Fight Stat Wrap: TUF 28 Finale
Fight Stat Wrap: TUF 28 Finale

This article is part of our Fight Stat Wrap series.

Kamaru Usman had a big night at the TUF 28 Finale. He picked up one of the biggest wins of his career against a former UFC champion, and he set the highest DraftKings score of the entire year. Also on the main card, the promotion determined the two most recent reality show winners. 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.

Kamaru Usman sets highest DraftKings score of 2018 against Rafael dos Anjos

For the second fight in a row, Dos Anjos found himself facing off against a fighter who wanted to control him along the fence and on the ground. Usman made it a point to press the action in the clinch, where he outlaned Dos Anjos 33 to 22 on significant strikes, and the ground, where he huge advantage (49 to five). As the fight wore on, that pounding took a toll, and Usman was able to flex some distance striking. In the final two rounds, he outlanded the former lightweight champion 25 to seven. Obviously, the approach to fighting for Usman will always include a wrestling-centric approach. However, in this fight, he showed that he can use that strategy to open up other aspects of his game as well.

Thanks partially to his wrestling, Usman put up the highest DraftKings score of the entire year. He earned players 176 points thanks to 12 takedowns, seven passes, 130 significant strikes and the 30-point decision-win bonus. He eclipsed the Tatiana Suarez, who scored 173 points versus Carla Esparza, for the highest score of 2018

Juan Espino wins heavyweight TUF tournament over Justin Frazier

On the reality show, Frazier knocked off one international wrestler, but he could not make lightning strike again in the finale. Espino dominated the fight with his wrestling and top-position grappling. He landed two takedowns, four passes and added 17 significant ground strikes on the ground. Frazier landed only four significant strikes before submitting in less than four minutes.

Espino came into this fight as a slight favorite, and he well exceeded those expectations. He had the second-highest DraftKings score of the night. He finished with 123 points, which would have been the highest score on most cards.

Macy Chiasson takes 145-pound TUF crown against Pannie Kianzad

Chiasson clearly wanted this fight on the ground. Despite what appeared to be a size advantage, she failed on all six of her takedown attempts. However, in the second round, she put the fight on the floor with a knockdown and then finished via submission. In the frame, she outlanded Kianzad 12 to five on significant strikes. Chiasson finished her run through the TUF tournament with a pair of knockouts and a submission. The 145-pound women's division is wide open, so she should receive some significant opportunities despite only holding a 3-0 professional record.

The TUF winner earned DFS players 98 points for her second round finish. On a night with six first-round finishes and a dominant five-round performance, she still managed to score the seventh highest score of the night.

Pedro Munhoz comes out on top of brawl with Bryan Caraway

Caraway came into this fight with his hands down, and he was looking to land power shots. He landed 20 significant strikes. However, the strategy made him an easy target for Munhoz. He landed 60 percent of his significant strike attempts, which was well above his career average. About halfway through the first round, Munhoz landed a kick to the body, which was only one of his two landed significant body strikes. It hurt Caraway, who dropped to the ground in pain. Munhoz continued to throw and the fight was over.

With 117.5 DraftKings points, Munhoz finished with the third-highest score of the night. He closed as the second-highest betting favorite on the main card, and he certainly came through for DFS players.

Edmen Shahbazyan hangs on for win over Darren Stewart

Coming into this fight, Shahbazyan had finished all seven of his opponents in the first round. However, none of those fights were in the UFC. In this bout, he needed to hang onto the victory in the third round. In the first two frames, he landed 21 significant strikes and nearly finished Stewart. However, he was mostly spent in the final round and managed to land only one significant strikes. Stewart outlanded him 21 to one on significant strikes in the final round.He went to his wrestling to hold on and landed four of his seven attempts in the third. This should be a wake up call for the prospect, but he did enough to win in the end.

Shahbazyan was on the way to a very high DraftKings score before running out of gas in the final round. He still finished with 90 points, which was the 10th highest score of the night.

Antonina Shevchenko flexes striking skill against Ji Yeon Kim

This was a battle between two different levels of strikers, and it showed. Both fighters threw similar number of significant strikes. Shevchenko attempted 134, while Kim attempted 128. However, Shevchenko landed 66 significant strikes (49 percent), while Kim only landed 33 (25 percent). Some fans might have expected more from Shevchenko, but this was an entirely one-sided fight.

While the fight was a wash out, she did not really do anything outstanding on the stat sheet. She ended up earning players only 76 points on DraftKings, which was the second-lowest score among winning fighters on the night.

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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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