Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight hitters Fabricio Werdum and Stipe Miocic clashed last night (Sat., May 14, 2016) at UFC 198 inside Arena da Baixada in Curitiba, Brazil.
Watch their fight video highlights right here.
Werdum's UFC run -- and career as a whole -- has been pretty incredible. He's achieved some great things, but last night he was looking to defend his title for the first time and really kick off his reign as champion.
Miocic did his best to disrupt those plans. One of the finest athletes in his division, Miocic intended to end his opponent's win streak and walk away with the strap.
Both men opened up with low kicks. Werdum wasted little time in going on the offensive, pushing forward with straight punches and finishing his combinations with hard kicks to the mid-section.
To his credit, Miocic looked quite calm. He was putting together punches well and shooting out smooth jabs. He was also doing a nice job of landing his low kicks, helping to ensure that he wasn't without a weapon at range.
Just as the two were settling into the bout, the fight ended.
Werdum was landing when he threw combinations, but he got too aggressive. While essentially running after his opponent with punches, Miocic simply stepped back and cracked him with a short right hand.
Werdum, with all his weight pushing him into the punch, went down hard.
This was an ideal result for Miocic. The two were trading rather evenly, but Miocic was able to capitalize on a reckless moment from his opponent. That's all it took for him to win a world title.
Honestly, there's not a whole lot to analyze. Miocic spent a couple minutes kickboxing with his opponent, and neither man really pulled ahead. Then, he knocked his opponent out cold.
If there's one thing certain in the heavyweight division, it's punching power.
Following this win, Miocic's next fight should be pretty clear. Alistair Overeem has earned a title shot, and that's a highly intriguing fight between knockout artists.
Obviously, this is the worst-case scenario for Werdum. He was a bit reckless early on, and that's simply not a mistake you can make against an elite Heavyweight with serious punching power.
Even longtime veterans make mistakes.
That doesn't make the loss any easier to swallow. If there's a silver lining, it's that Werdum is still in the immediate title mix. Since Overeem is very likely the next title contender, there's time for Werdum to get back into the win column and challenge for the strap again before long.
For example, Cain Velasquez is fighting Travis Browne in July. If Velasquez is victorious, then a rematch with Velasquez would make perfect sense and earn the winner a shot at the strap.
Last night, Stipe Miocic flattened Fabricio Werdum in the opening round. How long will Miocic hold onto his strap?
For complete UFC 198 "Werdum vs Miocic" results and play-by-play, click HERE!