In the main event of UFC 165, which took place on Sept. 21, 2013 at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Alexander Gustafsson landed 110 significant strikes and scored one takedown (replay here). That's more than Mauricio Rua, Quinton Jackson, Rashad Evans, Vitor Belfort and Chael Sonnen, combined.
In case you hadn't noticed, the Swedish striker was trying to finish the fight.
In the past, some fighters have employed a play-it-safe gameplan (think Condit vs. Diaz), preferring to stay out of the kill zone and earn points from the outside. While that's certainly understandable against a "monster" like Jones, there's a reason they call Gustafsson "The Mauler."
Coach Eric Del Fierro explains (via Telegraph Sport):
"We were looking to stop Jones. That's what we were always looking for. We in the camp knew what Alex has, what the rest of the world didn't know he had. The kid can wrestle. He has the whole game, you know what I mean, and this was his first time up against someone like Jones, who is a monster himself. After the first round, and then into the second we knew Alex could stop Jon and we were trying to urge him to pressure forward, and not to respect any of the takedowns. He was stopping all of them. Jones wasn't able to hold Alex down, even at the end, because he was so exhausted. We were really pleased when Alex took Jon down, because it made people realize that Alex is a monster himself. He's so young, he's going to be a beast, you know. We've known it about Alex for a while, he was going in there to win, and to take the belt for sure."
Maybe next time.
The Swede's performance probably came as a surprise to Jones, as well as to the fans in attendance and at home. Gustafsson entered the Octagon a +600 underdog and almost made a few privy investors very wealthy. Perhaps the second time around, which is a "very real possibility" for Super Bowl Weekend, Jones won't enjoy such a swollen betting line.
Then again, whatever doesn't kill you can only make you stronger.
For more on the UFC 165 pay-per-view (PPV) event including live results, play-by-play, recaps, highlights, videos, reactions and more, check out our "Jones vs. Gustafsson" live story stream by clicking here.