At UFC 162, Chris Weidman accomplished the unimaginable—within the first two minutes of the second round, he managed to capitalize on Anderson Silva's blatant showboating with a left-hook knockout that would send the middleweight kingpin's UFC-record run to the history books.
Mere statistics could never serve to fully illustrate the gravity of Weidman's accomplishment, though they do paint an interesting picture of the moments that preceded this iconic change in the MMA landscape.
Seems like nobody in a hurry to leave press room tonight. Almost like there was some crazy thing that just happened for us to discuss.— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) July 7, 2013
Courtesy of the number crunching at FightMetric, we now have a critical assessment of how both fighters fared in the six minutes and 18 seconds of combat that concluded with a prone Silva lying helplessly on the canvas in a state of daze.
If you can put aside the shock and awe for a brief moment, they're well worth an examination.
- Winner and new middleweight champion: Chris Weidman
- Fight ended in: Round 2 (Time: 1:18)
- Method: KO/TKO
Thirty seconds into the first round, Weidman managed to land one of the two takedown attempts for the round, resulting in a 50 percent takedown success rate. Better yet, he then passed Silva's guard in the process of landing some effective ground-and-pound.
At the 2:30 mark, Weidman was even bold enough to drop down for a heel-hook attempt—it marked the only submission effort for the fight. With a little over two minutes left in the round, both men eventually rose to their feet for some more of Silva's taunting and Weidman's cautious attempts to exchange strikes.
In total, Silva landed 15 of his 26 total strikes and nine of his 18 significant strikes, whereas Weidman landed 21 of his 39 total strikes and 11 of his 27 significant strikes.
In spite of the challenger's success in landing a takedown, and Weidman edging out a guard pass and attempting a submission, the champion threw a lower volume of strikes but landed more of them. Silva ended the round with 50 percent of his significant strikes landed as opposed to Weidman's 41 percent.
Yet again, Silva's superior significant strike percentage tells a different tale than the one seen during the fight; he landed five of his six strike attempts for a result of 83 percent accuracy—far more effective than Weidman's five landed strikes inside of 16 attempts for a result of 31 percent accuracy.
Though both fighters leveled the playing field with an identical volume of strikes, it was only the left hook at the climax of Weidman's final flurry that mattered most.
Silva, with hands at the waist, backpedaled with an air of disinterest for Weidman's forward movement. Moments later, the former champion paid a dear price for moving his head toward the challenger's left hook. Silva's relentless taunting cost him the middleweight championship along with his pristine UFC record.
Fight Totals and Conclusion
Over the course of the bout, Silva—as expected by most MMA analysts—yielded a higher significant strike percentage than the pursuing challenger. In total, he landed 58 percent of the time as opposed to Weidman's 37 percent accuracy. Ultimately, though, Weidman stole the show by pulling through on one of his three takedown attempts, passing Silva's guard, voluntarily dropping down for a submission attempt, and, of course, landing the only punch of noteworthy mention.
The new middleweight champion walked away with an unblemished record and a victory over the greatest fighter of all time. In spite of Silva's devil-may-care behavior, no credit should be taken from Weidman's incredible feat inside of 10 career fights.
*All statistics are courtesy of FightMetric