Another UFC pay-per-view (PPV) event is officially in the books, as the promotion touched down last night (Sat., June 3, 2017) inside the Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for UFC 212. The fight card produced from top to bottom, including Max Holloway capturing the UFC featherweight title with a knockout of Jose Aldo, but only a few fighters stood out among the rest. Based on degree of difficulty, divisional importance, and overall brutality, here are the biggest winners and losers from UFC 212 last night.
Biggest winner: Max Holloway
For obvious reasons, Holloway is the biggest winner from UFC 212. Not only did the Hawaiian smoke Jose Aldo in three rounds (highlights here) to claim the UFC featherweight championship, but he extended his current win streak to 11 in the process. Holloway’s TKO over Aldo is his eighth finish during the streak, which includes other stoppages over Anthony Pettis and Cub Swanson.
Outside of the shiny gold belt Holloway hoisted above his head at UFC 212, the 25-year-old inched closer towards eventually headlining UFC’s inaugural event in Hawaii. Now that “Blessed” is champion, there’s more push for him to compete on home soil. Holloway will also benefit from bigger paydays and an eventual featherweight title defense, which will most likely come against Frankie Edgar.
Now that he has dismantled the almighty Aldo, Holloway will get his wish to takeover the 145-pound crop. He has excelled every time he’s stepped inside of the Octagon and may be on the cusp of breaking out as a star.
Runner up: Claudia Gadelha
Gadelha is going to have to do a little more than defeating Karolina Kowalkiewicz at UFC 212 to warrant a trilogy fight with women’s strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk, but it’s a good start. Kowalkiewicz is clearly the second-best option in that division, yet Gadelha ran through her like a knife to butter en route to a first-round submission win (highlights here).
If Gadelha can continue to improve her game under new head coach Chris Luttrell, she’ll surely get back into position to challenge for a title. Her performance at UFC 212 was extremely dominant and in any other divisional scenario would be enough to catapult the Brazilian into a showdown with the champ.
Biggest losers: Jose Aldo, Marlon Moraes
First up is Aldo. After coming back from a 13-second knockout loss to Conor McGregor by defeating Frankie Edgar at UFC 200 to claim the vacant featherweight crown, the legendary Brazilian champion couldn’t last long enough opposite Holloway in front of his home crowd.
Aldo certainly landed his fair share of explosive offense, but he wasn’t able to adapt the same way that “Blessed” did in Rounds 2 and 3. It is Aldo’s second knockout loss in three fights and an example of a division evolving around its king. Hopefully Aldo can regain form his next time out and make one last run at UFC gold.
The second biggest loser from UFC 212 has to be Moraes. The former WSOF bantamweight champion was supposed to excel on arrival when he signed with the promotion earlier this year, yet struggled against Raphael Assuncao on the preliminary card. Assuncao is one of the best fighters at 135 pounds, but a debuting loss is not what Moraes wanted when trying to get a UFC title.
For complete UFC 212 results and coverage click here.