Stipe Miocic at UFC 220
via UFC

UFC 220 went down on Saturday (Jan. 20), and during the event’s heavyweight main event, it was champ Stipe Miocic who wore down the giant Francis Ngannou for a historic win.

Miocic (18-2) broke the UFC’s all-time record for consecutive heavyweight title defenses, with a unanimous decision victory over the hyped challenger inside Boston’s TD Garden.

There were a lot of questions heading into the fight. Would Ngannou win and take over the UFC’s heavyweight division? Would Stipe be able to withstand the power of the giant? Can Ngannou go the distant if needed? Those questions were all answered, after the champ weathered the storm of the first round when Ngannou (11-2) was still fresh. After that, Miocic easily controlled the fight, with multiple takedowns, wrestling and striking on the ground.

“I’m the baddest,” Miocic said after the fight, though he admitted how dangerous Ngannou is.

Stipe was cautious in Round 1, with Ngannou swinging for the fences, before gassing out. The four rounds following were slower paced, with Miocic grappling, holding Ngannou on the ground and sticking him with punches and knees.

Miocic converted 6 of 14 takedown attempts, according to Fightmetric, and worn Ngannou down.

“I think I underestimated him a little bit,” Ngannou said in the post-fight interview. “He’s very smart.”

With the win, Miocic has won six straight fights, including wins over the likes of Fabricio Werdum, Alistair Overeem and Junior dos Santos.

“I do [believe I’m the greatest of all time],” Miocic said. “No one has ever defended the title three times. I had a killer row of fighters to get to it. I had a hard path to the title. Then I hard path to defend the title Top dudes. Arlovski. Werdum in Brazil. Next guy, Overeem, killer. [Dos Santos], who I lost to previously. Now, a guy who’s a phenom. Nothing is ever easy. I never had an easy road.”

For Ngannou, the loss is his first in the UFC and last since 2013. Before Stipe, he knocked out his five of his last six opponents in the UFC, with one win via submission against Anthony Hamilton.

What’s next for Stipe? UFC president Dana White told ESPN that he’s thinking of a potential super fight between him and Daniel Cormier, who defended his light heavyweight belt earlier in the evening.

In the co-main event, Cormier (20-1) retained his UFC light heavyweight title, with a TKO over the dangerous Volkan Oezdemir (15-2).