The first PPV of 2022 is now one for the books and we take a look at the main talking points. We heard ‘And Still’ in the main event as Francis Ngannou outpointed interim champion, Ciryl Gane to reclaim the belt. In the co-main event, Deiveson Figueiredo became a two-time UFC flyweight champion as he defeated Brandon Moreno via unanimous decision, potentially setting up a fourth fight down the line between the two.
Elsewhere at UFC 270, the night was littered with submission and knockout finishes. We take a look at some of the main talking points from the first PPV of the year. The MMASucka podcast crew broke down UFC 270 on the latest episode which you can check out here:
UFC 270 Main Talking Points
The Heavyweight Championship Stays with Francis Ngannou
Francis Ngannnou surprised many by employing a more wrestling heavy offence on his way to securing a unanimous decision victory on Saturday night. Prior to the clash, he had landed just one takedown in his entire UFC career. In Saturday’s main event, he was credited with four. These weren’t just power takedowns with Ngannou using his size and power to muscle his opponent to the matt. There was a clear improvement in his technique, skill and execution of his ground game. ‘The Predator’ showed more patience and certainly should be shown more respect. His power wasn’t effective in this one as Ciryl Gane’s defensive work was so clean. It was clear for all to see that Ngannou entered the bout with knee injuries that he had to support using knee braces. He clearly wasn’t 100% but was still able to do enough to reclaim the belt.
Francis Ngannou confirms he suffered a major knee injury in the build up to #UFC270:
"Three weeks ago I hurt my knee, tore my ACL completely … I wanted to call off the fight but couldn't see myself retreating from this fight."
— Danny Segura (@dannyseguratv) January 23, 2022
Ciryl Gane can certainly come again. He’s still young in his MMA game, with this only being his 11th professional fight. He’s only been a professional MMA fighter since 2018. He showed weaknesses in his takedown defence, his bottom game and his overall fight management, not being able to adapt on the fly when Ngannou went to the wrestling offence. These are all things he can go away and learn to come back stronger. A fight with Curtis Blaydes makes the most sense next although it’s a tough stylistic match-up for Gane.
And New!… Again
In a high-paced, back and forth 25 minutes, Brazilian, Deiveson Figueiredo got his revenge over Brandon Moreno by outpointing him. Gaining fight of the night honours, the two landed over 200 combined total strikes. With takedowns, knockdowns and alternative gameplans throughout, each man thought they had done enough to have their arm raised.
THE GOD OF WAR RECAPTURES THE BELT 🏆
— UFC (@ufc) January 23, 2022
What ultimately paid dividends was Figueiredo’s cleaner work throughout. Although Moreno was landing, he wasn’t able to get the same reaction as he had in the second fight. Dropping Moreno and the end of the third and almost snatching a guillotine was the most significant sequence of the fight. Figueiredo’s early work in attacking the lower leg of the Mexican comprised the movement later in the fight, making him much easier to hit. Either a fourth fight or the winner of Askar Askarov and Kai Kara France will be next for the Brazillian champion.
Three total KO/TKO’s were recorded on the UFC 270 card. Firstly, Matt Frevola scored his first UFC knockout when he finished newcomer, Genaro Valdéz. Following a frantic start to the bout, Frevola scored four knockdowns on his way to victory. The crazy fight lasted just 3:15 with Frevola getting his hand raised.
Jack Della Maddalena made his UFC debut and did so in style. Taking on fellow newcomer Pete Rodriguez, Maddalena put on an almost flawless performance. Constantly pumping the jab in Rodriguez’s face, the Australian measured his distance expertly to side out of the way of a Rodriguez strike, before landing one of his own. Maddalena needed just three unanswered ground strikes before the referee had seen enough.
Finally, Michael Morales rallied to finish Trevin Giles. Having been bumped up to the main card, Morales took his opportunity with both hands. Landing a well-timed counter on the more experienced Giles, Morales finished the American with strikes to remain undefeated and progress to 13-0.
First Round Submissions
UFC 270 also consisted of two first-round finishes. The first came in the second fight of the night between Vanessa Demopoulos and Silvana Gomez Juarez. After both women landed big shots in the bout, it was Juarez who committed to a huge overhand, knocking Demopolous down and out. She admitted in her post-fight speech that she ‘woke up on the ground’, but was able to rally, sweep Juarez and finish it with an armbar. The submission earned her a $50K performance bonus.
What a comeback by Vanessa Demopoulos as she recovers from getting dropped by a massive right hand to submit Silvana Gomez Juarez with an armbar. That was fun while it lasted. #UFC270
— Ryan Frederick (@ryanjfrederick) January 23, 2022
The other performance bonus went to Said Nurmagomedov. Nurmagomedov was facing the toughest test of his career as he took on Cody Stamann. The Dagestani didn’t appear phased, however. Landing seven strikes, including a spinning back fist and a spinning side kick to the body, it was by way of submission that Nurmagomedov ended things. After Stamann shot in to try and take Nurmagomedov down, the latter locked in a guillotine which forced a quick tap from the American.
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