By the Numbers: UFC 254

By: Tristen Critchfield
Oct 24, 2020

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Khabib Nurmagomedov is simply on a different level than the rest of the lightweight division.

“The Eagle” improved to 29-0 in his mixed martial arts career with a second-round submission of interim title holder Justin Gaethje in the UFC 254 headliner at the Flash Forum in Abu Dhabi on Saturday. While many anticipated that Nurmagomedov would pursue a 30-0 career mark before calling it a career, the reigning lightweight king laid his gloves down and announced his retirement in the Octagon after the victory, keeping a promise he made to his mother before the event.

Here is a by-the-numbers look at UFC 254, with statistics courtesy of UFCStats.com.

13: Consecutive victories for Nurmagomedov, tying him with Jon Jones, Georges St. Pierre, Demetrious Johnson and Max Holloway for the second-longest winning streak in UFC history. Former middleweight champion Anderson Silva still has the longest winning streak in promotion history with 16 straight triumphs.

4: Victories in lightweight title fights for Nurmagomedov, tying him with Benson Henderson and B.J. Penn for the most in the history of the division.

3: UFC title fights that have ended via triangle choke after Nurmagomedov rendered Gaethje unconscious with the maneuver. The other two: Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen (UFC 117) and Tony Ferguson vs. Kevin Lee (UFC 216).

3,200: Days since Nurmagomedov’s Octagon debut, a third-round submission victory over Kamal Shalorus at UFC on FX on Jan. 20, 2012.

29: Significant strikes landed by Gaethje, who connected on 64 percent of his attempts in abbreviated bout. Nurmagomedov landed 26 significant strikes at a 32 percent success rate.

15: Significant leg strikes landed by Gaethje. Nurmagomedov, meanwhile, landed just one.

2: Takedowns landed in three attempts for Nurmagomedov. That gives him 61 takedowns landed over the course of his UFC career, tying him with Johny Hendricks and Colby Covington for the eighth most in promotion history.

69: Significant strikes landed by Robert Whittaker in a hard-fought three-round verdict over Jared Cannonier in the middleweight co-main event. By comparison, Cannonier landed 53. Whittaker outlanded his adversary 25 to 19 in Round 1, 27 to 24 in Round 2 and 17 to 10 in Round 3. Whittaker also held a 75-to-58 advantage in total strikes landed.

59: Significant head strikes landed by Whittaker. Cannonier, meanwhile, landed 17 significant strikes to the head.

22: Significant leg strikes for Cannonier, who reddened his opponent’s lead leg with a steady diet of kicks throughout the contest. Whittaker landed just five leg kicks.

7: Finishes in UFC history stemming from a front kick. Alexander Volkov became the seventh when he utilized a front kick to the gut and follow-up punches to stop Walt Harris 1:15 into the second stanza of their main-card heavyweight bout. It’s also the second body kick finish in UFC heavyweight history, joining Alistar Overeem’s win against Brock Lesnar at UFC 141.

29: Significant strike advantage for Volkov, who outlanded Harris 39 to 15 in Round 1 and 6 to 1 in Round two. The Russian landed 45 of 73 attempts for a sparkling 61 percent success rate.

11: Significant body strikes landed by Volkov.

0:18: Time of Phil Hawes’ stoppage of fellow Octagon newcomer Jacob Malkoun. That’s the second-fastest finish for a middleweight debutante in UFC history. Mark Weir, who knocked out Eugene Jackson in 10 seconds at UFC 38, holds the record for the fastest debut finish at 185 pounds. It also ties Hawes with Phil Baroni (UFC 39 vs. Dave Menne) for the fifth fastest finish in the history of the middleweight division.

4: Straight victories for Lauren Murphy, the second-longest active winning streak in the women’s flyweight division behind only reigning champion Valentina Shevchenko (five). Murphy dispatched short-notice opponent Liliya Shakirova with a rear-naked choke in the second round of their featured 125-pound matchup.

1: Submission triumph among 14 career victories for Murphy. The Houston native previously owned eight wins via KO/TKO and five by submission before tapping out Shakirova.

131: Minutes in the Octagon without even a submission attempt for Murphy prior to UFC 254.

5: Consecutive victories for Magomed Ankalaev, the longest active winning streak in the UFC’s light heavyweight division. Ankalaev knocked out Ion Cutelaba in a rematch of a controversial February bout in a featured matchup at UFC 254. The 26-year-old Dagestani has finished four of five opponents during that stretch by KO or TKO.

2: Knockdowns landed by Ankalaev, bringing his career total in UFC competition to five.

1-5: Record for Stefan Struve in his last six Octagon appearances. “Skyscraper” was knocked out by Tai Tuivasa 4:59 into the opening stanza of their preliminary heavyweight scrap on Saturday. Tuivasa snapped a three-bout skid in victory.

136: Significant strikes landed by Nathaniel Wood against Casey Kenney, a UFC best for the Englishman known as “The Prospect.” Although Kenney landed 123 significant strikes, the Legacy Fighting Alliance veteran emerged with a unanimous decision triumph over Wood.

57: Significant leg strikes landed by Wood, the fourth most ever in a three-round UFC bout, regardless of weight class. Wood also holds the No. 3 spot for landing 58 leg kicks in a three-round verdict over John Castaneda at UFC on ESPN 14 on July 25. Kenney, meanwhile, landed 24 significant leg strikes.

3: Fighters in UFC history to land 50 or more leg kicks in a fight on two separate occasions. With his effort on Saturday, Wood joined Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Alexander Volkanovski as the only athletes to accomplish that feat.

17: Unofficial media scorecards, of the 21 tracked by MMADecisions.com, that awarded the light heavyweight showdown between Sam Alvey and Da Un Jung to Alvey. However the cageside judges could not come to a consensus: David Lethaby submitted a 29-28 tally for Alvey, Darryl Ransom had it 29-28 for Jung and Ben Cartlidge saw it 28-28 — making the official result a split draw.

79: Combined significant strikes landed by Miranda Maverick (49) and Liana Jojua (30) in the opening round of their flyweight tilt. An elbow from Maverick opened a nasty gash on the bridge of Jojua’s nose, which resulted in a doctor stoppage after five furious minutes.

16: Career submission triumphs among 18 professional victories for Joel Alvarez after the Spaniard used an armbar to tap Alexander Yakovlev 3:00 into the opening stanza of their preliminary lightweight clash. It was only the second victory via armbar for “El Fenomeno.” Advertisement
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