Anthony Pettis made it look easy at UFC 164. | Ed
Mulholland/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images
Pettis once again provided the kryptonite for Benson
Pettis (17-2, 4-1 UFC) submitted Henderson with a first-round
armbar, capturing the Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight
crown in the UFC 164 headliner on Saturday at the BMO Harris
Bradley Center in Milwaukee. Henderson (19-3, 7-1 UFC) verbally
submitted 4:31 into round one, as he was beaten for the first time
inside the Octagon.
“Showtime” withstood a relentless clinch game from the champion. He
broke free late in the first round and delivered a series of
blistering kicks to the body. A wild kick attempt left Pettis on
the bottom, Henderson settling in his guard. In an instant, the
challenger locked up the arm and, after a brief struggle, forced
“I felt his arm pop, and I heard him say, ‘Tap,’” said Pettis, who
afterward called for a super fight with reigning featherweight
champion Jose Aldo. “It
was the body kicks that set that up. I hit him with four or five
body kicks, and I saw his face change. Body kicks are underrated in
mixed martial arts. People don’t know how to use them. I’m a
traditional martial artist. I’ve been using body kicks since I was
5 years old, so body kicks are [good] moves for me.”
The defeat halted Henderson’s streak of seven straight wins.
“Anthony is a tough dude,” Henderson said. “He proved himself to be
the No. 1 contender and the champion. He got my arm, and he did a
good job of twisting it the right direction. That’s a high-level
armbar right there. Most guys might miss the technique behind it,
but that was a pretty good armlock. My arm is killing me, dog.
“I just wanted to put pressure on him,” he added. “He’s not as good
going backward. He’s a lot better if you give him space to go
forward, so the idea was to keep him going backwards the entire
time. The kicks he hit me with both came while he was coming
Barnett Makes Triumphant Return
In the co-main event, former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett
made a dominant and triumphant return to the Octagon, as he
brutalized Frank Mir in
the clinch en route to a first-round technical knockout. Barnett
(33-6, 5-1 UFC), who had not competed in the UFC since March 22,
2002, forced the stoppage 1:56 into round one.
Barnett's knee dropped Mir to the canvas.
Mir (16-8, 14-8 UFC) was on the defensive from the word go. Barnett
pressed into the clinch and battered the Brazilian jiu-jitsu black
belt with punches, knees and elbows.
Pinned hopelessly on the cage, Mir lowered his head, was met with a
thudding knee strike and collapsed to the mat. Barnett then closed
him out with punches. Mir, who has now lost three in a row,
immediately protested the stoppage.
“I know I didn’t want to stop, I’ll tell you that much,” Barnett
said. “Me and Frank are the kind of guys who would rather die than
quit. That’s the way it goes. I’m just here to fight. If you want
us to come back after the main event and do it again after the main
event, we’ll walk back out here. We can do it in the parking lot,
too. I’ve got enough to go around for anybody.”
Mendes Scores Fourth Straight KO
Alpha Male’s Chad Mendes
dispatched Clay Guida
with third-round punches in a featherweight showcase. Mendes (15-1,
6-1 UFC) tagged Guida’s figurative toe 30 seconds into round three,
becoming the first man to ever stop “The Carpenter” with
Mendes blew Guida's doors off with punches.
Guida (30-14, 10-8 UFC) bobbed, weaved and fired off errant punches
and kicks throughout the match. Mendes did not seem impressed. He
threatened the Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts export with a
guillotine choke in the first round, sprawled and countered for
much of the second and then let loose in the third.
A crisp right hook folded Guida where he stood, forcing the Round
Lake, Ill., to dive at his opponent’s legs in desperation. Mendes
dodged his advances, blasted him with another clean right hook and
polished off another impressive victory with unanswered blows on
“I knew that punch landed clean,” Mendes said. “He’s been hit hard
before and didn’t get finished. I knew I needed to take my time and
keep the pace on him. I found another hard punch on the chin and
ended it. It’s tough to go against someone who is moving around
like that all the time, but I finally found him and ended it.”
Rothwell Swarms, Stops Vera
Rothwell spoiled Brandon
Vera’s return to the heavyweight division, as he put away the
Alliance MMA veteran with a third-round hailstorm of knees and
punches. Rothwell (33-9, 3-3 UFC), who still has never lost
back-to-back bouts as a professional, sealed it 1:54 into round
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty
Rothwell rallied to end Vera's night early.
Vera (12-7, 8-7 UFC) circled and countered for much of the match,
frustrating the monstrous Kenosha, Wis., native with pace, movement
and measured offense. Kicks to the legs and body were the primary
weapons for “The Truth,” along with a few left hooks.
Fed up with the pursuit, Rothwell dive bombed Vera in the third
round, burying him with knees and punches for the finish.
“It was time for me to show the UFC what I could do,” Rothwell
said. “[In] that third round, it hit me that my potential has
finally come on, and I’m here to give the fans what they need to
see. I see blood. It’s pretty obvious how I fight and how I’m going
to come after you. I just felt like a shot caught him, and he
looked stumbled and it was my time to spring.”
Poirier Denies Roufusport’s Koch
A multi-pronged offensive attack carried
American Top Team’s Dustin
Poirier to a unanimous decision over fellow prospect Erik Koch in a
featherweight showcase. All three cageside judges scored it for
Poirier (14-3, 6-2 UFC): 29-28, 29-27 and 29-27.
Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Getty
Poirier was too much for Koch.
Poirier escaped a tight triangle choke in the first round and
nearly finished it twice, first with a searing right hook and later
with a brabo choke. Koch (13-3, 2-2 UFC) kept himself in the bout
through sheer will power. However, Poirier had him in trouble again
in round two, where he mounted the
Roufusport product and moved out to a
Koch rebounded in the third round, as he tripped the Lafayette,
La., native to the floor, assumed a dominant position and
eventually transitioned to Poirier’s back. “New Breed” fished for
the choke, but Poirier defended well and ran out the clock.More UFC 164 »
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