For the first time since 2011, a fighter not named Jon Jones or Daniel Cormier is the light heavyweight champion. After Jones relinquished his top spot over the UFC’s light heavyweights, Jan Blachowicz (27-8) earned a TKO finish over Dominick Reyes (12-2) to claim the division crown Saturday night at UFC 253 from Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.
The tense first round opened with Reyes and Blachowicz feeling their way out. The duo traded shots, with Reyes more tentative to move forward and strike. Blachowicz was precise with his legs, bruising Reyes midsection and lead leg with brutal shots to finish off his combinations.
Reyes opened the second by getting inside and landing a slew of shots on Blachowicz. Blachowicz continued to push forward, targeting Reyes with a flurry of combinations, baiting him in and counterstriking often. At the end of the round, the pair traded heavy shots before Blachowicz dropped Reyes with an overhand left to the temple and the ref quickly jumped in to stop the fight.
— happy ฏ๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎๎ (@punjabipac) September 27, 2020
Reyes dropped a five-round decision loss to Jones in February, but couldn’t make good on his second opportunity at UFC gold against Blachowicz. At 37 years old, Blachowicz extended his five-fight win streak to win his first UFC belt. Blachowicz will savor the big win for now, with the winner of Glover Teixeira vs. Thiago Santos slated for Nov. 7, likely the next contender for his light heavyweight belt.