Cody Garbrandt was on top of the mixed martial arts (MMA) world in 2016, winning four consecutive bouts en route to toppling Dominick Cruz to earn the Bantamweight championship. Then his biggest rival, T.J. Dillashaw, finished him in back-to-back bouts — in violent fashion no less — to send “No Love” back to the drawing board. Nonetheless, Garbrandt is still the No. 2-ranked contender in the in the 135-pound division. And he looked to inch closer to another crack at his crown this evening when he locked horns with No. 9-ranked Pedro Munhoz in the opening pay-per-view (PPV) main card bout tonight (Sat., March 2, 2019) at UFC 235, which took place inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Unfortunately for him, he took another major step backward, letting his emotions get the best of him in the opening round, succumbing to another first round knockout in what turned out to be a crazy back-and-forth brawl.
Garbrandt came out the aggressor, flicking kicks, one of which Munhoz caught and tried to transform into a leglock, but “No Love” was able to step out. Munhoz started to work the low kicks as Garbrandt looked for an opening to counter. Garbrandt landed with a Superman punch, but it did not appear to hurt his opponent. Garbrandt began to showboat a little bit, sticking out his chin, but Munhoz didn’t take the bait. In fact, he drilled Garbrandt with a hard low leg kick that seemed to make “No Love” uncomfortable. Munhoz attempted a head kick, which Garbrandt ducked under, but in the process their heads inadvertanly collided.
Then all hell broke lose.
Garbrandt, who hit the canvas after the collision, went into attack mode and began to sling wild punches at Munhoz. Unfortunately for him, Munhoz has a beard and was able to walk right through them. Garbrandt appeared to wobble Munhoz with a right hand in the flurry, but then moments later the pair traded lethal right crosses and Munhoz’s was the one that landed flush, dropping Garbrandt to the canvas in a heap. Munhoz jumped on top and was able to quickly finish off Garbrandt with nine seconds left on the clock in the first round.
It was an insane finish. Garbrandt got stung and went into Crazy Brawler Mode, which ultimately led to his undoing and, unfortunately for him, his third straight (technical) knockout loss, all of which have come in the first round. Meanwhile, it’s a huge feather in the cap for Munhoz, who showed he is a game fighter, riding an impressive three-fight win streak.
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