With submissions and knockouts galore, UFC 116 this Saturday in Las Vegas was one of the best spectacles from the organization in recent times. If the card seemed overall underwhelming on paper, the fighters made it quite the opposite in the octagon.
In the evening’s main event deciding the definitive heavyweight champion, Brock Lesnar had his work cut out for him in facing Shane Carwin. A knockout artist, Carwin landed an upper cut that stunned his giant opponent, who eventually ended up with his back on the canvas. Carwin threw a string of shots, but Brock held out bravely and made his opponent for the first time in 13 fights go to the second round. There were doubts as to Carwin’s stamina should the fight play out after the first, and it did appear to be an issue, as Lesnar took his fatigued opponent down with ease, mounted and, to the joy of his Jiu-Jitsu coach Rodrigo Comprido, sunk an arm-and-neck choke for the finish.
Having just fought on June 19, Chris Leben took no rest and substituted an injured Wanderlei Silva at the last minute in his fight against Yoshihiro Akiyama. The Japanese fighter was the better in the first round, managing judo-trip takedowns and doing well in the standup exchanges. But Leben picked up the pace in the second. He nearly managed the knockout during a frenetic striking exchange. In the final round, Leben ended up on bottom, but was relentless in throwing punches and elbows and, after setting up an armbar, he insisted in using his Jiu-Jitsu to sink a snug triangle. All Akiyama could do was desist.
Another of the evening’s standout submissions came from Chris Lytle. After catching Matt Brown in a reverse triangle, he finished up with an armbar, in the second round.
Well known for the exciting spectacles he produces, Stephan Bonnar met all expectations. His fight with Krzysztof Soszynski was an action-packed affair. It seemed Bonnar would get the worst of the action once again. He was savagely punished in the standup, with his face battered as he entered the second round. At one point he even turned and sprinted away to avoid further punishment. However, as the second round played out, he landed some painful knees. One of them dropped Soszynski on all fours, from where he was struck repeatedly until referee Mario Yamasaki pulled the two apart.
In the first bout of the main card, George Sotiropoulos climbed a few more rungs up the organizational ladder. The pride of Australia used his striking and Jiu-Jitsu savvy to overwhelm the seasoned Kurt Pellegrino. Even after having suffered a knockdown at the very end, he took the unanimous decision win.
Check out the complete results:
Brock Lesnar submitted Shane Carwin via arm-and-neck choke at 2:19 min of R2
Chris Leben submitted Yoshihiro Akiyama via triangle at 4:40 min of R3
Chris Lytle submitted Matt Brown via armbar in R2
Stephan Bonnar defeated Krzysztof Soszynski via TKO at 3:08 min of R2
George Sotiropoulos defeated Kurt Pellegrino via unanimous decision
Brendan Schaub defeated Chris Tuchscherer via TKO at 1:07 min of R3
Ricardo Romero submitted Seth Petruzelli via armbar at 3:05 min of R2
Kendall Grove defeated Goran Reljic via split decision
Gerald Harris defeated David Branch via KO at 2:35 min of R3
Daniel Roberts defeated Forrest Petz via split decision
Jon Madsen defeated Karlos Vemola via unanimous decision