This article is part of our Fight Stat Wrap series.
UFC 205 was the latest show to be promoted as the biggest event in company history. It ended up being a quality show with a few very good fights and some wild finishes. 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.
Conor McGregor styles on Eddie Alvarez
As he is known to do, McGregor thoroughly dominated Alvarez. In his title second title-claiming victory, the Irishman became only the third fighter in UFC history to earn three knockdowns in a fight twice. The only others are Anderson Silva and John Lineker, per Michael Carroll of FightMetric. While it sounds ridiculous to say that McGregor was at all conservative, he did land 3.97 significant strikes per minute. That number is actually the second lowest output of his UFC career.
McGregor's more measured approach paid off on the defensive side, as Alvarez only managed to land 1.12 significant strikes per minute. The former champion's only real chance was landing a huge haymaker, and McGregor controlled the distance and easily took that away. To put this in perspective, McGregor absorbed 8.37 and 6.64 per minute in two fights against Nate Diaz.
Tyron Woodley blazes his own trail against Stephen Thompson
This was an entirely boom-or-bust fight for Woodley. In rounds one and four, he outlanded Thompson in terms of significant strikes, 41 to six. The fourth round was clearly his best, as he nearly finished via knockout and submission. In the other three rounds, Thompson had the edge 37 to 20. A lot has been made about Woodley's strategy in the fight. On the feet, he appeared to be at a sizable disadvantage, but he only attempted one takedown in the 25-minute fight. Despite coming from a wrestling background, Woodley has not relied on his wrestling in the UFC. In his prior eight fights inside the Octagon, he had only landed one takedown.
Following the bout, it was originally announced that Woodley had won via split decision. However, since two of the scorecards were even, it was correctly declared majority draw. As odd as that may seem, fighters winning majority draws is not entirely unheard of in MMA. For example, back in 2000, Dan Henderson handed Renato "Babalu" Sobral his first defeat in a Rings bout where two judges scored it a draw. Furthermore, "Bigfoot" Silva once fought Mark Hunt to a majority draw back in Dec. 2013.
Joanna Jædrzejczyk continues her striking domination against Karolina Kowalkiewicz
Outside of the fourth round when Kowalkiewicz landed some hard strikes, Jædrzejczyk was her normal dominant self. She finished with a 171 landed significant strikes, and absorbed only 50. The champion has been seemingly untouchable in the UFC.
The strawweight champion's per-minute striking differential properly highlights her dominance. Striking differential is simply a fighter's significant strikes landed per minute minus his/her significant strikes absorbed per minute. At 4.20, Jædrzejczyk is head and shoulders above the rest of the ranked strawweights. The second best differential is Jessica Andrade with 2.46.
Yoel Romero owns the third round against Chris Weidman
Romero turned it on in round three and scored a highlight-reel knockout over the former middleweight champion. In his eight-fight UFC career, Romero has scored five third-round knockouts, so waiting until the end is likely part of his strategy. While Romero could be looking for the late finish, his striking volume does not appreciably increase over the course of the fight. In the UFC, he has averaged 14 significant strikes in first rounds, 11.14 in second rounds and 15.43 in third rounds.
From a fantasy perspective, players should consider that while Romero regularly scores knockouts, those knockouts come in the later rounds, which under the new scoring rules means fewer points. He also does not seem to be concerned with volume striking, which also lowers his scoring potential. For him to return value, his price needs to be much lower than his opponent's, as was the case Saturday.
Raquel Pennington's improved accuracy leads to Miesha Tate's retirement
Tate finished her strange and noteworthy MMA career on Saturday night with a loss against Pennington. Tate reached the highest level of the sport and held both the UFC and Strikeforce women's bantamweight titles. The odd part is that she was able to achieve that success without ever really having impressive stats. Her UFC/Strikeforce career StrikeScore is 47, which is well below any other ranked fighter in the UFC (the average StrikeScore is around 150). In 17 fights for UFC/Strikeforce, she was outlanded 10 times.
Pennington likes to present herself as a brawler, and in some ways, she is. That being said, she has refined her striking and it has led to a four-fight winning streak. Against Holly Holm, Pennington only landed 28 percent of her signifcant strikes. In her next four fights (all wins), she has landed at least 55 percent of her significant strikes.