The following is from our live coverage of Strikeforce: Houston. To access our full coverage, click here.
Strikeforce Middleweight Championship
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Tim Kennedy
Round 1: Both fighters touched gloves to start. They had a brief exchange with both men connecting. Jacare landed a nice push kick. Jacare caught Kennedy with a right hand and followed it up with a flurry of punches. Kennedy landed a pair of overhand rights. Jacare landed some leg kicks and punches to the body. Kennedy nailed Jacare with a big shot and Jacare slipped, but he was back up to his feet. Kennedy landed a leg kick right before the round ended. FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Jacare.
Round 2: Kennedy started chasing Jacare to start the round but ate a couple of punches. Kennedy landed a nice combination. They continued to trade punches for most of the round. Jacare shot for a takedown, which was stuffed. Tough round to score as both fighters landed about an equal number of shots. FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Kennedy.
Round 3: Both fighters traded punches to start off the round. Kennedy pressed Jacare against the cage, but Jacare was able to spin out towards the center of the cage. Kennedy’s cut over his left eye. Kennedy scored a takedown and took Jacare to the mat. Jacare was able to get back to his feet. Both fighters continued to trade punches as the round came to an end. FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Kennedy.
Round 4: Kennedy landed a leg kick to start the round. They exchanged, and Kennedy landed another leg kick. Jacare went for a takedown, but Kennedy was able to successfully defend it. Kennedy accidentally kicked Jacare low, and Jacare was given time to recover. There was some confusion with the clock, giving both fighters even a longer break. The fight was restarted and Kennedy went for a takedown, which was stuffed. They stayed standing as the round ended. FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Kennedy.
Round 5: Kennedy landed a big shot to start the round. Jacare landed a nice jab. They stayed standing. Kennedy shot but Jacare moved out of the way and pegged Kennedy with a shot. They continued to trade punches with neither fighter coming out with a clear advantage. Jacare finally got on Kennedy’s back, but Kennedy was able to move out. Jacare landed some big shots and Kennedy scored a big takedown to end the round. Really close fight, I can see it called either way. FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Jacare.
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza defeated Tim Kennedy via unanimous decision (49-46,48-47,48-47).
After the fight Jacare gave Kennedy his props, and was happy to win the belt.
Kennedy noted after the fight that it was a frustrating fight. Kennedy said that he’s not sure how the decision went to Jacare but that he would be back.