The lightweight tilt went down during the UFC 274 main card featured bout. The first round featured “El Cucuy” hurting Chandler on the feet before Chandler took the fight to the mat. And in the second frame, Chandler landed a thunderous kick to Ferguson’s face, knocking the UFC veteran out cold.
With the win, Chandler snapped his two-fight losing streak. The former multiple-time Bellator lightweight champion is now 2-2 in this UFC, and he improved his professional mixed martial arts record to 23-7. He entered the Octagon as the No. 5-ranked 155 pounder, as per the official UFC rankings, and when the rankings update next week, he’ll remain at the top of the division.
On the other end, Ferguson’s slide down the lightweight ladder continues. Ferguson, who once boasted a 12-fight win streak, is now 0-4 in his last four UFC appearances. El Cucuy’s record fell to 25-7 and although he’s currently ranked No. 7, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Ferguson drop a few spots come Tuesday.
Although he’s on a tough losing streak, UFC president Dana White confirmed to MMA Underground’s John Morgan during fight week that Ferguson’s job wasn’t on the line.
“You’re still talking about No. 5 vs. No. 7 in the nastiest division in the sport,” White said via Sherdog.com. “So if you look at who they’ve lost to, it’s all the best in the world. These guys always bring it. They always come to fight. Nobody’s fighting for their life in this one.”
Twitter Reacts to the UFC 274 Featured Bout
Here are some of the best reactions to the fight from the MMA community:
“Morning Kombat” duo Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell reacted live:
UFC No. 3-ranked lightweight contender Islam Makhachev wrote “EL CUCUY IS BACK” but after he was knocked out, the Dagestani shared a face-palm emoji.
The official UFC Twitter account wrote: “WHAT. JUST. HAPPENED!!!!!!!!!!”
Yahoo Sport’s Kevin Iole tweeted: “It was like Chandler was punting a football. Right up the middle and hit Tony on the chin. Unreal.”
Former Bellator and ONE welterweight champion Ben Askren tweeted: “Holy Hell!!!!”
MMA Fighting’s Jose Young tweeted: “Michael Chandler just scored the knockout of the year with a head kick KO of Tony Ferguson.”
Twitter Reactions Continue
MMA reporter Ariel Helwani tweeted: “My goodness. What a replay. Front kick to the face but like a punt or field goal. Insanity. Different than Anderson or Lyoto from back in the day. @PatMcAfeeShow would be proud.”
BJJ practitioner and mixed martial artist Dillon Danis tweeted: “wow gotta give respect where it’s due what a knockout!”
BT Sport’s Chamatkar Sandhu tweeted: “Michael Chandler just became the front runner for knockout of the year. Incredible. Brutal. Wow.”
Severe MMA’s Sean Sheehan wrote: “KO of the year debate is over.”
TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter tweeted: “Nobody has ever knocked out Tony Ferguson like that. Scary KO by Michael Chandler and I hope that Tony is okay.”