Donald Cerrone did not mess around.
“Cowboy” submitted Alex Oliveira with a first-round triangle choke in the UFC Fight Night “Cerrone vs. Oliveira” headliner on Sunday at the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh. A fill-in for former King of the Cage champion Tim Means, Oliveira (13-4-1, 3-2 UFC) conceded defeat 2:33 into round one.
Cerrone (29-7, 16-4 UFC) dealt successfully with the dangerous Brazilian’s combination of aggression and physicality. He ducked in for a takedown two minutes into the first round, secured his position and sliced through Oliveira’s open guard to advance to mount. From there, Cerrone framed a mounted triangle choke, rolled to his back and drew out the quick tap, winning for the ninth time in 10 outings.
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Streaking Brunson Blitzes Carneiro
In the middleweight co-main event, Jackson-Wink MMA rep Derek Brunson handed Roan Carneiro his first defeat since March 19, 2011, as he disposed of the longtime Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt with first-round ground-and-pound. Carneiro (20-10, 3-4 UFC) wilted 2:38 into round one, his run of six consecutive victories halted in decisive fashion.
Brunson (15-3, 6-1 UFC) bided his time and waited for an opening. Carneiro obliged. The American Top Team Atlanta standout overextended on a right hand, lost his balance and wound up pinned to the cage beneath Brunson. A wild flurry of punches followed, and though Carneiro initially survived, Brunson continued to bring the heat until the fight was done.
The 32-year-old Brunson has rattled off four straight wins.
Unbeaten Garbrandt Sticks Mendes
Undefeated Team Alpha Male prospect Cody Garbrandt took care of multiple-time Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion Augusto Mendes with first-round punches in their bantamweight showcase. A short-notice replacement for the Dengue fever-stricken John Lineker, Mendes (5-1, 0-1 UFC) met his end 4:18 into round one.
Garbrandt (8-0, 3-0 UFC) kept the Brazilian grappler at bay with biting leg kicks and fast hands. Mendes wobbled the Ohio native with an uppercut but allowed him to reset and recover. Soon after, Garbrandt leveled the MMA Lab export with an overhand right, raised his hands in victory, took his cue from referee Mario Yamasaki and polished off the finish with a stabbing hammerfist.
The 24-year-old Garbrandt boasts seven stoppages among his eight wins, five of them inside one round.
Bermudez Wears Down Kawajiri for Decision
A tireless work rate, punishing clinch and a few takedowns carried “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 14 finalist Dennis Bermudez to a unanimous decision over former Shooto champion Tatsuya Kawajiri in a three-round featherweight attraction. All three cageside judges scored it 29-28 for Bermudez (15-5, 8-3 UFC).
Kawajiri (35-9-2, 3-2 UFC) ran out of gas after a frenetic first round he largely controlled. Bermudez leaned on an effective sprawl while punishing the muscle-bound Japanese veteran with punches, elbows and hammerfists. By the time Kawajiri came out for the third round, he was a spent force. Bermudez secured two takedowns in the deciding frame, excelled in close quarters and continued to pile up points with his ground-and-pound.
The win snapped a two-fight losing streak for Bermudez.
Camozzi Nukes Shopworn Riggs
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 11 graduate Chris Camozzi smashed through MMA Lab’s Joe Riggs with grisly first-round knee strikes in their featured confrontation at 185 pounds. Camozzi (23-10, 8-7 UFC) brought it to a close 26 seconds into round one.
Riggs (41-17, 5-7 UFC) was never afforded a chance to get going. Camozzi snapped back his head with a lunging jab that had “Diesel” ducking for cover. He then followed with seven unanswered knees to the head, one of which broke Riggs’ forearm, sent him crashing to the canvas and necessitated the stoppage.
The finish was Camozzi’s first inside the Octagon since he put away Nick Catone in June 2012.
Krause Holds Off Campbell
World Extreme Cagefighting, Bellator MMA and Resurrection Fighting Alliance alum James Krause won for the second time in as many appearances, as he claimed a unanimous decision against Shane Campbell in a three-round lightweight showcase. Krause (23-7, 4-3 UFC) earned 29-28 scores from all three judges.
The moments for Campbell (12-4, 1-2 UFC) were too few and far between to matter over the first 10 minutes. Krause pecked away with punches and kicks from the outside, utilized level changes to run the Canadian through a series of clinches, mixed in a few takedowns and threatened with rear-naked chokes in the first and second rounds. Campbell executed a foot sweep late in round three, advanced to the back and eventually achieved full mount. Shoulder strikes from top position followed, along with a last-ditch punching volley, but his efforts went for naught.
Campbell, 28, has lost two of his last three fights.