Fight Facts: UFC Fight Night 185

By: Jay Pettry
Feb 22, 2021

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Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and Octagon oddities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.

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TOTAL NUMBER OF UFC FIGHTS: 5,994
TOTAL NUMBER OF UFC EVENTS: 552

The Ultimate Fighting Championship staged one of the wilder fight weeks in recent memory, losing multiple bouts on fight night alone. Twelve matches made it to the station, bolstered by a myriad of knockouts throughout the night. UFC Fight Night 185 featured the all-time knockout leader position turning into a co-lead, the unusual occurrence of a former heavyweight champ getting tapped out and a rare appearance milestone for a longtime veteran.

Aim for Nine: Plenty of UFC fight cards throughout company history have seen seven bouts end by knockout, including this show and also recently occurring at UFC 245. Only five events featured eight, with none more than eight: UFC 92, UFC on Fox 7, UFC Fight Night 45, UFC 199 and UFC 128.

Bursting Out of the Gates: The first five bouts of the night ended by knockout. While the last time five consecutive bouts ended by knockout was recently at UFC 244 in 2019, and both UFC 9 and UFC Fight Night 68 contained six in a row, it is much rarer for an event to begin with five straight knockouts. This last happened at UFC 93 in 2009.

What Did You Expect? Leading up to this event, 13 of the last 15 heavyweight main events dating back to 2018 ended by knockout. Derrick Lewis continued the trend by demolishing Curtis Blaydes in the second round with an uppercut. One of the two decisions came from Lewis over fellow UFC Fight Night 185 competitor Alexey Oleynik in 2020.

He Doesn’t Believe It: Lewis’ knockout is his 12th inside the Octagon, tying the promotion’s record with Vitor Belfort. He extends his lead at heavyweight, while also notching the most in any individual weight class.

Accidentally Setting Records: The win at heavyweight was Lewis’ 16th, tying Frank Mir for the second-most in divisional history. The only man with more is Andrei Arlovski, who unsuccessfully vied for his 20th earlier on the card. Just one other fighter has 15: Junior dos Santos.

Always Bet on Black Beast: A +335 underdog against Blaydes, Lewis scored one of the biggest betting upset in a headlining match since Anthony Pettis (+345) superman punched Stephen Thompson at UFC Fight Night 148 in 2019, spanning 79 events.

For Houston: The knockout earned “The Black Beast” a “Performance of the Night” bonus for his handiwork, scoring his seventh post-fight bonus overall. Along with Travis Browne and Mark Hunt (seven each) as well as Stefan Struve (eight), he closes in on division leader Stipe Miocic (nine).

Not Just A Glass Cannon: Darrick Minner, a 37-fight veteran, earned only his third victory on the scorecards by defeating Charles Rosa. It was the first time since LFA 2 in 2017 that Minner went the distance or even reached the third round, win or lose.

Law Enforcement: By putting away Oleynik in less than two minutes with strikes, active police officer Chris Daukaus boosted his career finish rate – and knockout rate – to 91 percent. Each of his last eight wins has come by knockout within the first two rounds.

Still Fulton By Far: Oleynik entered into his 75th bout as a professional, joining a pantheon of names to cross the 75-fight threshold that includes Ikuhisa Minowa, Dan Severn, Jeremy Horn and recordholder Travis Fulton.

Near-Draw Experience: By the skin of his teeth, Phil Hawes won a majority verdict over Nassourdine Imavov. Across all majority decisions through company history, the only other to take place at 185 pounds is Matt Lindland’s win over Phil Baroni at UFC 34 in 2001.

Don’t Book Aspinall vs. Daukaus Yet: Hitting a rear-naked choke on Arlovski in Round 2, Tom Aspinall retained his 100 percent career finish rate while picking up just his second victory by tapout.

Pitbull Wranglers: Aspinall enters a category that previously held just one member that had submitted Arlovski. Josh Barnett first tapped out “The Pitbull” in 2016, also by rear-naked choke.

For the Arlovski of the Game: Albeit in a losing effort, Arlovski stepped in the UFC cage for his 34th bout. Extending his lead for the most appearances of any heavyweight, he only trails Donald Cerrone and Jim Miller overall (36 each).

By Sea, Land and Wehr: In 56 seconds, Julian Erosa put Nate Landwehr down with a flying knee to pick up the finish. There have only been six quicker flying knee knockouts throughout UFC history, with the fastest Jorge Masvidal’s over Ben Askren in five seconds.

Juice Boxed: Erosa notched his 22nd finish across 25 career wins by dispatching Landwehr. “Juicy J” evened his method of stoppage to exactly 44 percent of his victories by knockout, with another 44 percent from submissions.

Australian Thunder: Casey O'Neill made her promotional debut at the expense of Shana Dobson, picking up a knockout in the second round. The Aussie is now a perfect 6-0 as a pro, and she has scored back-to-back Round 2 knockouts.

Pay That Man His Win Bonus: Chas Skelly vs. Jamall Emmers was slated for this event at featherweight. As Skelly entered the cage, the commission informed the promotion that Emmers suffered back spasms and was pulled from the match minutes before his walkout. This is not the first time a match has been scratched when a fighter was in the cage, as Royce Gracie and Harold Howard were both inside the Octagon at UFC 3 before Gracie’s corner called it off.

That Young 33-Year-Old Prospect: Bouncing back from a lengthy layoff and a pair of defeats, Aiemann Zahabi smashed Drako Rodriguez in the first round. The Tristar Gym product lifted his career finish rate to 87 percent with a win, and all of his stoppages have come in the first round.

Exit, Pursued by a Bear: Late into the second stanza, Moldova’s Sergey Spivak pounded out Jared Vanderaa to pick up the victory. “The Polar Bear” saw his career finish rate elevate to 92 percent, which had only dropped below 100 percent due to his last triumph going the distance against Carlos Felipe.

Never Say Never Again: Coming into UFC Fight Night 185, Ketlen Vieira has never lost on the scorecards (12 fights), Aspinall (11 fights) and O’Neill (five fights) had never competed in the U.S. and Vanderaa had never been knocked out (15 fights).

The Extended LP Version: Ahead of each of his three UFC bouts, Aspinall entered to “Move on Up” by Curtis Mayfield. Not only has he won all three, but he remains the only UFC fighter on record to ever win with a song by Mayfield.

Chalk One Up for Phil Collins: For the first time in recorded UFC walkout music history, a fighter selected a song by legendary progressive rock band Genesis. Jared Gordon picked “Tonight, Tonight, Tonight” and went on to win a decision over Danny Chavez.

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