Stipe Miocic created history once again as he defeated the reigning champion, Daniel Cormier in the UFC 241 main event in Anaheim, California, to reclaim the heavyweight title.
For several rounds it looked like Miocic, the former UFC heavyweight champion might lose his second consecutive fight against Cormier who beat him at UFC 226 in July 2018, knocking him out in the first round.
In the opening round, Miocic found himself exactly where no one wants to be under Cormier. However, after a few boxing exchanges, Cormier secured a slam takedown and went to work in the card with ground-and-pound that established the early lead.
After a toughest three-round contest, both fighters looked bruised and exhausted heading into the fourth round. Cormier (22-2-1) led in points, with each judge giving Cormier a 2-1 advantage. But it was Miocic who kept focus, delivering an overwhelming body shot in the fourth round that turned the tide of the fight for good. With the knockout, Miocic (19-3) sealed the legacy as he become the most accomplished heavyweight in UFC history.
“He’s an amazing fighter,” Miocic said of his rival at a post-fight news conference. “He makes people feel uncomfortable in there. He did that for the first two rounds but then I started to get my bearings straight. I saw him slowing down and I thought, ‘Okay, this is where I take it now.'”
Before losing to Cormier last year, Miocic, was the first UFC heavyweight champion to defend the title three times.