After five hard-fought rounds, Jose Aldo retained his featherweight belt in a critical bout against former lightweight champion Frankie Edgar.
In these close decisions, there are often a few key strikes or takedowns that define the entire fight. So what were those pivotal moments, round-by-round?
In the early goings-on, Frankie Edgar showed us exactly what made him the lightweight champion. He bobbed. He weaved. He circled.
Towards the middle of the round, though, Aldo began landing a straight right. He landed it again and again, bloodying Edgar's nose a bit, and keeping him at the right distance to, eventually, land some of those iron pipe-like leg kicks.
It was a strong first round for Aldo, who reminded everyone that, even though Edgar was the champ 10 lbs up, Aldo's the bigger, stronger dude of the two.
Frankie Edgar started out the round at a much quicker pace than what we saw in the first round. He got inside quickly, and peppered some strikes.
As many were expecting, though, Aldo started landing those big, heavy leg kicks, and once a few of those land, it's easier and easier to land them again and again.
While Edgar would land a takedown, the fact that Aldo immediately squirmed out of it was not a great turn for the former champ.
Once again, Edgar would land a takedown that would last but a second.
After the two felt each other out for a little while, Aldo would land a front kick that would cause blood to pour from his nose (though replay showed it wasn't a flush hit).
As the round wore on, however, Edgar would start landing combos of punches. That, perhaps, signalled a possible turnaround for Edgar.
The two fighters pawed at each other for the first two minutes of the fourth round. After that point, though, he would go for a takedown. Even though he would not go to the ground, Edgar still got another combination off.
With about 90 seconds left, Edgar landed a big takedown and secured Aldo's back. He landed numerous knees from behind, and would eventually let Aldo go with 50 seconds left. Edgar landed more punches and some pitapat leg kicks.
However, after an ugly start for Frankie Edgar, it is possibly scored two rounds apiece.
Aldo's corner told him that he clearly had the first four rounds. While that's not part of the fight, if Edgar ended up winning, this would not be the first time a corner cost a fighter a win.
Once again, the two fighters stayed a safe distance from each other. Edgar landed some glancing shots and slipped away from Aldo's hands.
Halfway through the round, Edgar began landing the leg kicks with some consistency. Any attempts to clinch or grapple, however, were quickly shrugged off by Aldo.
As the clock started winding down, Edgar began landing more and more hands, while Aldo only really landed one big hand to answer all of Edgar's combinations.
In the end, the judges scored the bout 49-46, 49-46 and 48-47. Undoubtedly a disappointing turn for Edgar.
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