Cigano captures UFC heavyweight title by knockout

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The new champion rejoices. Photo: UFC.

Saturday saw the UFC pitch tent at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. For the historic first broadcast on Fox, as well as on Brazil’s most popular station, Globo, Junior Cigano took his post at the top of the heavyweight heap. Check out the results to arise from the card:

New champion

For the first UFC broadcast not just on network TV in the USA but on Brazil’s most popular TV station, Globo, Junior Cigano defeated Cain Velazquez and is now the UFC heavyweight champion. From the outset, the Brazilian took control of the ring and threw his fists menacingly. A right cross behind the ear knocked Cain to the ground and a few follow-up strikes left referee Big John no choice but to call an end to the encounter. The knockout came at 1:04 minutes of the opening round.

The win marks Cigano’s 14th in 15 fights, his eighth in a row in the UFC. Six years ago Cigano was serving tables. In a meteoric rise, he joins Anderson Silva and José Aldo as Brazil’s current UFC champions.

Henderson vs. Guida

Three action-packed rounds played out in the contest between Ben Henderson and Clay Guida. Henderson did well to control Guida’s momentum and used his ground game to good effect, passing guard and reaching back mount. Clay did throw some danger Henderson’s way in the third round with a snug guillotine, but Henderson worked through it to win the unanimous decision, and now he’s setting his sights on lightweight kingpin Frankie Edgar.

Submission swap

In the first round, Pablo Garza risked going for a tight kneebar on Dustin Poirier. Seeking his fourth win in a row, Poirier was already seeing the better of the action when he sunk a tight arm-triangle choke to end the action at 1:32 minutes of the second round.

In the first round, Ricardo Lamas had his work cut out for him against Cub Swanson but managed to work his way free from a tight guillotine. In the second, Lamas came up with his own choke hold, finishing Swanson with an arm-and-neck choke 2:43 minutes in.

Quick knockout

Damarques Johnson recovered his winning ways by laying out Clay Harvison with an upper cut and following up with another strike before referee Herb Dean separated the two 1:34 minutes into the first round. At bantamweight, Darren Uyenoyama controlled the action against Kid Yamamoto throughout the three rounds, winning the unanimous decision after the final bell.

Prelims serve up Jiu-Jitsu show

Alex Caceres had back-to-back losses leading in to his fight with former WEC champion Cole Escovedo. Caceres controlled the center of the ring and put on a sightly striking display, but the highlight came in the third round, when he landed in bottom position. “Bruce Leroy” did well in using his gentle art skills to get out of the jam, sinking a triangle, extending his opponents arm in an armbar, and even slapping on an omoplata. Escovedo managed to untangle himself but, once the three rounds had played out, he was the one to suffer a third loss in a row.

Check out the complete results:

UFC on Fox
Anaheim, California, USA
Saturday, November 12, 2011

Junior Cigano defeated Cain Velasquez via TKO at 104 min of R1;
Ben Henderson defeated Clay Guida via unanimous decision;
Dustin Poirier subbed Pablo Garza via arm-triangle at 1:32 min of R2;
Ricardo Lama subbed Cub Swanson via arm-and-neck choke at 2:43 min of R2;
DaMarques Johnson defeated Clay Harvison via KO at 1:43 min of R2;
Darren Uyenoyama defeated Kid Yamamoto via unanimous decision;
Robert Peralta defeated Makens Semerzier via TKO at 1:53 min of R3;
Alex Caceres defeated Cole Escovedo via unanimous decision;
Mike Pierce defeated Paul Bradley via split decision;
Aaron Rosa defeated Matt Lucas via split decision.

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