Alvarez Successfully Crosses Over to UFC Championship
The first title has changed hands during UFC International Fight Week 2016! With the week now overshadowed by more Jon Jones controversy, fans were able to be swept up in the magic of a championship win after former two-time Bellator champion left knuckle imprints on the face of now former UFC Lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos.
Now on a three fight win streak and with tears in his eyes, Alvarez said it all by saying very little: “Rafael dos Anjos was top five pound for pound and I took him out,” he said after the fight. “I had him hurt and I let it go, I knew I had to bring it.”
The man from the stomping grounds of Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky Balboa took out the defending Brazilian in just under four minutes. Shrieking in similar fashion to Tarzan and with hip-hop music echoing throughout the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Alvarez made his way to the Octagon.
He’s the first to strike–an inside right leg kick to dos Anjos. The defending champion paws at him for a moment. A left hand from dos Anjos whiffs and this time the leg kick goes to his left side as it lands again. The Brazilian lands a left jab but is caught with a counter right almost simultaneously.
A front kick attempt backs the challenger up before he takes a left inside leg kick as well. Dos Anjos approaches and serves his dance partner up a piping hot plate of steaming right uppercut. Alvarez blocks a head kick and tries to employ the ground game later in the round. The takedown is avoided by dos Anjos twice before he mirrors the tactic.
Alvarez balances out of the situation, landing an uppercut, but leaving himself open to another head kick. A right hook is launched and lands on the jaw of dos Anjos with a sound like the crack of a baseball bat making contact.
Dos Anjos is in deep trouble but avoids another takedown attempt. He suffers some wild strikes that make their way through before he clinches. He releases and backs up all the way to another part of the fences. Alvarez connects with a huge knee but slips in the process.
With limbs still like rubber dos Anjos loses top position as Alvarez maneuvers up from the bottom and sweeps both legs. They clinch again. Dos Anjos may be standing, but does nothing other than cover up. With uppercuts landing at will from either direction, referee Herb Dean stops the contest.
Eddie Alvarez is your new champion at 155 pounds.
The UFC also signed recent free agent and former Bellator Lightweight champion “Ill Will” Brooks who said previously to MMAFighting.com, “I told Eddie before, I told people before,” Brooks said. “He’s on my list. He got out of that ass whooping that one time. He can’t run this time. Where else is he gonna go? Is he gonna go back to Bellator, go somewhere else? Man, he can’t run.”
Brooks will debut for the UFC as a part of The Ultimate Fighter 23 Finale against Ross “The Real Deal” Person tomorrow on Fox Sports 1 at 9 p.m. CST.