Over 45,000 rapid MMA fans turned out for UFC 198 Saturday night.
All it took to silence 45,000 screaming Brazilians was one punch, as Stipe Miocic knocked Fabricio Werdum out cold in the main event.
Miocic caught Werdum charging in wildly, connecting with a right. Werdum dropped face-first to the canvas and Miocic jumped over the cage to celebrate with his team.
As Werdum was going after Miocic, the pride of Cleveland landed backing up. He hit Werdum with a few more shots on the ground, but the damage was already done.
It was all Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza in the co-main event, as the former Strikeforce champion got back on track with a dominating first round finish of Vitor Belfort.
Souza landed a takedown, busted Belfort open with elbows and finished him shortly there after. He now has 17 first round finishes and is 6-1 overall in his UFC career.
Different promotion, same result for Cris “Cyborg” Justino. The Invicta FC featherweight champion delighted the Brazilian crowd, storming right through Leslie Smith in earning another quick finish. The contest landed just 81 seconds before the ref stepped in.
Smith protested the stoppage, but her face was already badly swollen and bruised from the 21 strikes that Cyborg landed in a minute-plus.
Former UFC light heavyweight champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua made a triumphant return to Curitiba, earning a win over Corey Anderson. This marked the first time Rua has fought in his hometown since 2003.
American Bryan Barberena ruined the Brazilian run, handing Warlley Alves his first pro loss with a decision victory. Barberena was a 5-to-1 underdog, but improved to 9-1 over his last 10 fights with the win.
Former title contender Demian Maia capped the prelims in strong fashion for the Brazilians, earning a third round submission. Maia and his countrymen went a perfect 4-0 on the early portion of the card. The finish was the 11th submission victory in his career.
Thiago Santos scored his seventh first round finish, taking out former Strikeforce champion Nate Marquardt. After rocking Marquardt once, he followed up with another shot that floored him. The win was his fourth straight in the UFC middleweight division, behind only Yoel Romero and champion Luke Rockhold.
Nothing could stop Yancy Medeiros or Francisco Trinaldo, as the two lightweights stood and went toe-to-toe for 15 minutes. Trinaldo dropped Medeiros several times, only to see the Hawaiian storm back. In the end the judges ruled in favor of the Brazilian, giving Trinaldo his sixth consecutive victory.
John Lineker might have had troubles cutting to flyweight, but he showed no signs of issue bumping up to bantamweight. The Brazilian scored a dominating win over the red-hot Rob Font, likely positioning himself for a top contender next in the division.
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira got the fans going early, scoring a first round TKO over Patrick Cummins. The win was the first for Nogueira since a 2013 finish of Rashad Evans. After stunning the former wrestler, “Lil’ Nog” followed up with several shots until the ref stepped in.
One of two all-Brazilian fights ended in a split draw between Sergio Moraes and Luis Chagas. It was a strong performance for Chagas, who accepted the fight on short notice after stepping in for an injured Kamaru Usman.
In the opening bout, Renato Carneiro got the night going strong for Brazil with a split decision victory over Zubaira Tukhugov. Carneiro remained unbeaten in his career, improving to 10-0-1 with the win.
Souza and Miocic each earned “Performance of the Night” bonuses, while Trinaldo and Medeiros were “Fight of the Night.” The attendance checked in at 45,207 for the night.
Complete play-by-play of the card can be found on FightLine, with quick results below:
Stipe Miocic def. Fabricio Werdum via KO (right-hand) 2:47 of Round 1 to become new UFC heavyweight champion
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza def. Vitor Belfort via TKO (strikes) at 4:38 of Round 1
Cris “Cyborg” Justino def. Leslie Smith via TKO (strikes) at 1:21 of Round 1
Mauricio “Shogun” Rua def. Corey Anderson via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Bryan Barberena def. Warlley Alves via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Demian Maia def. Matt Brown via submission (rear-naked choke) at 4:31 of Round 3
Thiago Santos def. Nate Marquardt via KO (strike) at 3:39 of Round 1
Francisco Trinaldo def. Yancy Medeiros via unanimous decision (29-26, 30-27, 30-26)
John Lineker def. Rob Font via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-26)
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira def. Patrick Cummins via TKO (strikes) at 4:52 of Round 1
Sergio Moraes vs. Luis Chagas declared a split draw (29-28, 28-29, 28-28)
Renato Carneiro def. Zubaira Tukhugov via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)