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Dublin: 9 °C Tuesday 18 December, 2018

Cyborg defends title, Khabib makes a statement and more from UFC 219

The UFC rounded off its 2017 schedule with a pay-per-view event last night in Las Vegas.

UFC 219 Mixed Martial Arts Holly Holm (left) and Cris 'Cyborg' Justino trade blows at UFC 219. Source: John Locher

CRIS ‘CYBORG’ JUSTINO and Khabib Nurmagomedov were the big winners last night as the Ultimate Fighting Championship rounded off its 2017 schedule in Las Vegas.

Cyborg made a successful first defence of her women’s featherweight title at the expense of Holly Holm in UFC 219′s main event, after Nurmagomedov took his unblemished record to 25-0 with a dominant victory over Edson Barboza in the penultimate bout of the night in front of a 13,561 attendance at the T-Mobile Arena.

Having claimed the vacant title by stopping Tonya Evinger back in July, Cyborg (19-1-1) remains the woman to beat in the 145-pound division, despite being taken the distance over five rounds for the first time in her professional career.

The 32-year-old Brazilian picked up her 19th consecutive victory on unanimous scores (49-46, 48-47, 48-47), although Holm (11-4) did enjoy plenty of good moments early on.

Nevertheless, it was a second defeat in a featherweight title bout for the ex-bantamweight champion, who also came up short against Germaine de Randamie when the inaugural 145-pound championship was on the line back in February.

UFC 219 Mixed Martial Arts Khabib Nurmagomedov in control against Edson Barboza. Source: John Locher

Nurmagomedov made a major statement in the lightweight division by coasting to his 25th professional win over three rounds against Edson Barboza (19-5). The Dagestani fighter’s dominance was reflected in the scorecards — 30-25, 30-25, 30-24.

After being out of action for over 13 months, Nurmagomedov — who withdrew from his interim title bout against Tony Ferguson earlier this year having fallen ill during the weight cut — delivered an emphatic reminder of how difficult a proposition he is for any opponent in the 155-pound division, where Conor McGregor is still the reigning champion.

The 29-year-old wrestling ace, whose wife gave birth to their second child earlier in the day, smothered Barboza in a one-sided victory to end his Brazilian opponent’s three-fight win streak and leave some exciting possibilities for the division in 2018.

Elsewhere on the main card, popular welterweight Carlos Condit returned from a 16-month lay-off but couldn’t overcome Neil Magny, former women’s strawweight champion Carla Esparza got the nod from the judges over Cynthia Calvillo, and Dan Hooker submitted Englishman Marc Diakiese in one of only two finishes on the 10-bout bill.

UFC 219 results

  • Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino def. Holly Holm via unanimous decision (49-46, 48-47, 48-47)
  • Khabib Nurmagomedov def. Edson Barboza via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-25, 30-24)
  • Dan Hooker def. Marc Diakiese via submission (guillotine choke) after 0:42 of round three
  • Carla Esparza def. Cynthia Calvillo via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Neil Magny def. Carlos Condit via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
  • Michał Oleksiejczuk def. Khalil Rountree Jr. via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Myles Jury def. Rick Glenn via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Marvin Vettori vs. Omari Akhmedov ended in a majority draw (28-28, 29-28, 28-28)
  • Matheus Nicolau def. Louis Smolka via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-25)
  • Tim Elliott def. Mark De La Rosa via submission (anaconda choke) after 1:41 of round two

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Paul Dollery

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