Jamie Varner vs. Joe Lauzon
After a shocking upset over rising star Edson Barboza, Jamie Varner gets another big opportunity against Joe Lauzon. The submission specialist Lauzon will try and get back in the win column after suffering a knockout to Anthony Pettis. This is going to be a career-defining bout for both lightweights.
Round 1: Varner comes in with a quick left hook from the body and lands another explosive combination. Varner looking very crisp with his striking. Right hand rattles Lauzon who is struggling to find his rhythm with Varner’s pressure. Lauzon appears to have recovered as he catches Varner with a significant knee. Lauzon coming back into this fight as Varner slows his action. Lauzon rips a body shot and follows up with a few more punches. The two exchange and Varner catches him with a hook that sends Lauzon on his back. Varner with control of Lauzon who turtles up before the round comes to a close.
FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Varner
Round 2: Interesting to see if Lauzon’s stamina will give him the advantage as we saw Varner taking some deep breaths in the first round. Varner lands a powerful leg kick that throws Lauzon off balance. More pressure from Varner who peppers Lauzon with a short elbow and a few more shots. Lauzon goes for a takedown. Varner counters for the guillotine but Lauzon transitions to his back. Now attempting a rear naked choke as Varner stands to his feet and eventually slips out. Lots of action in this one. Fight turning into a brawl as the two exchange wildly. Back and forth action with Lauzon getting the better of his opponent. Varner slips and Lauzon is on top before they return to the feet. Lauzon drags him down again with both hooks in. Varner fighting for wrist control as Lauzon works the rear naked. Lauzon transitions to mount, now working an arm triangle but he loses it. Lauzon all over him but Varner escapes and throws two elbows from the top position as the round comes to a stop.
FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Lauzon
Round 3: This one has fight of the night written all over it as the two fighters hug in the center of the cage. Action stops as Varner forgot his mouthpiece. Varner throws a couple of short elbows but appears winded nonetheless. Varner with a well-timed double that finds him in Lauzon’s tricky guard. Lauzon sweeps and gets back to the feet. Nice right hand connects from Varner and now throwing some more elbows but Lauzon is covering up nicely. Varner gets a takedown but Lauzon locks in the triangle. Lauzon working to tighten the submission and he gets the tap.
Joe Lauzon def. Jamie Varner via submission (triangle choke) at 2:44 in the third round.
A rollercoaster match with a ton of action from both fighters. Varner’s striking was impressive but his stamina was tested and Lauzon proved why he is considered one of the greatest submission artists in the UFC.