Welcome to FightLine.com’s live coverage of Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov.
Tonight’s fight card comes to us live from the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. The event will air live on Showtime at 10:35 PM ET, and the prelims will air on HDNet.
Now, on to the action! We’ll have quick match results available for you after each preliminary fight followed by live round-by round coverage of all main card bouts. Remember to keep refreshing this page for the most up to date results.
Dominique Steele vs. Chris Mierzwiak
Round 1: Steele comes out fast and takes the center. Mierzwiak counters as Steele comes in, but he goes for the takedown as Steele continues forward. Steele reverses, but Mierzwiak reverses in kind and briefly goes for a reverse triangle on the ground. It fails and they return to their feet. Mierzwiak moves in for a takedown by a few punches, but he’s reversed. They scramble back and forth and end up back on their feet with Mierzwiak’s back on the fence. Mierzwiak looks fazed by a hard punch and a follow-up flying knee, he goes for the takedown. Steele thinks to threaten with the guillotine, but Mierzwiak defends and keeps hold of him. They separate and Mierzwiak turns it on, landing several damaging strikes on Steele, punctuating with a hard knee that briefly drops Steele. Mierzwiak dumps Steele to the mat and takes his back; he sinks both hooks and turns him over, applying the body triangle. Bleeding from the nose, Steele is doing his best to defend the rear naked choke. Under a minute to go and Steele finds the opening to turn into Mierzwiak. He doesn’t mess around in guard for long, letting Mierzwiak back to his feet. Mierzwiak looks to be tiring and Steele starts to turn it up with the striking. Mierzwiak stops his assault by grabbing hold of him and that’s where they end the round.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Mierzwiak
Round 2: They come out slower this time around, both men throwing half-hearted strikes before circling. Steele scores with a good combo, but Mierzwiak tosses him to the mat to interrupt. Steele scrambles out and then puts Mierzwiak down. Steele on top in Mierzwiak’s guard now. Steele is starting to land some ground and pound now, starting off a nice sequence with a flying knee. Mierzwiak looks for the triangle but is quickly denied. Mierzwiak gets to his feet, but Steele stays on him, only breaking to throw a flying knee. They stand their ground and briefly trade punches back and forth, with Steele getting the better of things, before clinching against the fence. Mierzwiak is wilting, he falls after Steele drills him with a right hand. Steele takes side control, looking to set up the crucifix while he peppers with ground and pound. Steele is looking a bit too tired to finish and Mierzwiak is able to survive until the bell.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Steele
Round 3: Both men looking very tired to start the round. Mierzwiak throws first, missing on a one-two and allowing Steele to grab him and press him into the fence. Mierzwiak turns him and looks for the takedown. These guys are exhausted. Steele drops Mierzwiak to his back with a right hand, but he falls as much from exhaustion as from force. Mierzwiak establishes guard immediately. Mierzwiak looks for the omoplata but is denied. They scramble and Steele ends up behind Mierzwiak. Mierzwiak to his feet, but Steele is right on him, throwing knees. Steele looks for and lands the double leg, firmly planting Mierzwiak on the mat. They look they’re fighting in molasses at this point, but Steele is likely taking this round on the judges’ score cards. Mierzwiak rolls for the armbar, but gives up side control. Steele gets sloppy trying to pass and lets Mierzwiak out the back door. Mierzwiak takes his back again, locking the body triangle in with under a minute left. Mierzwiak too tired to sink the choke and Steele turns into his guard.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-10
Dominique Steele defeated Chris Mierzwiak via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-27, 29-27)
Alexis Davis Vs. Amanda Nunes
Round 1: Nunes comes out hard with straight punches. They immediately start getting into it in the center of the cage, with Davis getting the worst of it. Davis is just eating shots, trying to grab hold of Nunes and put her down. They clinch against the cage, both working dirty boxing. Nunes goes for the single leg and puts Davis down against the fence. Davis fights her way to her feet and they hang out against the cage briefly before getting back into trading punches. Both women score with strikes. Davis starting to work the jab well, while Nunes continues to fire the right hand. They clinch again on the cage briefly. Nunes’ technique is starting to go out the window and Davis is still wading forward. They work against the cage until the round’s end.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Nunes
Round 2: Both women look dotted up entering the second. Davis gets right into Nunes’ face and backs her into the cage with punches. Davis goes to take Nunes’ back standing and ends up on her back against the fence. She goes for the low single and completes it, pulling Nunes down. They battle for position against the fence; Davis landing some nice knees with her arms clasped around Nunes’ body. They are separated and brought back to the center. They both unload punches, but Davis quickly latches onto Nunes again and presses her back into the fence, where she continues to work knees and dirty boxing. Nunes lands a nice throw as they move off the fence, but Davis rolls through it and ends up on top of Nunes, where she goes to work with ground and pound. Davis gets mount with just over a minute and a half; she takes her back and flattens her out in the middle of the cage. Davis goes to work with strikes from the top until the ref is forced to call an end to things.
Alexis Davis defeated Amanda Nunes via TKO (strikes) at 4:53 of round 2
Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos vs. Jordan Mein
Round 1: Santos whiffs on a leg kick; they start to trade leg kicks and both men land square. Mein checks a kick and counter with a good left hook. Santos turned Mein with that leg kick, a sign that the few he’s landed may be taking their toll. Mein with a good leg kick and then nice counter sequence off of a Santos leg kick. Mein hammers home another hard leg kick. Mein with a good, short left hook. Mein switches to Southpaw, possibly because of the leg kicks. Santos knocks Mein to the mat for a split-second with a hard leg kick to Mein’s back leg. Santos lands a good counter left hook of his own as Mein moves in. Santos starting to put his strikes together and he’s coming forward more aggressively now. He backs Mein to the cage, but Mein throws a few hard counters that show he’s still in this.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Santos
Round 2: Mein’s legs might be chewed up by those kicks in the first round, but he starts off the round with a pair of low kicks of his own. Santos tries for a head kick that slaps Mein’s arm. Mein looking a little tentative, content to peck away with single shots while Santos tries to load up on power shots of his own. Mein lands a pair of good left hands. Another combination by Mein; he’s starting to keep Santos on the end of his punches. Good body shot by Mein. Santos answers by sticking a good right hand. Mein turns it up, forcing Santos to shell up with a rapid-fire combo to the body and head. Mein showing nice head movement in the pocket, slipping punches nicely. Standing Southpaw, Mein is taking control of things standing. He tags Santos hard as the round winds down and the Brazilian buckles momentarily. Santos fires off a variety of strikes before the bell, but non connect.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Mein
Round 3: Santos tries for the leg kick again and it lands, but Mein makes him think twice by following up with two hard lefts. Santos slaps a kick against Mein’s dome. Mein starting to outclass Santos with straight boxing here, just battering Cyborg. Santos is starting to shut down under Mein’s attack, the young Canadian backs him into the cage and goes to town with elbows while standing until Cyborg wilts to the canvas.
Jordan Mein defeated Evangelista Santos via TKO (elbows) at 3:18 of round 3
Rafael Cavalcante vs. Yoel Romero
Round 1: Cavalcante takes the center of the cage, with Romero bouncing around on the outside. The crowd starts booing heavily as the two gauge each other. Romero tries a Crane kick-type thing that doesn’t accomplish much. Feijao tries for a head kick at around the 3:30 mark. Feijao lands a hard leg kick and misses on a follow-up Superman punch attempt. There’s a lot of inaction so far, with Romero moving around a lot on the outside and Cavalcante trying to figure him out. Feijao with a body punch, Romero returns with the same. The crowd boos the dancing. Feijao tries a head kick again; it misses. A leg kick lands for Feijao. Miragliotta calls time and then for a translator, seemingly to tell Romero to pick it up. Romero comes out taunting. He tries for a takedown, but Feijao ends up on top of him.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Cavalcante
Round 2: Romero swings with a big overhand right and misses. Feijao lands with a nice right kick to the body and then is tapped low when Romero returns fire with one of his own. They break briefly. Romero crouches to the mat and plays around there. Feijao falls to the mat after throwing a head kick, but recovers quickly. Romero bulls Feijao into the fence and starts to put some punches together on him. Feijao is looking a little beat up now and he briefly hits the ground when Romero hits a double. They work against the clinch briefly, but separate after stalemating. Feijao is plodding after Romero; he lands a hard kick to the body, to which Romero throws up his hands. Romero tries for the takedown but Cavalcante avoids and hits a takedown of his own from the cage. He lets Romero to his feet and the Cuban wrestler starts to put together some punches. Feijao throws up a head kick that misses, but he comes around with a hard spinning back fist that drops Romero. He takes his time in finishing his opponent, chasing him as he reels across the cage, only to put him away with a big right hand when he finally falls to the mat.
Rafael Cavalcante defeated Yoel Romero via TKO (strikes) at 4:51 of round 2
Mike Kyle vs. Marcos Rogerio de Lima
Round 1: Kyle comes out first, sticking the jab. De Lima working some good leg kicks, while Kyle fires straight punches down the pipe. De Lima is countering well, but Kyle might be landing the more effective strikes. Kyle with a leg kick of his own. De Lima starting to get eaten up by the jab now. Kyle takes another leg kick. De Lima is throwing a nice left hook-right leg kick combo that is scoring on Kyle. Kyle is keeping his chin up high, but de Lima hasn’t found it with anything of significance. Kyle backs de Lima up with some punches; on more than one occasion though, de Lima looks hurt and then seemingly recovers while firing off punches. Playing possum maybe? Either way, Kyle is dotting him up with straight punches, drawing blood with repeated jabs.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Kyle
Round 2: De Lima working some leg kicks that are knocking Kyle off balance. Kyle settles back into throwing straight punches. De Lima keeps him honest with two hard counter hooks. De Lima is scoring with leg kicks, while Kyle continues on with one-twos. De Lima lands a nice kick to the body and then chops into Kyle left leg with another kick. Both men going back and forth, fighting a measured and technical fight. Kyle goes for the clinch and briefly gets de Lima down. It looks like de Lima gets kneed low, but Kyle takes him down before he can rest from it. Kyle works a bit of ground and pound, then stands over him at the end of the round.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Mike Kyle
Round 3: Kyle disrupts de Lima’s initial attack with a straight punch. Kyle almost slips on the center of the mat, de Lima did the same earlier… De Lima lands two nice leg kicks and then another. De Lima lands another leg kick. Kyle’s offense is shutting down a little bit and de Lima is stalking him down, landing with leg kicks. De Lima lands a leg kick-left hand combo. Kyle drops under de Lima’s punches and plants him on the mat with a double leg. A minute and a half to go and Kyle is on top in de Lima’s guard. He passes to half guard. Kyle trying to pass, not going for much in the way of ground strikes. Kyle slips in an elbow, but de Lima keeps his posture broken and stays safe until the bell.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-10
Mike Kyle defeated Marcos Rogerio de Lima via decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Pat Healy vs. Maximo Blanco
Gary Copeland will referee the first main card bout of the evening.
Round 1: Healy takes the center. Blanco lands a good body kick before knocking Healy to his back with a leg kick. He follows Healy down and works from half guard. Healy gets to his feet, but eats a three-piece thrown from the pocket. Blanco lands a head kick and then starts in with the knees. From the clinch, Blanco is hammering home uppercuts. He lands another head kick, then a front kick which causes Healy to dive for the takedown out of desperation. Blanco stays on top of Healy and presses him into the fence. Healy’s looking to set up the triangle, now the omoplata. When he goes for the leg lock, Blanco repeatedly kicks him in the face with his other foot, an illegal technique. The fight is halted and a doctor is called in to see if a dazed Healy can continue. Copeland takes a point, but the fight continues. Healy comes forward, but Blanco gets right back to attack froming every angle with every limb. Healy grabs a leg and does his best to get Blanco down; he has to work damn hard for it but he eventually slams Blanco down and takes his back. Healy traps Blanco’s right arm with his legs and tags Blanco with some hammerfists.
FightLine.com scores the round 9-9
Round 2: Healy opens up with a one-two. Blanco is loading up on his punches and showing good head movement in avoiding most of Healy’s shots. Blanco lands a slow spinning back fist. Heally puts a few punches together. Blanco with a hard jab and then a follow-up combo that stings Healy. Blanco slips to the mat and Healy takes the opportunity to slam Blanco to the mat. He goes for a rear naked choke, but Blanco avoids and they get back to their feet. The action resumes, with both men landing some shots. Healy grabs the plum and looks to work knees. Blanco fights off the fence but is clearly tiring. Healy chases him down, tags him with a few punches before taking him down again. Blanco fights to his fight, but Healy slams him back down. And Blanco gets back up. Healy rolls him right into the crucifix and then goes for the rear naked choke again without hi hooks in. Blanco taps.
Pat Healy defeated Maximo Blanco via submission at 4:24 of round 2
Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal vs. Roger Gracie
Jerry Poe is the third man in the cage for this light heavyweight contest.
Round 1: They touch gloves and get to it, King Mo taking the center. Chants of “King Mo” ring out. Gracie in straight black shorts, no logos. So far both men are just feeling each other out, throwing feints and probing strikes. Gracie tries to clinch and gets hit with a couple of short punches as Mo shrugs him off. Gracie with a pair of jabs. Gracie trying to work his way into Lawal’s range with push kicks. Gracie lands a flying knee. His striking is awkward, but he’s being effective. Lawal tags him with a hard shot when he lunges in with a punch. Lawal throws a three-piece with heat on it, but nothing lands clean. Just as it seems things have hit a stalemate, Lawal drops Gracie to the mat with a hard right hand, he lands one follow-up shot that stiffens Gracie and Poe calls it.
Muhammed Lawal defeated Roger Gracie via KO (punch) at 4:33 of round 1
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Luke Rockhold
For the Strikeforce middleweight championship
Dan Miragliotta will oversee this middleweight championship fight.
Round 1: They touch gloves and get set to go. Rockhold gets off first with a short leg kick. Rockhold fighting Southpaw, lands a nice knee as Jacare tries for the takedown. He sprawls well but then gets tagged and sent reeling by a right hand. Jacare follows him across the cage, misses a knee but stays on Rockhold and takes him down against the cage. Jacare fighting to keep Rockhold down, he presses him into the fence while on their knees and hammers him with some right hands that have pop. Jacare continually working for the takedown against the fence, working in punches where he can. Rockhold gets to his feet, but Jacare is keeping him mashed against the fence. Rockhold breaks free. He goes for a leg kick and then push kick, both land glancingly. Rockhold lands two kicks but gets clipped by a hard right hand from Jacare. Jacare chasing Rockhold down, but the challenger keeps his composure and starts to turn it on with his kicks. He lands a switch kick and then a nice spinning kick. Jacare goes for the takedown and eventually gets it.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Souza
Round 2: Rockhold gets off with a spinning back kick right off the bat. Rockhold looks a lot looser to start this round and he’s finding a home for most of his strikes know, mainly kicks. Jacare sits Rockhold down with a right hand when he moves in, but Rockhold recovers quickly and moves away to avoid more damage. Jacare finally gets hold of Rockhold and smashes him with an elbow against the fence before they break. Rockhold lands a head kick and then another nice switch kick. Rockhold will back Jacare up with some nice shots, but Jacare continually lands a hard right counter that hurts Rockhold. Jacare gets Rockhold against the fence, but Rockhold turns him. He lands some nice knees to the thighs, but Jacare turns Rockhold and they shortly thereafter separate. Rockhold walking in behind punches, but getting tagged with that right hand still.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-10
Round 3: Rockhold pushes Jacare back with a front kick. Jacare eats a jab and then takes a hard high kick on the arm. Rockhold doing well to disrupt Jacare’s offense with his jab. Jacare goes on the attack with kicks and Rockhold fires back. Jacare takes a kick low and sits down for a few to recover. Jacare repeatedly points out that that was the second times he was clipped low. Rockhold goes right back on the attack, backing up Souza with straight punches. Jacare grabs Rockhold’s leg and presses him against the fence. As soon as Rockhold tries to land punches, he trips him hard to the mat. He can’t make much of it though and Rockhold pops back to his feet. Rockhold with a good front kick. Jacare is tiring here. but Rockhold is having somewhat of a hard time really capitalizing on his inactivity. Rockhold is landing more shots than Souza, who’s content to load up on single-shot counters. Rockhold starting to get loose, sensing that he can take the belt from the champ. Rockhold is picking his shots and landing almost at will with punches and kicks.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Rockhold
Round 4: Rockhold comes out intent on continuing his assault and he does so, showing slick head movement in avoiding Jacare’s counter shots. Rockhold keeping his hands low, he backs Souza up with a flurry of punches. Rockhold gets hit square with a right hook and barely moves; looks like Jacare’s punches have lost some mustard. Jacare presses Rockhold into the fence, but Rockhold turns him and returns the favor. Rockhold trying to make space and land some elbows. He goes for a takedown of his own but Jacare avoids and lands some good punches when they return to their feet. Jacare drops for the takedown, but Rockhold sprawls well and gets to his feet. Rockhold taking the momentum on their feet. He shows nice takedown defense when he overextends on a spinning back kick and leaves his leg for Jacare to grab; he uses the whizzer to keep Jacare off of him. Rockhold presses the champ against the cage and knees him until the bell.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Rockhold
Round 5: Rockhold swims in and lands a kick to the body. Rockhold is settling back into his range, landing with straight punches, mixing in kicks to keep Jacare guessing. Jacare explodes from time to time with a punch or kick, but Rockhold is usually a mile away. He moves in behind a pair of right hands to press Rockhold into the fence. Jacare gets the takedown briefly and knees Rockhold on the way up to their feet. Souza hits another takedown, this time getting Rockhold away from the cage. Rockhold scrambling well, but Jacare is staying on him. Rockhold gets to his feet, but Jacare hits him with a right hand and presses him into the cage again. Rockhold gets off the fence and starts to turn it on with his hands and feet. Jacare lands a front kick, but Rockhold just eats it and returns fire. Jacare isn’t exactly giving it up, but Rockhold is taking this round and this fight, avoiding most of Jacare’s shots and landing with most of his own. Jacare bulls Rockhold into the fence at the bell.
FightLine.com scores the round 10-9 for Rockhold
Luke Rockhold defeated Ronaldo Souza via unanimous decision (50-45, 48-47, 48-47)
That was a great fight and a big win for Rockhold. He is emotional in victory, delivering his post-fight speech through tears.
Antonio Silva vs. Daniel Cormier
Strikeforce World Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi-Final Bout
Greg Franklin is the third man in the cage for this heavyweight tilt.
Round 1: They touch gloves and Bigfoot takes the center. Silva catches a kick and bullrushes Cormier into the fence. They don’t play there for long, though. Cormier cracks Silva with a hard right hand that drops him to the mat. He works while standing over him briefly, but then lets him ti his feet. Cormier stings Silva again with a left hand. Cormier is snapping hard, fast punches that are wobbling Bigfoot. Silva dives for the takedown and Cormier easily avoids it. He lets Silva to his feet. Silva throws a body kick and is quickly swept to the mat when Cormier catches the strike. Cormier standing over Silva, circling and briefly kicking Silva’s legs. Silva moving in with some hard punches. Cormier finds his way off the fence though and resets, throwing punches. Cormier lands a three-piece that sees Silva slump to the mat. Two follow-up shots on the ground seal the deal. Rich Franklin’s brother stops it.
Daniel Cormier defeated Antonio Silva via KO (punches) at 3:56 of round 1
Looks like DC might’ve hurt his hand. Cormier pledges to take the tournament title now that he’s made it into the finals.
Josh Barnett vs. Sergei Kharitonov
Strikeforce World Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi-Final Bout
Dan Miragliotta will referee the night’s main event.
Round 1: Barnett fires off an overhand right and gets stung by a retaliatory combo from Khaaritonov. Barnett lands a hard counter right hand, but Kharitonov is landing some stiff shots to Barnett’s face. Barnett works hard for the takedown after fighting it out on their feet and he lands directly in mount. Barnett starting in with elbows, while Kharitonov tries to either break his posture or buck out. Barnett grinding his forearm into Kharitonov’s face and neck, chopping away with elbows. Kharitonov fighting back from the bottom, but Barnett is clearly dominating things right now. Barnett posturing up and firing off ground and pound. Kharitonov breaks his posture, but Barnett grapevines him and sits upright again. Kharitonov turns over and gives Barnett his back; The Warmaster is holding position on a turtled Kharitonov. Barnett landing punches from under the armpit. Barnett flattens him out and starts in with the ground and pound. Kharitonov rolls again, but Barnett slides out and slaps on the side choke to elicit the tap.
Josh Barnett defeated Sergei Kharitonov via submission (arm triangle choke) at 4:28 of round 1
Barnett goes for a takedown on Dan Miragliotta and then jokingly tries to steal the mic from Mauro Ranallo. He knows he has a tough fight waiting for him in Cormier. He gives a brief 9/11 tribute and pledges to tear Cincinnati apart tonight.
That’s it for the fight coverage y’all, thanks for tuning in!