UFC 243 LIVE REPORT: Real-time results and analysis of Whittaker-Adesanya

Cole Henry MMATorch Live event reporter

UFC 243

UFC 243

October 5, 2019

Marvel Stadium, Melbourne, Australia



Early Prelims (ESPN+)

Khalid Taha def. Bruno Silva via Submission (Arm-Triangle) Round 3, 3:00 

Ji Yeon Kim def. Nadia Kassem via TKO (Punches to Body) Round 2, 4:59 

Preliminary (ESPN2) 

Megan Anderson vs. Zarah Farin dos Santos (Featherweight)

Round 1: Anderson doesn’t waste much time in getting the fight to the ground. She has the mount, and dos Santos is allowing it. Megan Anderson is working towards a triangle, she’s rolled to her back but it’s hard to say how tight the choke is. Dos Santos taps! Big win for Anderson in her home country! 

Result: Megan Anderson def. Zarah Farin dos Santos via Submission (Triangle) Round 1, 3:57

Jamie Mullarkey vs. Brad Riddell (Lightweight)

Round 1: The first round was fairly back and forth, even striking and grappling. I missed the first bit of it but it looked like the edge was towards Riddell. (10-9 Riddell)

Round 2: Riddell throws a kick to the midsection, but Mullarkey catches it and puts him on his back. Mullarkey is working from side control, but Riddell is working back to his feet. Riddell connects with a stiff low kick! Mullarkey is coming forward, he eats a left hook for his efforts. Mullarkey shoots, but Riddell sprawls and takes the back. Mullarkey reverses the position though just as the round ends. (10-9 Mullarkey)

Round 3: Mullarkey shoots after a jab, but Riddell defends. Riddell shoots for his own takedown and scores, he is landing short shots from the top position. Mullarkey scrambles to his feet, only to eat a fierce combination from his opponent. Mullarkey lands a left hook! Riddell is down! Mullarkey takes the back, but Riddell scrambles back to his feet! Riddell scores with a left hook and then an uppercut! Mullarkey shoots but Riddell sprawls. Mullarkey seems exhausted here, things are getting pretty sloppy. The last thirty seconds of the fight was absolute madness… Riddell was landing shot after shot, but Mullarkey just would not go down! Great fight by both men! (10-9 Riddell) (29-28 Riddell)

Result: Brad Riddell def. Jamie Mullarkey via Unanimous Decision

Callan Potter vs. Maki Pitolo (Welterweight)

Round 1: They’re slugging it out to get things going. Both guys are throwing hooks, and both guys are landing! Potter pulls guard, he has butterfly hooks, but not for long. Potter tries to stand but Pitolo drags him back down and takes the back. Potter scrambles through and reverses the position and he is now working from top control. Pitolo has the neck but it’s more positional than an actual submission threat. Potter lifts Pitolo up and slams him to the mat! Pitolo scrambles to his feet and connects with a big left hook! Pitolo connects with a straight right and a left hook! Potter returns an uppercut as he initiates a clinch. (10-9 Potter)

Round 2: Potter closes the distance early, he is pressuring against the fence. We’ve been in the same position for a while now. Potter is landing short punches and elbows, and Pitolo is forced to just take them unless he can get off the fence here. They separate in the final seconds of the round, Potter connects with a solid counter left just as the bell sounds. (10-9 Potter)

Round 3: Potter scores early with a takedown. Pitolo scrambles to his feet, and they are exchanging. Potter shoots and scores with another takedown, we are not seeing a ton of action but he is controlling the action here and will likely win a decision. (10-9 Potter)

Result: Callan Potter def. Maki Pitolo via Unanimous Decision

UFC 243 pay-per-view

Justin Tafa vs. Yorgan De Castro (Heavyweight) 

Round 1: They’re exchanging some big punches to start the fight. De Castro secures an underhook and forces the fight against the fence. Lots of back and forth against the fence, lots of positional work. They’re off the fence, Tafa lunges forward with a wild right hand, and De Castro plugs him with a counter shot! Wow! What. A. Shot. Tafa is out cold!

Result: Yorgan De Castro def. Justin Tafa via KO (Punch) Round 1, 2:10

Dhiego Lima vs. Luke Jumeau (Welterweight)

Round 1: They’re sizing each other up to get things going. Both guys are landing potshots, not much is happening so far though. Jumeau poked Lima in the eye, we have a break in the action. Jumeau throws a big right hook but Lima is able to avoid it. Lima connects with a low kick, and Jumeau’s leg is starting to show signs of wear. (10-9 Lima)

Round 2: Lima is landing early. Jumeau trips after throwing a kick to the midsection, Lima charges him and puts him against the fence with a pair of underhooks. Lima connects with a jab. Jumeau just can’t quite connect with anything. Just as I say that Jumeau connects with a right hand that staggers Lima a bit. Lima shoots and completes a takedown, he’s working from Jumeau’s guard as the round ends. (10-9 Lima)

Round 3: Lima is looking for a takedown out of the gate. Jumeau is defending though and uses some space to create a separation. Jumeau seems to be turning it up a bit here in the third round, he’s more aggressive but the volume is just not quite there. Lima shoots for a single leg, but Jumeau defends and manages to stay on his feet. Lima fought a conservative fight and managed to slow Jumeau down with low kicks. Great performance for a guy that was really struggling just a few years ago. (10-9 Lima) (30-27 Lima)

Result: Dhiego Lima def. Luke Jumeau via Split Decision 

Analysis: Well… Split Decision? Not sure what that judge was watching… Jumeau just did not do anything, and Lima fought a decent, and well-rounded fight. A loss for Lima here would have been a robbery for sure. 

Tai Tuivasa vs. Serghei Spivak (Heavyweight)

Round 1: Tuivasa lands a heavy leg kick to get things going! Spivak is down, but he quickly recovers. Tuivasa throws another kick and Spivak takes him down! Tuivasa scrambles, and we’re back on the feet! Spivak shoots and takes Tuivasa down! We see another scramble though and they’re back on the feet. Spivak takes him down again! Spivak is in side control, he’s looking for a scarf choke. Tuivasa escapes back to his feet, but Spivak takes him right back down. (10-9 Spivak) 

Round 2: Spivak shoots and completes a takedown to start the round. Tuivasa scrambles back to his feet though. Tuivasa seems hesitant to throw punches, likely because of these takedowns. Spivak must realize it, as he shoots and takes Tuivasa down for the seventh time. Spivak moves into side control, and then into the mount. He’s looking for an arm-triangle choke and he’s got it. Tuivasa is out! Big win for Spivak, he came into this fight as a very big underdog!

Result: Serghei Spivak def. Tai Tuivasa via Technical Submission (Arm-Triangle) Round 2, 3:14

Analysis: Great win for Spivak, I don’t think a lot of people expected this one. He used his takedowns well, tired Tuivasa out and eventually got the choke for the win. This is a big hit for Tuivasa… he was a top prospect not long ago, he has a lot of work to do from here.

Al Iaquinta vs. Dan Hooker (Lightweight)

Round 1: Hooker is using his range early on. Iaquinta shoots for a takedown, but Hooker sprawls. Iaquinta is turtled, and Hooker is hitting him with some big elbows! Iaquinta might be in trouble here! He’s fishing for a leg, but Hooker takes the back and slaps on an RNC! Iaquinta breaks the grip though and he’s now fighting for wrist control. Iaquinta scrambles to his feet and they’re back in the center. Hooker connects with a solid low kick, it appeared to stagger Iaquinta a bit. Great round for Hooker… Iaquinta could not handle the distance, he tried getting around it with hooks, but Hooker just kept sniping him. He also dominated the fight on the ground. This will be an uphill battle for Iaquinta. (10-9 Hooker)

Round 2: Iaquinta connects with a left hook to get things started. Hooker lands a stiff low kick. Iaquinta shoots, but Hooker avoids it and beckons him back to his feet. Iaquinta connects with a solid right hand, and then a left! He’s doing much better in this round, he’s closing the distance and landing. Iaquinta secures a leg and attempts a takedown, but Hooker defends it well. Hooker forces Iaquinta against the fence and from there he separates back to the center. Hooker connects with a big ducking right hook! Wow! Iaquinta is down! Hooker drops into side control with just under twenty seconds left in the round. (10-9 Hooker)

Round 3: Hooker opens up with a right hook, and then an inside leg kick. Iaquinta rushes forward with a flurry, he may have landed a right hand but Hooker is proving to be evasive in round three. Hooker connects with an inside elbow! Iaquinta is trying to make something happen but it just isn’t happening. He appears to be very fatigued. Hooker is starting to string shots together with even more rhythm. Hooker connects with an inside low kick that trips Iaquinta up. (10-9 Hooker) (30-27 Hooker)

Result: Dan Hooker def. Al Iaquinta via Unanimous Decision

© Robert Whitaker vs. (IC) Israel Adesanya for UFC Undisputed Middleweight Championship 

Round 1: Whitaker connects with a right hook to get things going. We’re seeing controlled chaos so far. Whitaker connects with a grazing right hook. Adesanya connects with a jab, a very nice one. We’re seeing lots of collisions, not a lot of clean shots are landing, but shots are being thrown. Whitaker may have connected with another grazing right hook, but it was hard to say. Adesanya connects with a straight punch and Whitaker is down! And saved by the bell! Wow! (10-9 Adesanya) 

Round 2: Whitaker is using a bit of an odd style, lots of horse stances and then rushing in to close distance. Adesanya connects with a jab! Whitaker is being very reckless here. Adesanya connects with a high kick, Whitaker blocked it but it still got through a bit. Whitaker is chasing him here, he’s charging, this is about to get bad. Adesanya connects with a right hook and then a left! Whitaker is down and Adesanya is looking for the finish! This fight is over! Wow! What a performance by Adesanya! Whitaker was really never in this fight… he used a questionable game plan and it didn’t work. 

Result: Israel Adesanya def. Robert Whitaker via TKO (Punches) Round 2, 3:33 

Analysis: It will be interesting to see what sort of reaction Adesanya gets for this win. This could be a star-making performance. It felt like something special to see, Adesanya looked great in the cage and he was great on the mic afterward. Post-fight: he called out Paulo Costa, called him a few names, and made it clear that they will be fighting next. You’ll probably have to go back to the Luke Rockhold/Chris Weidman fight to find anything this compelling in the division. Two young fighters, one a newly crowned champion, one a surging contender. It should be great stuff.  


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