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Midnight Mania! Reinier de Ridder steals second title from Aung La N Sang, Ok Rae Yoon drops Eddie Alvarez en route to decision win

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UFC 218: Alvarez v Gaethje Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Welcome to Midnight Mania!

ONE on TNT 4 once again brought the action tonight.

In the main event, Reinier de Ridder absolutely dominated Aung La N Sang to steal the Burmese athlete’s Light Heavyweight title ... having already taken Aung La’s Middleweight crown in October 2020!

In the first bout, de Ridder scored a rear naked choke early in the first round. He nearly repeated that performance, but Aung La did a better job of defending from bad positions, preventing his foe’s many submission attempts. Unfortunately for the former double champ, his defense of takedowns was less successful, as de Ridder was able to gain top position within the opening minute of every round.

The rounds became repetitive, as de Ridder routinely outmaneuvered his foe, gained top position, and spent most of the round chasing a choke. Aung La scored a few good shots along the way, but he mostly, he was rendered defensive at the cost of his second title.

In the co-main event, Eddie Alvarez looked to rebound from his recent and controversial “No Contest.” He squared off with ONE Championship veteran Ok Rae Yoon, who looked to score his fourth straight victory, as well as a potential title shot.

Yoon started incredibly strong, knocking down the former UFC champion and nearly finishing him. In classic “Underground King” fashion, however, Alvarez battled back, using his wrestling to close distance and landing some good calf kicks. By the end of the bout, Alvarez was landing the better shots on his more fatigued foe.

ONE Championship bouts are scored in their entirety, however, as Yoon’s early knockdown and power shots throughout the second half of the fight were enough to sway the judges to his side.

Insomnia

Nick Diaz vs. Dan Hardy does make a fair bit of sense, but yeah, Diaz getting sacrificed to the next gen is unfortunately more likely. Also, per a reply from Hardy, UFC has yet to release him from his contract after the commentary incident.

Francis Ngannou is living his best life.

“Cowboy” isn’t the type to decline a fight, but if I were him, I would not be pumped about going from Diego Sanchez to Albert Tumenov.

Judo is intense.

An absolutely ridiculous stat from Valentina Shevchenko, who made her pro debut at 15!

Click through for an entire thread of gnarly cuts (if you’re into that kinda thing):

Is Kamaru Usman and Ngannou’s relationship the greatest exchange in MMA history?

Slips, rips, and KO clips

A sweet spin kick!

Reminder: Derrick Lewis is the absolute last person anyone wants to be stuck underneath.

A loaded up headbutt KO:

Random Land

The MMAMania Money Pool begins its next season on Saturday night. If you have $20, know a little bit about picking UFC fights, and want to check it out, click HERE! for further details.

Slow-mo cat jump:

Midnight Music: A weird bit of Krautrock-y post-punk from Montreal rock band Suuns!

Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.