The talking stopped on December 14, 2019. That was the day UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman faced Colby Covington in the main event of UFC 245. The two men had been jabbering at each other for quite a while heading into the bout, all that stopped when the cage door closed behind the two men at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
When the bout began, Covington, who was the former interim UFC welterweight champ, was a +160 underdog to the undisputed champ, who was a -190 favorite.
There was some thought the two men, who both have solid wrestling backgrounds, would tangle on the mat. That did not happen as both men came out firing strikes and that never changed. Neither man even attempted a takedown.
Covington was the more active fighter, but Usman was the more accurate of the two. Covington landed 36 percent of his attempted significant strikes. Usman’s strikes found their target at a rate of 48 percent.
By the time the fifth round began, there was talk that Usman broke Covington’s jaw earlier in the fight. Covington was also marked up and bloodied by the strikes of the champion.
As the clock ticked below 70 seconds in the last round, Usman knocked Covington to the mat twice. Covington covered up on the mat after the second knockdown. With that, Usman teed off with ground strikes and brought the fight to an end at the 4:10 mark of the final round.
With the win, Usman successfully made the first defense of his welterweight crown. Tonight, Usman looks to make the second defense of that belt when he steps into the octagon to face Jorge Masvidal in the main event of UFC 251.
UFC 251 takes place tonight at Fight Island on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. The pay-per-view card streams on ESPN+ following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+ and early prelims on ESPN+ and UFC Fight Pass.
UFC 251 is headlined by three title fights. In the main event, welterweight champion Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal. In the co-headliner, UFC featherweight titleholder Alexander Volkanovski faces Max Holloway. The other title fight is Petr Yan vs. Jose Aldo for the vacant bantamweight crown.
Before UFC251 takes place, watch Usman score a TKO win over Covington.