:28)
  • Lightweight Bout: Drew Dober def. Matt Frevola by submission (guillotine choke, round 1, 4:29)
  • Bantamweight Bout: Khaos Williams def. Rolando Bedoya by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Light Heavyweight Bout: Joseph Holmes def. Claudio Ribeiro by TKO (round 2, 3:21)
  • Welterweight Bout: Phil Hawes def. Ikram Aliskerov by submission (rear-naked choke, round 1, 2:10)
  • Bantamweight Bout: Braxton Smith def. Parker Porter by TKO (round 1, 2:10)