UFC 189 featured two championship bouts and not a single fight on the main card decided by the judges. What a night!


Robbie Lawler successfully defended the Welterweight Championship against Rory MacDonald, winning the fight by TKO after 1 minute of the 5th round. The brutal bout resulted in the challenger suffering a fractured nose as well as a fractured foot, according to MacDonald’s coach Firas Zahabi (speaking to Ariel Helwani). Had MacDonald been able to withstand the fifth round, he might have woken up this morning with championship gold on his dresser, as all of the judges had him winning the fight to that point 3 rounds to 1. The co-main event won Fight Of The Night honors.

UFC 189: Mendes v McGregor

The Interim Featherweight Championship was won by Conor McGregor, also as a result of TKO by punches. McGregor finished Mendes at 4:57 of Round 2. Jose Aldo was originally scheduled to defend the Featherweight belt against McGregor at the event, but the champion pulled out of the fight citing rib injuries. Conflicting reports from Aldo’s camp and doctors contracted by the UFC state that Aldo’s injuries are either a fractured rib or bruised cartilage. Dana White cited Aldo’s history of pulling out of fights as his reason of making the fight for the interim belt. Conor McGregor scored an additional $50k “Performance of the Night” bonus for the bout.

In a surprising turn of events, none of the five fights on the main card were ultimately decided by the judges:

Catchweight – Jeremy Stephens defeated Dennis Bermudez by TKO (flying knee and punches) less than a minute into the third round.

Welterweight – Gunnar Nelson defeated Brandon Thatch by submission with a rear-naked choke less than 3 minutes into the fight.

Bantamweight – Thomas Almeida defeated Brad Pickett by knockout with a flying knee at the 30 second mark of the second round. Almeida was also awarded a “Performance of the Night” bonus of $50k.

Breaking a record for a mixed martial arts event in the United States, UFC 189 pulled in $7.2 M at the gate, with an announced attendance of just over 16,000 in Las Vegas. The figures were reported by UFC President Dana White at the press conference after the event, reported by MMAJunkie.com.