Kicking off the UFC Auckland main card is a lightweight bout between Brad Riddell and Magomed Mustafaev.

Round 1: The two feel each other out. Mustafaev opens with a head kick that is blocked. Riddell misses his own head kick. Riddell drops Mustafaev with a right hook! The New Zealander looks to finish but Mustafaev counters with a leg lock. Both fighters get up with Mustafaev landing a takedown soon after with Riddell getting to his feet. He has Riddell’s back and takes him down again. The sequence is repeated with Mustafaev now landing knees to the back of Riddell’s thighs. He lands a knee on Riddell’s head and a couple to the stomach. Riddell is struggling to separate from Mustafaev’s grip. He eventually does with just over 20 seconds remaining and attempts his own takedown. He fails and the two end the round standing apart from each other.

Round 2: Riddell lands a big right hand and follows it up with a leg kick. Mustafaev slips while attempting a kick but gets back to his feet. The two exchange strikes. Riddell lands another leg kick. Riddell closes the distance to land some strikes but Mustafaev isn’t hurt. Mustafaev partially blocks a head kick. Mustafaev lands a huge right hand but Riddell seems unfazed. The two continue to strike while maintaining range. Mustafaev takes Riddell down as the latter was attempting a body kick. It’s back to a clinching contest with Mustafaev applying the pressure. Mustafaev eventually takes him down but only momentarily as Riddell looks to get right up. Mustafaev ends the round in control.

Round 3: Riddell lands a body kick. He misses with some strikes. Mustafaev slips as he attempts a spinning attack but Riddell doesn’t choose to engage him on the ground. Mustafaev lands a body kick and Riddell replies with his own. Mustafaev lands a knee on Riddell who proceeded to drop Mustafaev soon after with strikes. Mustafaev once again resorts to the clinch game as he attempts a takedown. Riddell escapes and lands a leg kick soon after. The fight goes to the ground momentarily as Riddell falls on Mustafaev after a spinning backfist from the latter. Riddell — now bloodied — gets up and decides to enter his guard and ground and pound him. Mustafaev gets up and has control of his back. Riddell escapes and lands a big body kick. Mustafaev times a single leg well. Riddell escapes and sprawls on Mustafaev as he lands strikes. The fight comes to an end.

Official result: Brad Riddell defeats Magomed Mustafaev via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).

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