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UFC on ESPN 3 pre-event facts: Demian Maia latest to join UFC’s 30-fight club

The UFC returns to Minnesota for the first time since 2012 on Saturday with UFC on ESPN 3, which takes place at Target Center in Minneapolis with a fight card that airs entirely on ESPN.

Heavyweight contenders clash in the headliner of the card when Francis Ngannou (13-3 MMA, 8-2 UFC) takes on fellow knockout specialist and former UFC champ Junior Dos Santos (21-5 MMA, 15-4 UFC) in a matchup that could elevate the winner into a title shot opportunity.

There are a few other noteworthy fights on the card, as well. For more on the numbers, check below for 54 pre-event facts about UFC on ESPN 3.

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Main event

Ngannou has earned all 13 of his career victories by stoppage.

Ngannou has earned all eight of his UFC victories by stoppage.

Ngannou is one of four modern-era UFC fighters to begin his career with the organization with six consecutive stoppages. Anderson Silva, Rich Franklin and Ronda Rousey also accomplished the feat.

Ngannou is one of nine fighters in UFC history to earn their first eight victories with the promotion by stoppage.

Ngannou’s eight stoppage victories since 2015 in UFC heavyweight competition are tied with Derrick Lewis for most in the division.

Ngannou absorbs just 1.94 significant strikes per minute in UFC heavyweight competition, the best rate among active fighters in the division.

Ngannou and Lewis combined for 31 total strikes landed at UFC 226, the second fewest in a three-round UFC fight that went the distance behind Jens Pulver vs. Joao Roque (23) at UFC 26 in June 2000.

Dos Santos competes in his 12th UFC headliner. He’s 8-3 in his previous main event bouts.

Dos Santos’ three-fight UFC winning streak in heavyweight competition is tied for the second longest active streak in the division behind Daniel Cormier (four).

Dos Santos’ total fight time of 3:43:23 in UFC heavyweight competition is second most in company history behind Andrei Arlovski (4:18:13).

Dos Santos’ 15 victories in UFC heavyweight competition are third most in divisional history behind Arlovski (16) and Frank Mir (16).

Dos Santos’ 10 knockout victories in UFC heavyweight competition are tied with Lewis and Cain Velasquez for most in divisional history.

Dos Santos’ 14 knockdowns landed in UFC heavyweight competition are the most in divisional history.

Dos Santos has landed 1,064 significant strikes in UFC heavyweight competition, the most in divisional history.

Dos Santos and Ben Rothwell combined for 234 significant strikes landed at UFC Fight Night 86, the second most in a single UFC heavyweight fight behind Fabricio Werdum vs. Marcin Tybura (282) at UFC Fight Night 121.

Dos Santos’ 157 significant strikes landed against Rothwell stand as the single-fight UFC heavyweight record.

Dos Santos’ 92 significant body strikes landed against Rothwell are the single-fight UFC heavyweight record.

Dos Santos defends 80.5 percent of all opponent takedown attempts in UFC heavyweight competition, the third-highest rate in divisional history behind Marcin Tybura (81.5 percent) and Alexander Volkov (81.5 percent).

Co-main event

Joseph Benavidez (27-5 MMA, 14-3 UFC) competes in his 16th UFC flyweight bout, the most appearances in divisional history.

Benavidez’s 12 victories in UFC flyweight competition are second most in divisional history behind Demetrious Johnson (13).

Benavidez’s five stoppage victories in UFC flyweight competition are tied with John Moraga for second most in divisional history behind Johnson (seven).

Benavidez’s four knockout victories in UFC flyweight competition are tied with John Lineker and Dustin Ortiz for the most in divisional history.

Benavidez’s three fight-night bonuses for UFC flyweight bouts are tied with Louis Smolka for second most in divisional history behind Johnson (nine).

Jussier Formiga (23-5 MMA, 9-4 UFC) competes in his 14th UFC flyweight bout, tied for the third most appearances in divisional history behind Benavidez (16) and Johnson (15).

Formiga’s four-fight UFC winning streak in flyweight competition is tied with Henry Cejudo for the longest active streak in the division.

Formiga’s nine victories in UFC flyweight competition are tied for third most in divisional history behind Johnson (13) and Benavidez (12).

Formiga’s three submission victories in UFC flyweight competition are tied for second most in divisional history behind Johnson (five).

Formiga defends 86.2 percent of all opponent takedown attempts in UFC flyweight competition, the second-highest rate in divisional history behind Ian McCall (90 percent).

Remaining main card

Demian Maia (26-9 MMA, 20-9 UFC), 41, is the oldest of the 24 fighters scheduled to compete at the event.

Maia competes in his 30th UFC bout, tied for the third most appearances in company history behind Donald Cerrone (32) and Jim Miller (32).

Maia’s total fight time of 6:03:12 in UFC competition is fourth most in company history behind Frankie Edgar (6:47:33), Michael Bisping (6:05:33) and Jeremy Stephens (6:05:23).

Maia’s 20 victories in UFC competition are tied with Bisping and Georges St-Pierre for second most in company history behind Cerrone (23).

Maia’s 20 victories in UFC competition are the most of any Brazilian fighter in company history.

Maia is 11-5 since he dropped to the UFC welterweight division in July 2012.

Maia’s 10 submission victories in UFC competition are tied with Royce Gracie for second most in company history behind Charles Oliveira (13).

Maia’s eight submission victories via rear-naked choke in UFC competition are most in company history.

Maia is 20-2 in UFC bouts in which he completes at least one takedown. He’s completed at least one takedown against 22 of his 29 UFC opponents.

Maia once went a combined 0-for-49 on takedown attempts over a three-fight UFC stretch. It’s the longest streak of failed attempts in UFC history without a takedown landed.

Maia was unsuccessful on all 21 of his takedown attempts against champ Tyron Woodley at UFC 214, the second worst title-fight output in UFC history behind Diego Sanchez’s 0-for-27 effort against B.J. Penn at UFC 107.

Maia completed just two of 22 takedown attempts in his unanimous-decision loss to Rory MacDonald at UFC 170. Those 22 takedown attempts were the most in a single UFC welterweight bout.

Anthony Rocco Martin (16-4 MMA, 8-4 UFC) is 4-0 since he returned to welterweight in April. He’s 7-0 in the weight class, overall.

Martin is one of 16 fighters in UFC history with a submission win by anaconda choke. He accomplished the feat at UFC Fight Night 142 in December.

Vinc Pichel (11-2 MMA, 4-2 UFC) is 2-1 since returning from a career-long layoff that lasted from May 2014 to June 2017.

Pichel lands 63 percent of his takedown attempts in UFC lightweight competition, the third-highest rate in divisional history behind Islam Makhachev (70.8 percent) and Penn (66.7 percent).

Marco Polo Reyes’ (8-5 MMA, 4-2 UFC) average fight time of 6:53 in UFC lightweight competition is second shortest among active fighters in the weight class behind Oliveira (5:08).

Reyes lands 6.13 significant strikes per minute in UFC lightweight competition, the fourth-highest rate in divisional history behind Justin Gaethje (8.5), Dustin Poirier (7.11) and T.J. Grant (6.83).

Alonzo Menifield (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) has earned all of his career victories by stoppage. Seven of those wins are by knockout.

Paul Craig (11-3 MMA, 3-3 UFC) has earned all of his career victories by stoppage. He’s finished 10 of those wins by submission.

Craig’s victory at 4:59 of Round 3 at UFC Fight Night 127 is the latest submission in a three-round UFC fight.

Preliminary card

Ricardo Ramos (12-2 MMA, 3-1 UFC), 23, is the youngest of the 24 fighters scheduled to compete at the event.

Ramos is one of two fighters in UFC history to earn a knockout victory stemming from a spinning back elbow. He accomplished the feat at UFC 217. Dong Hyun Kim is the other fighter to win with the technique.

Eryk Anders’ (11-4 MMA, 3-4 UFC) three-fight losing skid is the longest of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since August 2018.

Anders is 1-4 in his past five fights after starting his career on a 10-fight winning streak.

Anders is 0-2 in UFC light heavyweight competition.

Emily Whitmire’s (4-2 MMA, 2-1 UFC) 61-second victory at UFC on ESPN 1 marks the fastest submission in UFC strawweight history.

Maurice Greene (7-2 MMA, 2-0 UFC) is one of two heavyweights in UFC history to earn a submission by triangle choke. Stefan Struve owns two wins with the technique.

Junior Albini’s (14-5 MMA, 1-3 UFC) three-fight losing skid is the longest of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since July 2017.

For more on UFC on ESPN 3, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

UFC research analyst and live statistics producer Michael Carroll contributed to this story. Follow him on Twitter @MJCflipdascript.

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