UFC 279 Results: Chimaev and Diaz Score Big in Controversial Event

Last-Minute Shuffle Had the Would-Be Opponents Winning

It was an unprecedented move for the UFC. President Dana White announced just hours before the ceremonial weigh-ins that the promotion had shuffled its three main fights thus wreaking havoc across the sportsbook. Khamzat Chimaev and Nate Diaz, the original headliners, ended up fighting different opponents and coming away with wins per the UFC 279 results. The pair benefit the most from what was a mess turned into a sly marketing opportunity.

UFC 279 Remixed: The Winners and Losers

Six fighters were directly impacted by the UFC’s decision to shuffle its main fights, which came as a kneejerk reaction to Chimaev’s failed weight cut. The Chechen-Swedish fighter weighed in at 178.5 pounds, 7.5 pounds over the welterweight limit. This was just after getting into a scuffle backstage with Kevin Holland, who was fighting Daniel Rodriguez at a catchweight of 180 pounds.

The next thing you know, the UFC had swapped the fights involving Diaz, Chimaev, and Holland; and per the UFC 279 results, this “audible” mostly benefited everyone involved.

Winners: Diaz and Chimaev

Of all the fighters on the card, Diaz benefited the most from this shuffling. Chimaev would likely have squashed Diaz and instead, the Stockton native submitted Ferguson in the main event. Diaz secured his first submission win in over six years. With this being Diaz’s last fight on his current contract, he has potentially upped his asking price thanks to his victory. This gives Diaz more power at the negotiating table whether it’s with the UFC or other promotions.

As for Chimaev got to extend his winning streak to 12 and got to shut up Holland, who he claims had been talking trash incessantly. His reputation took a hit with his unprofessional antics at the scale. But Khamzat Chimaev height of popularity remains with that victory and instead of being punished, he gets another win to his resume.

Loser and Winner: Li Jingliang

Li Jingliang was supposed to notch one of his biggest victories had he fought Tony Ferguson. Instead, he lost a split decision against the lesser-known Rodriguez. Over 90 percent of polled MMA media outlets scored the fight in favor of Li but in the end, the Chinese fighter walked away with an “L” on his record.

No matter, Li won over more fans thanks to saving the card. Had he turned down Rodriguez, who weighed in 10 pounds more than him, the UFC may have had to scrap the card. Li was also not able to use his chic new suit as the press conference got canceled, but fans and fighters alike gave him shoutouts for it. So even with the loss, Li’s stock has gone up.

Winners: The UFC and the Fans

The UFC had a potential disaster on its hands and used it to improve the overall quality of UFC 279. Initially, Chimaev was set to maul Diaz while another fan favorite -Ferguson- was set to get starched by Li Jingliang. With Chimaev beefing with Holland, the UFC paired Diaz vs Ferguson as the main event thus giving the fans what they wanted. Ferguson odds opened at -135, but moved closer to -175 before the start of the fight.

Losers: Everyone that Parlayed From the Original Fights

The new fights appeased the fans, but it likely vexed bettors who had already made bets off the original fights. Those who parlayed the Chimaev-Diaz, Li-Ferguson, and/or Holland-Rodriguez fights would have seen their potential payouts shrink significantly depending on the sportsbook. The books would have ruled the originally-scheduled fights “no action”, thus making the parlay smaller perhaps without as much value. Instead of Diaz being a massive underdog of +700, he was instead just a +145 underdog.

Losers: Conspiracy Theorists

With everything that happened, you’d have no shortage of fans online complaining about a “work” from the UFC. After all, the UFC itself released the backstage footage of the “brawl”. Whether or not the UFC planned for this, no one will know. Hence, conspiracy theorists can clamor and speculate on the UFC 279 results with no closure.

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