Undefeated light heavyweight contender Dominick Reyes stunned former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman as he gave the New Yorker a painful introduction to the 205-pound division and in the process delivered a statement to UFC light heayvweight champ Jon “Bones” Jones.
Reyes effectively nullified an early Weidman takedown attempt, then punished him with a ramrod straight left that dropped the former middleweight king to the mat before he applied the finishing touches on the ground to score a quickfire finish and stake a huge claim for the next shot at Jones’ light heavyweight title.
We’ve seen it with Luke Rockhold and now with Chris Weidman. Even for a world-class 185er, that 20-pound gap between middleweight and light heavyweight is an almighty chasm. #UFCBoston
— Simon Head (@simonhead) October 19, 2019
“His loss is my gain, that’s how this business is,” said Reyes after the fight.
“But it’s nothing but love, baby.”
And the man known as “The Devastator” had a short, but sweet, message for the reigning champ as he addressed Jones directly.
“I don’t want any party favours, man, I want that belt.”
RODRIGUEZ EDGES WAR AS HE BURIES THE HATCHET WITH STEPHENS
The bad blood was for real heading into the night’s co-main event between Yair Rodriguez and Jeremy Stephens as they faced off for a second time after their 15-second no-contest in Mexico last month. But by the time the fight was over, both men were smiling and embracing as they squashed the beef following their three-round war.
Rodriguez had the better of the opening round, then looked close to finishing Stephens in the second when a crushing body kick folded up Stephens like a deckchair. But despite the American being in dire straits, Rodriguez just couldn’t put Stephens away as “Lil’ Heathen” survived the round to take it into a third and final frame.
Stephens came storming back in the final five minutes, taking Rodriguez down repeatedly and punishing him on the mat with smashing elbows, but it wasn’t enough to get the finish he needed as the Mexican ran out the winner on the scorecards, 29-28, 29-28, 29-28.
— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) October 19, 2019
It’s highly likely that, after their newfound respect following their win, they went off to grab a beer in the bar afterwards. Hopefully there was no argument over whether they drank bottles of Corona or Sam Adams…
‘INFLATE-GATE’ CONTROVERSY MARS HARDY’S LATEST WIN
Polarising UFC heavyweight Greg Hardy claimed a unanimous decision victory over Australian Ben Sosoli in his main card bout, but more controversy shrouded his win as he was caught on camera using an inhaler between rounds.
The former Dallas Cowboys star, who was the subject of a domestic abuse scandal that saw him frozen out of the NFL, was caught on camera asking if he could use his inhaler, with his coach Din Thomas telling him he didn’t think it was allowed. A commission official appeared to ask if it was for medical reasons, to which Hardy replied: “It’s USADA approved” before taking a couple of puffs.
Find someone who looks at you the way Greg hardy looks at his inhaler pic.twitter.com/DQ9ozZE9Gx
— ike vallie-flagg (@IKEVF) October 19, 2019
It left commentators Daniel Cormier, Dominick Cruz and coaching analyst Trevor Wittman astounded, and the UFC’s head of regulatory affairs, Marc Ratner was equally nonplussed as he came on commentary to say the use of the inhaler was “completely illegal.”
However, it was later reported that Hardy’s inhaler may have been cleared for use pre-fight. Legal or illegal, it seems controversy just continues to follow Greg Hardy around.
A GOOD NIGHT FOR THE BRITS
Molly McCann and Darren Stewart made all the right moves to ensure they extended their respective winning runs with crucial victories.
Despite fighting with a tummy bug, McCann outpointed in-form Romanian debutant Diana Belbita, while “The Dentist” extracted another victory from the octagon as he drilled his latest victim, wrestler Deron Winn, with strikes to earn a tight, but deserved, split-decision win.