“Cleveland, we have a champion!”
New UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic spoke these words after knocking Fabricio Werdum unconscious at UFC 198 on Saturday night in Brazil. In doing so, Miocic gives his hometown something neither the Browns, nor the Cavaliers, nor the Indians could give it in his lifetime: a championship.
An overconfident Werdum advanced toward the underdog American, eating a right hook that knocked him to the floor unconscious. The stoppage came halfway through the first round.
“Fabricio Werdum is tough, he had me guessing,” Miocic explained after the fight. “I trained hard, man. He’s quicker than I thought, he was catching me off guard. It was a good shot. This is what I want to talk about, these guys put their time and effort into me, they wasted their money on me, but it was damn worth it, wasn’t it?”
In other action, Ronaldo Souza grounded-and-pounded Vitor Belfort into a bloody mess to win via first-round stoppage, Bryan Barberena again scored an upset by decisioning Warlly Alves, Mauricio “Shogun” Rua won a split decision over Corey Anderson, and in her promotional debut Christine “Cyborg” Justino made quick work of Leslie Smith.