Alexander Volkanovski defended his featherweight title, defeating Max Holloway via questionable split decision at the UFC 251.
Even though the majority of the spectators saw the American as the winner of this highly interesting contest, the judges didn’t have such an opinion. One of the scored 48-47 for Holloway, but the latter two had the same result for Volkanovski (22-1 MMA, 9-0 UFC).
“It was a tough one,” said Volkanovski. “Max brought it. I stood there and didn’t take a backward step, and I got the job done. It was two apiece I felt, and I felt I had to win that [fifth] round.”
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The start of the fight passed with Holloway (21-6 MMA, 17-6 UFC) being the better guy in the octagon, and even inflicting two strikes which saw the champion touching the ground after wobbling.
Holloway’s right leg kick hit Volkanovski in the head, and the Aussie lost his balance for the moment, but managed not to fall on the canvas. The same situation was seen in the second round, only this time, the Blessed’s uppercut smashed Volkanovski’s chin.
The third round was more balanced, and both guys showed a lot of aggression. The Australian jabs were something Holloway couldn’t control, and on a couple of occasions, he would absorb pretty good hits.
Champion started being more aggressive in the fourth and scored two takedowns, while also using those jabs to record points on the scoreboard. He wouldn’t come out as some convincing winner of this sequence, but that was for sure the first part of the event in which he had some edge.
The last five minutes saw both guys going after a finish, with Volkanovski being more aggressive. He wouldn’t make some massive difference, but according to the judges, he won this one. We need to say that Holloway also had some solid combinations.
This was the 19th straight win for the champion, who now has two over Holloway, one against Aldo, Chad Mendes, etc. He declared himself ready during the postmatch interview to have another fight until the end of the year.
Meanwhile, once mentioning Aldo, he lost against Petr Yan (15-1 MMA, 7-0 UFC) in the bantamweight title match. The Russian TKOd the veteran with 3:24 into the last round. With this victory, Yan proved that he is one of the biggest UFC talents, and with 27 years became one of the youngest champs in the organization.
Petr Yan wins by TKO (+110) in a heavy beatdown over Jose Aldo.
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Yan would dominate from the beginning up until the end of the battle, not allowing Aldo (28-6 MMA, 10-5 UFC) to feel comfortable at all. As time went by, the Brazilian was starting to slow down, while on the other hand, Yan was pumping up the tempo.
His punches and burst were presenting a problem to Aldo, who, in the end, suffered a massive beating in the last round. He would use his stamina in the final ten minutes to finish the job.
“I expected it to be a hard fight, but then he kicked my leg and it forced me to change my stance,” Yan said. “In the beginning, we wanted to put pressure on him, make him tired, and after the third round, put the pressure on. That’s exactly what happened.”
Yan now has 15 wins and one loss in his career while on the other side, Aldo sits at 28 victories and six defeats, from which he has three in a row right now. The previous two were against Alexander Volkanovski and Marlon Moraes both via decision.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.