Coach Trevor Wittman had a successful night as all 3 of his fighters walked away with victories, and 2 of them retained their championship titles.
In the main event, Kamaru Usman battled for the full 5 rounds to earn a unanimous decision over Colby Covington. He now holds an MMA record of 20-1, improving his winning streak to 19 and furthering his argument as the pound-for-pound best. Usman also joined Covington in the UFC’s 50 takedown club, he’s the 25th fighter to be added to the list.
In Round 1, the two came out and felt each other out for the first minute, before Covington shot in for the first takedown attempt of the match at 1:15. Usman stuffed the takedown, threatened a choke, and came back to his feet. The two continued to feel each other out and Usman scored a double leg takedown, but the fight again came back to the feet. Usman was effective in his striking and the round ended with a cut under Covington’s right eye.
Usman started Round 2 with some heavy body work and kept the advantage to his side. Covington had another failed takedown attempt, and Usman capitalized shortly after with a big left hand that dropped Covington. Covington came back to his feet, just to get dropped a second time. Again, he gets back to his feet, but this time shoots for a double leg. Usman sprawls and lands a series of heavy body shots until the round ends.
Round 3 became a bit more interesting as Covington’s strikes started to land heavy. The round ended with Covington securing a takedown and briefly getting onto Usman’s back, then separating and landing a strong knee. The takedown wasn’t registered, but DC, Din Thomas, and Joe Rogan all agreed that it was clearly a takedown.
Round 4 started with some of Covington’s best striking of the night. He landed some big shots that stunned Usman at t:00 into the round. Usman maintained his composure and turned up his pace, landing some big shots of his own. In the final minute, Covington stunned Usman again and the round ended with Usman clearly wobbled and stumbling.
Round 5 was straight excitement, with both fighters landing bombs on each other from the start. As Covington consistently found a home for his uppercut, Usman really started to take some damage but was landing a stiff jab in return. Usman bloodied Covington’s face through the rest of the round, and as the bell rang, the two fighters hugged it out and showed mutual respect.
The fight was scored in Usman’s favor. Total strikes landed: Usman 158, Covington 119. Takedowns: Usman 1/1, Covington 0/11. Knockdowns: Usman 2, Covington: 0
Performance Bonuses for the night went to Chito Vera for his Front Kick KO over Frankie Edgar, Chris Barnett for his heavyweight spinning wheel kick KO(see below), Alex Pereira for his flying knee KO, and Bobby Green for his 1st round KO over Al Iaquinta.
// MAIN CARD //
Kamaru Usman def. Colby Covington via Unanimous Decision
Rose Namajunas def. Zhang Weili via Split Decision
Marlon Vera def. Frankie Edgar via KO
Shane Burgos def. Billy Quarantillo via Unanimous Decision
Justin Gaethje def. Michael Chandler via Unanimous Decision
// PRELIMS //
Alex Pereira def. Andreas Michailidis via TKO
Bobby Green def. Al Iaquinta via TKO
Chris Curtis def. Phil Hawes via KO
Nassourdine Imavov def. Edmen Shahbazyan via TKO
Ian Garry def. Jordan Williams via KO
Chris Barnett def. Gian Villante via TKO
Dustin Jacoby def. John Allan via Unanimous Decision
Melsik Baghdasaryan def. Bruno Souza via Unanimous Decision
Ode Osbourne def. Carlos Vergara via Unanimous Decision