Tyron Woodley heard all the hype surrounding Darren Till heading into the main event of UFC 228. Even though he had defended the title on three occasions, oddsmakers closed their books with Woodley as a slight underdog against the Englishman.
The UFC welterweight champion put together a dominant performance and submitted Till in the second round with a d’arce choke. It was the kind of performance that will certainly silence the naysayers and perhaps earn Woodley the respect that he deserves.
The submission victory was the first for Woodley in the UFC. Woodley hadn’t won by submission since submitting Rudy Bears back in Nov. 2009, when Woodley fought for Strikeforce. The submission over the previously unbeaten Till earned Woodley his Brazilian ji-jitsu black belt.
It was Woodley’s first fight in 13 months. He had surgery on a torn labrum after beating Demian Maia at UFC 214 in July 2017. There were no effects of cage rust on Woodley, as he attacked Till from the opening bell with a right and left hand that let the Englishman know he was there to compete. Woodley also used an effective clinch game to not only conserve energy, but wear Till down due to the difficult weight cut the 25-year-old had faced heading into the fight.
Woodley came out firing to begin the second frame and he dropped Till with a blistering counter right hand. The champion swarmed in an attempt to finish Till with vicious ground and pound. To Till’s credit, he managed to survive the assault of elbows and punches. He tried anything and everything, but couldn’t escape the wrath of Woodley. Till turned to his side and Woodley slowly snuck his arm under the head of his opponent. Woodley trapped Till’s head, roilled and sunk in the choke. There was no escape for Till (17-1-1) and was forced to tap out at the 4:19 mark and suffer the first loss of his mixed martial arts career.
At this point, it is hard to deny that Woodley (19-3-1) is one of the greatest welterweights of all tim with four consecutive title defenses. He is deserving of a big fight, plain and simple. There’s no reason he shouldn’t land a “money fight” against the likes of Georges St-Pierre, Conor McGregor, Nick or Nate Diaz or middleweight champion Robert Whittaker. However, what is likely next is a showdown with former interim champion Colby Covington.
“Whenever I name a name, I don’t get a good response,” Woodley, who was referring to former 170-pound champion Georges St-Pierre, told Joe Rogan in his post-fight interview. “Whoever they put in front of me, I’m gonna beat them up.”
Time to give Tyron Woodley the respect he rightfully deserves.
Sporting News recaps what happened at UFC 228. (All times Eastern.)
UFC 228 results
12:04 a.m.: Round 1 to Woodley (10-9). Woodley was more aggressive in the first round than he was in last two fights combined. He came right at Till with a right and left hand in the opening seconds. He exemplied very good clinch work against the cage. Don’t get why referee Dan Miragliotta broke them each time they were in that position for no reason in the slightest bit. As long as they are doing something while there are, you have to let them fight.
11:46 p.m.: It is now time for the main event of UFC 228: Tyron Woodley defends the welterweight championship against Darren Till. Woodley returns from a 13-month layoff and Till is unbeaten in 18 fights. Till has never faced anyone like Woodley in his career. How much will cage rust play a factor? Woodley can make this an easy fight by his wrestling and make Till suffer until he wilts. Who walks out of Dallas the welterweight champ?
Jessica Andrade blasts Karolina Kowalkiwicz by first round KO
11:36 p.m.: Andrade def. Kowalkiewicz by knockout at 1:58 of the first round. Andrade came out on a mission, blasting Kowalkiewicz with a series of heavy shots to send Kowalkiewicz on her heels throughout the fight. She kept the pressure on Kowalkiewicz and never let off the pedal. The end came when Andrade connected on a thunderous right hand to send Kowalkiewicz back to Poland.
HOLY SH*T! I’ve never seen a one-punch KO like this in women’s MMA. Andrade KO’s Karolina Kowalkiewicz in Round 1! Andrade vs Namajunas, book it. #UFC228 pic.twitter.com/QNajTcZxO2
— Ahmar Khan (@AhmarSKhan) September 9, 2018
The higher-ups at the UFC have a hard decision to make on who receives the next title shot. It’s either Tatiana Suarez or Andrade. Earlier, we said Suarez, but now that got thrown at the window. Here’s a suggestion: Let them fight and see who faces Namajunas next.
11:26 p.m.: It is time for the co-main event of UFC 228: No. 2-ranked Jessica Andrade squares off with No. 4-ranked Karolina Kowalkiewicz. After moving down to bantamweight in 2016 because she was too small for the weight class, Andrade’s won five of her six fights at 115 pounds. Kowalkiewicz rebounded from suffering the first two losses of her career by winning back-to-back fights. Hard to see where Kowalkiewicz wins. Andrade has the advantage in every facet.
Zabit Magomedsharipov taps out Brandon Davis
11:17 p.m.: Magomedsharipov def. Davis by submission (kneebar) at 3:46 of the second round. What an insane night to see two kneebar submissions on the same card. Magomedsharipov’s wasn’t as vicious as Aljamain Sterling’s earlier in the card, but still got the job done nonetheless. He had Davis on the ground, transitioned onto his back and locked in the kneebar. Davis thought about trying to get out of it, but decided it would be a good idea to tap out.
Magomedsharipov’s win streak is now at 12 with four of those being in the UFC. He needs to be in a big fight as no one knows how good he really is. He called out Chad Mendes for his next bout. Let’s see what happens.
11:10 p.m.: Davis’ corner did him no favors between rounds one and two. They told him he was winning even though it was clear as day that Magomedsharipov won the opening round. Still don’t get why fighter corners do that. Never proves to be effective.
11:00 p.m.: Coming up next at UFC 228, Brandon Davis battles no. 15-ranked Zabit Magomedsharipov in featherweight action. Davis took the fight on 11 days notice after Yair Rodriguez bowed out due to suffering an injury. Out of his nine victories, five of them have come by way of stoppage. Magomedsharipov is riding an impressive 11-fight winning streak. 12 of his 15 wins have come inside the distance. Many have deemed him the future at 145 pounds and rightfully so. He should run through Davis, but never say never in a short notice bout.
Jimmie Rivera bests John Dodson in snoozer
10:54 p.m.: Rivera def. Dodson by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27). Well, that took some steam off of what had been an exciting card up to this point. Neither guy did much whatsoever. Rivera was content on throwing leg kicks and throwing from the outside and Dodson really just stood there and threw too infrequent to score any points. A win is a win though for Rivera. But, not the way you want to look after losing in 33 seconds.
10:44 p.m.: Crowd not very happy with Rivera and Dodson. Fight has been very boring to say the least. Been more of a chess match than anything else with no one establishing a clear advantage after two rounds.
10:28 p.m.: Up next at UFC 228, No. 5-ranked Jimmie Rivera takes on No. 7-ranked John Dodson in bantamweight action. Rivera’s 20-fight winning streak was snapped in a 33-second defeat to Marloen Moreas. Since Dodson returned to 135 pounds last year, he’s won two of three including his most recent outing, a split decision win of Pedro Munhoz.
Is Rivera coming back too soon and will Dodson prove he’s a legit contender at bantamweight?
Abdul Razak Alhassan outslugs Niko Price to win by knockout
10:18 p.m.: Alhassan def. Price by knockout at 0:43 of the first round. You won’t find a better 43 second fight than we just saw. Price went right at Alhassan and was determined to go toe-to-toe. Alhassan had no problem exchanging. Price had his back against the cage. Alhassan and Price started throwing heavy shot after heavy shot. Alhassan dropped Price with a body shot. When he tried to get up, Alhassan landed an uppercut and then a left hook which knocked Price out on his feet. Alhassan connected on two more punches to win the fight.
All of Alhassan’s 10 career victories have come by way of KO. Alhassan has now won four of his last five fights.
10:10 p.m.: Kicking off the main card at UFC 228 are welterweights Abdul Razak Alhassan and Niko Price. Alhassan has won three of his four UFC fights by stoppage while Price is 4-1 with one no-contest in his UFC career. Two entertaining prospects at 170 pounds. Great showcase opportunity for Alhassan and Price.
9:57 p.m.: Tatiana Suarez def. Carla Esparza by TKO at 4:33 of the third round. That was as dominant as dominant can get. Suarez controlled the action throughout. She beat Esparza in the one area which many thought she would have the edge, wrestling, securing eight takedowns while Esparza didn’t get a single one. Suarez also had 81 significant strikes to none for Esparza. Suarez’s now won four consecutive bouts (longest in the strawweight division), all of them in dominating fashion. If Suarez doesn’t get the next title shot at Rose Namajunas, something is severely wrong.
9:34 p.m.: Time for the featured prelim of UFC 228, a women’s strawweight contest between No. 6-ranked Carla Esparza and No. 9-ranked Tatiana Suarez. A great showcase fight in the 115-pound division. Suarez has a big size advantage coming in. Esparza is going to have to get Suarez to the ground if she’s going to have any chance.
9:15 p.m.: Aljamain Sterling def. Cody Stamann by second-round submission (kneebar) at 3:42. Great performance by Sterling and an even better finish. Sterling was blasting Stamann with ground and pound punches, went into in a full nelson and then transitioned to what had to be the nastiest kneebar that I’ve seen in a very long time. When Sterling cranked on the knee, you could see the kneecap shifting a way it isn’t supposed to go. That was Sterling’s first win via stoppage since 2015. A guy who many felt had already peaked has now won four of his last five and is once against a contender at 135 pounds.
He called out the winner of the main card tilt between Jimmie Rivera and John Dodson and then started to run off some expletives towards Dominick Cruz. He reconsidered and suggested that he would “slap fire” out of the former champion.
9:04 p.m.: Up next at UFC 228, a bantamweight fight between No. 8-ranked Aljamain Sterling and No. 10-ranked Cody Stamann. Sterling has won three of his last four after losing back-to-back fights. Stamann is the on a tear, winning a division-high 10 consecutive fights. Something has to give here. A rising contender will go the wayside. Interesting the UFC would put two guys on the rise against one another when others are out there for them to face.
8:45 p.m.: Geoff Neal def. Frank Camacho by knockout at 1:23 of the second round. After nearly finishing Camacho at the end of the first round, Neal and Camacho were exchanging heavy shots against the cage to begin the second. Neal backed off and invited Camacho to the middle of the Octagon. Camacho thought Neal was going to throw a punch and pulled his head back. Instead, Neal threw left high kick which knocked Camacho out immediately and sent him crashing to the canvas.
Ladies and Gentlemen – Geoff Neal. #UFC228 pic.twitter.com/ot4DTHkUjU
— Maximiliano Bretos (@mbretosESPN) September 9, 2018
A knockout of the year candidate. An exciting card so far and there are seven fights left to go.
8:40 p.m.: Almost a finish at the end of the first round. Neal popped a right jab and then blasted Camacho with an overhand left to send Camacho to the mat. Camacho tried for a takedown and Neal kept punching. The horn sounded to end the round and Camacho came up wobbly in walking to his corner.
8:29 p.m.: Next at UFC 228, Geoff Neal faces Frank Camacho in welterweight action. Neal is on a nice run, winning his last three fights, all of them by stoppage. Camacho’s lost two of his last three bouts. It’s weird that the UFC would book a matchup like this. They tend to shy away from pairing fighters up who are on different sides of the spectrum.
8:17 p.m.: Darren Stewart def. Charles Byrd by second-round TKO at 2:17 of the second round. People always say a fight can change with one shot. That proved to be true as Byrd controlled the entire first round in which he was battering Stewart on the feet. Then in the second round, Byrd had his back against the cage and Stewart clipped Byrd with a sharp, standing right elbow to send Byrd to the canvas. A couple punches later and it was all over. Great comeback victory for Stewart. A loss would have netted him a pink slip and now he’s anot a extra life.
8:06 p.m.: Right now at UFC 228, Charles Byrd fights Darren Stewart in middleweight action. Byrd is on a roll, having won four consecutive fights, all via stoppage. Stewart has lost three of his last four but won his last outing against Eric Spicely in February by second-round TKO. Two of the best nicknames on UFC 228: “Kid Dynamite” versus “The Dentist.”
7:59 p.m.: Diego Sanchez def. Craig White by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27). Head scratcher on how this wasn’t scored 30-25 for Sanchez. He dominated every second of the first and second round. The best performance from Sanchez in five years. He still fought aggressive, but implemented his ground attack and didn’t allow White any room to breathe. For one night, Sanchez proved he still has something left. How much? Who knows. But at least for one more night, we got to see “The Nightmare”.
7:50 p.m: Could we have two 10-8 rounds scored for Sanchez?
7:44 p.m.: What a first round for Sanchez. The best round in the last few years for the seasoned veteran. He came out very aggressive with an early takedown and battered White on the ground for the entire five minutes. Can Sanchez continue this pace for another 10 minutes?
7:35 p.m.: Up next at UFC 228, a lightweight fight between Craig White and Diego Sanchez. All of White’s 14 victories have come via stoppage, 11 of them in the first round. Sanchez’s lost three of his last four, with all of them coming by KO or TKO. This has the makings of White battering Sanchez into oblivion. Hard to figure out why Sanchez is still competing. He’s nowhere close to title contention and is nothing more than a punching bag at this point of his career
7:27 p.m.: Jim Miller def. Alex White via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:29 of the first round. One of the most spectacular wins in Miller’s UFC career. It all started when Miller clipped White with a left hand to send him back against the cage. Sensing he had White in trouble, Miller landed a couple more shots to get White to the mat. He quickly took White’s back, locked in the choke and, moments later, White tapped out. Miller snaps a four-fight losing and earns his 17th win in the lightweight division. The most in UFC history.
TURNING BACK THE CLOCK! #UFC228 pic.twitter.com/kyXvDzuxT7
— UFC (@ufc) September 8, 2018
7:20 p.m.: Coming up at UFC 228, a lightweight battle between Jim Miller and Alex White. Miller is fighting in a record-setting 30th time in the UFC. But he is dire need of a win, as he’s lost four consecutive bouts. White could also use a victory, as he’s lost two of his last three. Who will get the much-needed win?
7:14 p.m.: Irene Aldana def. Lucie Pudilova by split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28). A shame you couldn’t give the victory to both Aldana and Pudilova. One of the more exciting women’s fights in 2018. They stood toe-to-toe for 15 minutes and threw strike after strike with neither taking a step back. By the end, Aldana and Pudilova were bleeding and exhausted. Fans want to see fighters giving it their all and leaving everything they have inside the Octagon. Well done. Aldana has now won back-to-back fights after losing two fights in a row.
Came to BRAWL! #UFC228 pic.twitter.com/VtGe8vXRIk
— UFC (@ufc) September 8, 2018
7:06 p.m.: Don’t know how Aldana and Pudilova are standing here. We are seeing high level striking at its finest and they are stalking each other and throwing it all out there.
6:59 p.m.: Highly entertaining first round. Aldana and Pudilova dishing out the heavy artillery. They have very good chins as Aldana and Pudilova walked through a series of vicious shots. We should be in for an entertaining fight.
6:53 p.m.: Next at UFC 228, a women’s bantamweight fight between No. 12-ranked Irene Aldana and No. 13-ranked Lucie Pudilova. Aldana has seven finishes in the first round with four of them coming in under 1:05. Since losing her UFC debut, Pudilova’s reeled off back-to-back wins. An exciting fight featuring two women looking to create some noise at 135 pounds.
6:45 p.m.: Jarred Brooks def. Roberto Sanchez via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28). Let the crazy scorecards begin. Very difficult to see how Sanchez won two rounds. He won the first, gave away the second and Brooks dominated the third. Really impressed with Brooks’ performance. He did a fantastic job in knowing if he was going to win and have enough cardio in the tank since he accepted the fight on five days notice, he would need to utilize his wrestling. Brooks did just that and had enough energy in which he could have gone five rounds if necessary.
6:36 p.m.: Surprised Brooks has anything left in the gas tank and the second round is just about to end. Hard to understand why Sanchez pulled guard. No reason to do that whatsoever. He just gave a round he was winning.
6:25 p.m.: Our opening bout at UFC 228: Jarred Brooks takes on Roberto Sanchez in flyweight action. Brooks got added to the card on Monday after Ryan Benoit had to bow out of the fight. He looks to rebound after suffering back-to-back losses. After losing in his UFC debut, Sanchez rebounded with a first-round submission victory of Joby Sanchez at UFC Fight Night 126. Give Brooks credit for taking a bout on extremely short notice. Nothing to lose in this situation, as he can just go in and go all out and even if he loses, he comes out smelling like roses because he accepted the fight on short notice.
6:10 p.m.: We are moments away from the beginning of UFC 228. Grab your refreshments and stay locked into SN’s coverage all night long.
1:40 p.m.: Tyron Woodley and Darren Till square off one final time before they meet inside the Octagon.
UFC 228 fight card
- Tyron Woodley (c) vs. Darren Till for Woodley’s Welterweight title
- Jessica Andrade vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz; Women’s Strawweight
- Carla Esparza vs. Tatiana Suarez; Women’s Strawweight
- Brandon Davis vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov; Featherweight
- Jimmie Rivera vs. John Dodson; Bantamweight
- Aljamain Sterling vs. Cody Stamann; Bantamweight
- Charles Byrd vs. Darren Stewart; Middleweight
- Abdul Razak Alhassan vs. Niko Price; Welterweight
- Diego Sanchez vs. Craig White; Welterweight
- Jim Miller vs. Alex White; Lightweight
- Irene Aldana vs. Lucie Pudilova; Women’s Bantamweight
- Ryan Benoit vs. Roberto Sanchez; Flyweight
- Geoff Neal vs. Frank Camacho; Welterweight
UFC 228 latest news
— Who will emerge victorious at UFC 228? SN’s MMA experts give their picks.
— Nicco Montano off UFC 228 card after being sent to the hospital.
— Interested in making some money on UFC 228? We give you the best plays heading into the show.
— Why doesn’t Tyron Woodley get the proper respect as welterweight champion? He offers an explanation to SN .
— Who is Tatiana Suarez ? SN takes a look at one of the rising stars in the UFC.
— Is Valentina Shevchenko the women’s fighter to supplant Ronda Rousey as the next female star?
— Darren Till explains to SN why he would rather become great than making millions of dollars.
— Shevchenko tells SN that she wished the women’s flyweight division would’ve came along much faster than it did.