The UFC's 10 most memorable moments at Madison Square Garden, ranked
The UFC returns to Madison Square Garden on Saturday for UFC 230.
And while this is only the third time the UFC has held an event at the historic arena, there have already been many memorable moments involving a number of big names at MSG.
Let’s count down the top 10.
10. Bisping taunts Yoel Romero from Fox set
Yoel Romero beat local favorite Chris Weidman in the third round just moments after he opened up Weidman’s head with a vicious knee. Then, while still in the Octagon at UFC 205, Romero and then-middleweight champ Michael Bisping got into a long-range trash-talking battle with Bisping flashing double birds and taunting Romero about steroid use. Sadly, the two middleweights would never actually meet in the Octagon before Bisping retired.
9. Joanna makes history with win at UFC 205
Joanna Jedrzejczyk, the then-flyweight champ, was rocked a little bit in the fourth round of her title fight with her compatriot Karolina Kowalkiewicz but was able to hold on and earn the win via unanimous decision. The victory was her seventh in the Octagon and made her the winningest women’s fighter in UFC history.
8. Khabib tells Michael Johnson to give up
By now we all know that Khabib Nurmagomedov is a beast in the Octagon and sometimes likes to talk to his opponent when he’s in control of a fight. That happened at UFC 205 when fighting Michael Johnson in an undercard bout Khabib said: “You have to give up. I need to fight for the title. You know this. I deserve it” Johnson eventually tapped out in the third round.
7. Miesha Tate surprises everyone with immediate retirement
Miesha Tate, one of the most legendary women’s fighter in UFC history, surprised just about everyone when she announced her retirement in the Octagon following her loss via decision to Raquel Pennington. Tate had two huge fights with Ronda Rousey in her career and later won the bantamweight weight title with an incredible win over Holly Holm at UFC 196.
6. Khabib calls Conor ‘chicken’ in post-fight interview
Following his undercard victory over Michael Johnson at UFC 205, Khabib grabbed on to Joe Rogan’s mic and yelled to the heavy-Irish crowd at MSG that Conor McGregor was a “chicken” and that he wanted to tap their guy out. This started the Khabib-Conor talk that would eventually lead to Khabib chocking out McGregor at UFC 229.
5. The dramatic scoring mixup of Woodley and Thompson
Welterweight champion Tyron Woodley and Stephen Thompson put on a show in their five-round co-main event title fight at UFC 205. Moments after it ended, Bruce Buffer announced that Woodley had won via split decision. Then, while Woodley was conducting his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan, Buffer clarified the scoring and explained that the fight was a actually a majority draw. Woodley couldn’t believe the mixup and was visibly shaken upon hearing the news that Buffer had, in fact, made a mistake. The two fighters did, however, earn an extra $50K for fight of the night honors.
4. T.J. Dillashaw knocks out Cody Garbrandt
The two former teammates at Team Alpha Male shared a ton of bad blood leading up this bantamweight title fight at UFC 217. Garbrandt, the champ at the time, almost knocked out Dillashaw in the closing seconds of the first round. But Dillashaw was able to recover after stumbling to his corner and then delivered a knockout blow early in the second round to win the belt.
3. Rose Namajunas takes Joanna’s belt
Joanna Jedrzejczyk’s reign as women’s flyweight champ came to a stunning end as Namajunas knocked her to the ground three minutes into the first round of their fight at UFC 217 and then quickly ended it with a flurry of punches. Namajunas would later prove that it was no fluke at all as she would beat Joanna again at UFC 223.
2. GSP returns, taps out Bisping
UFC legend Georges St. Pierre made his highly anticipated return to the Octagon after a nearly four-year break and choked out Bisping, the middleweight champ, in the third round at UFC 217. GSP looked like his old self in the victory, leaving the MSG crowd in awe of seeing one of the greatest to ever do it not skip a beat in beating Bisping.
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