UFC 205: Conor McGregor KOs Eddie Alvarez in the 2nd Round / Woodley Retains Belt
Well folks, it must officially be stated that Conor McGregor is currently the best mixed martial artist on the planet. With a mix of guts, skill and pure emotional inertia, the guy is unstoppable. He's now done something that has never been accomplished in the UFC before: hold two belts simultaneously.
The main event match up of UFC 205 in Madison Square Garden against Eddie Alvarez went exactly as McGregor wanted as he dominated the former champ from the outset, dropping Alvarez three times in the first round with solid lefts. Alvarez always scrambled to recover, but McGregor’s patience and pinpoint accuracy in the center was impressive.
With McGregor teeing off at will and mixing up ground strikes with standup brilliance, it went no further than 3:04 of the second round to solidify the new two-division champ as the most dangerous man in MMA today. Now holding belts in the featherweight and lightweight division, McGregor demanded at the UFC press conference that he receive a piece of ownership from the new WME/IMG controlling group.
With star power always being the driver in sports and with McGregor clearly leading the pack and making history, having fought in three weight classes since December 2015, the kid has a right to some demands. The most interesting part of his new dominance will be how the UFC brass handles an athlete with more power than they have ever been used to.
Tyron Woodley Fight to Majority Draw with Stephen Thompson
Ferguson, Missouri native Tyron Woodley retained his welterweight belt in an uninspiring majority draw decision over Stephen Thompson. TSL saw the 5 rounder as 3 rounds to to 2 in favor of Woodley, however, the judges saw things differently, posting scores of 47-47, 47-47 and 48-47.
In round 1, Thompson kicked low, and Woodley grabbed it pushing his opponent to the floor. With Thompson in half-guard, Woodley hammered the ribs while controlling his neck, staying that way until the end of the round. Thompson appeared busted up at the end of the round after the ground onslaught from the former NCAA Division I wrestler.
Round 2 saw patient exchanges from the fighters, but ended with Woodley chasing Thompson at the end and landing a right that busted Thompson’s nose open. In Round 3, Thompson was able to neutralize Woodley, but did nothing dominating except mange to avoid Woodley’s counters to win the round.
However in round 4, Woodley unleashed a big right hand that droped Thompson. He popped back up, but Woodley landed another right that sent Thompson crashing to the floor.
Round 5 saw Thompson turn it up as the aggressor, mixing up striking with low kicks to a less enthusiastic Woodley. However, Woodley stayed in the game, even as the crowd chanted for his opponent and survived the retain the belt.
Earlier in the prelims, Miesha Tate lost to Racquel Pennington via unanimous decision and announced her retirement.
Boxing: Danny Garcia KOs Samuel Vasquez in the 7th; confronts Keith Thurman
WBC Welterweight champion Danny “Swift” Garcia advanced to 33-0 with 19 knockouts after stopping the overmatched Samuel Vargas in the seventh round on Saturday night at the Liacouras Center in North Philadelphia.
The non-title bout gave hometown fans the opportunity to see Garcia up close before he faces off for a title unification bout against Keith “One-Time” Thurman on March 4th. Garcia showed no rust, despite a 10-month layoff since his last win against Robert Guerrero, quickly making haste of Vargas with a slew of knockdowns throughout the night.
Garcia’s night began with true Philly style as he was escorted to the ring by basketball Hall of Famer and former 76er Allen Iverson. Later he would be joined ringside by Philadelphia rapper Meek Mill.
Garcia dropped Vargas with a counter right hand, sending the Canadian-Colombian to the canvas early. The stunned Vargas waited until the eight count but did rise to his feet. It set the tone and although Vargas showed heart, he was nothing more than target practice for Garcia up until the stoppage in the seventh round.
Afterwards, Garcia was joined by the nights color commentator, WBC welterweight champion, Keith Thurman and the two engaged in a heated war of words that ended with Thurman repeating his taunts of Garcia “cherry-picking” fighters and Garcia vowing to “(expletive) him up.”
In all a great night for fight fans of all combat sporting genres.