UFC 247 saw light heavyweight champion Jon Jones defend his title against Dominick Reyes via judge’s decision. The top 205-pound light heavyweights headlined the marquee from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. In the co-main event, women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko defended her title against top contender Katlyn Chookagian.
The two champions were overwhelming favorites to retain their titles and neither disappointed. We streamed the full event to bring you the results.
The announcers on hand for UFC 247 were Dominick Cruz, Joe Rogan, and Jon Anik. They did a great job of breaking down the color commentary.
Derrick Lewis clearly had size over Ilir Latifi, but Latifi’s wrestling skills came in handy. Latifi looked obviously outmatched the entire match, but he was quick enough on his feet and smart enough to absorb and avoid most the damage. Although the big man kept coming at him with flying knees, he held his own for three rounds and forced the judge’s decision.
Mirsad Bektic struggled against Dan Ige and ultimately lost the judge’s decision after three rounds in the featherweight match. It was the second fight of the UFC PPV and a great, fast match that’s to be expected with men of this size. Ultimately the stakes were too low to matter though.
Juan Adams had size over Justin Tafa, but he was ultimately dropped by a hook/uppercut combo just a second shy of two minutes into the first round. Although the shortest fight of the night, it was an exciting knockout and the first bit of real action until the women took the octagon.
Finally we got into the good stuff with the best flyweight female fighter in the world in Valentina Shevchenko fighting Katlyn Chookagian. Shevchenko was methodical and focused throughout the first round, finally getting Chookagian on the ground and cutting her above the eye with a viscious right elbow at the end of the round.
By round two, Chookagian was trying to attack more, but the blood was pouring from above her eye the entire time. She stayed light and nimble, but Shevchenko stayed steady and gave her absolutely nothing but counters the entire first half. Midway, she landed a face kick that had the entire crowd groaning in pain for Chookagian. After a few more strikes, she took it back to the ground and retained control.
To her credit, Chookagian came out the gate strong in round 3, but it only led to her quick demise. She knocks her out from the crucifix position and retains her title wiht a high level of excitement and energy as Dana White puts the belt on her and she does a ballet dance that shows her Eastern European roots. It was a dominating performance.
Then it was time to see what Jon “Bones” Jones can do. The controversial fighter is widely regarded as the best pound-for-pound fighter, but he’s also a stigmatizing one. He was stripped of his title three times in the 2010s after becoming the youngest champion since weight classes were implemented at the age of 23 against Mauricio Rua.
He reclaimed his title in 2018 and had two successful defense going into tonight’s fight.
Dominick Reyes is no slouch though – that’s how he earned his nickname of The Devastator. The Mexican American former college football player came into UFC 247 undefeated with 12 professional wins. He came out to the octagon to Nipsey Hussle’s “Grinding All My Life/Stucc in the Grind”
Reyes started off with some excitement a few minutes into the first round, even sending Jones to his ass for a brief moment. It was difficult for Jones ot understand what he was fighting. It gave the crowd hope we would see a fight, and he continued following up, keeping Jones off his guard.
By round two, neither fighter showed any signs of slowing. Reyes held Jones to a high standard of speed and continued attacking. Although Jones was able to dodge quite a bit (fitting, since he showed up to Jadakiss “The Champ Is Here,” which uses a sample of Will Smith playing Muhammad Ali), he clearly was thrown off his game. Gone is the early Jones who was practically goofy and joking in the ring. We saw a serious, methodical champion at UFC 247.
It was Reyes’s first five-round championship fight, but he stood toe to toe with Jones for the first two rounds, building up quite the sweat. It seemed as though Jones was purposely holding out in the early rounds.
By round 3, Reyes was slowing down, but he was still able to keep countering Jones. He stopped him from striking much, blocked takedowns, and worked the clinch. He was clearly sweating up a storm and was likely to end the match dehydrated.
Reyes was still defending in round 4, known as the champion rounds, since only championship fights go beyond 3 rounds. Jones started attacking more, but Reyes was relentless with his defenses and counters. At a point, both men were pressed against the cage, but Jones obviously had more energy in the later rounds. It was clear the champion wanted to go the full five rounds.
The fifth round was explosive and gave fight fans our money’s worth. Both men had energy, but Jones successfully executed a shoot takedown. Reyes continued getting back up and frustrating Jones, who wouldn’t let up pressure either. It was like watching a chess match, and you started to believe Reyes could make a great champion. As the fight approached the final three minutes, however, Jones proved why he’s the champion.
By the end of the fight, we watched a lot of dancing, but ultimately little contact. That’s because both men were too good for each other. Ultimately Reyes failed to knock Jones out, giving the judges no choice but to allow the champion to retain his title in a boring fight.