Israel Adesanya got the main stage, and after defeating a legend, he moved himself one step closer to title contention.
“The Last Stylebender” earned a unanimous decision victory over Anderson Silva in the UFC 234 headliner at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia on Saturday night, raising his gaudy career mark to 16-0. It wasn’t the showcase performance some expected, but credit Silva for showcasing some veteran’s guile to keep the fight competitive. Nonetheless, Adesanya got the better of the battle between two flamboyant strikers to continue his ascent in the middleweight division.
Here is a by-the-numbers look at UFC 234, with statistics courtesy of UFCStats.com.
0: Official title defenses for Robert Whittaker since being promoted to middleweight champion following his interim title win over Yoel Romero at UFC 213 on July 8, 2017. His only fight since then was a split-decision victory in a rematch with Romero at UFC 225 this past June. That bout was a non-title fight due to Romero missing weight. Whittaker pulled out of Saturday’s headliner against Kelvin Gastelum to undergo surgery for a hernia.
5: Consecutive victories for Adesanya, tying him with Antonio Carlos Jr. for the second longest active winning streak in the middleweight division. Whittaker is No. 1 with eight straight wins.
34: Significant strikes by which Adesanya outlanded Silva. Adesanya outlanded his opponent 20 to 6 in round one and 25 to 5 in round three, while both middleweights landed 20 significant strikes in the second stanza.
29: Significant leg strikes landed by Adesanya. By comparison, Silva landed seven.
1,470: Days since Anderson Silva last headlined a pay-per-view card. At UFC 183, “The Spider” took a five-round verdict over Nick Diaz in Las Vegas on Jan. 31, 2015. However, the bout was overturned to a no contest when Silva failed a drug test in relation to the fight.
9: Takedowns, in nine attempts, successfully defended by Ricky Simon in a unanimous decision victory at bantamweight against Rani Yahya. Simon, meanwhile, landed four of his five attempts.
2: Knockdowns landed by Simon in the opening round of the bout.
3: Consecutive victories for Montana De La Rosa, tying her with Jessica Eye for the longest active winning streak in the women’s flyweight division. De La Rosa submitted Nadia Kassem with an armbar 2:37 into the second round of their featured 125-pound bout at UFC 234. De La Rosa’s three finishes are also the most in the history of the young division.
64: Total strikes by which De La Rosa outlanded Kassem.
4: Consecutive first-round KO/TKO finishes — including two in UFC competition — for Devonte Smith, who earned a technical knockout victory win over Dong Hyun Ma at the 3:53 mark of round one in their preliminary lightweight bout on Saturday. Overall, Smith has earned nine of his 10 career triumphs by KO or TKO.
120: Significant strikes landed by Shane Young, 43 more than opponent Austin Arnett. Young punctuated his decision victory in featherweight bout with a knockdown in the waning moments of the third round.
12: Unofficial media scorecards, of the 19 tracked by MMADecisions.com, that awarded the flyweight clash between Kai Kara-France and Raulian Paiva to Paiva. Cageside judges Derek Cleary and Christopher Shen submitted 29-28 scorecards in favor of Kara-France, resulting in a split-decision triumph for the Auckland, New Zealand, native.
67: Significant strikes landed by Paiva. By comparison, Kara-France landed 58. Paiva outlanded his foe 16 to 12 in round one, 25 to 21 in round two, and 26 to 25 in round three. Kara-France, meanwhile, landed the only two takedowns of the fight.
11: Career submission victories — among 15 total triumphs — for Kyung Ho Kang following his first-round rear-naked choke of Teruto Ishihara in a preliminary bantamweight bout. Three of Kang’s four UFC wins have come via tap out.