NEW YORK (AP) - The Latest on UFC 205, with Conor McGregor facing Eddie Alvarez for the lightweight title in the main event (all times local):
Conor McGregor knocked out Eddie Alvarez in the second round to win the UFC lightweight title and become the first two-class champion in the promotion’s history.
McGregor dominated from the opening bell of the main event of UFC 205 at Madison Square Garden and the sold-out crowd roaring with each blow. McGregor is now the reigning featherweight and lightweight champ.
UFC has not decided if McGregor will be allowed to defend both championships. UFC President Dana White said McGregor could be about the only fighter in the promotion to handle that kind of fight load.
McGregor crouched inside the cage waiting for the bell to ring and attack Alvarez. McGregor was the clear aggressor from the start and dropped Alvarez three times in the first round. Alvarez, out of Philadelphia, bounced up the first two times and took a severe beating on the third. McGregor forced Alvarez to fight with his back to the cage and dominated the rest of the round.
McGregor placed his hands behind his back in the second, taunting and toying Alvarez to hit him. McGregor, UFC’s biggest box office star, unloaded a left and ended the fight.
Tyron Woodley defeated Stephen Thompson via majority draw to retain his welterweight title in a fantastic fight at UFC 205.
Woodley, making his first title defense since he knocked out Robbie Lawler in the first round at UFC 201, was on the brink of choking out Thompson in the fourth round. Thompson broke free and ended the fourth with a series of strikes that brought the MSG crowd to its feet.
UFC ring announcer Bruce Buffer left the octagon before he announced the judges’ scores, and announced the fight as split decision. Woodley was irritated when Buffer interrupted a post-fight interview to change the decision to a majority draw.
Thompson took a shot to the nose in the first round and was bloodied for the rest of the fight. He also had the New York crowed on his side with “Wonderboy” chants in the fifth. He connected with a couple of hard rights but had a seven-fight winning streak snapped.
Joanna Jedrzejczyk successfully defended her UFC women’s strawweight championship with a unanimous decision win over Karolina Kowalkiewicz.
This battle of unbeaten Polish fighters needed three rounds to warm up before the fighters took it to each other over the final two rounds. Jedrzejczyk (13-0) won a title defense for the fourth straight fight.
Kowalkiewicz (10-1) earned a standing ovation for gutsy performance in giving Jedrzejczyk one of her toughest fights.
The bout was the first of three title fights to close out UFC 205.
Yoel Romero caught Chris Weidman with a flying right knee and finished him off with a spectacular knockout victory at UFC 205.
Weidman sat in the octagon with blood pouring down his face and onto his chest. Romero sprinted toward the cage, flipped over the top and ran a lap in celebration.
Romero is the No. 1 contender for Michael Bisping’s middleweight title. Bisping was shown on the big screen and extended his middle fingers at Romero.
Romero won the final bout before three scheduled title fights were set to go off at UFC 205.
Madonna and Hugh Jackman both watched from the Madison Square Garden seats.
Miesha Tate announced her retirement inside the octagon following a loss to Raquel Pennington at UFC 205.
The 30-year-old Tate says the loss played a role in her decision. She says: “I had a lot more to give but I couldn’t pull it out of myself.”
Tate defeated Holly Holm in March to win the bantamweight title and then lost the belt in her first title defense to Amanda Nunes in July.
Tate (18-7) had coached Pennington on “The Ultimate Fighter,” a reality show used by the UFC to recruit new talent.
Pennington won a methodical bout and unanimous decision on Saturday night, with only one judge awarding Tate a round. It was the first of two women’s bouts on the main UFC 205 card.
The Madison Square Garden crowd gave Tate a loud ovation following her surprise announcement.
Frankie Edgar made the short trip from Toms River, New Jersey, to Madison Square Garden a memorable one.
With a packed crowd going wild for the local favorite, Edgar defeated Jeremy Stephens via unanimous decision in the final preliminary bout at UFC 205 on Saturday night.
Edgar had the crowd on its feet for most of the fight and seemed close a couple of times to choking out Stephens in the second round. Edgar kept his arms around Stephens and his eye on the clock to how much time was left in the round.
Edgar said in the cage that he wants to fight again in New York at UFC 209 on Feb. 11 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Tim Boetsch knocked out Rafael Natal in the first round in one of six preliminary bouts.
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., former New York Rangers great Mark Messier, and “Jersey Shore” star Jenni “JWoww” Farley were among the celebrities in the crowd for the early fights. New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft sat cageside with UFC President Dana White.
Rashad Evans and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone weren’t going to miss UFC 205 even though their respective fights were scrapped.
Evans, the former light heavyweight champion, had a medical issue and his fight against Tim Kennedy was scrapped and booked for UFC 206. He was in Michael Johnson’s corner for his lightweight bout against Khabib Nurmagomedov. Whatever advice Evans had, it didn’t work. Nurmagomedov pummeled and choked out Johnson and improved to 24-0.
Cerrone, a wildly popular fighter, was scheduled to fight Kelvin Gastelum. Gastelum failed to make weight Friday and the fight was canceled. Cerrone was paid his show money and rebooked for UFC 206. UFC announced during the card that Cerrone will fight welterweight Matt Brown at UFC 206.
Rising lightweight Khabib Nurmagomedov is realizing stars are made with their mouths as much as their fists.
The undefeated Russian fighter touted himself for a title shot and compared himself to Irish megastar Conor McGregor on Saturday night following a convincing win against Michael Johnson, a flashy striker. Johnson landed some shots early in the first but couldn’t contend with Nurmagomedov when the fight went to the ground in each of three rounds. Nurmagomedov got a submission win in the third.
After winning, Nurmagomedov put a giant wig on TV commentator Joe Rogan, then immediately compared home countries with McGregor, one of the sport’s biggest draws, saying Russia offers a much larger fan base. He turned the tables on Rogan when asked what’s next, asking Rogan whether he deserved a title shot.
The 24-0 record makes it hard to argue against the division’s No. 2 contender.
The first winner of a UFC fight in New York is Liz Carmouche, a bantamweight who’s looking to rise in her division to contend against the likes of superstar Ronda Rousey and champ Amanda Nunes.
Carmouche beat Katlyn Chookagian in a split decision Saturday night at UFC 205 in the first bout of a stacked 11-fight card.
Two judges awarded Carmouche the first two rounds of a three-round fight.
Carmouche says she worried after Chookagian landed a big kick in the third round, a blow that spurred a roar from the Madison Square Garden crowd anticipating a stoppage. But Carmouche finished the round to secure the win.
Jim Miller scored a decision win over Thiago Alves in the other fight aired only online. Vicente Luque followed with a knockout of Belal Muhammad in the first round.
UFC is legal and live at Madison Square Garden.
UFC 205 on Saturday night marked the company’s debut card in New York following the end of the state’s nearly two-decade MMA ban.
UFC stacked the card with three title fights that were expected to help set a gate record at Madison Square Garden.
Eddie Alvarez defends the lightweight championship against Conor McGregor in the main event. McGregor is easily UFC’s biggest male star and had fans going wild for him all week in New York. McGregor, the featherweight champ, is attempting to become the first UFC fighter to hold championship belts in two divisions at the same time.
Joanna Jedrzejczyk defends the women’s strawweight title against Karolina Kowalkiewicz and UFC welterweight champ Tyron Woodley fights Stephen Thompson.
StubHub had tickets for sale for as much as $3,000 at the start of the night for what UFC had billed as its biggest and best card of all time.
Copyright © 2022 The Washington Times, LLC.