No matter what happens from here, Nicco Montano will always be first.
Montano became the inaugural Ultimate Fighting Championship women’s flyweight champion, capturing the belt with a unanimous decision victory over Roxanne Modafferi in “The Ultimate Fighter” 26 Finale headliner on Friday night. Facing a far more experienced opponent who stepped in on short notice, Montano continued the underdog story she began on the reality show by outstriking her foe for five rounds to make UFC history. Here is a by-the-numbers look at the “TUF 26” finale, with statistics courtesy of FightMetric.com.
186: Significant strikes landed by Montano during her five-round triumph. By comparison, Modafferi landed 132. Montano outlanded her opponent 21 to 17 in round one, 46 to 26 in round two, 52 to 37 in round three, 39 to 27 in round four and 28 to 25 in round five.
957: Combined total strikes attempted by Montano (524) and Modafferi (433). Montano outlanded her foe 242 to 154 in that category.
29: Difference in professional fight experience between Montano (six) and Modafferi (35).
3: Promotions in which Modafferi has come up short in championship bouts. In addition to Friday’s UFC defeat, “The Happy Warrior” has also lost title bids in Invicta Fighting Championships and Strikeforce.
141: Significant strikes landed by highly-touted prospect Sean O’Malley in a unanimous decision triumph over Terrion Ware at bantamweight. O’Malley, who turned heads with a knockout victory on Dana White’s Contender Series 2, landed 55 percent of his 252 significant strikes. Ware, meanwhile, landed 88 of 288 attempts, a 30 percent clip.
119: Significant head strikes landed by O’Malley. By comparison, Ware landed 59.
3: Takedowns landed by O’Malley in the third stanza. Those were the only takedowns landed by either fighter in the bout.
11: Takedowns defended in 11 attempts by Melinda Fabian in her flyweight clash against DeAnna Bennett. Despite that quality defensive work, Fabian was only able to battle to a majority draw with her opponent, as a point deduction for grabbing the fence in the second stanza loomed large in the final verdict.
7: Unofficial media scorecards, of the 13 tracked by MMADecisions.com, that had Fabian winning the bout. Four scored the contest for Bennett, while two others saw it as a draw.
2: Calf slicer submissions in UFC history after Brett Johns finished Joe Soto with the maneuver in the first round of their bantamweight bout. The first occurred when Charles Oliveira submitted Eric Wisely with a calf slicer at UFC on Fox 2 on Jan 28, 2012.
0:30: Time of Johns’ victory, making it the second-fastest submission triumph in UFC/WEC bantamweight history. Patrick Williams owns the fastest such victory, a 23-second guillotine choke of Alejandro Perez at UFC 188.
255: Significant strikes landed by Ryan Janes and Andrew Sanchez in their middleweight bout, a single-fight UFC record for the division. The previous record of 208 occurred when Luke Barnatt took a unanimous decision over Collin Hart at “The Ultimate Fighter 17” finale.
159: Significant strikes landed by Janes in his come-from-behind victory. By comparison, Sanchez landed 96 significant strikes. Janes also held a 200-to-113 advantage in total strikes landed.
18: Significant strikes by which Sanchez outlanded Janes in the opening stanza, when he landed two knockdowns and appeared to be on the verge of finishing his opponent.
81: Significant strikes by which Janes outlanded Sanchez in rounds two (97 to 38) and three (23 to 1) combined. Janes would go on to win via technical knockout 58 seconds into the third frame.
32: Significant strikes to the body landed by Janes. Sanchez, meanwhile, landed just six.
3: Armbar submissions at the “TUF 26” finale, tying it with UFC on Fuel TV 10 as the events with the most such finishes. Gillian Robertson, Rachael Ostovich and Montana De La Rosa all won via armbar on Friday night.