The T-Mobile Center in Las Vegas, Nevada was home to a great night of fights at UFC 264: Poirier vs. McGregor 3. The card saw six (T)KOs, one submissions, and fiven decisions, including one split-decision.
The prelims opened with Zhalgas Zhumagulov defeating Jerome Rivera via modified guillotine in just 122 seconds. That was followed up by a really great battle between the 185-pound grinders that saw Brad Tavares take the split-decision. Jennifer Maia left Jessica Eye pretty battered taking a unanimous decision victory. Dricus du Plessis defeated Trevin Giles almost at the midpoint of the fight, scoring a nice KO to seal the deal. Ilia Topuria defeated Ryan Hall via sensational knockout just before the horn sounded to end the first round. That was followed by a wild scrap between Michel Pereira and Niko Price that saw all manner of bonkers activity that saw “Demolidor” take the unanimous decision. The final fight on the prelims was a battle between Carlos Condit and Max Griffin that ended with Griffin taking the unanimous decision victory.
The main card opener saw Kris Moutinho do his best Korean Zombie impersonation, wading through lots of punishment from Sean O’Malley, getting dropped and coming back for more before finally being finished in the third. Irene Aldana absolutely brutalized Yana Kunitskaya, ending her night in the first round, battering her relentlessly after dropping her until the ref mercifully stopped the action. Tai Tuivasa earned his traditional shooey tonight when he knocked out Greg Hardy in the opening round of the fight, taking just 67 seconds to get the job done. HUZZAH!
The co-main event was a fun fight between Number 2 contender Gilbert Burns and Number 4 Stephen Thompson. Burns had more success and by the third round, the general consensus was that Wonderboy needed a finish to get the W. He didn’t get the finish, though. As a matter of fact, if the horn had sounded just two or three seconds later, Burns would’ve finished Thompson. “Durinho” took the unanimous decision quite handily.
The main event saw a fierce battle between Poirier and McGregor, with Conor, starting off early with low kicks, but Dustin was clearly tuning tuning up the Irishman on the feet. McGregor pulled “The Diamond” into a guillotine, but couldn’t hold it, getting outgrappled, then just brutalized from up top. Dustin let him up, continued the assault forcing Conor backward. And then Conor sgtepped back wrong and SNAP! His leg broke in a horrific way. The fight was ended at the 5:00 minute mark of round one. Sensational!
Performance of the Night: Tuivasa, Du Plessis (Aldana will also get a bonus per Dana White at presser)
Zhalgas Zhumagulov (modified guillotine, 2:02 of round 1), Dricus du Plessis (KO (punches), 1:41 of round 2), Ilia Topuria (KO (punches), 4:47 of round 1), Sean O’Malley (TKO (strikes), 4:35 of round 3), Irene Aldana (TKO (strikes), 4:35 of round 1), Tai Tuivasa (KO (punches), 1:07 of round 1), and Dustin Poirier (TKO, 5:00 of round 1) all finished their fights before the final horn but it would be
Fight of the Night: O’Malley vs. Moutinho
Brad Tavares (29-28, 28-29, 29-28), Jennifer Maia (29-28, 29-28, 30-27), Michel Pereira (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), Max Griffin (29-28, 29-28, 30-27), and Gilbert Burns (29-28 x3) all went the distance but it would be
NOTE: Bonuses were $75K each tonight