Connect with us


UFC 302: Makhachev beats Poirier by submission, defends lightweight title



UFC 302: Makhachev beats Poirier by submission, defends lightweight title

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Islam Makhachev had a determined opponent in entrance of him and far of a sold-out crowd towards him.

None of that stopped him. Nothing has in a very long time.

Makhachev defended his light-weight title and prolonged his successful streak to 14 fights, the third longest in UFC historical past, by getting a submission victory over Dustin Poirier within the fifth spherical on Saturday night time at UFC 302.

Overcoming one of many sport’s achieved veterans and a crowd — together with former President Donald Trump — that was towards him from the beginning, Makhachev ran his file to 26-1 and mentioned afterward he could transfer up in weight for an additional problem.

“That is my dream,” Makhachev mentioned.

There’s actually not a lot left for the Russian at 155 kilos, the place he defended his title for the third time and confirmed once more why he’s ranked because the pound-for-pound finest in UFC.

Poirier (30-9) fell quick in his third try for the undisputed title, all three ending by submission. At 35, he’s contemplating retirement.

“I’ve acquired to see. I feel this could possibly be it,” he mentioned after the combat.

He battled again after Makhachev managed the primary spherical and bloodied the champion’s face later, however Makhachev took him down halfway by way of the fifth and shortly pounced, with Poirier unable to flee the chokehold.

“Unimaginable combat. Each guys dug deep,” UFC President Dana White mentioned.

Makhachev, whereas respectful of the challenger’s accomplishments, famous this week that Poirier did properly towards boxers however was uncovered towards fighters with wrestling backgrounds — which Makhachev lists as his power.

The champion appeared on his technique to a twelfth victory by submission within the first spherical when he took Poirier down within the opening minute of the combat and saved him on the mat the remainder of the spherical.

Followers roared when Poirier, the No. 4-ranked light-weight, escaped a few takedown makes an attempt within the second, rising even louder when he made it to the horn on the finish of the spherical.

The fighters had good exchanges within the third and fourth and each have been bloodied, however Makhachev didn’t have to fret about taking any extra punches.

“Pleased to complete him, however this man remains to be among the finest on the earth,” Makhachev mentioned of Poirier.

Although Makhachev spoke of his need after to maneuver as much as 170 kilos, White appeared extra enthusiastic about making a match with Arman Tsarukyan, the No. 1-ranked contender at light-weight, who’s from Russia however represents Armenia. However Makhachev appears intent on difficult for an additional belt.

“If you wish to create a legacy you must get second belt,” he mentioned.

Poirier, the favored veteran from Louisiana who ranks within the UFC’s prime 5 in profession victories, knockouts and finishes, bumped into maybe the most effective fighter at this time. He was choked out by Charles Oliveira and Khabib Nurmagomedov in his different title pictures, and whereas White mentioned that gave Poirier information he might use for this combat, it wasn’t sufficient to win it.

Although it sounded at occasions like retirement was the plan, he actually didn’t sound certain.

“I nonetheless really feel like I need to be world champion,” he mentioned.

Within the co-main occasion, former middleweight champion Sean Strickland acquired again within the win column with a cut up choice over Paulo Costa. Strickland seemed to be controlling what he referred to as a boring combat towards the Brazilian, who spent a lot of it backpedaling away from exchanges.

Strickland (29-6), who misplaced the title in his final bout, additionally by cut up choice to Dricus Du Plessis in January, mentioned afterward he desires one other shot.

“I need to combat for the belt,” he mentioned.

Strickland spent many of the first spherical utilizing quick kicks to maintain the space, throwing few punches with the newly designed UFC gloves — designed largely to forestall eye pokes — that he criticized till dropping Costa (14-4) with a proper hand within the ultimate minute of the spherical.

He tried for the end within the ultimate minutes of the fifth spherical, knocking Costa down with a kick and speeding after him earlier than the clock ran out.

Trump entered to a loud ovation simply because the preliminary portion of the occasion was ending. Days after changing into the first former U.S. president to be convicted of felony crimes in New York, he shook fingers with the announcers and waved his fists to supporters who cheered him earlier than sitting to look at the motion with White.


AP sports activities: activities

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *