Fight News: Judges help crown Jones, Joshua eyes home fight and MORE
All the latest combat news from around the fight world.
Jon Jones defended his light heavyweight title against Dominick Reyes at UFC 247 in classic fashion over the weekend. By which we mean he was gifted a decision despite looking like he had lost most of the rounds.
Reyes came out firing from the bell, pressuring Jones and outstriking him for three rounds. The high pace began to take its toll on the challenger in the fourth and Jones was able to fight his game, closing out the fight strongly.
“I feel like he hit me one out of every six times I hit him in that fifth round. That fifth round won me the fight,” said Jones afterwards, displaying an alarming ignorance of how fights are supposed to be scored.
Dana White, Joe Rogan, and nearly everyone watching disagreed with the judging. Such was the outcry that Judge Joe Soliz, who incredibly gave four rounds to Jones, took to Twitter to defend himself.
“Dominick Reyes advanced for only 9% of the fight. You cannot win a fight or a round without advancing….” Soliz wrote in a series of tweets. Much to the amusement of counter fighters the world over.
Less controversial was women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko’s one-sided victory over Katlyn Chookagian to defend her title.
Shevchenko threw a range of crisp, technical strikes to utterly outclass the challenger. By the third Chookagian was spent, allowing Shevchenko to take a crucifix position and pummel her way to the stoppage.
At One Championship: Warrior’s Code in Jakarta, Petchmorakot Petchyindee Academy was crowned the inaugural Featherweight muay thai champion, taking a decision over Pongsiri PK. Saenchaimuaythaigym.
There was a clear and present size difference between the two fighters that Pongsiri had difficulty overcoming.
Petchmorakot was able to work from range, one twoing his opponent at will and generally having a great time.
Petchyindee is now the 19th champion One Championship has crowned with 21 belts across MMA, kickboxing and muay thai.
Earlier in the night, former undefeated lightweight champion Marat Gafurov got a taste of his favourite submission at the hands of Iuri Lapicus.
Gafurov managed to wake up in time for the official announcement and looked a little embarrassed. Lapicus moved to 14 and 0 and looks to be a legit threat at lightweight.
And perennial almost contender Leandro Ataides has again missed his shot at a title fight, being beaten by Reinier de Ridder in a bloody affair.
It was Leandro’s first fight since May 2018 but he was unable to deal with the taller man’s pressure. De Ridder took the bout in a unanimous decision.
In the boxing, Eddie Hearn has announced that his number one earner, Anthony Joshua, wants his next fight to be in London, probably in June. Tottenham Hotspur’s 62,000 seat stadium is the current front runner to host the fight.
The front runner for opponent is 28 and 1 Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev, who Joshua was scheduled to fight back in 2017. That fight sold out quickly before Pulev had to pull out with a shoulder injury.
And former welterweight champion Kell Brook returned to boxing over the weekend after taking all of 2019 off. He battered Mark DeLuca to a seventh round stoppage, reasserting his status as a threat to the best in his division.
That division is now super welterweight and Brook announced his desire to meet former WBO champ, and fellow Brit, Liam Smith for a title shot eliminator later this year.
Trevin Giles going three with 24 hour replacement James Krause took deserved fight of the night honours at UFC 247. Debutant Khaos Williams and Mario Bautista went home fifty grand richer for their stoppages in the prelims.
In the boxing, Mayerlin Rivas won a vacant, Terri Harper upset champ Eva Wahlstrom, Guillermo Rigondeaux got a new title in a split decision over Liborio Solis, and Gary Russell Jr had enough to handle Tugstsogt Nayambar convincingly.
Wilfredo Mendez stopped Gabriel Mendoza, Artem Dalakian stayed undefeated with a decision over Josber Perez, and Mary McGee did Deanha Hobbs in the 8th to retain her belt.