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UFC 250: Post Fight Breakdown



Credit: Getty/UFC

UFC 250: Post Fight Breakdown

On paper, UFC 250 seemed a little bit lacklustre for a big number event.  It lacked big name draws and had a title fight which appeared to be very one sided. However, the card delivered a number of explosive fights and helped to cement contenders in the bantamweight division.


Sean O’Malley vs Eddie Wineland

Fight Rating: ? ? ? 3/5

The main card opened with an exciting bout pitting rising start ‘Sugar’ Sean O’Malley vs tough veteran Eddie Wineland. O’Malley notably came from Dana White’s Contender series, the American came into this bout undefeated, but also untested.

UFC 250 video: Sean O'Malley delivers stunning one punch, walk off ...

Photo: Credit Zuffa Jeff Bottari

O’Malley circled as the two men felt each other out before O’Malley narrowly missed with a slick spinning back kick. Then out of nowhere O’Malley unloaded a devastating right hook turning Eddie Wineland’s lights out. It was a mic drop walk away moment.

O’Malley has announced himself as a real player in the packed bantamweight division.


Neil Magny vs Anthony Rocco Martin

Fight Rating: ? ? ? 3/5

The opening main card bout of the night pitted two journeymen welterweights and solid grapplers against each other. Neil Magny and Anthony Martin have been fighting in the UFC since 2013 and 2014 respectively but have failed to pick up much of a fan following. Both men have solid records and have beaten some good fighters. Magny unbelievably has the second most WW wins in UFC history. Unfortunately, ‘The Haitian Sensation’ (we love the new nickname Neil) often suffers a loss against top competition when he is on a roll.

The opening two rounds were a an evenly contest grappling match with a mixture of fighting against the cage punctuated with exchanges of striking. Martin seemed to be landed the harder and more significant strikes with Magny throwing at a higher rate but mostly insignificant strikes. Magny controlled the tempo and octagon control. In the second, Martin landed a slick overhand right and scored a beautiful double leg takedown which suggested to me he was ahead on the scorecard going into the 3rd.

Magny is famed for his pressure and cardio which showed in the 3rd as Martin started to slow. He was gulping for air after every grappling exchange and Magny started to walk him down popping him with some boxing combos. It’s a shame Magny lacks KO power because with Rocco having little left, ‘The Haitian Sensation’ should really have finished this one. It’s also a shame that so many fighters in the UFC still lose due to poor cardio. A professional athlete at this level shouldn’t be gassing after 3 rounds.

The fight went to the scorecard and it was no surprise that Magny took the decision although the two 30-27 scorecards were surprising. Magny needs another few wins to put himself in the contender picture, but at 32 he still has a bright career ahead.


Aljamain Sterling vs Cory Sandhagen

Fight Rating: ? ? ? 3/5

Another exciting fight in the bantamweight eliminators, Aljamain Sterling and Cory Sandhagen both ranked in the top 5 coming into this fight and it really should have been number 2 on the fight card. Both men came into this bout with a lot of hype behind them and have the potential to be bantamweight champions in an absolutely stacked division.

Aljamain ‘Funk master’ Sterling came out of the gates full of energy stalking Sandhagen and pushing him up against the fence where some hand fighting and grappling ensued. Sandhagen dropped to a knee and momentarily turned sideways which allowed Sterling to leap on his back.

Sterling quickly secured a constricting body triangle lock and wrapped his arms around Sandhagen’s face as he looked for the rear naked choke. Sandhagen seemed to be calm and composed, but as he tried to break free from the suffocating body triangle, Sterling wrapped the arm under the neck to secure the choke. Sandhagen tried to hold on and was choked unconscious.

An impressive win for ‘Funk Master’ and a potential title shot in the future.


Cody Garbrandt vs Raphael Assuncao

Fight Rating: ? ? ? ? 4/5

Cody Garbrandt came into this fight after a 14-month layoff, having suffered 3 brutal knockouts in dogfights. Despite being an incredibly exciting fighter, he had been criticised for having a weak chin and throwing all strategy, and his highly impressive skillset, out of the window in favour of a slobber knocker.  Garbrandt had gone back to the drawing board by mixing up his training camp. Coming in against tough number 5 ranked bantamweight Raphael Assuncao was going to be no easy task.

Straight from the get-go it was clear that Garbrandt was the far faster fighter. He bounced around the octagon as he darted in and out to land jabs and chopping kicks to the calves (a move which has proved popular and effective for many fighters this year). Assuncao had trouble finding his timing in the first and was slowly being picked apart by Garbrandt who appeared to have matured as a fighter as he choose to stick and move rather than engaging in a fire fight in the middle of the octagon.

The second round proved much of the same. Assuncao failed to check Garbrandt’s calve kicks and his lead left leg was slowly starting to resemble a slab of marbled meat on a butcher’s block. The warriors started to talk to each other when a right hand from Garbrandt clipped the back of Assuncao’s head momentarily knocking him to the floor. Assuncao, ever game, was right back to his feet and told Garbrandt it was a slip. As the round drew to a close, Assuncao remained game, cutting of Garbrandt and throwing a jumping body kick.

What happened next will remain on highlight reels for years to come. Garbrandt, back against the cage, ducked like a coiled spring and unleashed a hellish right hook that left the Brazilian face down on the floor just as the bell rang.

So devastating was the KO, that minutes later Assuncao nearly fell from the doctor’s stall having no idea where was.

Make no mistake. Cody Garbrandt is back and has sent notice to the bantamweight division.


Amanda Nunes vs Felicia Spencer

Fight Rating: ? ? ? 3/5

Amanda Nunes came into this fight against Felicia Spencer as a heavy favourite. She has fast been cementing her place as the greatest MMA fighter of all time with dominant wins in nearly all her fights. Valentina Shevchenko is the only fighter to offer a real challenge so far. On paper, Spencer appeared not to have tools to put Nunes in danger. Spencer is a good Jiu-Jitsu player, but the expert’s views were that she would be steamrolled and that is just what happened.

Nunes spent 5 rounds laying a beating down on Spencer. Crisp combinations on the feet combined with 5 takedowns throughout the fight guided Nunes to victory. On the ground, she easily tore through Spencer’s guard and carved up her face with nasty ground and pound. Due credit to Spencer for gritting it out and surviving a brutal beatdown, but she had nothing to offer in offense and Nunes swept the judges scorecards.

What remains for Nunes is anyone’s guess. She is truly the Queen of MMA.


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Scott is a Literature teacher and currently lives and works in Shanghai. Scott spends his spare time travelling, blogging, training in BJJ, and searching for great beer and whisky.


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