UFC 249 in tweets
The whole world had their eyes firmly set on UFC 249 this past weekend as we witnessed a stacked card take place in Jacksonville, Florida.
Kicking off the main card was a heavyweight bout between Greg Hardy and Yorgan De Castro. As expected, the two men came out swinging with bad intentions. De Castro was beating up on Hardy’s left leg and the American was having a hard time moving as fluidly as he would have liked. As we started the second round, De Castro threw another leg kick but Hardy checked it and Yorgan visibly hobbled back onto his right foot. As a result, Yorgan went into defensive mode and failed to gain any traction towards the end of the fight. As Bruce Buffer read out the judges scores, there was no surprise to hear Greg Hardy’s name announced as the winner.
Next up was a featherweight blockbuster between Jeremy Stephens and Calvin Kattar. Early on, it was Jeremy who was the aggressor and he was controlling the Octagon much to the annoyance of Kattar’s team. Stephens was landing good low calf kicks and Kattar was having trouble with the lead leg and his advancing. Wild exchanges were on full view as we started the second round and Kattar landed a step in elbow which put Jeremy onto the canvas in a flash. The Boston native jumped on “Lil’ Heathen” and finished the fight with a series of brutal elbows to get the biggest win of his career and put the entire 145-pounds division on notice.
Arguably the most anticipated fight on the card was on finally upon then as over 520-pounds of pure power stepped inside the cage as KO artists Francis Ngannou and Jairzinho Rozenstruik squared off at Heavyweight. Francis continued the streak of first round knockouts as he destroyed Rozenstruik with a left hook which put him out cold. Ngannou’s last 4 fights have gone a combined 2 minutes and 2 seconds and a title shot could next on the cards for Ngannou.
The co-main event was then upon us, as Henry Cejudo was aiming to defend his Bantamweight title for the first time against the consensus greatest 135-pounder of all time, Dominick Cruz.
All eyes were on Cruz upon his return and from the off, his footwork and slickness were still on point. Henry was utilising his leg kicks well to try and disrupt the movement of Dominick as he edged the first round of the title bout. As the second round started, there was a clash of heads which produced a notable cut on the hairline of “Triple C”. As Cruz then rushed in, Cejudo landed a knee which stunned Dominick as he fell to the floor and after which several unanswered shots forced Keith Peterson to step in and stop the fight much to the disbelief of Cruz. In his post fight interview, Henry Cejudo announced his retirement with immediate effect.
The moment we had been all been waiting for was then finally on deck as fan favourites Tony Ferguson and Justin Gaethje faced off for the Interim Lightweight Championship.
The opening period was intriguing with both men trying to find their range to establish control. Justin started well with his trademark low leg kicks and was landing the left hook while Tony was also utilising his movement with some good early strikes. In the second, it was Gaethje who started the stronger with his left hook which was finding the target regularly but that didn’t stop Tony from pressing Justin back to the cage. “El Cucuy” landed a flush uppercut at the end of the second which dropped Gaethje and had “The Highlight” stunned.
With Justin likely two rounds up, Ferguson needed to take control in the third but that was halted with a big cut under his right eye which was hindering his vision as he was advancing. Tony Ferguson’s chin was showing its pedigree once again as the left hook of Gaethje was landing hard as we entered the championship rounds. The start of the fourth round had Ferguson’s legs doing the chicken dance after a big right hand from the former World Series Of Fighting champion. The leg kicks had returned and they were starting to bother Tony, forcing him to attempt unorthodox strikes as he likely needed a finish as we approached the fifth and final round.
Justin Gaethje was showing a maturity to his performance and that was having a effect on Ferguson who was a shell of his former self. With Tony’s face a bloody and bruised mess, Justin landed a jab which rocked Ferguson back and forced “El Cucuy” to shake his head twice which prompted Herb Dean to step in at exactly the right time to prevent any more unnecessary damage and Justin Gaethje was crowned the new Interim Lightweight champion. A fight with the undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov is on the horizon now as he aims to dethrone one of the UFC’s most dominant fighters in recent history.
Check out the full reaction below:
Justin Gaethje vs Tony Ferguson
@Justin_Gaethje it was so impressive, congratulations. Very smart fight.
— khabib nurmagomedov (@TeamKhabib) May 10, 2020
Casual fans look at Gaethje as just a brawler. I’ve always said his technical prowess is very over looked but it was on full display tonight. Congrats @Justin_Gaethje and @TrevorWittman. To me, that fight was one of the most inspiring sporting events I have ever watched. #ufc249
— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) May 10, 2020
Henry Cejudo v Dominick Cruz
Honestly, what do you expect when a guy has 4 years OFF, when the talent pool is constantly growing and improving their skills by actively fighting the best in the world?! Cruz is the GOAT at Bantamweight, but time has passed him by.
Hey, you don’t gotta agree with me. #UFC249
— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) May 10, 2020
Triple C , the King of Cringe lives on! #UFC249
— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) May 10, 2020
Full main card results below
Justin Gaethje bt Tony Ferguson via TKO Round 5- 3:39
Henry Cejudo bt Dominick Cruz via TKO Round 2- 4:58
Francis Ngannou bt Jairzinho Rozenstruik via KO Round 1- 0:20
Calvin Kattar bt Jeremy Stephens via TKO Round 2- 2:42
Greg Hardy bt Yorgan De Castro via Decision (unanimous) (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
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