UFC Fight Night 90 kicked off the first of three nights of live events for the Ultimate Fighting Championship on Thursday night, marking the biggest week of fights in the promotion’s history.
Capping off the promotion’s first live fight event of the week, UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos put his belt on the line for just the second time since taking it from Anthony Pettis early last year. He entered the Octagon as the champion, but left without the belt.
Second ranked Eddie Alvarez ended dos Anjos’ title reign with a counter right hand and a flurry of strikes in the first round of the UFC Fight Night 90 main event.
Dos Anjos pressured Alvarez and was having success until a perfectly placed right hand got through the Brazilian’s defense. Dos Anjos was staggered and badly hurt. Alvarez turned up the heat and continued to land heavy shots. Dos Anjos miraculously stayed on his feet, but the referee had seen enough after a flurry of punches and consecutive uppercuts by Alvarez.
“This doesn’t have anything to do with me. This has everything to do with my friends, my family, my trainers and training partners and my wife and kids. I love you guys,” said the newly crowned champion following the fight.
“He’s was the champion. Rafael is resilient. I had him hurt. I had to empty the gas tank and let it go,” said Alvarez about the finish. “That’s the old me. I told you, don’t bring the dog out. Don’t bring the dog out in me!”