UFC 290 Highlights: Volkanovski stops Yair Rodriguez in masterful TKO

Alexander Volkanovski and Yair Rodriguez squared off in the main event of UFC 290. The night was filled with explosive finishes and grueling battles, but it was Volkanovski who showcased his dominance to emerge as the victor.

Volkanovski was sporting a band aid the entire week, so it was no surprise to see him heading into the contest with a healing cut on his cheek.

Rodriguez was hoping to secure a different outcome for Mexican champions after Brandon Moreno’s defeat earlier in the night. Unfortunately, the trend continued, as Volkanovski took control from the start.

Volkanovski wasted no time imposing his game plan, pressuring Rodriguez and avoiding his dangerous question mark kick. Within the first two minutes, the Australian executed a takedown, grounding Rodriguez and maintaining top position for the remainder of the round.

In the second round, Rodriguez attempted to keep Volkanovski at bay with kicks but was unable to deter his relentless forward movement. Volkanovski swiftly closed the distance, securing another takedown and continuing his ground and pound assault. Rodriguez struggled to escape Volkanovski’s dominant top game, enduring more damage as the round progressed.

Referee Herb Dean issued warnings to Rodriguez for fence-grabbing and holding his opponent’s gloves, urging him to maintain fair play. However, Rodriguez found himself in a desperate situation going into the third round.

Aware of the urgency, Rodriguez showcased some moments of success, landing solid blows and mixing up his strikes. He connected with a head kick and displayed improved offense. However, Volkanovski quickly regained control, landing a significant right hand that hurt Rodriguez and backed him against the fence. Volkanovski unleashed a flurry of uppercuts before executing a powerful takedown. Rodriguez covered up, unable to defend himself effectively, leading to the conclusion.

Volkanovski acknowledged the danger of Rodriguez’s striking abilities and admitted to some adversity during his training camp. He’s reportedly expecting to undergo a hand surgery following the event but is still looking forward to returning before the year’s up.


In the end, the official result was declared in favor of Alexander Volkanovski, who secured a TKO victory over Yair Rodriguez at 4 minutes and 19 seconds of the third round. The dominant performance further solidified Volkanovski’s position as a force to be reckoned with in the featherweight division.