This article is part of our Fight Stat Wrap series.
The anticipated lightweight match between Justin Gaethje and Edson Barboza lived up to the hype. It wasn't the longest fight, but it was certainly a memorable brawl. Outside of the top-two fights, the card was rather pedestrian. However, there were still interesting statistical occurrences across the main card. 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 UFCStats.com.
In order for him to have been successful, Barboza needed to get to his leg kicking offense early. He tried, but he was not able to establish it. Not only was Gaethje able to walk him down, but the former wrestler also went to the clinch to stall Barboza's leg kick game. In the clinch, he landed eight of his 20 significant strikes and set the tone for the fight. In the end, he outlanded Barboza 13 to six on significant head strikes, scored a knockdown and finished the fight in the first round.
This was Gaethje fifth UFC fight, which means that he is now eligible for UFC records. He now holds the record for the highest career significant strikes landed per minute rate in history. His SLpM currently stands at 8.50. The previous record holder was Leslie Smith, whose career rate is 7.56.
Gaethje finished with the second-highest score on DraftKings on the card. His 110 points was behind only the 117.5 registered by Desmond Green on the undercard. Gaethje's level of activity and newly found finishing ability should make him a fighter to consider in all DraftKings games.
Hermansson needed only 49 seconds to submit Branch with a guillotine choke. With the stoppage, he now has the fifth fastest submission in a UFC middleweight fight. Not only did he score the fast submission, but he also absorbed only a single significant strike. He has now absorbed only 13 significant strikes in his last three fights. In his UFC career, he has only allowed his opponents to land 1.77 significant strikes per minute, which is one of the best rates in the middleweight division.
With 99.5 points on DraftKings, Hermansson finished with the fourth highest score of the night. He was one of only three fighters to score a first round finish on the card. Since going to decision in his UFC debut, all of his UFC victories have come via stoppage.
Neither fighter was really able to establish range in this fight. Emmett finished with 25 percent striking accuracy while Johnson landed 18 percent of his attempts. However, in the end, Emmett landed the power shot that he needed to finish the fight. He landed only seven significant head strikes in the 14-plus minute fight. Against Johnson, he only needed one.
The final striking stats were relatively close, but this fight belonged to Waterson. In the second and third rounds she scored takedowns and enough via position to take the rounds. For the fight, Waterson outlanded Kowalkiewicz 64 to 57 on significant strikes. The biggest divergence came in terms of head strikes where she has the advantage 25 to 16.
Waterson finished with 75 points on DraftKings, which was slightly below average for winning fighters on the night (82).
Not only did Craig score the submission in the final minute of the fight, but he also did so after going one for 16 on his takedown attempts and not registering a pass. Nzechukwu outlanded Craig 40 to 25 on significant strikes, and he defended well on the ground until the end. For his UFC career, Craig has landed only 1.91 significant strikes per minute, but he has now scored three submission victories.
Craig earned players 67.5 points on DraftKings. Outside of his 25 significant strikes and the third round finish bonus, he also scored points via a takedown and a reversal.
Yusuff had strong opening and closing rounds against Moraes to take the decision. In those two rounds, he outlanded his opponents 56 to 34. For the fight overall, Yusuff did a good job diversifying his targets. He landed 32 significant strikes to the head, 25 to the body and 16 to the leg. Moraes is normally a solid leg kicker, but he only managed to land seven in the 15 minute fight.
On the DFS front, Yusuff earned players 79.5 points on DraftKings. In his UFC debut, he showed off game-changing power. However, going into this fight, it should have been clear to players that he was taking a step up in competition.