In the main event at UFC 148, middleweight champion Anderson Silva (32-4, 15-0 UFC) once again solidified himself in history as one of the best pound-for-pound fighters ever. Silva scored an impressive technical knockout over Chael Sonnen (28-11-1, 7-4 UFC) at 1:55 of the second round at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Before the fight Sonnen said, “I will do anything to be the world champion for one night.” Tonight just didn't happen to be that night.
The first round was clearly won by Sonnen. He took Silva down in the first six seconds of the round and stayed in his guard for 4 minutes and 55 seconds. He was able to land several punches on the champion, but nothing damaging.
Leading up to the fight, Sonnen wasn’t too secretive about his strategy for winning the match. “I'm going to shoot a double [leg takedown] and run him into that cage, shoot a double and put him on his prissy little [behind] and sit there for 25 minutes until he gives up.”
In the second round, Silva showed the American why he is considered the best MMA fighter ever. Sonnen ran toward Silva once again and backed the champion against the cage. But this time Silva held onto Sonnen's leg and tried a takedown of his own.
Sonnen went down low to try another takedown, but Anderson held the challenger's shorts and controlled his movement. Sonnen then tried a spinning back fist on the Brazilian, but missed badly landing on his back looking up at the champion.
Anderson took full advantage of the missed swing and landed a significant knee to Sonnen's chest, which turned out to be the key strike of the fight. Sonnen cradled up in a fetal position as Anderson threw punch after punch.
Showing the determination that has gotten him this far in his career. Sonnen made it back to his feet before Anderson landed a right hand that knocked him down to the canvas for the last time.
Referee Yves Lavigne stepped in and stopped the bout at 1:55 of the second round.
Before the fight, Sonnen walked out to the cage to country singer Daryle Singletary'a song “Too Much Fun”. In the end, it was fun while it lasted -- it just didn’t last too long.
In the co-main event, light heavyweights Tito Ortiz and Forrest Griffin thrilled the crowd with toe-to-toe action.
Just inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame, the “Huntington beach bad boy” Tito Ortiz was fighting in the Octagon for the last time. He was fighting Griffin for the third time, with both fighters previously winning one fight each.
At the start of the first round, Ortiz land a takedown on Griffin and unleashed his signature ground and pound. The chants of “Tito, Tito” could be heard throughout the arena for the former light heavyweight champion who announced his retirement weeks before the match.
The fight was close at the start of the third round when Ortiz's cornerman told him “This is your last five minutes in your career.”
But, the former champion didn’t have anything left in the gas tank. And Griffin landed the most significant punches of the round to win by unanimous decision.
At the end of the fight, Griffin walked out of the cage and started towards the dressing room before the decision was announced. UFC president Dana White ran after him to tell him to get back into the cage.
Throughout the night at UFC 148, Silva vs. Sonnen was being billed as the greatest matchup ever. I don’t believe it lived up to the hype, but it was pretty good.
Below are the full undercard results for UFC 148:
Rafaello Oliveira won by unanimous decision over Yoislandy Izquierdo.
Shane Roller won by unanimous decision over John Alessio.
Constantinos Philippou won by unanimous decision over Riki Fukuda.
Khabib Nurmagomedov won by unanimous decision over Gleison Tibau.
Melvin Guillard won by unanimous decision over Fabricio Camoes.
Mike Easton won by unanimous decision over Ivan Menjivar.
Chad Mendes won by TKO (punch to the body) over Cody McKenzie in 0:31 seconds of the first round.
Demian Maia won by TKO (rib injury) over Dong Hyun Kim in 0:47 seconds of the first round.
Cung Le won by unanimous decision over Patrick Cote.
Forrest Griffin won by unanimous decision over Tito Ortiz.