Sports

UFC 221: Luke Rockhold vs Yoel Romero

UFC 221: Luke Rockhold vs Yoel Romero

Yoel Romero scored one of his patented third-round knockouts over former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold, Mark Hunt lost to ever-intriguing heavyweight prospect Curtis Blaydes, and Tai Tuivasa lit up the hometown crowd with a quick TKO win before chugging a beer from an audience member's shoe. After all, Whittaker won the interim title from Romero last summer at UFC 213 in a closely-contested, back-and-forth fight. Romero had little success in those first five minutes, as he struggled to get in close and was reduced to winging wild overhands from distance.

Romero turns 41 in April but shows no signs of slowing down and still has the ability to end any fight in a heartbeat with his brutal, fight-ending power. This streak is highlighted by wins over Brad Tavares, Uriah Hall, Rafael Natal, Derek Brunson, "Jacare", and of course, Romero.

These are the types of young, emerging prospects everyone needs to be paying attention to going forward and the kind of potential local stars the capacity crowd in Perth paid to see.

After a tentative opening round, Romero, a Miami resident by way of Cuba, picked up the pace in the second, darting into range and landing punches in bunches on Rockhold (16-4), a former UFC and Strikeforce champ from Santa Cruz, Calif. Remaining on the outside, Romero slapped in a right jab.

It's a shame Yoel Romero didn't make weight, otherwise he'd be leaving Australia with UFC gold. Eventually he backed Luke up to the cage and unleashed an amazingly powerful left hand that slept Luke Rockhold!

The Cuban also believed he broke his leg in the first round of the fight, as he said: "Yes, I think in the first round I took two kicks and I'm pretty sure that it broke my leg".

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Subscribers will also have access to ESPN films-including the 30 for 30 franchise-and additional original sports programming. Disney said it earned an adjusted $1.89 a share, compared to the $1.61 that Wall Street expected for the quarter ending.

Making his UFC debut on commentary, Jimmy Smith noted in the second that Rockhold seemed content at boxing range.

Romero came out charging in Round 2 and didn't relent in Round 3.

Sure, Romero has already been punished by having 30% of his purse taken away and given to Rockhold, plus he was ineligible for the $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus.

Hunt landed a huge shot to drop Blaydes early in the fight, prompting Blaydes to turn to his wrestling.

As good as Romero is, it's not fair to reward him with a title shot. Meanwhile, Rockhold will be looking to wear Romero out and finish this one in impressive fashion.


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