Daniel Cormier solidified his claim as the best heavyweight in mixed martial arts and one of the best fighters to ever grace the Octagon.
“DC” made it look almost too easy when he dominated challenger Derrick Lewis in the main event of UFC 230 Saturday night to retain his UFC heavyweight title. Cormier (22-1) scored takedowns whenever he wanted, never took any clean punches and vanquished ”The Black Beast” in the second via rear-naked choke.
Lewis (21-6) was never allowed to get into a rhythm and eventually tapped out to the choke, officially ending the fight at 2:14 of the second frame.
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‘Jacare’ Cleans Weidman’s Clock
One of the fiercest middleweights in the world inched closer to a possible world title match as Ronaldo Souza walked through hell in order to conquer Chris Weidman.
The co-main event was thrilling as it was dramatic as Souza and Weidman (14-4) slugged it out for nearly three rounds, but only one had to have his hand raised. “All-American” rocked the Brazilian numerous times in the battle with clean punches to the head, but Weidman was never able to put his foe away. With blood pouring from his nose, “Jacare” rallied in the third and rocked Weidman with a right to the head during a heated exchange.
Souza (26-6) followed that up with a wicked left hook to the body and then a right to the temple, dropping Weidman flat on his back. Souza wanted referee Dan Miragliotta to stop it right then and there and raised his hands in a pleading motion, but the Brazilian was forced to land a handful of follow-up punches before the veteran third man finally intervened. The end came at 2:46 of the third.
Cannonier Upsets Branch
Former heavyweight and light heavyweight contender Jared Cannonier was excellent in his middleweight debut as he knocked out former two-time World Series of Fighting champion David Branch.
“The Killa Gorilla” was taken down five times in the first round, but he kept getting back to his feet. Cannonier (11-4) never faltered and when he stuffed an early takedown attempt from Branch moments into the second, he ended the battle.
Cannonier pelted Branch (22-5) with a straight right to the face, dropping him. From there, the Arizona-based fighter rained down a cornucopia of punches until referee Keith Peterson had no choice but to intervene. The end came just 26 ticks into the second.
Roberson Outpoints Marshman
Middleweight Karl Roberson looked solid again inside the Octagon in winning his second UFC fight. The former Glory kick boxer dominated Welshman Jack Marshman from start to finish, landing several thudding kicks to the body and jamming his left hand down his throat repeatedly.
“Baby K” scored timely takedowns as well and nullified everything Marshman (22-8) off his back. In the end, Roberson (7-1) was awarded a unanimous verdict via tallies of 30-26 (twice) and 30-27.
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Adesanya Styles on Brunson
Israel Adesanya is one of MMA’s highest-touted contenders and on Saturday in the opening bout of the UFC 230 main card, he passed the biggest test of his career with flying colors.
“The Last Stylebender” thwarted a total of eight takedown attempts from veteran Derek Brunson before vanquishing him in the first round. Adesanya crushed Brunson’s face with a right knee when the North Carolinian charged in for his ninth takedown attempt and from there, the end was near. Brunson stumbled around the Octagon, eating knees and punches along with being knocked down. Finally, a combo of pinches to the melon felled Brunson (18-7) for good, prompting referee Herb Dean to intervene.
The end came officially at 4:51 of the first, allowing Adesanya to rise to 15-0.
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