Eddie Alvarez became the first fighter to hold Bellator and UFC gold at UFC Fight Night 90 as he finished Rafael dos Anjos by TKO to become the new UFC lightweight champion.
UFC Fight Night 90 was held on July 7, 2016, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
After spending years as quite possibly the best lightweight fighter outside of the UFC, Eddie Alvarez finally proved that he is also the best within the promotion by blitzing former champion Rafael dos Anjos in the first round of the main event of UFC Fight Night 90. The bout was the first championship contest to be featured on the UFC’s digital streaming service, UFC Fight Pass.
The action was contested at a high pace from the opening bell, as both champion and challenger looked to land quick strikes in the early moments. It was Alvarez who first attempted to take the fight to ground, but dos Anjos countered with a choke attempt that briefly had Alvarez in trouble. He was able to defend, however, and the fight returned to the standing position. Alvarez would score with a game changing blow only moments later.
With his back close to the cage, the challenger unleashed a huge shot that stunned dos Anjos and sent him stumbling backwards. From there, Alvarez poured on the punches, blasting his damaged opponent from every angle. Brazil’s final champion fought valiantly to stay in the running, but he was unable to hold onto top position after Alvarez fell to the mat while attempting a flying knee and could not stem off the continuous attack. Herb Dean was finally forced to step in and halt the action at 3:49 of the opening stanza, even though dos Anjos remained on his feet. There was no complaint from the dethroned king, though, as he returned to his corner while the new ruler celebrated his victory only feet away.
Acquiring the UFC lightweight championship puts Eddie Alvarez on the short list of possible candidate for the best 155 lbs’er in history, while Rafael dos Anjos has tasted defeat for the first time in over two years.