UFC 213 (and TUF: Redemption Finale) are officially in the books! It was a weird couple of nights, but a very fun weekend nevertheless. Let’s highlight some of these UFC 213 results as well as the action the night before:
TUF: Redemption Finale Results
On Friday night, the UFC held an Ultimate Fighter Finale card featuring the UFC debut of Justin Gaethje. We already had a World Series of Fighing champion debut earlier this year, and it was rather lackluster. However, Gaethje arrived to the UFC with a blast. He and top-ranked lightweight Michael Johnson engaged in a Fight of the Night scrap. Johnson had Gaethje all but finished several times throughout, but Gaethje rebounded and stopped Johnson late in round 2. It was a classic that is an immediate candidate for Fight of the Year.
In other TUF Finale news, this season’s champion was Jesse Taylor. He defeated Dhiego Lima via rear-naked choke in the 2nd round. Taylor was kicked off his first attempt at The Ultimate Fighter after smashing a limousine during the show. He lost one fight in the UFC and was let go. Taylor then became a journeymen for several years before coming back and dominating the show. Let’s move on to UFC 213 results.
UFC 213 Results: Main Card
In the main event, Robert Whittaker became the UFC interim middleweight champion. He took out Yoel Romero via unanimous decision in a sensational back-and-forth bout. Whittaker’s leg was injured early on by a kick that may have sparked an existing knee injury. Nevertheless, Whittaker powered through, marched Romero down late in the fight, and stole the victory on the scorecards. Romero’s dynamic and explosive wrestling was on display a few times, but Whittaker’s defense prevailed.
Of course, the main event for UFC 213 was supposed to be Amanda Nunes vs Valentina Shevchenko. However, Nunes had to pull out of the fight the day before. The doctors cleared Nunes to fight, but apparently a sinus condition prevented her from feeling able to fight. I expect Nunes vs Shevchenko will be rebooked for UFC 215 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Moving on to more UFC 213 results … the co-main event featured a peculiar bout between Alistair Overeem and Fabricio Werdum. This was the third time the two met each other, and once again the fans are left undecided as to who the better fighter is. The first round was very close. Overeem won the second round rather soundly as he smashed Werdum with blistering body kicks and punch combinations. However, Werdum dominated round three. He had Overeem unconscious on the feet, and seemed one punch away from getting the KO. After three rounds, Overeem took the victory via majority decision.
Another big addition to these UFC 213 results is Anthony Pettis’s decision win over Jim Miller. Things haven’t been easy for Pettis. He was the lightweight champ until losing three consecutive fights. He tried dropping down to 145 lbs in an attempt to rejuvenate his career, but suffered more defeats. Now back up to 155 lbs, Pettis was able to put everything together to defeat the tough Jim Miller. Pettis was able to fire off his dynamic strikes, fend off takedown attempts, and hustle his way to victory.
UFC 213 Results: Now What?
Whittaker’s win over Romero sets him up for a title shot against Michael Bisping. Of course, we saw the two engage in a memorable altercation in the Octagon. Stylistically, it’s a fantastic match up. I’m so happy the GSP vs Bisping fight is off, and the middleweight division can now progress. I’m expecting Whittaker vs Bisping to be on the UFC 217 card at Madison Square Garden.
Overeem and Werdum both expected title shot if they won. However, Overeem’s less-than-convincing win will probably not gift him a title shot. Rather, I expect Overeem to face Cain Velasquez later this year. Meanwhile, if Francis Ngannou beats Junior dos Santos, I would expect him to fight for the title next.
Anthony Pettis’s next fight will likely be against a top 15 lightweight. Miller was unranked, but a valid test; he passed with flying colors. I would like to see Pettis vs Al Iaquinta later this year. That match up has fireworks written all over it.
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