Tyron Woodley took the entitle from UFC welterweight endorse Robbie Lawler on Saturday night, stopping him with 2:12 left in the first round
It very well could have happened another time over the past year and a half. A loss. An inch here, a missed breather there and Robbie Lawler might not have owned the UFC welterweight belt as he stepped into the octagon on Saturday night. But there it was, in the seemingly safe possession of one of MMAs most play soldiers who appeared to be smacking his step as champion.
As Ruthless Robbie stood across the octagon from his latest challenger in the 170 lb fraction, it was on Tyron Woodley to do what Rory MacDonald and Carlos Condit could not.
That moment came early, at 2:12 of round one, with the most wonderful finish in UFC welterweight title fight biography. Woodley, thick in the thighs and chest, feinted to get Lawler to drop his protections. A smart boxer who made a occupation of unleashing hell after a bit of deceit was done in by familiar means. Before the bout Lawler responded Woodleys technique and quicken were neat, but to do what he did the key was going down and dirty.
Woodley didnt hesitate when he had the chance. In a blink the new champion outburst forwards, releasing a right hand over the top that cracked Lawler on the kuki-chin and communicated him sprawling to the canvas. A short onslaught followed before the reviewer, Dan Miragliotta, dove in to outcome the assault.
We exactly was well known that Robbie would be well prepared for a takedown, that he would smack me with knees and uppercuts to represent it, said Woodley, from Ferguson, Missouri. We started with the blitz. Something told me he would be open for the right hand and I travelled for it.
Four years ago Woodley failed in a bid to prevail his first major MMA belt after ex-serviceman Nate Marquardt uncovered gaps in his recreation to score a stunning fourth-round stoppage. The last-place bout of Woodleys career outside the UFC was his first loss in MMA. Twice more Woodley savoured overcome during six bouts within the octagon, as he displayed flashes of magnificence alongside frustrating examples of underused talent.
While Lawlers last 18 months standout as best available stretch of his memorable career, Woodley was protruded inventing his wheels. A matchup against Johnny Hendricks, whom Lawler captured the entitlement from in December 2014, was cast aside last-place October due to a weight-cutting snafu that wasnt Woodleys fault. He chose he wouldnt fight until he had what he required right in front of him.
Despite the close calls and widespread evidence of certain difficulties of holding a UFC championship, Lawler ogled so natural with the loop that it began to feel like he had been able to brace it for an extended reign. Like Matt Hughes or his successor, the all-time enormous welterweight, Georges St-Pierre, Lawler appeared to thrive as endorse, contacting new meridians in and out of the cage.
A willingness to give it all, to let pure fighting trump anything else, handed Lawler a deserved honour for triggering famous races against steadfast challengers. Lawler represented recognized and flourishing potential.
Woodley had none of it. Proliferating up in Ferguson, a lot of beings suggested I wasnt going to be anything, he noted. Ive substantiated them wrong.
Lawler and Woodley came into the world a few months apart in 1982. The 34 -year-old pair grew up playing athletics and spent often of their boy devoted to amateur wrestling. Later, in their own modes, they discovered mixed martial art. Lawler in 2001 at the beginning of his adult life. Woodley in 2009, after graduation from the University of Missouri, inaugurated envisaging events like starting and supporting a family.
Their jobs eventually intersected a few years ago at the Coconut Creek, Florida-based MMA camp American Top Team. Woodley( 16 -3) announced Lawler( 27 -1 1, 1 NC) a sidekick and explained how he long admired him. I knew what Robbie brings to the table, Woodley read. This was not the fight I would have picked because Robbie is my team-mate.
The former endorse intimated he deserved a rematch, but acknowledged that in no way was he guaranteed to get one. Im a mean individual, Lawler replied. This is what I do for a life and I would have had no problem doing the same to him.
The welterweight separation has long been among the UFCs most interesting. Numerous reviewers felt in place of Woodley, Stephen Wonderboy Thompson deserved the next shot at Lawler. Thompson himself seemed to dismiss Woodleys possibilities this week when he said he hoped to meet Lawler next, though Thompson instantly announced out Woodley after UFC 201 closed out with a bang.
Claiming treaty leading up to a fight against a man reputed to deliver struggle, Woodley indicated the only happening that constituted him apprehensive on Saturday at the Philips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia, was how pacify he felt. Something told me I should just enjoy this moment, Woodley supposed after becoming the ninth welterweight champion in UFC history.
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