The man they call “The Korean Zombie” left his mark on the Commonwealth, and it was indelible.
Chan Sung Jung rendered Dustin Poirier unconscious with a fourth-round brabo choke in the UFC on Fuel TV 3 headliner on Tuesday at the Patriot Center in Fairfax, Va. Poirier, who had never before lost at 145 pounds, went limp 67 seconds into round four, bringing a dramatic close to a remarkable encounter between two blue-chip featherweights.
Afterward, Jung (13-3, 3-0 UFC) zeroed in on the man who has ruled the 145-pound division for more than two years.
“I want [UFC featherweight champion] Jose Aldo,” he said.
Jung was spectacular in victory and had Poirier reeling in the first round, as he struck for a trip takedown from the clinch, moved into side control and opened a cut near the Louisianan’s hairline with a well-placed elbow. The surging Korean nearly finished it in round two, where he stunned Poirier with a flying knee, followed it with a series of short uppercuts and lured him into a wild scramble that resulted in several submission attempts, including a pair of triangle chokes.
Poirier (12-2, 4-1 UFC) did his best work in the third round, sticking his fatigued foe with one straight left hand after another. However, success proved fleeting. In the fourth, Jung cracked him with a searing right uppercut and backed it up with another flying knee. Out of desperation, Poirier dove for a takedown, leaving his neck exposed in the process. Jung sprawled, deftly locked in the choke and finished it. The crowd erupted with its approval
“He had me in trouble at the beginning of the third round,” Jung said. “The thought of giving up was in my head, but I just kept going, and I came out with the win.”
Sadollah Ekes Out Decision
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 7 winner Amir Sadollah weathered a clinch-centric attack from Jorge Lopez to eke out a split decision in the co-main event. All three judges scored it 29-28, two of them in favor of Sadollah (6-3, 6-3 UFC).
Lopez (11-3, 0-2 UFC), a protégé of former Pride Fighting Championships titleholder Wanderlei Silva, did little in terms of striking. He delivered takedowns in all three rounds and expended much of his energy engaging his adversary in the clinch. Sadollah landed the only meaningful strikes of the bout, his trademark front kick chief among them.
Stephens No Match for Cerrone
Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts standout Donald Cerrone ravaged Jeremy Stephens with strikes en route to a lopsided unanimous verdict in a featured lightweight matchup. All three cageside judges scored it for Cerrone (18-4, 5-1 UFC) by identical 30-27 counts, as the world-ranked 155er won for the seventh time in his last eight outings.
Stephens (20-8, 7-7 UFC) never got in gear. Cerrone badly damaged his left eye with a first-round combination and sucked the sting from his punches with a well-executed kick-heavy game plan. Stephens, to his credit, kept his nose in the fight but had no answer for his foe’s diverse striking arsenal. Cerrone all but toyed with the Iowan in the second half of the bout, as he grew more and more confident and showed less and less regard for Stephens’ skills.
Jabouin Overwhelms Game Hougland
A multi-faceted standup attack and vicious ground-and-pound carried Haitian-born Canadian Yves Jabouin to a one-sided unanimous decision over Jeff Hougland in a bantamweight showcase. All three cageside judges scored it for Jabouin (18-7, 3-1 UFC): 30-27, 30-26 and 30-27.
Jabouin nearly finished it in the first and third rounds. In round one, he ripped into Hougland’s midsection with an exquisite spinning-back kick that sent him crashing to the mat in visible pain. Somehow, Hougland (10-5, 1-1 UFC) survived the subsequent onslaught.
“Not a lot of guys can withstand that back kick when it sinks in,” Jabouin said. “He took it like a man. My hat is off to him.”
Jabouin remained the aggressor throughout, and, in the third period, he tagged Hougland with a left hook, followed him to the mat and unleashed a savage torrent of punches and elbows. Again, Hougland refused to wilt. Jabouin delivered another devastating shot late in the fight, as he cracked his foe with a knee to the body and closed out the victory on the ground with punches and elbows inside Hougland’s guard.
“The UFC does a great job matching me up with tremendous opponents,” Jabouin said. “I’m not going to take that job from them.”
Pokrajac Outpoints Maldonado in Slugfest
Igor Pokrajac endured a grueling clinch war with Fabio Maldonado, as he rode his heavy power punches, a first-round takedown and several knees from the Thai plum to a unanimous decision in a featured light heavyweight duel. All three cageside judges scored it for Pokrajac (25-8, 4-3 UFC): 29-28, 30-27 and 29-28.
A protégé of 2006 Pride Fighting Championships open weight grand prix winner Mirko Filipovic, Pokrajac seized an early advantage when the Brazilian swung wildly, left himself vulnerable and succumbed to a takedown in the first round. The Croat mounted Maldonado (18-5, 1-2 UFC) briefly before settling in half guard and dropping elbows, punches and forearms to the head. Maldonado ultimately escaped to his feet, rattled Pokrajac with a pair of short left hooks and attacked with his trademark blows to the body.
Rounds two and three saw the two men spend most of their time in close quarters, Pokrajac answering Maldonado’s thudding body punches with well-timed knees to the head. The third round proved wildly entertaining, as the two light heavyweights threw caution to the wind, exchanged with reckless abandon and staked their claim to “Fight of the Night.”
Lawlor Stops MacDonald in 50 Seconds
Tom Lawlor celebrated his 29th birthday in style, as he needed less than a minute to dispatch Canadian journeyman Jason MacDonald in a middleweight showcase. MacDonald (25-16, 7-7 UFC) met his end 50 seconds into round one.
Lawlor (8-4, 4-3 UFC), who appeared on Season 8 of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality series, stuffed a loose takedown attempt and went to work with his hands. A straight left wobbled MacDonald and a follow up right hook behind the ear sent him to the canvas in a dazed state, forcing referee Todd McGovern to intervene on his behalf.
“I hit him with a [left cross] right on the button, and I backed off because I’m slow and my reaction speed is bad,” Lawlor said. “I threw a [right hook], and it landed. I feel good. I’m elated.”