UFC 297 post-event facts: Dricus Du Plessis, Raquel Pennington make history in title wins

The UFC’s first pay-per-view of the year is likely to prove to be far from the most memorable, but UFC 297 at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto did prove significant with two new champions crowned.

In the main event, Dricus Du Plessis (21-2 MMA, 7-0 UFC) edged Sean Strickland (28-6 MMA, 15-6 UFC) by split decision in the Fight of the Night to claim the middleweight championship. In the co-headliner, Raquel Pennington (16-8 MMA, 13-5 UFC) outlasted Mayra Bueno Silva (10-3-1 MMA, 5-3-1 UFC) for a unanimous decision for the vacant women’s bantamweight title.

For more on the numbers behind the title fights, as well as the rest of the card, check below for MMA Junkie’s post-event facts for UFC 297.

Event stats

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The UFC Promotional Guidelines Compliance payout for the event totaled $285,500.

Du Plessis, Strickland, Gillian Robertson and Jasmine Jasudavicius earned $50,000 UFC 297 fight-night bonuses.

Debuting fighters went 1-1 on the card.

UFC 297 drew an announced attendance of 18,559 for a live gate of $7,898,695.

Betting favorites went 5-7 on the card.

Betting favorites improved to 2-0 in UFC headliners this year.

Total fight time for the 12-bout card was 2:50:38.

Dricus Du Plessis def. Sean Strickland

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Du Plessis became the 14th undisputed middleweight champion in UFC history.

Du Plessis became the first South African champion in UFC history.

Pantoja became the fifth fighter in UFC history to force a title change by split decision. Alexandre Pantoja, Robbie Lawler, Henry Cejudo and Carla Esparza also accomplished the feat.

Du Plessis’ seven-fight UFC winning streak at middleweight is the longest active streak in the division.

Strickland fell to 6-3 since he returned to the UFC middleweight division in October 2020.

Strickland has suffered four of his six career losses by decision.

Raquel Pennington def. Mayra Bueno Silva

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Pennington became UFC champion in her 18th octagon appearances, the most octagon appearances for any first-time female titleholder in company history.

Pennington’s 12 victories in UFC women’s bantamweight competition are second-most in divisional history behind Amanda Nunes (13).

Pennington’s five-fight UFC winning streak at women’s bantamweight is the longest active streak in the division.

Pennington’s 10 decision victories in UFC women’s bantamweight competition are most in divisional history.

Bueno Silva has suffered all three of her career losses by decision.

Neil Magny def. Mike Malott

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Neil Magny’s (29-11 MMA, 22-10 UFC) 20 victories in UFC competition are tied for fourth-most in company history behind Jim Miller (26), Andrei Arlovski (23) and Donald Cerrone (23).

Magny’s 22 victories in UFC welterweight competition are most in divisional history.

Magny has alternated wins and losses over his past seven fights.

Mike Malott (10-2-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) has suffered both of his career losses by knockout.

Movsar Evloev def. Arnold Allen

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Movsar Evloev’s (18-0 MMA, 8-0 UFC) seven-fight UFC winning streak at featherweight is the second-longest active streak in the division behind Alexander Volkanovski (11).

Evloev has earned all eight of his UFC victories by decision.

Arnold Allen (19-3 MMA, 10-2 UFC) has suffered all three of his career losses by decision.

Garrett Armfield def. Brad Katona

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Brad Katona (13-3 MMA, 3-3 UFC) has suffered all three of his career losses by decision.

Sean Woodson def. Charles Jourdain

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Sean Woodson (11-1-1 MMA, 5-1-1 UFC) has earned four of his five UFC victories by decision.

Charles Jourdain (15-7-1 MMA, 6-6-1 UFC) has suffered five of his six UFC losses by decision.

Gillian Robertson def. Polyana Viana

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Robertson (13-8 MMA, 10-6 UFC) improved to 2-1 since he dropped to the UFC strawweight division in April 2023.

Robertson has earned 11 of her 13 career victories by stoppage.

Polyana Viana (13-7 MMA, 4-6 UFC) suffered the first knockout loss of her career.

Sam Patterson def. Yohan Lainesse

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Sam Patterson (11-2-1 MMA, 1-1 UFC) has earned 10 of his 11 career victories by stoppage.

Yohan Lainesse (9-3 MMA, 1-3 UFC) has suffered all three of his career losses by stoppage.

Jasmine Jasudavicius def. Priscila Cachoeira

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Jasudavicius (10-3 MMA, 4-2 UFC) earned the first stoppage victory of her UFC career.

Jasudavicius’ +300 total strike differential (326 vs. 26) marked a new women’s UFC record and a new overall three-round UFC fight record.

Priscila Cachoeira (12-6 MMA, 4-6 UFC) fell to 4-6 in her past 10 fights after starting her career 8-0.

Cachoeira has suffered all four of her career stoppage losses by submission.

Jimmy Flick def . Malcolm Gordon

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Jimmy Flick (17-7 MMA, 2-2 UFC) has earned both of his UFC victories by submission.

Flick earned a stoppage victory despite a -34 (3 vs. 37) significant strike differential, the largest statistical comeback finish in UFC flyweight history

Malcolm Gordon’s (14-8 MMA, 2-5 UFC) three-fight losing skid is the longest of his career. He hasn’t earned a victory since February 2022.

Gordon has suffered all seven of his career losses by stoppage.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 297.

UFC research analyst and live statistics producer Michael Carroll contributed to this story. Follow him on Twitter @MJCflipdascript.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie