Amanda Nunes dominates Aldana at UFC 289, retires as women’s GOAT

Amanda Nunes dominates Aldana at UFC 289, retires as women’s GOAT

Amanda ‘The Lioness’ Nunes successfully defended her women’s bantamweight belt for the final time last night in the UFC 289 headliner, dominating Irene Aldana in a unanimous-decision win (50-44, 50-44, 50-43) as a -340 favorite in Vancouver.

Bets on Nunes to win by decision cashed +300 tickets, while gamblers backing ‘over’ 4.5 rounds were winners of a +143 ticket.

In my UFC 289 picks column yesterday, we accurately predicted that Nunes would retire after the fight whether she won or lost. We also cashed our picks at a 3-3 clip for 4.35 units of profit.

Both of our two-unit plays – Charles Oliveira as a +134 underdog and Mike Malott to win inside the distance (-125) – were easy winners, and all three of our losses were underdog plays with only 1.3 units at risk.

With Nunes going into retirement, there’s a vacant women’s belt at 135 pounds. Aldana replaced Julianna Pena, the former champ who had to pull out of last night’s fight with an injury. Therefore, she’s seemingly a given to get a chance to reclaim the title.

The rematch for Valentina Shevchenko and Alexa Grasso for Grasso’s women’s flyweight championship isn’t even booked yet, so that eliminates the winner potentially moving up in an attempt to become double champ.

Behind No. 1 ranked Pena, there’s No. 2 ranked Raquel Pennington and No. 3 ranked Holly Holm, but Holm, another former champion, is currently booked to fight No. 10 ranked Mayra Bueno Silva next month. Ketlen Vieira is ranked fourth and Aldana was fifth going into last night’s lopsided defeat.

Pennington served as the backup at UFC 289 and hit championship weight this past Friday. I’d personally rather see Holm face Pena, but the guess here is that it’ll be Pennington vs. Pena. If Holm gets past Silva, she’d be in line to face the Pena-Pennington winner.

In the co-main event, Charles Oliveira produced his UFC-record 20th career finish by knocking out Beneil Dariush with 50 seconds left in the first round.

Dariush had scored an early takedown and was working some ground and pound from the top. When Oliveira attempted a log lock, the fight returned to the feet. Then Oliveira landed a head kick that slipped around Dariush’s blocking arm.

Dariush was wobbled and Oliveira put on the pressure. Next, several strikes landed and then a right hand from ‘Do Bronx’ put Dariush down. Oliveira followed up with ground strikes until the referee intervened.

Oliveira cashed prop bets to win in Round 1 (+470), by TKO/KO (+575) and inside the distance (+200). Gamblers on ‘under’ 1.5 rounds also cashed tickets for a small +108 return.

UFC President Dana White said that a rematch with Oliveira for the belt he had taken from him by Islam Makhachev “makes sense.” DraftKings has Makhachev installed as a -275 favorite, with Oliveira as a +230 underdog.

In a welterweight contest, Mike Malott improved to 4-0 in the UFC with a second-round submission of Adam Fugitt. Malott hooked up his supporters as a -210 ‘chalk,’ garnering a second straight Performance of the Night bonus.

The Canadien is now 10-1-1 overall with 10 finishes. Bettors backing Malott to win in Round 2 earned a +450 payout.

In a featherweight battle, Dan Ige prevailed over Nate ‘The Train’ Landwehr by UD (29-28, 29-28, 30-27). The loss ended Landwehr’s three-fight winning streak.

In the pay-per-view opener, Marc-Andre Barriault won a UD over Eryk Anders (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) as a -145 favorite. Both fighters earned an extra $50,000 for Fight of the Night honors.

 

 

 

 

 

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