Yoel Romero lands stunning knockout on Luke Rockhold at UFC 221

Yoel Romero lands stunning knockout on Luke Rockhold at UFC 221

Yoel Romero lands stunning knockout on Luke Rockhold at UFC 221

Romero used a wicked overhand left to the temple followed by a big left uppercut to the jaw to finish Rockhold at 1:28 of the third round of their UFC 221 main event in Perth, Australia, on Saturday night (Sunday afternoon locally).

Romero was in frightening form before his loss to Whittaker, winning eight in a row, including knockouts over former champions Lyoto Machida and Chris Weidman. Part of the blame lies on Whittaker pulling out of the Rockhold fight at UFC 221, because if he was healthy Romero wouldn't have even been part of this discussion, as Romero was supposed to fight David Branch at UFC Orlando. But he didn't win a belt for his efforts. After fending off myriad takedown attempts in the opening round, Adesanya started piecing up Rob Wilkinson in the second, eventually bringing the fight to a close with a patient, punishing onslaught along the fence.

The first Whittaker-Romero went the distance and Whittaker won a unanimous decision in a bout that was named Fight of the Year. Rockhold stayed behind his jab and drilled Romero with leg kicks, while Romero kept the former champion honest with his Olympic-caliber wrestling and punching power.

Robert Whittaker was originally expected to face Georges St-Pierre for the title, but St-Pierre vacated it and Whittaker, the interim champion, became the undisputed champion.

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But the 26-year old American played it wisely and changed things up, taking Hunt down to the canvas, where the two spent most of the remainder of the fight as Blaydes superior fitness eventually told, the judges scoring it 30-26, 30-26 and 29-27 in the United States fighter's favour.

Romero also tried to target Rockhold's right knee, which had been seen strapped on Instagram in the lead-up to the fight. "I trained very hard for this fight".

The Soldier of God was incredibly lucky this opportunity against Luke Rockhold fell into his lap and was even more lucky when the promotion's president, Dana White, was oddly chill about his failure to make weight for the bout. But this is a sport, and part of the sport is making weight. Beating Hunt makes him relevant, and if he can get another notable win, "Razor" will be securely in the title picture. The problem is no one else stands out as the next contender in line. This flash knockout over Rockhold did just that, and while he might be an underdog against Whittaker, it's impossible to deny his chances. "So there's a bit of time to figure out what's going to happen in the weight division".

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