UFC 202: What happened when Conor McGregor fought Nate Diaz for the second time?
It was the most heavily hyped re-match in UFC history. "Notorious" Conor McGregor versus Nate Dias; the man who had inflicted McGregor's first UFC defeat on him several months earlier at UFC 196.
McGregor's performance in the headliner is among the best if not the best of his entire career as he demonstrated hugely improved conditioning to go the distance in the longest fight of his career.
The fight was a topsy-turvy contest with McGregor and Diaz both inflicting some excellent punching and leg kicks. McGregor busted Diaz open badly in the fourth round which likely was the deciding factor for the judges on who would edge this encounter.
McGregor clearly won three rounds and Diaz won two. The question was how many rounds were 10-9 and were any scored 10-8? The judges' decision was majority decision in favour of McGregor, with two judges scoring the bout 48-47 in favour of the Irishman and the other 47-47. Both men embraced after the decision. They both knew they had contested a classic.
Underneath the thrilling headline bout, there were four other fights on the UFC 202 card. The co-main event was an intriguing battle at Light-Heavyweight between title contenders, Anthony Johnson and Glover Teixeira. 13 seconds later and it was all over. The pair both came out swinging but it was Johnson who caught Teixeira with a huge right uppercut that knocked the Brazilian senseless. Your winner via devastating Knockout: Anthony Johnson.
In a truly stacked card, the "Cowboy" Donald Cerrone lined up versus Rick Story. The story of the fight was Cerrone's incredible combinations being too hot for the journeyman, Story to handle.
Story survived the first but not the second as "Cowboy" viciously unleashed a crazy left hand, right hand body shot into another left before cracking Story with a stunning right high kick. That put "The Horror" down and punches finished him off. Cerrone was the winner and looked like a million bucks in victory in all honesty.
Then unknown Mike Perry stepped in as a substitute for the injured Sultan Aliev to face Hyun Gu Lim in yet another Welterweight clash on a card stacked with them. Perry upset his more experienced opponent with a couple of brutal right hooks that put the Korean down. It was quite possibly one of the best UFC debuts of all times. Perry looked like a world beater. Lim had no answer to his awesome striking.
Rounding out the main card was the fight between Tim Means and Sabah Homasi. Homasi was a veteran of the 21st season of The Ultimate Fighter show and was coming off three impressive Knockout victories as he took on Means, who had not fought since the previous December due to a failed drugs test.
It was Means who was the much more impressive combatant in this outing, however, surprisingly enough. Means looked incredibly dangerous throughout the contest as he patiently picked apart his opponent who gassed very early in the fight and had no answer to Means' deliberate approach. The finish was an extended, brutal succession of nasty looking punches, elbows and knees before the referee, Herb Dean finally ended the massacre. Means was the winner in impressive fashion.
UFC 202 was one of the greatest UFC pay per view events ever. Top to bottom, the card was superb and had truly world class striking action on display. It is no surprise the card was at the time, the most financially successful card in UFC history, with a colossal 1.65 million pay per view orders.
Published 17 Nov 2018, 00:56 IST