Fight Facts: UFC 230

By Jay Pettry Nov 5, 2018

Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and Octagon oddities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.

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Returning to Madison Square Garden for the third consecutive November, the Ultimate Fighting Championship on Saturday brought a fun impromptu title fight and a de facto middleweight tournament to New York with UFC 230. The event featured a dual-division champion handing his counterpart the first submission loss of his career, a middleweight contender seemingly allergic to boring fights and an undefeated rising star who has knocked out 87 percent of his opponents.

ONE AND ONLY: By retaining his heavyweight belt, Daniel Cormier became the first fighter in UFC history to ever defend a title in two different weight classes.

CAN IT BE ALL SO SIMPLE: In 15 career bouts as a heavyweight, Cormier has only lost one single round on one lone scorecard. One judge gave Josh Barnett the fifth round of their meeting in Strikeforce in 2012.

PROTECT YA NECK: All five of Cormier’s submission wins have come by rear-naked choke.

PROJECT 119: Cormier and former champion Stipe Miocic successfully defended their heavyweight belts for the first time exactly 119 days after winning them.

THE FIRST TAP IS THE DEEPEST: Forced to tap to a rear-naked choke in the second round of his bout with Cormier, Derrick Lewis suffered the first submission loss of his 28-fight career.

THE BEAST IS BACK: Lewis became the third fighter in modern UFC history to compete on back-to-back pay-per-view main cards after fighting on UFC 229 in October. He joins Tito Ortiz (UFC 132 and UFC 133) and Cynthia Calvillo (UFC 209 and UFC 210).

METHOD MAN: As his bout with Cormier was his fourth of 2018, Lewis will end the year as the most active heavyweight inside the Octagon. He will likely be tied with Andrei Arlovski, who is slated for his fourth appearance of 2018 at UFC 232. No heavyweight in modern UFC history has fought more than four times in a calendar year.

CASH RULES EVERYTHING AROUND ME: Ronaldo Souza’s thrilling battle with Chris Weidman earned the pair a “Fight of the Night” bonus. Souza has now earned post-fight bonuses in five of his last six bouts. The only fight in that stretch where he did not earn a bonus was his knockout loss to Robert Whittaker, who earned a “Performance of the Night” bonus for stopping “Jacare.”

DA MYSTERY OF CHESSBOXIN’: Souza has not scored a submission in his last four appearances. This represents the longest stretch of his career without a submission victory. The longtime Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt has delivered 14 of his 26 career wins via submission.

BETTER NEVER THAN LATE: In suffering his third stoppage loss in the third round or later, Weidman tied Arlovski, B.J. Penn, Clay Guida, Mark Hunt and Patrick Cote for the most stoppage losses beyond Round 2 in company history.

SHAME ON A WRESTLA: Despite later losing by knockout, Weidman managed to score a takedown in the second round against Souza. In doing so, he has now successfully taken down his opponent at least once in all 14 of his Octagon appearances.

BIG-GAME FISHERMAN: Outside of the UFC, David Branch owns an 18-1 record, including victories in Bellator MMA and the World Series of Fighting, where he served as the only two-division champion in the organization’s history. His lone defeat in those 19 appearances came to Anthony Johnson in Titan Fighting Championship. Inside the UFC, Branch owns a 4-4 record, and he has been stopped in all four of his losses.

BRING DA RUCKUS: By demolishing Derek Brunson in the first round, Israel Adesanya remained undefeated at 15-0, with 13 knockouts inside the first two rounds.

DEFENSE IN DA FRONT: In each of Adesanya’s four Octagon appearances, he has cut down on the number of takedowns he has conceded. Rob Wilkinson got him down three times in his debut; Marvin Vettori took him down twice; Brad Tavares scored one takedown against him; and Brunson whiffed on all seven of his attempts.

TEARZ: The owner of 12-first round stoppage victories, Ben Saunders suffered a first-round defeat for the first time in his career when he was knocked out by Lyman Good.

SEVENTH CHAMBER: In suffering his seventh career knockout defeat, Saunders now has more losses by KO than all but three other fighters on the card had in total career losses by the end of UFC 230.

THIS DEAL IS GETTING WORSE ALL THE TIME: By fighting to a majority draw with Matt Frevola, Lando Vannata became the fourth fighter in UFC history to come in even on the scorecards on multiple occasions, joining Penn, Caol Uno and Ken Shamrock.

NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN: Coming into UFC 230, Kurt Holobaugh had never been submitted (23 fights), Brian Kelleher had never pulled out of a fight (27 fights) and no recorded fighter had ever walked out to “Livin’ on a Prayer” by Bon Jovi (Frevola).

TIME IS ON MY SIDE: In all 12 of his Octagon appearances, Souza has walked out to “My Time” by Fabolous ft. Jeremih. When accompanied that song, he holds a record of 9-3 with eight finishes. Overall, the song has the second-highest winning percentage (.706) of any with at least 20 recorded uses, trailing only “Cowboy” by Kid Rock (.714).

WALKOUT SONGS AIN’T NUTHING TA MESS WIT: In three recorded uses of tracks by the Wu-Tang Clan, no fighter has ever won while walking out to the group, and all have lost by knockout. Saunders made his walk to the Octagon accompanied by “Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nothing Ta F’ Wit” and was knocked out in the first round.


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