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UFC 137: Diaz beats BJ on night of octagon farewells

Nick Diaz in photo by Esther Lin

Las Vegas hosted the 137th installment of The Ultimate Fighting Championship this Saturday. And if most of the bouts didn’t do much to stir the crowd, the main event provided their fair share of emotion.

The Cesar Gracie-trained Nick Diaz only needed to fall back on his Jiu-Jitsu skills in defending a first-round back mount from BJ Penn. The fiesty Diaz went on to dominate the match by outboxing Penn, who wouldn’t make things easy on him. The three rounds played out almost entirely on the feet, with Nick getting better of the firefight and taking the unanimous decision when it was over. To boot, Diaz called out welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre, who would have headlined the event, but had to pull out due to injury.

“I don’t believe GSP is hurt, I think he’s scared,” Diaz said, taunting the champion, who watched on from the front row.

When it came time for BJ to make his statement, the forlorn fighter announced the bout had been his last.

MMA legend Mirko Cro Cop took on Roy Nelson, and it may very well have been his last fight as well. The Croatian’s performance was reminiscent of the days of Pride FC, when he struck fear in the hearts of his opponents with his crisp striking and devastating high kicks. Against the slimmed-down version of Nelson this Saturday, he managed to land a solid combination of strikes that battered Nelson and had his fans hoping the knockout was nigh. But Cro Cop was unable to contain Nelson’s momentum thereafter, and succumbed to a rear-baked choke in the third round.

Cheick Kongo and Matt Mitrione had one of the weaker encounters of the event. The Frenchman used his reach advantage to land strikes through Mitrione’s spacious guard. Landing the better strikes and managing a third-round takedown and ground-and-pound, Kongo was awarded the unanimous decision.

In the prelims, Donald Cerrone needed just over two minutes to impose his will, mercilessly beating Dennis Siver and following up on a high kick by taking back mount and finishing with a choke. Cerrone thus notched his sixth back-to-back win.

Check out the full results:

UFC 137
Las Vegas, USA
October 29, 2011

Nick Diaz defeated BJ Penn via unanimous decision;
Cheick Kongo defeated Matt Mitrione via unanimous decision;
Roy Nelson defeated Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic via TKO in R3;
Scott Jorgensen defeated Jeff Curran via unanimous decision;
Hatsu Hioki defeated George Roop via split decision;
Donald Cerrone submitted Dennis Siver via rear-naked choke in R1;
Bart Palaszewski knocked out Tyson Griffin in R1;
Brandon Vera defeated Eliot Marshall via unanimous decision;
Ramsey Nijem defeated Danny Downes via unanimous decision;
Francis Carmont defeated Chris Camozzi via unanimous decision;
Clifford Starks defeated Dustin Jacoby via unanimous decision.

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