In a legendary night in mixed martial arts (MMA) history, the brand new T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada played host to the historic UFC 200: "Tate vs. Nunes" event last night (Sat., July 9, 2016), featuring two title fights, the most stacked undercard in history, and the return of former Heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar.
In the main event of the evening, Amanda Nunes became the new UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion after laying down a savage beating on Miesha Tate before submitting the champ just over three minutes into the first round.
The co-main event featured the return of Brock Lesnar, and after five years away from MMA, the WWE superstar stepped into the Octagon and manhandled a top 10 contender in Mark Hunt in incredibly impressive fashion (highlights here). While Lesnar's future in the sport in unknown at this point, he proved he can still hang with the best of them.
With that quick overview of the night's marquee bouts, here are your biggest winners, as well as the runners-up from Las Vegas.
Biggest Winner: Amanda Nunes
Amanda Nunes was undoubtedly the biggest winner at UFC 200, putting together an impeccable performance in the main event, savagely beating the reigning champ Miesha Tate en route to a rear naked choke submission just 3:16 into the title fight.
"The Lioness" made the most of her opportunity in the most historic UFC PPV to date, and she is now the undisputed champion of the world.
The road to the title hasn't been easy for Nunes, as the Brazilian shook off a difficult loss to Cat Zingano by winning three straight fights. Even with the impressive streak, Nunes was far from guaranteed the next shot at UFC gold.
With former champ Ronda Rousey undoubtedly UFC brass' first choice for the next title shot, and Holly Holm making a case for an immediate rematch with Tate, it was an achievement for Nunes to get the title fight in the first place.
Earlier this week, the American Top Team product was slated to be the third fight on the PPV, but after the Jon Jones debacle and some last minute changes to the card, Nunes was thrust into the main event of arguably the biggest and most important event of all time.
Many fighters would have crippled under the bright lights, but "The Lioness" thrived, and showed off her championship mettle.
Nunes' title victory was her 6th inside the Octagon, tying Ronda Rousey for the most in the division's history.
Could the newly minted UFC Women's Bantamweight champion be staring down "Rowdy" in her first title defense?
Only time will tell.
Runners-Up: Jose Aldo
Jose Aldo Jr. is back!
The newly minted interim UFC Featherweight champion put together a picture perfect performance at UFC 200, shutting down the offense and completely neutralizing former UFC Lightweight champion Frankie Edgar over 25 minutes.
Heading into the fight, many questioned whether Aldo would be able to bounce back from his knockout loss to Conor McGregor, and exorcise his demons inside the cage.
Aldo had already defeated Edgar previously, but "The Answer" had won five straight fights against the cream of the crop heading into this rematch.
The odds seemed stacked against Aldo, and yet his true championship form came through in a fight that could ultimately define his career.
Being able to shake off a difficult loss after a decade of winning is an incredible mental and physical feat, and Aldo did it on the grandest stage of them all.
On top of his great performance inside the Octagon, Aldo used his opportunity on the mic to call out Conor McGregor to a rematch, promising he would defeat the Irishman and exact revenge.
Well done Junior. Well done.
With his performance at UFC 200, Brock Lesnar once again proved he is one of the most special athletes of this generation.
Most athletes don't leave a highly competitive sport for five years and suddenly return to compete at an elite level with little to no training, and yet Lesnar did just that at UFC 200.
On just five weeks notice, the former UFC Heavyweight champion took on the legendary striker and top ten contender Mark Hunt, and completely dominated "The Super Samoan" on the mat.
Lesnar's explosive takedowns and impregnable top control led to a ferocious beating in the first and third rounds, and although the WWE superstar had some cardio issues, his performance was sensational.
Lesnar had a ton of pressure to perform well, and he proved he can still fight against elite level competition.
You have to respect the former champ's competitive drive to want to compete on the historic UFC PPV, and he got the job done in impressive fashion.
While no one is campaigning for Lesnar to fight Stipe Miocic next, there are definitely going to be a lot of fans hoping to see the mammoth return to the Octagon again.
In the post-fight press conference, Lesnar was non-committal to returning, but after picking up the W and earning a $2.5 million purse, it may be too difficult for him to leave for good now.
Anderson Silva and Daniel Cormier
It is cliche to say, but Anderson Silva is a certified legend.
His performance at UFC 200 was nothing short of inspiring.
Let's be honest here, "The Spider" had no business being in the Octagon against the Light Heavyweight champ in Daniel Cormier last night, but when Dana White and the company needed him to step up, he did so on just two days notice.
The greatest champion in the history of the sport, now 41-years old and clearly in the final stages of his Hall of Fame career, got into the cage against a prime champion with hardly any training, one month removed from surgery, and clearly not in fight shape, and yet he was able to fight his way to a decision.
Sure, "The Spider" lost, but he wasn't savagely beaten down and finished. Silva was there to compete for his fans, for his legacy, and for the UFC.
In the few moments of Silva flashing his incredible striking, the crowd erupted, and the former Middleweight champ even hurt Cormier to the body late.
Of course, Cormier ultimately got the victory, so he too deserves to be in the "Winners" category.
The crowd in attendance at the T-Mobile Arena wrongfully booed Cormier as he used his takedowns and top control to coast to a decision victory. The Light Heavyweight champ fought intelligently and did what he had to in a difficult position to pick up the win.
Remember, Cormier was training for the best fighter in the world today in Jon Jones, and just 48 hours before their scheduled rematch, his opponent was switched to Anderson Silva.
Even without a training camp, "The Spider" is capable of incredible combinations on the feet, and it would have been foolish for Cormier to play into Silva's hands.
Ultimately, the fight wasn't too spectacular, but Cormier and Silva both deserve praise for stepping into the Octagon and doing their job on Saturday night.
Biggest Loser: Miesha Tate
After working so desperately hard to achieve UFC Women's Bantamweight gold for nearly a decade, it was stunning to see the title ripped from Miesha Tate in such violent and quick fashion at UFC 200.
"Cupcake" is known for her durability and heart, having been in numerous wars over her career, and only being finished by an elite few.
Add Amanda Nunes to that elite list of challengers following UFC 200.
What makes Tate's loss so difficult is how she noted in the lead up to the event that she was going to break Nunes, stating she had more heart than her challenger.
When push came to shove, "The Lioness" was the one who broke Tate, and she did it in under four minutes.
There were rumors that had Tate defended her title against Nunes, she would have earned her coveted trilogy bout against Ronda Rousey next, but after losing the belt last night, "Cupcake" can kiss that opportunity goodbye.
For now, Tate will need to climb the Women's Bantamweight ladder once again.
Runners-up: Frankie Edgar
The former UFC Lightweight Champion was incredibly confident heading into his UFC 200 rematch against Jose Aldo, but with the former Featherweight Champion returning to his legendary form on PPV, Edgar once again found himself on the wrong side of the decision.
After losing to Aldo in his Featherweight debut at UFC 156, Edgar won five straight fights against elite competition to set up the rematch for the interim title.
With Aldo coming off a knockout loss to Conor McGregor, it seemed the stars had aligned for Edgar to snag 145-pound gold, and become only the third fighter in UFC history to earn title in two separate weight divisions.
Unfortunately for Edgar, it was not meant to be.
Edgar had improved drastically from their first fight, but was still unable to close the distance on Aldo, which resulted in the Brazilian picking apart "The Answer" from the outside.
When the former Lightweight kingpin tried to get the fight to the mat, Aldo easily shrugged him off.
By the fourth round, Edgar's entire game plan had been neutralized, and Aldo was cruising towards the interim title.
With his second loss to the Brazilian, Edgar will have to go back to the drawing board and fight his way back to the top of the Featherweight mountain.
The Yellow Canvas
No Dana White, that was a yellow canvas, not gold.
The eye sore was supposed to be a special homage to the historic UFC 200 event, but instead it became the joke of the evening on social media, as fight fans were surprised to see the hideous mat inside the T-Mobile Arena.
The sponsors on top of the yellow canvas looked dreadful, and it took some serious adjusting to simply ignore it throughout the night.
UFC brass were trying to be unique with the alternative canvas, but it just really didn't seem to fit the vibe of the evening.
Overall, it was a swing and miss by the UFC in a weekend full of home runs.
For complete UFC 200: "Tate vs. Nunes" results, including real-time play-by-play updates, click here.