Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) catchweight brawlers Cris Cyborg and Leslie Smith threw down last night (Sat., May 14, 2016) at UFC 198 inside Arena da Baixada in Curitiba, Brazil.
Video of their 140-pound showdown right here.
After years of rumors and public feuds, Cyborg's long-awaited debut was finally here. Opposite the tough-but-hittable Leslie Smith, the Brazilian was looking to make a statement about her status as the best in the world.
Very few fighters wanted to scrap with Cyborg at a catchweight, but Smith jumped at the opportunity. Planning to shock the world, Smith could jump the line and move into the title mix with a win last night.
Cyborg didn't waste much time.
The Brazilian marched forward, striking quickly and landing a few hard right hands. As the stronger, faster, and more technical striker, everything Cyborg threw began to land and land hard.
Before long, Cyborg connected with a massive right hand. Smith's knees wobbled, and Cyborg followed up with a combination of big hooks, most of which connected. Smith crumbled, and it only took a few more follow up shots on the mat to force the stoppage.
This was about what everyone expected. Cyborg entered the Octagon looking huge and dangerous, and she absolutely pulverized her opponent. Smith simply had no advantages, and Cyborg knew it.
Cyborg picked her opponent apart and ended it quickly.
Following this victory, Cyborg did herself no favors by not making her next bout clear. If she goes back to Invicta and defends her title, it would be massively disappointing. Hopefully, she manages to drop to Bantamweight and fight either Holly Holm, Miesha Tate, or Ronda Rousey.
Smith got smashed. It wasn't unexpected, and it wasn't pretty. There's no doubt Smith has heart -- and she never curled up and surrendered after getting rocked -- but she was outmatched in this bout.
There's not much to breakdown. Unless Cyborg gassed herself out trying to force the finish, Smith had no real path to victory. Win or lose, this was going to be a painful contest for "The Peacemaker."
That's the risk of being a massive underdog against a striking specialist.
Last night, Cyborg blitzed through Leslie Smith in the very first round. Who will the Brazilian fight next?
For complete UFC 198 "Werdum vs Miocic" results and play-by-play, click HERE!