Upstart welterweight contender Darren Till promised to make an impact in his first UFC main event on Saturday, as he took on Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone in a highly anticipated matchup at 170 pounds.
Till delivered in a big way as he stalked Cerrone across the Octagon with an aggressive game plan, throwing straight punches down the middle, repeatedly tagging the former UFC title contender.
Till was supremely confident throughout the fight, while Cerrone just couldn't seem to find his rhythm as he struggled to deal with the size disadvantage he was facing in the fight.
Finally, with just about a minute left to go in the opening round, Till uncorked a beautiful combination that staggered Cerrone and sent him teetering backwards towards the Octagon wall. That was all Till needed to rush ahead with a barrage of punches that sent Cerrone crumbling to the mat until referee Marc Goddard saw enough to stop the contest.
Despite being a massive underdog going into the card, Till picks up a signature win over a top 10 opponent while earning a first-round TKO in the main event. Till was only selected by 16 percent of fantasy players, compared to a whopping 84 percent in favor of Cerrone. Out of the sliver of players who did correctly pick Till to win, another 82 percent said he would walk away with a knockout, so those points surely added up by the end of the night.
In the co-main event, former title challenger Karolina Kowalkiewicz put on a dominant performance against newcomer Jodie Esquibel to win a lopsided unanimous decision. Kowalkiewicz was, by far, the biggest favorite on the entire card, with an overwhelming 96 percent of fantasy players picking her to win, and another 75 percent saying she would get the victory by decision.
Local favorite Jan Blachowicz was actually an underdog according to oddsmakers going into his fight with Devin Clark, but savvy fantasy players seemed to know better when picking this light heavyweight matchup. Blachowicz was selected by 67 percent of players, as he wrapped up a Performance of the Night worthy standing rear naked choke to get a win on Saturday in Poland.
Blachowicz's win also earned the players picking him an extra 120 points because this was such a tight matchup.
Newcomer Oskar Piechota pulled off the other upset on the main card outside of the headliner as he defeated Jonathan Wilson by unanimous decision with just 33 percent of fantasy players picking him going into the night. Piechota also got an extra 40 points for the players selecting him, as this was his UFC debut.
On the preliminary card, late notice didn't slow down Poland native Marcin Held from defeating Nasrat Haqparast in a lightweight matchup. Held took the fight at the last minute, but still came away with 84 percent of fantasy players picking him to win and he did not disappoint.
Brian Kelleher also put on an outstanding performance in the bantamweight division as he finished Damian Stasiak to get his second UFC win. Kelleher was picked by 64 percent of fantasy players as he gets back on track following a loss to Marlon Vera in his last fight.
UFC rookie Ramazan Emeev pulled off one of the bigger upsets on the prelims as he defeated multi-time Octagon veteran Sam Alvey by unanimous decision on Saturday. Emeev was picked by just 21 percent of fantasy players, and his win also earned an extra 160 points as this was his debut and also a very tight matchup on paper.
Andre Fili also got an upset win over former Ultimate Fighter finalist Artem Lobov, although these odds were much closer, as the Team Alpha Male fighter was picked by 49 percent of fantasy players versus 51 percent in favor of lightweight champion Conor McGregor's favorite sparring partner.
Another upset followed in the women's bantamweight division, as debuting fighter Aspen Ladd put on a very strong performance to stay undefeated with a TKO victory against Lina Lansberg. Ladd was selected by only 31 percent of fantasy players, but now she certainly earned a lot more eyeballs for her second performance after a very impressive debut.
By the end of the night, according to the selections made by fantasy players, five underdogs came away victorious while six favorites got the job done in an ultra-competitive event.