The UFC lightweight title was formally relinquished when Bruce Buffer announced Charles Oliveira’s name. That was due to him not making weight during fight week. Oliveira didn’t seem to mind at all, instead looked like a man on a mission versus Justin Gaethje.
Oliveira is now the top contender for the UFC lightweight belt after his victory.
As expected, the fight got underway quickly. Gaethje did knock Oliveira down a couple times with strong blows, but Oliveira recovered. Oliveira eventually downed Gaethje with a few huge blows of his own. Oliveira was bleeding from the eye and straining to dodge Gaethje’s shots at initially.
He also attempted to willingly lower Gaethje to the floor, but Gaethje refused.
Oliveira eventually knocked Gaethje out with a punch. He then proceeded to the back of Gaethje, as he had done previously. He finally got Gaethje with a rear-naked choke after many submit attempts, sending the fans into a frenzy.
Oliveira now has an eleven-fight winning run, with six of those victories coming via submission.
Oliveira now gets a chance to fight for the UFC lightweight title again. Michael Chandler, who knocked out Tony Ferguson earlier in the night, is one of the prospective challengers he could face. There’s also Conor McGregor and Islam Makhachev.
Carla Esparza defeated Rose Namajunas 2-0 in the co-main event to reclaim the UFC strawweight title. Esparza regained the championship she lost almost seven years ago in a battle that was ultimately devoid of action. She now has a six-fight winning run, while Namajunas’ three-fight winning streak has ended.
Carla Esparza def. Rose Namajunas via split decision (47-48, 49-46, 48-47), regains the UFC strawweight title
Michael Chandler obliterates Tony Ferguson in round two
11:40 p.m. ET – A front leg kick from hell drops Tony Ferguson and the fight is over.