October 24, 2010
Velasquez upsets Lesnar at UFC 121Mexican-American fighter disposes of heavyweight champ four minutes into Round 1 of bout
By JOSE RODRIGUEZ, QMI Agency
The UFC has a new heavyweight champ.
Cain Velasquez defeated champ Brock Lesnar in a dominating victory during UFC 121 in Anaheim, Calif., that left Lesnar bloodied and beaten.
Lesnar exploded in the opening seconds of the round, scoring a takedown, but less than two minutes in, Velasquez responded with some calculated strikes that dropped the heavyweight champ.
Velasquez was relentless with his attack on the dummied Lesnar, earning a TKO stoppage at 4:01 of the first round.
Velasquez, the UFC’s first Mexican/American heavyweight champ, addressed the largely Hispanic crowd at the Honda Centre in Anaheim, Calif.
“To all the Latinos … we did it,” said Velasquez, who is now 9-0 as a pro.
Lesnar was gracious in defeat.
“He’s a great fighter. I knew I had a great challenge. Congrats. What can I say? He was better than me tonight,” said Lesnar.
Saturday’s UFC 121 event also featured the debut of former Strikeforce and EliteXC champ Jake Shields.
Shields was far from spectacular, but he did well enough to eke out a split decision victory over Martin Kampmann.
In a lackluster groundfight against a stand-up specialist, Shields was unable to submit Kampmann and looked gassed halfway through the second round.
Diego Sanchez’s superior conditioning and never-say-die approach made for one of the better fights of the night against Paulo Thiago. Sanchez looked crisp and powerful even picking up Thiago and dropping him to the delight of the crowd and an eventual unanimous decision.
In the Matt Hamill/Tito Ortiz battle, the student got the better of the teacher. Hamill, who was coached by Ortiz in The Ultimate Fighter, took a unanimous decision over the former light heavyweight champ, who hasn’t won a fight since 2006.
Brendan Schaub controlled his fight against Gabriel Gonzaga from the second the cage doors closed until the final horn, earning a unanimous decision from the judges.
In earlier action, Canada’s Patrick (The Predator) Cote lost his third straight UFC fight after being dominated for three rounds by Tom Lawlor.
A frustrated Cote failed to find an answer for Lawlor’s superior wrestling, and instead spent much of the fight on his back fighting off submission attempts and elbows.
Cote entered the fight having suffered back-to-back losses against Anderson (Spider) Silva and Alan Belcher. Three straight losses in the UFC is usually an ominous benchmark that sees many fighters cut from the fight club. The loss brings Cote’s pro record to 13-7.
Canada’s other fighter at UFC 121 fared better.
Sam Stout of London, Ont., got a split decision nod over Paul Taylor in a back-and-forth scrap that saw both lightweights stand and trade rather than tempt any ground action.
Both fighters landed strong kicks and brought punches in bunches in a predictably up-tempo standup battle.
Despite one judge scoring all three rounds for Stout, the Team Tompkins fighter was forced to settle for his fourth split decision of his UFC career. Two have gone his way, two haven’t.
The fight improves Stout’s record to 16-6-1.
In the undercards, middleweights Court McGee and Ryan Jensen started with a bang, with Jensen getting the best of the badly-bearded McGee.
But Jensen gassed out early in the second and McGee controlled the rest of the fight until he fell victim to a triangle choke at 1:21 of the third round.
Middleweights Dongi Yang and Chris Camozzi also fought to a split decision, with the judges liking Camozzi’s efforts more than the Korean fighter’s.
Welterweight Daniel Roberts didn’t waste any time in disposing of Mike Guymon with an anaconda choke at 1:13 of the first round.
In the first fight of the night — overseen by legendary ref Big John McCarthy — former The Ultimate Fighter contestant Jon Madsen handed Gilbert Yvel his third consecutive loss in the Octagon.
Madsen made short work of the heavily tattooed heavyweight, winning by TKO due to strikes at 1:48 of the first round.