a kick and tries to box inside, only to be shoved away by his younger foe. Matyushenko charges forward with a punch and gets caught on the button by a short left jab. The “Janitor” falls to the ground Gustafsson finishes off the turtling veteran with punches, referee Yves Lavigne stepping in for the stop at 2:13 of round one.
Jon Fitch vs. Johny Hendricks
Fitch crouches low and throws range-finding punches at Hendricks, missing. Hendricks steps forward and uncorks a massive overhand left right on Fitch’s jaw. Fitch falls backward like a tree and Hendricks only gets one follow-up shot in before ref Steve Mazzagatti dives in for the save. It’s a sensational knockout win for Johny Hendricks after just 12 seconds.
Nate Diaz vs. Donald Cerrone
The lightweights refuse to touch gloves and get to slugging as soon as the bout begins. Diaz gets a waistlock and tries to drag Cerrone down, winds up dirty-boxing against the fence. Cerrone lands a knee inside and Diaz answers in turn. Cerrone shoves him away and Diaz lands a nice two-punch combo, countered quickly by Cerrone. Diaz is picking Cerrone apart now, landing long, straight punches at will as the “Cowboy” wobbles about. The shots keep coming, Diaz moving Cerrone into the fence and blasting away with punches, elbows, knees. Cerrone gets off an outside thigh kick but eats half a dozen clean punches in return. There’s still half a round to go and Diaz is simply lighting up Cerrone, who tries a head kick which Diaz partially ducks. Diaz sticks his right hand in Cerrone’s face and jacks his jaw with three quick punches. Cerrone is bleeding from the mouth, slips on a kick. With 30 seconds to go, another big combo snaps back Cerrone’s head. Five, ten more good shots land and Diaz finishes the round holding Cerrone on the cage.
Diaz goes straight back to stuffing his fists in Cerrone’s face until he’s chopped down by a Cerrone leg kick. He pops right back up and keeps the punches coming, only to be sent to the floor again with a low kick. Diaz stands up this time and takes Cerrone’s back standing, but he’s quickly shucked off. Diaz wades into close quarters to throw now, finding success with uppercuts and defending a sweep from Cerrone. The Cowboy falls backward after landing a head kick and can’t pounce on the downed Diaz. Another leg kick trips Diaz to the ground; he stands back up. Cerrone tries to sweep Diaz down again, leaving himself open for a three-piece to the face. With two minutes to go, Diaz seems to have slowed the momentum of Cerrone and is now moving forward on the tired Greg Jackson pupil. Diaz hits a standing elbow, misses with a step-in knee and connects with a two-punch combo. He’s swept down again, but when Diaz gets up, he sends Cerrone staggering backward with a left straight. Diaz gets the better of the last 30 seconds with hooks to the body and face.
Diaz flips double birds at Cerrone from across the Octagon as the final round begins, then gets back to putting those same two hands on Cowboy’s face. Diaz is getting his volume going, mixing up combinations to the body and head. Diaz lands a kick to Cerrone’s ribs, ducks in with a three-piece and zips away before Cerrone can counter. Cerrone connects with a solid knee to the solar plexus of Diaz, who’s keeping more space as the bout enters its final three minutes. Cerrone sweeps Diaz to the ground, lets him back up. Diaz, who’s showing damage on his left eye, is still throwing plenty of punches but they’re finally beginning to slow. Cerrone lands a knee and Diaz answers with a harder one and a pair of punches. Diaz goes down again from a leg kick, and again is allowed back up. Down to the final minute now, Diaz is still coming forward, ripping combos to the ribs and jaw of Cerrone, who’s looking for a big flying knee. Diaz rattles off another dozen punches, blocks a head kick and gets kicked down again. They finish throwing and shake hands after the horn.
Official result: The judges’ scorecards read 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28, all in favor of the winner by unanimous decision, Nate Diaz.
Brock Lesnar vs. Alistair Overeem
Referee Mario Yamasaki is the third man in the cage for tonight’s scheduled five-round main event and heavyweight title eliminator. Lesnar bounces on his toes to begin as Overeem crouches and approaches with caution. Lesnar wades inside and ducks under an overhand right. Overeem hops away from a Lesnar single leg but he’s cut above his right eye. Stepping in, Overeem lands a solid knee to the body, then shoves him into the fence. More knees up the gut land on Lesnar and the ex-UFC champ is composed but moving backward. Lesnar is throwing single left crosses and gets jacked with another big knee. A kick to the liver sends Lesnar to the floor, covering up. Overeem stands over his crouching, covering opponent, socking Lesnar with heavy right hands until ref Yamasaki steps in. The TKO finish comes officially at 2:26 of round one.
After the fight, Brock Lesnar says he is done with the UFC and is "officially retired".