The UFC on Fox 4: "Shogun vs. Vera" event tonight (Sat., Aug. 4, 2012) at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, featured a main card lightweight lowdown pitting Joe Lauzon taking on Jamie Varner.
Lauzon has been as high up in the division as he has low, bouncing back and forth between contender and pretender status. Varner, meanwhile, came into tonight riding a wave of momentum after destroying Edson Barboza to win his third in a row.
Amazingly enough, we got the best of both worlds.
Lauzon was on point, firing off strikes and mixing in his patented submission attempts from all angles after some sickeningly slick sweeps. Varner was game, returning fire and knocking Lauzon down multiple times while also scoring points on takedowns throughout the fight.
Unfortunately, the last one cost him dearly.
After a shot, Lauzon reversed right into a triangle that Varner battled hard to get out of but just couldn't pop his head free. He had no choice but to tap midway through the third round.
Take a bow, fellas. You're both winners.
Varner opened with a right hand a left hook to the body. In and out, give and go. Lauzon controlled the center but he was getting hit in the process of doing so. Just over one minute in and a big shot had Lauzon staggering back.
The former WEC champion looked good. Hell, he looked great.
Lauzon got aggressive and landed a big knee after Varner tried to lock up to avoid an onslaught of punches. Once they reset, "J-Lau" had regained the momentum he lost in the first couple minutes.
He continued to pour it on, enough so that the numbers supported him almost 3-to-1. Varner responded with another big punch late, though, dropping Lauzon and signaling another big shift in momentum.
The round ended and it was exciting as it was unpredictable.
They went hard with punches to start the second until a crazy sequence when Varner jumped a guillotine but ended up getting reversed and Lauzon suddenly had his back and looking to lock the rear-naked choke in.
After a short reset, they went back to firing shots off in high volume. Lauzon took advantage of a tired Varner and took him down, once again taking the back and looking for the choke. By the time the round ended, Varner was on top landing elbows.
This shit was crazy.
Varner decided to get some points by shooting in for a takedown. He got it, too, even if he ended up getting swept before Lauzon stood back up. Varner kept on firing, though, while the commentary team continued with the storyline that he had no gas tank.
He looked pretty good, all things considered.
Again, Varner executed a takedown but again got swept. This time, Lauzon locked in a triangle and Varner was forced to tap.
What a crazy, crazy fight. A "Fight of the Year" candidate, no doubt.
Remember, too, to check out MMAmania.com's complete coverage of the UFC on Fox 4 event by clicking here.