UFC 274 Results – Is there a viable opponent for Charles Oliveira? How will Rose Namajunas recover?

A 14-fight hand at UFC 274 produced some big wins, great action, memorable knockouts, and a lackluster co-main event that alternated between two great bouts. Jeff Wagenheim and Carlos Contreras Legaspi react to pay-per-view and deliver their biggest thoughts of the night.

Big nights of teamfights highlighted by championship games often provide clarity. But what UFC 274 offers instead is contradiction.

On a Saturday night in Phoenix, Charles Oliveira stepped into the cage as a UFC lightweight champion. Then he choked Justin Gaethje right in the first round – and walked out of the Octagon as the old champion.

The reason for that mixed situation was Oliveira’s loss of weight Friday, prompting the UFC to strip him of his title as soon as his bout with Gaethje began. What brings, at the end of a fight, is a feeling of emptiness when something is missing – no “And still!” As stated by Bruce Buffer, no belt was worn by Dana White around Oliveira’s waist.

And there’s no denying one thing: Belt or no belt, Charles Oliveira is the best 155-pound boxer on the planet.

That became clear in 3 minutes 22 seconds the fight lasted. Oliveira staggered Gaethje in the first minute, but soon Gaethje knocked him down with a punch. Then Gaethje dropped him again. But who would have expected this to be the beginning of the end has clearly not been following Oliveira lately.

The 32-year-old Brazilian was badly injured a year ago in the first round of the fight with Michael Chandler for the title was vacated afterwards, but Oliveira showed up in the second round and immediately overtook Chandler, then finishing him off in the 19th second of the round. Seven months later, Oliveira had to persevere through a rough start against Dustin Poirier before knocking out his challenger in Round 3.

This time Oliveira, whose face was marked by Gaethje’s malevolent work, scored a knock-down mid-half and quickly regained control, sending him into position to sink in a suffocating choke behind. for his 30th finish and 21st out of 33. -win pro career. Inside the Octagon, he has 19 finishes and 16 returns – both UFC records.

If only there was a strong racer in the division that could compete with Oliveira’s ground game. Too bad Khabib Nurmagomedov Retired.

That might just leave work until Islam Makhachev, a friend and teammate of Nurmagomedov known as Khabib 2.0. Makhachev 22-1 has been working his way to building lightweight hierarchy, and his arrival couldn’t have come at a better time. – Wagenheim

Should Tony Ferguson face Michael Chandler?

At the beginning of the fighting week, when I outline the must-watch UFC 274 fights, I also noted a couple that I suspect might be difficult to watch. The one that I chose in the end didn’t happen, after Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone was sick on Saturday, making it unlikely for us to see him extend his six-game winless streak in a way that would leave us heartbroken. The other battle I picked was up and running and was really hard to watch – but not necessarily for the reason I was expecting.

I fear that Michael Chandler compare to Tony Ferguson will be a harrowing display of what happens when someone at or near the top of his bout (Chandler) comes face-to-face with a boxer whose career is waning (Ferguson, who has spent three catastrophic defeat). It can go bad quickly, I think.

But then Ferguson rushed out because of a slight collision and immediately injured Chandler. From the outset, Ferguson looked agile, dangerous and clearly competitive. Maybe I was wrong about this booking?

Or not.

In the opening seconds of the Second Half, Chandler sent a kick straight into the middle, and when the ball with his foot hit Ferguson’s chin, the game was over. Ferguson fell on his face, lost consciousness, and lay motionless for several minutes. Even when he arrived and was led away, Ferguson still looked dazed.

Is this terrifying knock a direct byproduct of Ferguson being pale, reflexes too slow to protect him, and his chin no longer able to withstand the impact? Or is this just something that can happen to anyone, even a champion or a top boxer of his career? No one knows for sure, but I’ll just say this: It was the kind of ending I envisioned as a possibility for Ferguson and Cerrone when I expressed concern about their booking.

“Cowboy” and “El Cucuy” are legends of MMA. Both have delivered countless thrills and glorious moments over the years. No one is asking the last of a career to shut down completely, but matchmakers need to be aware of when both gladiators are in their careers before bringing them into the cage together.

In a UFC bout marked by a 12-match winning streak, Ferguson was spectacular. But now when he’s fighting, we have to hold our breath. – Wagenheim

Namajunas-Esparza: A title war unlike any other

“I’m the best! I’m the best!”

That’s the spell Rose Namajunas spoke loudly, quietly and firmly and over and over, as she stepped out into the cage for the co-main event.

I wonder what spell she had for her lonely return to the dressing room as a former champion.

To be fair, Namajunas has established himself as the world’s best heavyweight athlete over the years, with two crowns and multiple wins over former champions. Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Zhang Weilias well as winning over another title holder, Jessica Andrade. But Saturday night, she wasn’t the best – or at least she chose not to show us the best of her.

Carla Esparza was booed after she raised her arm and had a belt wrapped around her waist. She doesn’t deserve that response. She moved forward for most of the skirmish, but Namajunas kept her distance and refused to engage. Esparza finished very little in five rounds, it is true, but less is better than nothing, and that “nothing” was what Namajunas showed until late in the game, when it was too late.

Two questions arise: First, is this the worst title fight in UFC history? It is definitely a contender. Esparza hit just 30 critical hits, at least in a decisive win in a UFC title fight in the modern era of promotion. But hey, Esparza is mostly a wrestler. On the other hand, Namajunas is known as a polished striker. She connects with only 37.

“It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t want to fight,” Esparza said during the post-match Octagon.

That leads to the second question that emerges from this war: What do we do about Namajunas? Why would a boxer who has stood her ground against more deadly enemies jumping around the Octagon during her more amazing 25 minutes there with Esparza? I don’t know that there’s a serious answer, but do you know anyone who should have known that answer when the fight went on? Namajunas corner. From what I can hear of her trainers, no one has tried to light a fire and make Rose fight like Rose.

Namajunas is such a mystery, that this foolish performance does not signal demise. Next time she’s in the cage, she might look like a world beater. That’s what she used to look like… back when she was a champion. – Wagenheim

Francisco Trinaldo, young 43 years old



Francisco Trinaldo doubles Danny Roberts’ lead after he hits him with his left hand.

If you want to know just how far-reaching the UFC lightweight division is, just consider the underrated veterans. Francisco Trinaldo. He fought with all his might against Danny Roberts – who is on a two-fight streak – to close his UFC 274 record and light up the Footprint Center.

”Massaranduba” earned his 18th victory in the Octagon with an outright impressive performance and got Roberts in trouble more than once in the fight. He’s one of the many gatekeepers the division has and he’s certainly always been an interesting fighter to watch, constantly looking for a knockout finish. Trinaldo defeated Bobby Green, Jim Miller and John Makdessi.

At 43 and with more than a decade of fighting for promotion, he stands 5-1 in his last six games. As Andrei Arlovski, who is also winning over fighters who probably hadn’t even trained when he signed with the UFC, Trinaldo shows no signs of slowing down and wants to make some memories for his 5-year-old son. And tonight is a good thing. – Legaspi

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