UFC 131: Cigano beats Carwin and now aims for Velasquez

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Cigano staredown with Carwin in photo by Josh Hedges

UFC 131 took the goods to Vancouver, Canada, this Saturday night. In the main event, Junior Cigano notched his seventh-straight win, his sixth in the UFC, and now he’ll get his shot at the heavyweight belt. Check out the rundown of the main card:

Junior Cigano vs. Shane Carwin

Early on, it seemed clear Carwin would rather not risk dealing with his opponent’s boxing skills, opting to try to take it to the ground. In the opening round, Cigano landed strikes handily and nearly ended it, with Shane taking an onslaught of strikes while on all fours, going into the second-round break showing heavy damage to his face. After a lukewarm second, Cigano again dominated the action in the third round, even successfully shooting for takedowns. It was the first time Carwin went a whole three rounds, but the unanimous decision win was Junior’s, and now the winner will get his shot at Cain Velasquez for the heavyweight belt.

Kenny Florian vs. Diego Nunes

Diego Nunes had a good first round and managed a knockdown in the waning moments. In the second, Florian found his rhythm and took the lead with takedowns. In the third, with a steady stream of blood flowing from his head, Nunes seemed to have worn out. Kenny forged ahead with the takedowns and took the unanimous decision. It was Florian’s debut as a featherweight.

Demian Maia and Mark Munoz

Demian Maia had the better start. In the first round he landed more potent strikes in the standup exchanges. In the second, the black belt seemed to have run out of gas, mainly with his takedown attempts. Munoz went on to control the fight both with takedowns and strikes. Demian tried a few attacks on the ground but to no avail. Munoz took the unanimous decisions.

Jon Olav Einemo vs. Dave Herman

Olav came on strong in the first round with solid takedowns and strikes. It looked like Olav was sure to win in the second, but Herman landed a knee that set off a sequence of fight-ending strikes, taking the win by technical knockout.

Donald Cerrone vs. Vagner Rocha

Vagner had a promising start with a nice takedown. He was swimming upstream from there on out, though, as Cerrone took control of the fight with leg kicks. Pablo Popovitch black belt Rocha didn’t get to put any of his Jiu-Jitsu to work during the three rounds. Keeping out of danger with his potent leg kicks, Cerrone took the well-deserved unanimous decision.

Complete results:

UFC 131
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
June 11, 2011

Junior Cigano defeated Shane Carwin via unanimous decision;
Kenny Florian defeated Diego Nunes via unanimous decision;
Mark Munoz defeated Demian Maia via unanimous decision;
Dave Herman defeated Jon Olav Einemo via TKO at 3:19 min of R2;
Donald Cerrone defeated Vagner Rocha via unanimous decision;
Sam Stout defeated Yves Edwards via KO at 3:52 min of R1;
Chris Weidman submitted Jesse Bongfeldt via guillotine at 4:54 of R1;
Krzysztof Soszynski defeated Mike Massenzio via unanimous decision;
Nick Ring submitted James Head via rear-naked choke at 3:33 of R3;
Dustin Poirier defeated Jason Young via unanimous decision;
Joey Beltran defeated Aaron Rosa via TKO at 1:26 min of R3;
Darren Elkins defeated Michihiro Omigawa via unanimous decision.

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