Photo: Chris Unger Zuffa LLC
Cynthia Calvillo put on an impressive display of grappling and striking during her move to the Flyweight division at UFC Fight Night on Saturday.
Calvillo’s first entry in the 125-pounds division since 2016 was no easy reintroduction, as she was matched up against No. 1-ranked Flyweight in the world, Jessica Eye.
Eye missed weight by just a quarter of a pound at the weigh-ins on Saturday. The grueling weight cut left her barely stand able to stand afterwards. This was the second fight in a row that Eye missed weight, and was forced to forfeit 25% of her fight purse to her opponent as a result.
However, Calvillo has a history of missing weight herself (missing weight in both 2018 and 2019), which was a contributing reason for her jump from Strawweight to Flyweight.
“When I missed weight, I locked myself in the hotel and I freaking cried for hours,” Calvillo said in the post-fight press conference. “It’s all about how you carry yourself outside when you miss weight.”
Calvillo went to work in the Octagon during her first ever main event. Despite never fighting for five rounds in the UFC, her cardio training showed as she kept the pressure and always threatened Eye with a takedown.
“I felt great,” Calvillo said in the post-fight interview. “This was my first time doing a five-round fight. I was really proud of myself.”
The new Flyweight contender landed 113 significant strikes and notched four takedowns to win the fight by a unanimous decision. Calvillo’s pressure in the fight allowed her to get huge takedowns and showcase her grappling skills. Although Eye was able to evade multiple submission attempts, it was not enough for her to win in the eyes of the judges.
“I am always a little bit hard on myself because I want to get the finish,” Calvillo said in the post-fight press conference. “I have to remind myself that I just took out the number one contender in the Flyweight division.”
In a night of fighters not being able to make weight, the evening turned out to hold a solid lineup of bouts. With five different weight divisions being highlighted, this Fight Night showed some of the up-and-coming talent that is moving through the rankings.
One of the fighters who missed weight was middleweight Karl Roberson, who went over weight by a whopping four-and-a-half pounds. Roberson had to give 30 percent of his fight purse to his opponent, Martin Vettori, in the co-main event of the night. This was a bout that did not last long, as Vettori submitted his challenger with less than a minute left in the first round.
To kick off the set of fights, Flyweight Mariya Agapova submitted Hannah Cifers in the first round. After that, the next three fights would go the distance for all three rounds. Of the six fights on the main card, four ended up going to the judges’ scorecards for a decision.
The next event will be UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Kolkov on Saturday, June 20 at the UFC APEX.
Written by: Drew Pierce