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Home MMA Strikeforce Miami Results and Commentary
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Strikeforce Miami Results and Commentary

strikeforce_miamiNick Diaz, one of MMA’s most outspoken and polarizing figures made a huge statement Saturday night in the main event of Strikeforce: Miami. He would put on a dominating performance over internationally known, and DREAM welterweight champion, Marius Zaromskis. Zaromskis was coming into the welterweight fight on a five fight win streak looking to be the first MMA fighter to hold two titles in two different organizations at the same time. Zaromskis, a Lithuanian native has made a big name as of late, displaying highlight reel KO wins in his past fights. Diaz would have different plans as he used his height and reach advantage to pick apart his cagey opponent in an all action packed fight.

“I knew he was going to run and jump at me,” said Diaz who had no time for a feeling out process as Zaromskis started the bout with a flying jump kick. Diaz prepared well and was not intimidated as he immediately put to work left-rights that landed flush the whole night. The two would trade shots at each other on several occasions but Diaz would get the better of the exchanges, partly due to his huge reach advantage.

Diaz was caught by a Zaromskis hook in the first round that sent him off balance and eventually to the floor. The crowd cheered as the possibility of an upset seemed apparent for a good ten seconds, as the Lithuanian rushed to finish the fight on the ground but allowed Diaz to regain his composure. Later in the first, with Diaz now taking over, a stiff jab set up a huge uppercut that badly hurt the DREAM welterweight champion who was backed into the cage. Diaz would land a heavy body shot followed by a barrage of head body combinations that took the wind and legs out of his opponent. The end was near as Zaromskis attempted to create some distance, backing off but was caught with a short hook that sent him crashing down. The fight was immediately stopped and Diaz became the first Strikeforce welterweight champion. The Northern California based fighter improves to a record of 21-7 while Zaromskis suffers his first loss after five straight wins.

Cyborg walks through a game Coenen to make successful defense

Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos looks set to be the Strikeforce lightweight women’s champion for a very long time as she walked through the best shots of Dutch fighter Marloes Coenen en route to a hard earned TKO stoppage in the third round. It was the Brazilian’s toughest test to date in Strikeforce as Coenen landed hard straight rights throughout the bout. Cyborg’s strength would prove to be the deciding factor as she would walk past those flush rights and land barrage after barrage of hook combinations that took their toll over time. Much of the fight was fought on the ground, with Coenen attempting to secure single and double leg takedowns. Santos would just push off her opponent as if Coenen were a small child and fight inside the closed guard. At one point, with Coenen on the ground and on the defensive, Santos almost tossed her up into standing position. Her brutal strength was put on display the whole night and she closed the show late in the third. Coenen, finding that her strikes were doing no damage went in for a takedown. Cyborg stopped the shot and sat on Coenen as she landed hard shots from the top position. The bout was stopped at 3:40 in the third via TKO as a jubilant Cyborg displayed her emotions to the crowd. “She was the toughest fight of my career. She displayed a lot of heart,” Said Santos. What awaits the women’s lightweight chance is anyone’s guess but the rumor mill began to thread as Erin Toughill’s name was brought up soon after.

Walker makes successful debut; Lawler shocks and Lashley has a quick night.

Heisman trophy winner and former NFL pro Herschel Walker at 47 years young took Greg Nagy and gave him a spanking winning by TKO in the third round of his highly publicized and anticipated MMA debut. Walker was clearly a bit nervous in the opening seconds of the bout, but managed to land a few punches and kicks before negating a potential Nagy takedown. He was able to hold Nagy on the ground for much of the round and much of the fight, neutralizing his opponent’s advances for submission attempts by pinning his arms and legs to the ground. Walker showed good jiu-jitsu aptitude as he was able to escape a heel hook attempt in the first round and secured mount position on more than one occasion. Walker seemed comfortable being on the ground opting to stay in either side control or half guard and working shots to the head, shoulders and body of his opponent. By round three, the damage caught up to Nagy who visibly looked like he lost the will to fight. Walker was able to get Nagy to the ground and proceeded to continue doing what he had done the previous two rounds. With Nagy turtled up and Walker raining shots to his head, the referee had no choice but to stop the fight at 2:17 of the third round. Walker celebrated; snarling and flexing his genetically gifted physique. He showed great cardio fitness that would match anyone twenty years younger. After the bout, Walker admitted that training for MMA was the hardest thing he had ever done. When asked if he was one and done Walker responded, “I’ve got to come back and train. They’ve (American Kickboxing Academy) got to make that decision for me.”

Melvin Manhoef came into his fight with “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler as the odds on favorite. The Dutch kick boxer came with a solid pedigree from a country that creates some of the most skilled strikers in combat sports. Lawler impressed even more withstanding brutal attacks to the legs and body to catch the striker with a counter overhand hook that disoriented Manhoef and put him away with a straight punch while the Dutchman was falling to the ground. The official time was 3:33 of the first round. Lawler, who previously lost to current Strikeforce middleweight champion Jake Shields, reminded everyone he is still relevant in the division. From the opening of the bout Manhoef pushed the pace with the vicious hooks and kicks he is famous for. Lawler’s lead right leg was a consistent target and at one point Manhoef had Lawler limping. Manhoef continued with the pressure throwing hooks to the head and body that backed up Lawler. Lawler though, was sticking to his game plan, “I kept my hands up, and I knew I was going to catch him. I just didn't want to get over-extended. I knew I'd have a chance to catch him. His hands seem to drop once he goes to finish guys, and that's what I was waiting for." Patience and an iron will paid off for Lawler, as the victory is sure to infuse new founded vigor to a struggling career as of late.

It was another short night for former WWE champion and NCAA collegiate standout Bobby Lashley. The next big thing after Brock Lesnar made quick work of the always colorful Wes Sims that could have suited Lashley’s former profession. Sims was all jokes as he taunted Lashley at the beginning of the bout, but Lashley kept cool and was all business. In the end, Lashley stuck with what he knows best, as he used his superior wrestling ability to take Sims down. The great base and hip strength of the now Florida based American Top Team fighter was too much for Sims to work out from his guard position. It allowed Lashley to sharp shoot shots at will and forced Sims to give his back up, which led to the stoppage of the fight when he could no longer defend himself. The official time came in at 2:06 of the first round as the young Lashley makes it 5-0 in his professional mixed martial arts career.

In the undercard:

Jay Hieron def. Joe Riggs via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)

Joe Ray def. John Clarke via TKO in R1 (3:14)

David Gomez def. Craig Oxley via unanimous decision (30-27)

Pablo Alfonso def. Marcos DaMatta via armbar in R1 (1:47)

Hayder Hassan def. Ryan Keenan via TKO in R2 (2:42)

John Kelly def. Sabah Homasi via rear-naked choke in R1 (2:48)

 

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