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15 Dec, 2019 08:46

UFC 245: Kamaru Usman stops Colby Covington in five-round welterweight championship classic (VIDEO)

UFC 245: Kamaru Usman stops Colby Covington in five-round welterweight championship classic (VIDEO)

UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman finally got his hands on outspoken challenger, Colby Covington. But it wasn't an easy victory as the two went to war over the course of five thrilling rounds at UFC 245 in Las Vegas.

As expected, each fighter quickly came to the center of the Octagon. Usman was stinging with his jab while Covington looked for his usual hooks. Covington's pace quickly started to pick up leading to Usman getting somewhat staggered. The champion's shots were coming less frequently, but he was still able to land.

Covington's hooks were finding their home until a big body shot connected from the Nigerian. Shortly after, it was back to work for "Chaos."

With very few clinch exchanges, round one was just a lot of trading strikes in the middle of the Octagon from both men - jabs and hooks aplenty.

Round two saw body attacks landed by both fighters. They connected on jabs at the same time repeatedly. Usman was starting to mix in body kicks before being stunned by a Covington hook.

He quickly recovered and it turned into a legitimate stiff jab fest for each. A would-be body kick ended up hitting the cup of Usman but upon replay, it didn't quite seem like it. The action resumed, regardless.

The final minute of the round saw the volume continue from Covington with his jabs and hooks. Usman was able to find some of his own on the counters while still seeking body blows.

Round three saw a slower start from Covington as he ate another front kick to the body among some straight rights. A big right connected to Covington's forehead.

The bodywork was starting to take its toll as Usman kept going to that well with his kicks and punches. Covington was now using a more counter heavy attack. Usman landed a big overhand left on his rival before taking a big head kick that was accompanied by a bad eye poke.

The action resumed with 30 seconds left and Usman landed another good body kick before scoring a straight right to Covington's chin.

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Usman's jab found its home in the fourth but it didn't matter as Covington started throwing very wild and landing with a few big punches. After the exchange of bombs, Usman went back to work. Both men landed significant hooks which had really become the story of the fight. Covington was now working uppercuts into his arsenal.

Throughout all the wild action, Usman's body shots were still a factor. To balance it out, Covington started to work the leg. It's onto the final round.

Round five saw Usman abandon the body shots through the first two minutes as they picked their shots a lot more. A big straight right seemed to stagger Covington as he poured on the pressure.

Then, with the clock ticking down, Usman claimed a big knockdown with a huge straight right. Covington bounced back to his feet, but was in clear trouble, and Usman swiftly followed up and dropped the challenger for a second time.

This time, Covington would not return to his feet as Usman swarmed his rival and finished him with a powerful salvo of ground strikes that forced referee Marc Goddard to step in and end the contest with 50 seconds left on the clock.

Covington reacted to the defeat by removing his gloves and running out of the octagon. What this will mean for him going forward remains to be seen.

But the night belonged to Usman, whose performance cemented his status as the UFC's premier 170-pound athlete.

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