What a wonderful performance by Charles Oliveira! Charles Oliveira and Justin Gaethje had put everything they had on the line. In one of the best rounds ever, Oliveira defeated Justin Gaethje at UFC 274 by Rear Naked Choke and celebrated 11 times in a row, giving the American his second defeat in belt fights. Oliveira proved again why he’s the best Jiu-Jitsu practitioner and Jiu-Jitsu black belt in UFC. They both went to the floor in those wondrous minutes, and Oliveira came back from the knockdown again, grabbed the challenger by the neck after a few changes on the ground floor, and chokes with RNC.
But as he did not pass the weigh-in, Charles Oliveira did not become the champion, but the lightweight title will remain vacant. It is easily possible that Oliveira will get a chance to regain his belt in the next fight, clearly if he passes the scales, and now it remains to be seen who will be his next opponent. Maybe even Conor McGregor …
Esparza ascended the throne again after eight years
One of the worst title fights in UFC history was done by Carla Esparza, who became the new champion, and Rose Namajunas, the favorite who was left without a belt with her zither approach.
Rose Namajunas (11-4), a UFC straw fighter, enters the match after two wins over Weili Zhang and Jessica Andrade, preceded by a defeat again by Jessica Andrade with the famous ‘straw’ at UFC 237 that cost her her belt. Currently, her last title defense was at UFC 268 against Zhang, and she enters the match against Esparza as a bookmaker favorite.
Carla Esparza (18-6) enters the match against Namajunas after an impressive streak of five wins and was last defeated back in 2018 in a match against Tatiana Suarez, where she lost by technical knockout in the third round. Second-ranked Esparza has won four of their last five fights by referee’s decision, but bookmakers still trust Namajunas more in tonight’s clash.
At the beginning of the first round, Rose took the center of the cage, but in the first round, the fight was only around him. The first round to the displeasure of the audience passes without too much action, Esparza moved forward a couple of times but would retreat after a counter-attack by Rose.
In the second round Esparza knocks down Namajunas but only briefly, Rose managed to get up almost immediately. The rest of the round passed practically without action, just like in the first.
Esparza opens the third round of dew directly into the body, she took down Rose in the same way again, but she gets up again. The rest of the round was identical to the previous two with some unsuccessful attempts at demolition by Esparza.
In the fourth round, Esparza knocks Rose down twice and briefly takes his back, but Rose is soon on her feet. At the end of the round, Rose hits the right crochet, but Esparza crashes again and takes the round.
The fifth round again without action, eight seconds before the end of this time Rose knocks down Esparza.
Carla Esparza took the victory with a divided judge’s decision, thus becoming the new champion of the straw category.
Chandler turned off Ferguson with an incredible blow
The long-awaited fight between Michael Chander and Tony Ferguson ended in Chandler’s victory with a great knockout at the very beginning of the second round.
The fight started very dynamically and it was clear that they were both waiting for the right moment to attack. He was first greeted by Chandler, but Ferguson countered superbly with a left-handed direct, after which Chandler was on the floor. He immediately got up and continued, after which Ferguson continued to look for another blow. Still, right in the middle of the round, Chandler surprised him with a perfectly hit demolition and taking the fight to the floor. He worked well from the guards there, but Chandler quickly went through the same and hit several sets with his elbows by the end of the round.
The second round didn’t even make it, and it was all over. Chandler found a front kick to the head, in the style of legendary knockouts Lyot Machido and Anderson Silva, and Ferguson fell asleep at the same time. The fourth defeat in a row and maybe the end of his career.
St. Preux and Shogun put the spectators to sleep
The second fight on the schedule brought a rematch of the fight from 2014, in which Ovince St. Preux defeated Mauricio Shogun Ruu after just over half a minute. In the return match, the winner remained the same, but the fight was not nearly exciting, although it lasted almost 30 times longer.
It’s actually very easy to describe what was going on. The first two rounds were a fight in which the Shogun moved more aggressively, looking for space for attacks, but it can be said that they both scored equally, although without any too strong effect. Without too much content, especially one that would leave a more significant impression, it was hard to judge.
So the last round is very easy to conclude how he got St. Preux. He started hitting the tired Shogun more regularly, but it was still nothing that would lead to the end. But sure to take the round and eventually win. Namely, one judge gave him all three rounds, the other scored 29:28 in favor of the OSP, while one judge thought that two rounds belonged to the Brazilian.
The fight without the favorites was confirmed as such
The UFC 274 event kicked off with Randy Brown with a split decision by the judges over Khaos Williams.
Williams is a fighter who started his UFC career with two wins that took him half a minute, to show something more in his next three appearances. He entered this fight with a total of four wins from five UFC appearances. Brown is a bit more experienced and came in with a UFC ratio of 8-4, but also with four wins in his last five appearances.
Williams has confirmed himself as a fighter who aggressively opens fights and he did the same this time. At the beginning of the somewhat more reserved Brown, he managed to send a kick to the floor in the middle of the round, but he did not finish it so shaken. Still, he made enough to take the round. In the second, Williams is more tired, which Brown uses. He raised the pace, moved and scored well and equalized the situation after two rounds.
Brown continued in the last round, but in the middle of it, Williams took another bad blow and was again a fighter from Jamaica on the floor. He recovered and managed to catch his rhythm by the end of the round and finish it with more punches, but it was hard to guess what the judges would say about the last leg of the fight.
In the end, two judges scored Brown’s aggression and more shots, while only one thought that Khaos managed to steal the round with the blow. Great win for Brown, fifth in the last six fights.
UFC 274 Results
Charles Oliveira def. Justin Gaethje – 1st Round submission (RNC)
Rose Namajunas vs. Carla Esparza (c) – unanimous decision
Michael Chandler def. Tony Ferguson – Knockout, Round 2 (0:17)
Ovince St. Preux def. Mauricio Shogun Rua – split decision of the judges
Randy Brown def. Khaos Williams – split decision of the judges