Gaethje dominates Ferguson to win interim belt at UFC 249

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher 

There is a new interim UFC Lightweight Champion. Justin Gaethje defeated Tony Ferguson in the main event of UFC 249 at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida. 

Gaethje dominated the fight that surprisingly went five rounds. It would have nearly went the distance, but Herb Dean stopped the fight late in the final round. 

UFC fighter Justin Gaethje looks on during his fight against Eddie Alvarez at UFC 218
Justin Gaethje looks on during his fight against Eddie Alvarez at UFC 218 (Getty Images)

Ferguson appeared to be staggering late in the fight. Dean saw that Ferguson may be in trouble and stopped the fight. 

Following the fight, Gaethje threw down interim belt. He said he wanted the real thing. 

The UFC will likely attempt to book Gaethje vs. champion Khabib Nurmagomedov later in the year. Nurmagomedov was originally scheduled to fight Ferguson in this bout, but due to the global coronavirus pandemic, he was not granted access to leave Russia.

UFC President Dana White then gave Gaethje the opportunity with a five week camp. This fight was initially supposed to happen in April in New York. 

However, due to the coronavirus, the event took place in Florida, as they have lessened the restrictions in the state unlike other states being stricter than others.

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

With the win, the 31-year-old Stafford, Arizona native improved to 22-2 in his career. With the win over Ferguson, he has now won four straight bouts.

In fact, all four of these wins have come via the knockout. Nineteen of his wins in his career have come via knockout.

This was the first-time in Gaethje’s career that he has went into the fifth-round. Bouts that are scheduled to go five rounds are only for the championship.

The 36-year-old Oxnard, California native suffered just his fourth loss in his career. In fact. This loss was his first in nearly eight years, as he lost to Michael Johnson on May 5, 2012.

The loss has dropped Ferguson to 25-4 in his career. His 12-fight win streak was snapped with this loss.

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