All he needed was an opening, as Tim Boetsch overcame 10 minutes of punches by Yushin Okami to stun the former No. 1 contender in the UFC’s middleweight division at UFC 144: Edgar vs. Henderson.
Okami was winning the fight after bruising and cutting the face of Boetsch early in the bout. However, after exiting his corner following the second round, Boetsch went for broke against Okami, dropping him to the ground with several strikes after a head kick connected.
“I knew nothing less than a knockout would win the fight for me,” Boetsch said. “Yushin beat me up for two rounds, but in my heart, I knew I could take him out.”
Boetsch’s corner let him know that he was well behind on the scorecards and needed to go for broke in the final round. Right from the bell, that’s what Boetsch did, nearly dropping Okami early in the round.
“I knew how tough Yushin was, but I saw him hurt and couldn’t let him get away and recover,” Boetsch said. “I landed a couple of big shots and put him away.”
In the third round, Boetsch landed 20 strikes compared to just two by Okami. Through the first 10 minutes, Okami led 47-26 in total strikes.