It may not have been the most stacked Fight Night card of the year, but UFC Vegas 61 delivered valuable action from start to finish last night (Sat., Oct. 1, 2022) live on ESPN+ from inside UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.
This not only included a main event showing from Yan Xiaonan over women’s strawweight counterpart Mackenzie Dern, but also a fight card chock-full of knockouts, submissions, sloberknockers, and Facebook CEO’s. You can check out some the biggest takeaways from UFC Vegas 61 below:
Dana White: Sucker For Zucker
Let’s get the elephant out of the room right off the bat. Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, did in fact attend last night’s fights with his wife and a few friends. The billionaire genius was seen from the “Prelims” card all the way through the main event between Yan and Dern. For a few moments, fight fans were convinced that Zuckerberg was just like them as pictures of the Facebook frontman screaming cageside popped up on their social media feeds.
It was an intriguing moment to witness, but why the hell did UFC president Dana White feel obligated to keep the arrangement a secret? Why did White label Dern’s claim that Zuckerberg rented out the UFC Apex as “bullshit?” As if the combat world would collapse on itself if Zuckerberg watched a night of fights by himself, White dismissed all rumors without hesitation.
It’s weird to say the least, but I guess White is a sucker for Zuckerberg and wanted to keep this one close to the chest.
Is Brown Rude Enough For Welterweight Top 15?
After outlasting welterweight veteran Francisco Trinaldo in UFC Vegas 61’s co-main event, Randy Brown has pushed his 170-pound win streak to four. It wasn’t the most beautiful performance for “Rude Boy,” but the 32-year-old put together a solid outing in one of his biggest fights to date.
Believe it or not, Brown has been competing under the UFC banner for nearly seven years. He has shown improvement in each and every one of his fights, but most recently the Jamaican fighter has taken his game to a new level. He’s been more aggressive, fluid with his attacks, and eager to dig deep in the later rounds.
But has Brown done enough over the past 18 months to warrant a shot at the UFC welterweight top 15?
As of now, no. That’s not to say that Brown doesn’t have the skill set to contend with a handful of ranked welterweights, but it’s more of a resume thing. While Brown has won his last four trips to the Octagon, two of those wins came against guys no longer on the UFC roster (Alex Oliveira, Jared Gooden) and his win last night came against a 42-year-old veteran well past his prime.
If “Rude Boy” wants to test his luck at the top 15 in one of the deepest divisions around then he’s going to have to win one more inside of the cage.
Don’t Sleep On ‘Super’
Sodiq Yusuff was back in action last night at UFC Vegas 61 in a main card clash with Octagon newcomer Don Shainis. While Shainis was a massive betting underdog who was never expected to put Yusuff in serious trouble, “Super” made things look easy. He ended up stopping Shainis with a 30-second guillotine choke for his first career submission finish.
Yusuff’s performance was a reminder that he’s still a viable contender in the featherweight division. Standing out in a weight class as stacked as 145 is a tough ask for a guy who doesn’t finish too many fights, but Yusuff might be poised to break out of that mold. Don’t forget, Yusuff is 6-1 since entering UFC back in 2018 and his lone loss came against red-hot featherweight contender, Arnold Allen.
In other words, don’t sleep on “Super.” Yusuff still has a ton of potential at 145 pounds and utilized his post-fight interview to call out former UFC title challenger, “Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung. Big things are on the horizon for Yusuff.
For complete UFC Vegas 61 results and coverage click here.