In one of the welterweight division’s most important fights in years, champion Tyron Woodley met rising contender Darren Till in the main event of tonight’s (Sat., September 8, 2018) UFC 228 from the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.
Woodley had defended his title three times since winning it from Robbie Lawler in July 2016, yet had been out of action since a highly lackluster decision win over Demian Maia in July 2017. ‘The Chosen One’ brought all the skills, including unparalleled power, speed, and athleticism. But he had also been repeatedly blasted for his safe fighting style as of late and his constant complaining about seemingly every situation that was not in his favor.
He met up with one of the UFC’s fastest-rising stars in the 25-year-old Liverpudlian Till, maybe the biggest welterweight in the world’s best MMA promotion. Till had won four UFC fights in a row and five out of his total six in the octagon. He had also run afoul of many by missing weight heading into his controversial decision win over Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson in his native Liverpool this May.
The tension was thick in the air in Texas as a somber, focused Woodley walked out to the Octagon.
The fight kicked off with Woodley using his patented rush. He shot down for a takedown that turned into a clinch. Woodley missed a brief trip attempt and threw a knee. Referee Dan Miragliotta suddenly restarted the fighters in the center of the octagon. The two looked for an opening and Woodley landed a rushing shot.
Till pressured the champion up against the cage. Woodley swung a body shot and a kick. Till’s volume was nearly nonexistent. Woodley shot for a single leg and went to the clinch again. He kneed the legs of Till but was reversed. Another restart came from Miragliotta. Till finally landed a left hand and Woodley a glancing straight right. Till threw a kick to end an uneventful round that should go to the champion on activity alone.
The round began with Till eating a huge counter right hand from Woodley. He swarmed with ground and pound, landing huge elbows and punches that bloodied Till. The challenger was in trouble as the damage came down like a monsoon. More elbows came from the champion and somehow Till stayed in.
Woodley smothered Till from top position. He landed a clean punch and passed Till’s guard. “The Chosen One” then stepped into half guard and began landing even more elbows. Woodley looked for an arm-triangle. He briefly mounted Till and began throwing more shots. Elbows and punches rained down again Woodley went for a D’arce choke, and it was locked in tight.
Shortly thereafter Till tapped out in the final minute of the second round and the champion received his black belt in jiu-jitsu.
Final Result: Tyron Woodley def. Darren Till via R2 submission (D’arce choke)