UFC 221: Fight predictions and analysis

Jonathan Hernandez
February 12, 2018

Last night, in the main event of UFC 221, former Olympic wrestler Yoel Romero picked up one of the best wins of his unbelievable career thus far, knocking out former UFC and Strikeforce champion Luke Rockhold with a brutal, third-round salvo.

Cuban powerhouse Yoel Romero knocked out former UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold in devastating fashion at UFC 221, despite believing he might have broken his leg earlier in the contest. Romero missed weight by 2.7 pounds on Friday and as a result, was ineligible to win the interim middleweight crown.

Romero, who looked gassed in his bout against Robert Whittaker last time out, showed some flurries in the second frame but continued to fight at a slower pace. At the end of the fight, Aussie fighter Matthews walked away with a unanimous decision victory, and both fighters walked away with $50,000 bonus checks. Stunned, Rockhold looked to clinch up but Romero simply began obliterating his midsection with hooks. Rockhold was reportedly awarded 30% of Romero's purse which is said to have totalled about $100,000. Romero was originally scheduled to face David Branch at UFC on Fox 28 in Orlando, Fla., on February 24 before he accepted the fight against Rockhold. The rest of athletes didn't attend the post-fight press conference. Saturday night, the ageless Cubam middleweight collected the most impressive finish of his career, dropping former champ Luke Rockhold with a clean overhand left before smashing home a clubbing left to close out the proceedings. But injuries are part of the sport and Whittaker got injured. Born in Cuba but residing in Miami, Romero moves his record on to 13-2 whilst Rockhold slips to 16-4 having lost two of his last three fights. "With the takedowns and everything else it's really hard to stop them getting it to the ground, but striking wise we're pound for pound with the best fighters in the world".

Romero had the breakthrough moment when he jumped forward with a big right followed by a huge left that sent Rockhold crushing to the canvas, before a left hand on the floor left Rockhold, cold.

"Rockhold is a very good athlete and an unbelievable fighter", Romero said after the fight. Let's just hope if that happens he makes weight.

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