Evans dethrones Griffin!

By Brady Crytzer, photo by Chris Cozzone

Rashad Evans stopped Forrest Griffin in the third round to become world light heavyweight champion in the main event of UFC 92: The Ultimate 2008. Round one was controlled by the rangy strikes of the champion Griffin as he pelted the challenger with hard jabs and snapping body kicks. The second round saw Griffin maintain his pace but begin to tire while Evans remained fresh. In round three Evans caught a lazy kick and cracked Griffin with a crisp right hand. With Griffin on his back, Evans began to tee off prompting the stoppage at 2:46.

In the co-main, Frank Mir made history by becoming the interim UFC heavyweight champion as well as the first man to ever stop Antonio Rodrigo “Minotauro” Nogueira. Mir showed fantastic boxing throughout the first round by dropping his opponent twice with hard southpaw lefts. In the second round, Mir landed a powerful left hook that flattened Nogueira. Mir followed up with hard shots on the ground and finished the fight at 1:54.

In the third feature fight, revenge was sweet for Quinton “Rampage” Jackson as he avenged two prior losses by knocking out nemesis Wanderlai Silva with a single left hook. The official time was 3:21 of round number one.

In other results: The Ultimate Fighter 7 middleweight runner up CB Dolloway defeated fellow upstart Mike Massenzio via TKO at 3:01 of the opening round via strikes from the back position.

Cheick Kongo finished UFC newcomer Mustapha al-Turk in the opening round with brutal ground n’ pound. The official time was 4:37.

On the undercard: Heavyweight kickboxing veteran Patrick Berry made his UFC debut a successful one stopping fellow striker Dan “The Viking” Evensen in the first round with a series of brutal lowkicks. The official time was 2:36. IFL standout “Bad” Brad Blackburn scored a unanimous decision over Ryo “Piranha” Chonan in a welterweight bout. Scores all read 29-28. Wrestling powerhouse Matt “The Hammer” Hamill scored a 2nd round TKO over Reese Andy in a light heavyweight contest. The official time was 2:19. Heavyweight striker Antoni Hardonk stopped Mike Wessell in the second round with heavy punches from the top position. The stoppage came at 2:09. Middleweight contender Yushin “Thunder” Okami scored a unanimous decision over former world submission grappling champion Dean Lister. All three judges scored the bout 30-27 in favor of Okami.

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