On the main card of UFC 274, we saw matchup that fight fans have wanted to see for a very long time. Former interim lightweight champion Tony Ferguson (25-6) returned to the octagon he took on former title challenger Michael Chandler (22-7).
It’s been a really rough couple of years for Tony Ferguson in the UFC. After Khabib Nurmagomedov was denied entry into the US during the beginning stages of covid, Ferguson lost his title shot and was given an interim title shot with Justin Gaethje.
Ferguson was stopped in that fight and that loss started a downward spiral. In his last two UFC fights, he’s been dominated by Beneil Dariush and Charles Oliveira. He was looking to recapture some of his El Cucuy magic tonight.
Michael Chandler stormed on the scene in the UFC with a knockout of Dan Hooker. Afterwards, he got a lightweight title fight against Charles Oliveira. After dominating Oliveira in the first round, Chandler was stopped early in the second.
He returned in November to face Justin Gaethje at UFC 268. After a strong opening round, Chandler was outstruck in the final two rounds and lost a decision. While he still has high stature in the division, the reality is he’s lost two in a row and needs a win.
UFC 274 Recap
The UFC 274 lightweight contest started with no touch of the gloves. Ferguson looks for a low kick and he circles around the outside. Chandler looks very poised here in the opening minute and he pops his jab. Ferguson works his way in with an awkward combination.
Big low kicks from Chandler but both were checked. Both men exchange big left hooks. Sharp hook from Ferguson and down goes Michael Chandler. Chandler pops up immediately but Ferguson stunned him bad. Ferguson stalking Chandler her.
Big shot to the body from Chandler and a nice left hook. Check left from Ferguson lands and Ferguson goes back on the pressure. Another nice left hook from Ferguson wobbles the legs of Chandler. Chandler looking to answer with power, but he’s whiffing badly.
Out of no where Chandler explodes into a double leg and slams Ferguson to the ground. Two minutes left in the round. Ferguson lands a big elbow from the bottom and Chandler is busted open. Ferguson continues to look for attacks off the bottom.
Chandler trying to land big shots, but Ferguson is defending well here. Ferguson tries to attack an arm bar, but gets blasted with a big shot from Chandler. Chandler settles into the guard after landing that big shot.
Ferguson using the fence to try and get back up. Chandler has a decent body lock and drags him back to the ground. Helluva first round at UFC 274 and I give the first to El Cucuy.
Entering the second round and despite the end of the round, momentum seems to be with Ferguson at UFC 274. Ferguson takes the center to start the second and Chandler circles on the outside. Out of no where a front kick to the face from Michael Chandler and Ferguson is out cold. Oh my god!
Michael Chandler def. Tony Ferguson by KO – Round 2