By Ivan Saldajeno
MANILA--Germaine De Randamie became the first winner of the UFC women's featherweight title after beating Holly Holm in the controversial main event of UFC 208 at the Barclays Center in New York City on Sunday (Philippine Time).
De Randamie got the better of the scorecards of the three judges in the fight, but two instances of her striking after the bell only for the referee to let them go drew mostly jeers from the crowd.
The Dutch fighter landed a right hook to her American opponent right after the final bell for the second round that rocked the latter.
De Randamie had another too late to be scored right punch in the third round just after Holm landed two straight kicks to her head. The referee also let the moment pass, although he warned De Randamie that he will deduct a point in the next offense.
De Randamie would not further land a late strike the rest of the way, but Holm rocked her with an early fifth round punch that slowed her down.
The judges scored identical 48-47 wins for De Randamie without any deduction, further making the Brooklyn crowd upset.
De Randamie won for the third straight time and fourth in the last five fights, while Holm dropped her third straight loss since giving Ronda Rousey her first defeat.
In the co-main event, Anderson Silva snapped a five-year winless run after beating Derek Brunson by unanimous decision.
Silva, who had a 17-fight winning streak that spanned for seven years, finally won after dropping his last four and seeing what was initially a win for him overturned to a no contest after he and Nick Diaz both failed the post-fight drug test.
Meanwhile, Filipino-American Phillipe Nover lost in his homecoming fight to Rick Glenn in an undercard match.
Nover, who calls the borough of Brooklyn his turf, ended at the wrong side of a split decision against Glenn.
Nover, who made his fellow Filipinos happy after beating Nam Yui-Chul at UFC Fight Night Philippines on May 16, 2015 at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay, dropped his third straight match since then.
Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno