Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
An explosive night of action from Perth, Australia concluded in a huge knock out victory for Yoel Romero over Luke Rockhold. Get all the results and round by round synopsis for each and every fight on the card.
PPV Main Card (BT Sport 2) (3am.)
Middleweight: Yoel Romero def. Luke Rockhold via KO (punch) 1:48, Round 3:
Round 1: 10-9 Rockhold. Rockhold is patient and not exerting a lot of energy. Playing it safe and is slowly chipping away at the lead leg of Romero who hasn’t really got going as of yet.
Round 2: 10-9 Romero (19-19 overall) After a slow start, Romero came out like a house on fire. Put a lot of pressure on Rockhold and landed a flurry of punches. Rockhold could do with staying on the outside.
Round 3: Romero lands a huge left hook over the top and follows it up with a straight left and knocks out Luke Rockhold clean.
Heavyweight: Curtis Blaydes def. Mark Hunt via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 29-27):
Round 1: Curtis Blaydes has a hell of a chin. Hunt landed big and he somehow survived and ended up in top mount to close out the round. Tough round to score but 10-9 in favour of Hunt given how close he was to finishing the fight.
Round 2: Curtis Blaydes has a hell of a chin. Hunt landed big and he somehow survived and ended up in top mount to close out the round. Tough round to score but 10-9 in favour of Hunt given how close he was to finishing the fight.
Round 3: Curtis Blaydes weathered the early storm and just dominated Mark Hunt with slams, takedowns and top positioning. Fantastic game plan.
Heavyweight: Tai Tuivasa def. Cyril Asker via TKO (punches) 2:18, Round 1:
Round 1: Tai Tuivasa just destroyed Cyril Asker. It was a beatdown of seismic proportions. Asker may have a chin of granite but he didn’t help himself by standing in the pocket. Big win for Tuivasa.
Welterweight: Jake Matthews def. Li Jingliang via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-26, 30-26):
Round 1: 10-9 Matthews. He stunned Jingliang with a straight punch, dropped him and ended up in top mount. He was very close to earning a submission but Jingliang manages to see another round.
Round 2: 20-18 Matthews. Matthews almost had a submission victory but Jingliang made his way out of it by nearly gouging out Matthews’ eye. Both fighters swinging for the fences late in the round.
Round 3: Strong final round from Jingliang but it may be too little too late. Strong showing from both welterweights in a fight that had everything. Great fight.
Light Heavyweight: Tyson Pedro def. Saparbeg Safarov via submission (kimura) 3:54, Round 1
Round 1: Tyson Pedro just scored a beautiful kimura finish in round one. Amazing groundwork and transitions to secure it.
FS1 Preliminary Card (BT Sport 2) (1am)
Lightweight: Dong Hyun Kim def. Damien Brown via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28):
Round 1: 10-9 Brown. It has been a fairly tentative opening round but Brown has had very good success with those inside leg kicks and has buckled Kim twice.
Round 2: 10-9 Kim. One round a piece going into round 3. Kim has landed some nice stinging jabs and mixed it up with some body shots. Brown hasn’t got going in round 2 and needs to find some composure.
Round 3: Pretty poor fight overall. Neither fighter really putting any highlight reel finish but Kim should have the fight. In a round where nothing really happened, he somehow did more than Brown.
Middleweight: Israel Adesanya def. Rob Wilkinson via TKO (punches) 3:37, Round 2:
Round 1: 10-9 Wilkinson. He has closed the distance very well and has stifled Adesanya’s offence which is proving very smart. All to play for but a very interesting opening round.
Round 2: Israel Adesanya wears down Rob Wilkinson to gain the TKO victory in round 2. Peppered him with shots and Wilkinson had nothing in reply. Very nice debut.
Featherweight: Alexander Volkanvoski def. Jeremy Kennedy via TKO (punches) 4:57, Round 2:
Round 1: 10-8 Volkanovski. He absolutely smothered Kennedy on the ground and was relentless in his ground and pound. Came close to finishing the fight twice.
Round 2: Kennedy can’t be saved by the bell. Volkanovski just threw bomb after bomb and Marc Goddard had no choice but to call a halt to the end of the fight right at the end of round 2. Phenomenal performance.
Flyweight: Jussier Formiga def. Ben Nguyen via submission (Rear Naked Choke) 1:43, Round 3:
Round 1: 10-9 Formiga. Nguyen had been looking for a takedown of his own but ended up on the receiving end of Formiga’s TD who finishes the round in full mount.
Round 2: 20-18 Formiga. Was able to take Nguyen down with ease but the Australian managed to get up which will give him some confidence. He needs a finish you would think.
Round 3: Jussier Formiga landed a HUGE spinning back fist. Nguyen goes down and can’t recover. Formiga all over him takes the back and sinks in a rear naked choke. WOW!!!
Fight Pass Preliminary Card (11:30pm)
Lightweight: Ross Pearson def. Mizuto Hirota via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Round 1: 10-9 Pearson. He is landing well against Hirota. Ducking and dodging with his head movement and countering very well over and over again. Nice tidy boxing.
Round 2: 20-18 Pearson. Hirota struggling to find his range with his punches, at least until the very end of the round but Pearson is doing damage with those counter punches. Landing at will and displaying beautiful boxing and footwork.
Round 3: Very composed and patient performance from Ross Pearson. Hirota did land one big punch but little else. Pearson should take this victory to halt a big losing streak.
Bantamweight: Jose Alberto Quinonez def. Teruto Ishihara via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28):
Round 1: 10-9 Quinonez. Outwrestled Ishiahara for the majority of the round. Absolutely dominated him on the ground. Ishihara managed to clip Quinonez with a left hook right at the bell.
Round 2: 10-9 Ishihara. Putting a lot of pressure on Quinonez this round. Completed a TD and landed another heavy shot at the bell which floored Quinonez. All to play for in the final round.
Round 3: Tough fight to call. Very even final round. Ishihara is pushing forward constantly but Quinonez has landed a few leg kicks to keep him at bay. Could go either way.
Welterweight: Luke Jumeau def. Daichi Abe via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-27, 28-27)
Round 1: 10-9 Abe.
He has come close to finishing Jumeau twice with damaging punches against the fence. Jumeau has landed his own shots but they are few and far between. Fun opening round.
Round 2: 19-19 after 2. Abe looks visibly tired and his offence has been lacking this round.Jumeau is picking shots on the outside with success.
Round 3: Leg kicks the aim of the game for Jumeau in this 3rd round. High, low and has landed repeatedly. Abe’s cardio let him down and Jumeau should take this 29-28
UFC 221 has taken quite a turn in the wake of Yoel Romero missing weight ahead of the interim title fight against Luke Rockhold.
Romero weighed in at 188lbs initially – 3lbs over the alotted middleweight allowance – and could not shift the extra weight required to compete for the interim middleweight title.
It all means that should Romero win, the belt remains with current champion, Robert Whittaker and will receive no belt for his efforts. Rockhold is still able to fight for the title.
If it sounds pretty crazy, it’s because it is crazy.
You can follow all of the live action from UFC 221 from 11:30pm GMT right here or on Twitter.