UFC went all in for UFC 225 in Chicago, putting together "the deepest card of the year." The result was a $2.55 million gate and 18,117 total fans.
The last time the company was at the United Center, they drew 10,287 fans for a gate of $1 million. That was a UFC on FOX card headlined by Holly Holm and Valentina Shevchenko. The event took place on July 23, 2016. This was the first pay-per-view event to take place in Chicago. The previous five UFC events held in the Windy City were all FOX cards.
The card was filled with decisions with eight of the 13 bouts going to the judges. Despite the bevy of scorecards, the night was packed with action. In no surprise, Yoel Romero and Robert Whittaker took home Fight of the Night for their five-round classic. Whittaker walked away with a split decision victory in the rematch, but not without plenty of bruises and scars. Romero nearly forced a stoppage in the third and fifth rounds, but Whittaker somehow survived. The middleweight champion did enough in the first, second, and fourth round to convince two of the three judges that he earned the victory.
Due to Romero missing weight, Whittaker was not only given his $50,000, but Romero's as well.
Performance of the Night bonuses went to Charles Oliveira and Curtis Blaydes. Blaydes made a statement on the preliminary card, stopping former heavyweight title contender Alistair Overeem with elbows in the third round. Meanwhile, Oliveira tapped out Clay Guida with a guillotine in the first round.
Gate: $2.55 million
Fight of the Night ($100,000 for Whittaker): Yoel Romero and Robert Whittaker
Performance of the Night ($50,000): Charles Oliveira
Performance of the Night ($50,000): Curtis Blaydes
Check out the Fightful post-fight podcast for a recap of all the action.