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It took an unbelievable power of will to flee a number of submission makes an attempt, however Alexander Volkanovski capped an action-packed UFC 266 card with a unanimous resolution win over Brian Ortega.
The featherweight title struggle that noticed Volkanovski earn his second profitable title protection had somewhat little bit of all the things. The two saved issues standing within the first and second rounds, with the champ holding a slight benefit within the exchanges because of his quickness.
But when the 2 threw some grappling within the center rounds, the chaos started. Multiple choke makes an attempt from Ortega had the champ in hassle, however he did not panic and finally labored his manner out of three makes an attempt that have been tight to various levels.
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HE GETS OUT 🤯
@alexvolkanovski escapes Ortega’s choke! #UFC266 https://t.co/4a6PWGxZSA
Although the cage-side physician needed to look at Ortega’s eye a number of occasions, he was allowed to proceed and saved showcasing his toughness by marching ahead.
In the tip, it was a wonderful major occasion that brings much more legitimacy to Volkanovski’s standing as champion and units up one other assembly between these two guys down the road.
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It was a becoming conclusion to an evening that featured a few dominant performances and spectacular finishes.
- Alexander Volkanovski def. Brian Ortega by way of unanimous resolution (49-46, 50-45, 50-44)
- Valentina Shevchenko def. Lauren Murphy by TKO (Round 4, 4:00)
- Robbie Lawler def. Nick Diaz by way of TKO (Round 3, 0:44)
- Curtis Blaydes def. Jairzinho Rozenstruik by way of unanimous resolution
- Jessica Andrade def. Cynthia Calvillo by way of TKO (Round 1, 4:54)
- Merab Dvalishvili def. Marlon Moraes by way of TKO (Round 2, 4:25)
- Dan Hooker def. Nasrat Haqparast by way of unanimous resolution (30-27 x2, 30-26)
- Chris Daukaus def. Shamil Abdurakhimov by way of TKO (Round 2, 1:23)
- Taila Santos def. Roxanne Modafferi by way of unanimous resolution (30-27 x3)
- Jalin Turner def. Uros Medic by way of submission (rear-naked choke) (Round 1, 4:01)
- Nick Maximov def. Cody Brundage by way of unanimous resolution (29-28 x3)
- Matthew Semelsberger def. Martin Sano by way of KO (Round 1, 0:15)
- Jonathan Pearce def. Omar Morales by way of submission (rear-naked choke) (Round 2, 3:31)
Valentina Shevchenko def. Lauren Murphy
It was six up, six down for Valentina Shevchenko. Six girls have tried to remove her flyweight title, however Bullet as soon as once more overwhelmed a challenger to notch the sixth consecutive protection of her belt.
Murphy was a large underdog on this struggle, and Shevchenko confirmed why earlier than discovering the end within the fourth spherical. No matter the place the struggle went she held the higher hand. She was too fast for Murphy on the skin, too sturdy on the within, and when it went to the mat, she was in prime management.
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In brief, Shevchenko is essentially the most dominant girl within the sport outdoors of Amanda Nunes.
At this level, the most important concern for Shevchenko is a scarcity of fascinating competitors. She has misplaced twice to Amanda Nunes, so shifting up in weight to tackle the reigning bantamweight champ is not a gorgeous choice, however she has dispatched of practically each challenger in her division.
As some of the well-rounded fighters within the sport, there simply aren’t many matchups on paper that appear price making.
Robbie Lawler def. Nick Diaz
The rematch 17 years within the making noticed Robbie Lawler get some redemption within the folks’s major occasion. Diaz’s comeback after six years away from the Octagon was ruined by a motivated Lawler, who appeared a lot sharper than he has in current fights.
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Lawler got here out aggressive from the leap and overwhelmed Diaz within the early going.
However, Diaz did finally settle in and put forth the type of boxing-heavy high-volume method we’re used to seeing from the Stockton native.
But Lawler’s early work to the physique and willingness to soak up Diaz’s combos to land his personal energy strikes finally grew to become an excessive amount of for Diaz. Lawler floored him with a clear proper hook and walked to the middle of the Octagon to get his opponent to satisfy him for extra hanging.
Diaz refused to oblige, and the struggle was known as within the third spherical.
After this efficiency, it will be powerful to see Diaz get again within the cage once more. Of course, the identical could also be stated for Lawler, who now has 20 years invested and will stroll away with a win.
Curtis Blaydes def. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
Curtis Blaydes continues to be a major problem for anybody who does not hit like a truck. He as soon as once more wrestled his solution to a win with a unanimous resolution over Jairzinho Rozenstruik.
Rozenstruik is a harmful striker, however Blaydes is phenomenal at negating that benefit for everybody besides Francis Ngannou and Derrick Lewis. He landed a large flying knee that swelled Blaydes’ eye and gave him an opportunity:
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However, it was shortly met with one more takedown from Blaydes.
According to ESPN, Blaydes held management for somewhat over six minutes of the 15-minute struggle, however it was sufficient to take the clear sweep of all three rounds from all three judges.
The 30-year-old continues to point out that his takedowns and ground-and-pound are among the many finest within the division. It will not be lengthy earlier than he will get a crack on the title, and his ability set goes to make him a troublesome out for whoever has the belt when that day arrives.
Jessica Andrade def. Cynthia Calvillo
Jessica Andrade was all about getting the end to kick off the primary card, and he or she achieved her mission with ease.
From the outset the Brazilian was the aggressor. She backed Calvillo in opposition to the cage together with her ahead motion and put the 34-year-old on the defensive. While Calvillo was in a position to rating some counters, the cracks within the protection started to point out early.
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Calvillo is usually a powerful wrestler, however the few occasions she tried to clinch or take down Andrade, she was shrugged off.
This was a powerful bounce-back efficiency for Andrade. After dropping to Valentina Shevchenko by second-round TKO it will have been straightforward for her to have a letdown efficiency.
Making brief work of her opponent is a powerful assertion that she’ll be again in rivalry sooner reasonably than later.