Robbie Lawler tops Matt Brown at UFC on FOX 12
Burning with the desire to vie for the world title once again, Robbie Lawler elevated his status as the next challenger for Johny Hendricks’ welterweight belt with a unanimous decision win over Matt Brown in the main event UFC on FOX 12 on Sunday morning, July 27 (PHI Time) at the SAP Center in San Jose, California.
Lawler outlasted the toughness of Brown, earning him the scores of 49-46, 49-46 and 48-47 on the judges’ scorecards.
Right out of the gate, “Ruthless” struck with a combination of clean power punches and punishing kicks to the body, later countering each time Brown stepped forward with a strike.
But after 90 seconds of Lawler landing numerous solid shots, Brown regained his wits with a big right hand that clearly had the American Top Team standout reeling inside the Octagon.
However, Lawler managed to break free and unleashed a flurry of punches to highlight the end of the opening salvo.
Brown took advantage of the tranquil second round with his patented clinch work and was able to move his body into a precise position to lock a D’Arce choke on his 32-year-old opponent.
In the third stanza, Brown tried to score a takedown, but Lawler kept the scuffle from fully going to the ground, trading strikes in a close-quartered distance before disengaging to smack a hard kick on his cage counterpart’s abdomen.
Following a brief pause for an accidental low blow, Lawler turned the volume up and began dropping heavy bombs at higher accuracy.
After grabbing a kick from Brown at the start of the fourth frame, Lawler secured a takedown and utilized his ground-and-pound, forcing “The Immortal” to work off his back.
Instead of being overwhelmed by Brown’s admirable final surge in the fifth and last round, Lawler remained composed and waited for the right moment to clobber a thunderous punch that planted his foe on the canvas.
“There are two champions in this ring tonight. He’s a hell of a fighter. We put on a great show. He came toe-to-toe with me, and not many people do that,” Lawler said in his post-fight interview.
With his decision victory over Brown, Lawler improves his mixed martial arts (MMA) record to 24-10, 1 NC and likely earns a rematch with Hendricks for the UFC welterweight championship.
“I’m very excited. I want to get back to work and go after Hendricks. He’s nursing some injuries, but I’m going to be the one waiting for him,” he stated.
Lawler and Hendricks first crossed paths this past March at UFC 171, where “Bigg Rigg” walked away with the vacant top prize of the 170-pound weight class.
On the other hand, Brown snaps his impressive seven-match winning streak with the disappointing setback and heads back to the loser’s bracket with an MMA win-loss card of 19-12.
In the co-headliner of UFC on FOX 12, Anthony Johnson (18-4) stopped Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (21-6) via first-round technical knockout.
Johnson rocked the Brazilian PRIDE veteran with a series of savage right uppercuts that compelled referee Herb Dean to halt the contest at the 44-second mark of round one. - Rappler.com