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Recap of UFC 287 in Miami


UFC 287 is in the books and the main card ended with a bang…literally. In a rematch for the middleweight championship, Defending champion Alex Pereira was trying to defeat challenger and former champion Israel Adesayna for a fourth straight time, the first two victories in kickboxing and then winning the middleweight title a few months back in the UFC.

Before we get to that main event, here’s a rundown of the other fights that took place on the main card beginning with the opening bout.

Raul Rosas Jr. vs. Christian Rodriguez

This was a perfect example of fighter hype backfiring. All the rage was about the 18-year-old Rosas Jr. how great he was going to be and came into this bout with a perfect 7-0 record. As he entered the Octagon full of confidence and came out for round one like a bat out of hell, Rosas Jr. was overconfident and took Rodriguez lightly. After surviving the opening round onslaught, Rodriguez took Rosas Jr. to school. He gave him an education in MMA winning the ground game and using excellent ground and pound over the final two rounds to win by unanimous decision. Rodriguez only has one loss on his record and set back Rosas Jr.’s rise to stardom back a notch.

Kevin Holland vs. Santiago Ponzinibbio. Holland has nine losses on his record and Ponzinibbio has seven. But both are solid fighters and were evenly matched. But Holland is a slick tricky fighter and proved to be just a bit much for Ponzinibbio who was knocked out in round three.

Rob Font vs. Adrian Yanez

Font landed the punch of the night. It’s not even close to trying to find any fighter on the entire card who may have hit their opponent harder than Font. This might even rival any other fight for the punch of the year. It happened in round one and Font nearly took the head off of Yanez as the referee stopped the bout after that punch landed and Yanez went down.

Gilbert Burns vs. Jorge Masvidal

I knew going into this bout Masvidal didn’t stand a chance. By unanimous decision, Burns put Masvidal into retirement. In my opinion, Masvidal is one of the most overrated fights in UFC history. He has 17 losses in his career with his biggest victories coming in a five-second knockout of Ben Askren who proved to be nothing more than a journeyman fighter. Then there was the knockout of Darren Till who has been a very questionable fighter. Sure he beat Nate Diaz, but Diaz who bleeds easily could have won that fight if not for the cuts. Consider this, Masvidal with the loss here lost his last four fights. Between the three victories he had just mentioned, Masvidal lost to Stephen Thompson, Damian Maia, Lorenz Larkin, Al Iaquinta, Gilbert Melendez, and Raphael Assuncao all excellent fighters.

Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira

The main event was intriguing. Many were saying Pereira was Adesanya’s boogeyman. Having knocked him out twice before it was believed that Pereira was going to do it again. Before the fight, my gut said Adesanya was going to win back his title. Then before the first round began, Pereira looked so intimidating that I began to think otherwise. But Israel Adesanya put on one his finest performances ever and then drew Pereira in close for some striking exchanges and his own words played “Possom.” It worked perfectly as the former champion threw two punches to the jaw and temple of the current champ that put rendered him unconscious. A final hammer punch sealed the deal but Pereira was already out cold. Dana White says the now-former champion may move up to 205 but what about the former champion who is champion once again? He’s wiped out the middleweight division so who could he possibly fight next? There is nothing for him to prove in his division so perhaps he will just settle for trying to record the most title defenses in history.

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About the author

Harv Aronson

Harv Aronson was born and raised in Pittsburgh but now lives in Florida with his beautiful wife Melissa.

Harv currently writes for Abstract Sports, the Sports History Network, and the magazine Gridiron Greats. Harv wrote the published book "Pro Football's Most Passionate Fans" and as a professional writer has had articles published in an array of sports publications.

Harv loves all sports but football and baseball are at the top of his interest. His passion is for sports history. You can also watch Harv’s videos on his YouTube channel “Total Sports Recall.”

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