The first event from UFC Fight Island, UFC 251 is in the books and the event produced some exciting fights as expected.
Usman dominates Masvidal in the main event
Usman landed takedown just seconds into the main event and pushed Masvidal into defensive mode. The champion then went on to close the round on a strong note with aggression, cage control and some punches. Usman spent a major portion of the second round in control against the cage and even managed to land a string of shoulder strikes.
Usman had the upper hand in the third and fourth round as well with his clinching and ground expertise. The champion then sailed safely through the fifth round as well to secure a decision win and retain the title.
Volkanovski gets a split decision win to retain the title
Max Holloway and Alexander Volkanovski had a composed and calm first-round while trading punches and kicks whenever they had the opportunity to do so.
Holloway seemed to be having better control over the fight and this extended to the second round as well. Volkanovski tried to land a takedown in the third-round but Holloway’s excellent takedown defence kept the fight in standing and Holloway went on to close the round strongly.
Although Volkanovski managed to land a takedown in the fourth round, he couldn’t do anything damaging from the same. A similar story unfolded in the fifth-round as well when Volkanovski tripped Holloway and had him on the ground only to see Holloway get back up without taking any damage.
Volkanovski increased the pressure in the final minutes of the last round and got another takedown to his name. Once the dust settled down, the judges gave a split decision win to Volkanovski.
Petr Yan wins the UFC Bantamweight title
Jose Aldo and Petr Yan had a full-throttle first-round. Aldo’s legendary leg kicks were on show in the round with one kick even taking Yan off his feet. Yan, however, almost got a finish in the last 20 seconds of the first round when he hurt Aldo badly with a body shot.
The pace slowed down a bit in the second round but the number of strikes attempted and landed by both fighters remained on the high-end. World-class striking was on show for the third and fourth rounds as well with both fighters going toe-to-toe in standing and trading punches.
Tides turned when Yan dropped Aldo in the start of the fifth round itself with a huge punch and followed up with some vicious ground and pound which forced the referee to step in and stop the fight and crown Yan as the new UFC Bantamweight champion.
Rose Namajunas secures split decision win over Jessica Andrade
Former champions Rose Namajunas and Jessica Andrade had an exciting fight that went the distance. Both fighters had their moments throughout the first two rounds which proved to be close to call. Andrade then pushed for a stoppage win and almost got one in the third round only to see Namajunas recover and come back strongly. In the end, the judges ruled in favour of Namajunas via split decision.
Amanda Ribas made quick work of Paige VanZant and secured a first-round submission victory. With the win, Ribas improved her record to 9-1 and remained undefeated in the UFC with a record of 4-0.
The preliminary card of the event saw Jiri Prochazka securing a huge win over Volkan Oezdemir while Muslim Salikhov and Makwan Amirkhani also got wins on their resume. Below are the complete results from the event.
UFC 251 Main Card Results:
UFC 251 Prelims Results