If it wasn’t already clear during his previous nine victories, Tony Ferguson once again proved that he is a dangerous man.
“El Cucuy” claimed the interim lightweight championship with a third-round submission of Kevin Lee in the UFC 216 main event at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night. The end came 4:02 in the third round, when Ferguson forced “The Motown Phenom” to tap to a triangle choke from his back. After his victory, Ferguson issued a profanity-laced callout of reigning 155-pound king Conor McGregor.
Meanwhile, flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson made history in style, as he executed deftly transitioned from a belly-to-back suplex in midair to an armbar to submit Ray Borg 3:15 into the fifth round of the co-main event. In addition to claiming the long-awaited mark for most consecutive title defenses, “Mighty Mouse” continued to build on a slew of other impressive milestones.
Here is a by-the-numbers look at UFC 216, with statistics courtesy of FightMetric.com.
10: Consecutive victories for Ferguson, the longest active winning streak in the lightweight division and the third longest active winning streak in the UFC overall behind only Johnson (13) and Max Holloway (11).
24: Total strikes by which Lee outlanded Ferguson in the opening stanza. However, Ferguson outlanded his opponent by a combined 41-to-28 margin in rounds two and three combined.
2: Triangle choke submission victories in title fights in UFC history. With his finish, Ferguson joined Anderson Silva as the only two men to win a title fight in the Octagon with the maneuver. “The Spider” tapped Chael Sonnen in the fifth round of their championship clash at UFC 117 in August 2010.
11: Consecutive title defenses for Johnson, giving him sole possession of the UFC record he previously shared with longtime former middleweight king Anderson Silva.
13: Consecutive triumphs in the Octagon for Johnson, tying him with Jon Jones and Georges St. Pierre for the second-longest winning streak in UFC history. Silva is no. 1 with 16 straight victories.
7: Finishes in UFC title bouts for Johnson, third-most in the history of the Las Vegas-based promotion behind Silva (nine) and Matt Hughes (eight).
150: Total strikes by which Johnson outlanded Borg, the seventh largest strike differential ever in a UFC title fight.
22: Significant strikes landed by Borg, the fifth fewest ever for a fighter who reached the fifth round of a UFC bout.
8: Takedowns landed in eight attempts by Johnson. The AMC Pankration also passed guard 19 times in the bout.
5: Submissions for Fabricio Werdum following his 65-second tapout of short-notice foe Walt Harris. That ties him with Josh Barnett and Stefan Struve for the second-most among heavyweights in the combined history of the UFC and Strikeforce promotions. Frank Mir is No. 1 with eight submissions.
38: Total strike advantage for Beneil Dariush in the first round of his lightweight clash with Evan Dunham. Dariush nearly finished the fight in a dominant opening stanza.
12: Total strikes by which Dunham outlanded Dariush in rounds two (26 to 21) and three (34 to 27) combined. Dunham’s remarkable recovery allowed him to stay in the fight and earn a majority draw against Dariush.
33: Significant strikes by which Cody Stamann outlanded hyped French prospect Tom Duquesnoy in their preliminary bantamweight bout. Stamann also landed four of five takedown attempts en route to a split-decision triumph.
197: Combined significant strikes landed by Lando Vannata (104) and Bobby Green (93) in a wildly entertaining lightweight scrap. Vannata outlanded his foe 31 to 23 in round one and 44 to 38 in round three, while Green held a 32-to-29 edge in round two. Ultimately, the contest was ruled a split draw by those scoring cageside.
7: Unofficial media scorecards, of the 13 tracked by MMADecisions.com, that scored Green vs. Vannata a draw. Four others saw the fight for Vannata, and two more scored it in favor of Green.
8: Split draws in UFC history, according to MMADecisions.com. Prior to Vannatta vs. Green, the most recent split draw in the Octagon occurred in a middleweight clash between Kevin Casey and Elvis Mutapcic at UFC 199.
6,588: Days since the last UFC event to feature two draws occurred before it happened again at UFC 216 on Saturday. The first and only other time was at UFC 22, when both Tim Lajcik vs. Ron Waterman and Jens Pulver vs. Alfonso Alcarez ended in a draw on Sept. 24, 1999.
157: Total strikes landed by Poliana Botelho in a unanimous decision triumph against Pearl Gonzalez. By comparison, Gonzalez landed 89. Botelho did most of her work with her back against the cage as Gonzalez unsuccessfully attempted to take her down for the majority of the fight.
15: Takedowns stuffed, in 15 attempts, by Botelho. Ironically, the Brazilian landed the bout’s only takedown late in the third round.
5: Finishes by John Moraga in UFC competition, the second-most in the history of the flyweight division behind only Demetrious Johnson. Moraga knocked out highly-touted prospect Magomed Bibulatov 1:38 into the opening round of their 125-pound encounter on Saturday night.
7: UFC flyweight victories for Moraga, third most in promotion history behind only Demetrious Johnson (12/13) and Joseph Benavidez (10). Moraga, a former title challenger, is 7-5 during his Octagon tenure.
0: Takedowns landed, in seven attempts, by Brazilian jiu-jitsu specialist Thales Leites in a unanimous decision loss to Brad Tavares at middleweight. Tavares career takedown defense rate stands at 73 percent.