UFC 290 Results, Bonus Winners And Highlights
UFC Featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski further cemented his argument for top pound-for-pound mixed martial artist in the world on Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Volkanovski scored a third-round TKO victory over Yair Rodriguez in the UFC 290 main event to successfully defend the title he has held since December 2019.
Volkanovski took the dangerous Rodriguez down with ease, it seemed. The champion scored seven successful takedowns in 12 attempts. The champion also out-landed the challenger 149-57 in total strikes and 66-40 in significant strikes.
The win gave Volkanovski a bounceback victory after suffering only the second loss of his MMA career against UFC Lightweight Champion Islam Makachev in February. Volkanovski had sought to become a two-division in that bout, but fell just short as he dropped a unanimous decision.
By defeating Rodriguez, Volkanovski proved he is still king of the 145-pound division. Volkanovski has all but cleaned out the featherweight class with three wins over future Hall-of-Famer Max Holloway, another victory over Jose Aldo (whose HOF indicution was confirmed on Saturday), along with unanimous-decision wins over Chang Sung Jung and Brian Ortega.
It is possible we could see Ilia Topuria rise as Volkanovski’s next opponent. The former scored a unanimous-decision win over Josh Emmet on June 24, so it would appear he and Volkanovski would be on similar timelines.
However, Volkanovski mentioned he may need surgery after Saturday night’s win, so that could put him out of action for a spell. There is also talk that he would like to have another shot at Makhachev. We’ll likely have a better idea of Volkanovski’s next move in the coming months once we know how long he’ll be out of action.
In any case, Topuria is currently ranked No. 5 according to the UFC’s rankings, which have Rodriguez No .1, Holloway No. 2, Ortega No. 3 and Arnold Allen at No. 4.
Volkanovski just beat Rodriguez. He has beaten Holloway three times and Ortega once. Allen is No. 4, but he is coming off a loss in his last fight against Holloway, thus it seems unlikely he’d get the next shot at Volkanovski.
As for Rodriguez, a match against Allen or even Topuria would seem logical, and perhaps Volkanovski waits to see what comes of another round contender scraps before he climbs back into the Octagon.
It should be an interesting few weeks as the plans for the 145-pound division take shape.
UFC 290 Attendance and Gate, Performance Bonuses
According to UFC President Dana White, who addressed the media after the event, the attendance for Saturday’s show was 19,204. The gate, for what White described as a “sold out” crowd was $9.75 million.
The Perfomance Bonuses for UFC 290 went to the following fighters.
- Fight of the Night – Alexander Pantoja def. Brandon Moreno – $50,000 apiece
- Performances of the Night 1 – $50.000 – Denise Gomes def. Yazmin Jauregui
- Performances of the Night 2 – $50,000 – Dricus Du Plessis def. Robert Whittaker
Pantoja dethroned Moreno to become the new UFC Featherweight Champion in their third meeting. Pantoja has now defeated Moreno three times.
Pantoja’s first win over Moreno came in July 2016 at The Ultimate Fighter Season 24 finale. The Brazilian defeated Moreno again at UFC Fight Night 129.
Gomes scored an amazing 20-second first-round finish. Quite honestly, it could have been stopped sooner.
Du Plessis seemed to set up a shot at UFC Middleweight Champion, Israel Adesanya with a TKO win over former champion Robert Whittaker. Adesanya came into the Octagon for a confrontation with Du Plessis. There is some real life tension between the two that the UFC seems likely to lean into as we move toward an inevitable clash.
UFC 290 Results
- (c) Alexander Volkanovski def. Yair Rodriguez via TKO (R3, 4:19)
- Alexandre Pantoja def. (c) Brandon Moreno via split decision 48-47×2, 46-49)
- Dricus Du Plessis def. Robert Whittaker via TKO (R2, 2:23)
- Dan Hooker def. Jalin Turner via split decision (29-28 x2, 28-29)
- Bo Nickal def. Val Woodburn via first-round TKO (0:38)
- Robbie Lawler def. Niko Price via first-round KO (0:38)
- Tatsuro Taira def. Edgar Chairez via unanimous decision (29-27 x3)
- Denise Gomes def. Yazmin Jauregui via first-round TKO (0:20)
- Alonzo Menifield def. Jimmy Crute via submission (guillotine) (R2, 1:55)
- Vitor Petrino def. Marcin Prachnio via submission (arm triangle) (R3, 3:42)
- Cameron Saaiman def. Terrence Mitchell via first-round TKO (3:10)
- Jesus Aguilar def. Shannon Ross via first-round knockout (0:17)
- Esteban Ribovics def. Kamuela Kirk via unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
The UFC is back at it on July 15. Former bantamweight champion Holly Holm faces Mayra Buena Silva in the main event of a Fight Night card from the Apex in Las Vegas.
Look for coverage of the event during fight week and after the event has ended.