Fight Stat Wrap: UFC Gdansk Recap
Fight Stat Wrap: UFC Gdansk Recap

This article is part of our Fight Stat Wrap series.

The UFC returned to Poland for the first time since 2015. The card featured a main event upset, some dominant performances and even a rare submission. The following is a by-the-numbers recap that highlights the stats and milestones that stood out on the main card, with stats courtesy of FightMetric.com.

For DraftKings, the highest possible score was 569.5 points for a team composed of Darren Till, Jan Blachowicz, Brian Kelleher, Ramazan Emeev, Andre Fili and Aspen Ladd. Kelleher had the highest score of the night with 113.5. He scored points every way possible as he finished with 79 significant strikes, three passes, a takedown, a reversal, a knockdown and the third-round finish bonus.

Darren Till went headhunting against Donald Cerrone

In the main event, Till picked up the biggest win of his career and dispatched Cerrone in the first round. He outlanded Cerrone 24 to 14 on significant strikes overall. One of Till's strengths as a striker and fighter is his almost single-minded dedication to head strikes. For his career, he lands 76 percent of his significant strikes to the heads of his opponents. Against Cerrone, he took this to the extreme and landed 23 head strikes while absorbing only two.

While Till winning is not a monumental upset, the way he won was rather unexpected. The bookmakers gave him only a 27 percent chance to finish via knockout (+273). This ended up being Till's quickest knockout in the UFC and his first finish in the opening frame since 2014. In order to secure the knockout, Till had to drastically increase his effective striking output. In his four previous UFC fights, he had never landed more than 3.77 significant strikes per minute. Against Cerrone, Till upped that rate to 5.54, which is a 47-percent increase over his previous career best.

On the other hand, the knockout could be a sign of a decreased capacity for punishment for Cerrone. Over his first 33 fights in the UFC and WEC, Cerrone had been knocked out only twice. In his last four fights, he has been knocked down four times and knocked out twice.

Till finished with 112 DraftKings points. For DFS players, this win might signal a change in strategy when it comes to Till. Up until this point, he seemed happy to outpoint his opponents and take decisions. If he sticks with the more active striking style, he could become a consistent knockout threat and point scorer.

Without takedown threat, Karolina Kowalkiewicz shows what she can do against Jodie Esquibel

Kowalkiewicz is at her best when she is able to lead in a striking battle without worrying about the possibility of a takedown. That was certainly the case here. She ended out outlanding Esquibel 127 to 65 in terms of significant strikes. She dominated both at distance (95 to 57) and in the clinch (27 to 4). The American fighter attempted only one takedown, and she was unable to finish. This was only the second time that Kowalkiewicz has not allowed a takedown in the UFC. In those two fights, she has outlanded her opponents 246 to 135 on significant strikes.

The difference between the first-round finish bonus (90 points) and the decision win bonus (30 points) in DraftKings is 60 points. Since Kowalkiewicz landed 127 significant strikes (63.5) she basically had the equivalent performance of a quick stoppage. She finished with 101.5 DraftKings points, which was tied for fourth highest on the night.

Jan Blachowicz used striking to set up rare submission against Devin Clark

Per FightMetric, this was only the 12th standing rear-naked choke finish in UFC history. Blachowicz set up the finish by forcing Clark into a standing fight. In his previous two fights, Blachowicz had struggled in the wrestling department and allowed Alexander Gustafsson and Patrick Cummins to take him down a combined seven times. Against Clark, he stopped both of the takedown attempts and outlanded him 28 to 15 on the feet.

Blachowicz earned DraftKings players 94.5 points via the second-round finish bonus, 33 significant strikes, one pass and one takedown.

Oskar Piechota dominated Jonathan Wilson in all aspects

This fight was basically Piechota winning from start to finish. He outlanded Wilson in all three rounds and ended up landing 56 significant strikes while absorbing only 17. Piechota did have some trouble generating power on his ground and clinch strikes. Piechota landed 80 total strikes, but FightMetric counted only 56 as significant. The definition used for significant strikes is basically all strikes at distance (standing and not in the clinch) and power strikes on the ground and in the clinch. If he can find a way to land more power shots on the ground and in the clinch, he could be even more dominant and perhaps score the finish in his next outing.

Piechota finished with 82 DraftKings points. In addition to strikes and the decision win bonus, he also scored points with three passes, one takedown and a knockdown.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Richard Mann
Richard is a statistical MMA analyst that has appeared on ESPN MMA via Fightmetric.
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