Sunday, September 11, 2011

Strikeforce - Barnett vs. Kharitonov Results and Leftovers

We've all heard the story of David vs. Goliath -- an entire country is afraid of some 8 foot giant, except for some scraggly little kid who defeats the towering figure with a sling shot. Well, unified rules don't allow sling shots but Daniel Cormier didn't need any outside weapons last night. The former Olympic wrestler toppled and slayed one of MMA's biggest giants in Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva last night in the semifinals of the Strikeforce Heavyweight GP. Cormier, who is considerably smaller than Silva, opened the bout, catching the giant on his chin. That opening chin check wobbled Bigfoot and set the tone for a striking campaign by Cormier. Cormier opted for a stand-up war with Silva, and with just over a minute remaining, he caught Silva under the chin with a devastating upper cut. A few pounds on the floor finished off Silva, drawing the referee stoppage.

But Cormier's giant slaying wasn't the only big story coming out of last night's semifinal GP event. This card was stacked from top to bottom -- too much to type about (especially when you're recovering from a fight night drinking marathon. So, here's a lazy man's rundown of everything else that happened last night in Cincinnati:

Josh Barnett must love that side-arm choke. He used the same strategy last night to eliminate Sergei Kharitonov in the first round, that he used to take out the wife beater, Brett Rogers back in June -- throw, mount, side-arm choke. Easy finish for Barnett. I doubt he'll have the same ease against Cormier in the finals.

Luke Rockhold went from a 'Challengers' level fighter to Strikeforce 185 lb. Champion last night. He gave Jacare the full cage press in a tough 5-rounder. Meanwhile, King Mo did exactly what he said he'd do to Roger Gracie -- 'knock him the eff out.' Also, Pat Healy made Maximo Blanco his third victim in a row, submitting the outgoing King of Pancrase in the second stanza. It was Blanco's Strikeforce debut.

The preliminary card was just as exciting. Mike Kyle got back on track since loosing to Bigfoot Silva last December. He welcomed Marcos Rogerio de Lima to the Strikeforce arena, offering the tough Brazilian prospect his first loss in the process. Another undefeated prospect saw the loss column in their SF debut, as Yoel Romero fell to Feijao via third round TKO. Jordan Mein gave a bonifide striker a lesson in Striking 101, elbowing his way to a TKO victory over Evangelista Santos. Also, Amanda Nunes can forget about that dream title match with Cris 'Cyborg' following her loss to a game Alexis Davis.

Results after the break...

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Strikeforce: "Barnett vs. Kharitonov"
September 10, 2011
U.S. Bank Arena,
Cincinnati, Ohio

Main Card
Josh Barnett def. Sergei Kharitonov via submission (arm triangle)
Daniel Cormier def. Antonio Silva via first-round KO
Luke Rockhold def. Ronaldo Souza via unanimous decision
King Mo Lawal def. Roger Gracie via first-round KO
Pat Healy def. Maximo Blanco via submission (rear-naked choke)

Preliminary Card
Mike Kyle def. Marcos Rogerio de Lima via unanimous decision
Rafael "Feijao" Cavalcante def. Yoel Romero via second-round KO
Jordan Mein def. Evangelista Santos via third-round TKO
Alexis Davis def. Amanda Nunes via second-round TKO
Dominique Steele def. Chris Mierzwiak via unanimous decision

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