WEC 53: Dominick Cruz is latest UFC champ; Pettis and Barão win

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Renan Barão. Photo: Josh Hedges.

An historic night in Arizona, WEC 53 marked the farewell to the promotion that now folds its roster and weight divisions into the UFC.

The fight that brought the WEC to an end after fifty-three shows could not have been more spectacular. In the lightweight title fight, Ben Henderson started out well against Anthony Pettis and dominated the first round. However, starting in the second the challenger took charge. He brought danger from back mount and landed solid strikes. The fight went back and forth, but Pettis always ended with the advantage. In the final round came the most striking moment. Anthony jumped against the cage and on his return three a spot-on kick to Henderson’s face. A well-deserved win for Pettis, who in the UFC will have a shot at the title against the winner of the fight between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard.

(Watch Anthony Pettis’s insane kick)


The fight between Dominick Cruz and challenger Scott Jorgensen was worth the bantamweight belt, but the UFC’s. The WEC champion dominated five rounds. Throwing all kinds of boxing combinations, Cruz mixed in knees and takedowns as well as defending well when on the receiving end. The new UFC champion holds a record of 17 wins and only one loss.

In the preliminary-card action, two Brazilian up-and-comers in the organization had their day. Renan Barão finished Chris Cariaso with a rear-naked choke in the opening round, notching his second win in the event in two fights. Promotional first-timer Yuri Marajó knocked out Ricardo Lamas also in the firs round. Now both go on to a career in the UFC.

Check out the results:

WEC 53
Glendale, Arizona, USA
December 16, 2010

Anthony Pettis defeated Benson Henderson via unanimous decision

Dominick Cruz defeated Scott Jorgensen via unanimous decision

Donald Cerrone submitted Chris Horodecki via triangle at 2:43 min of R2

Kamal Shalorus defeated Bart Palaszewski via unanimous decision

Danny Downes defeated Tiequan Zhang via unanimous decision

Shane Roller submitted Jamie Varner via a rear-naked choke at 3:55 min of R1

Brad Pickett defeated Ivan Menjivar via unanimous decision

Eddie Wineland defeated Ken Stone at 2:11 min of R1

Danny Castillo defeated Will Kerr via KO at 1:25 min of R1

Yuri Marajó defeated Ricardo Lamas via KO at 3:26 min of R1

Renan Barão submitted Chris Cariaso via a rear-naked choke at 3:47 min of R1

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