Mark Hunt's record might not be impressive, but when he wins, you are entertained. Early Saturday morning, the Super Samoan knocked out "Big Country" Roy Nelson with an uppercut in the second round of the main event at UFC Fight Night 52 in Saitama, Japan.
The 40-year-old Hunt improved to 10-8-1 with the win and kept his name in the mix of "elite" heavyweights in the UFC.
Quite honestly, there isn't very much to choose from when doling out the "e" word. There are Cain Velasquez, Fabricio Werdum and everybody else. It seems every other heavyweight is competing to see who is going to be beaten up next by the winner of the Velasquez vs. Werdum tussle at UFC 180 in Mexico.
Many of them have already proved to be inferior by the top two big men in the company.
In the co-feature, Myles Jury resoundingly announced himself as a contender by extinguishing the "Fireball Kid" Takanori Gomi in just over 90 seconds.
Here's a look at the official results from every fight on the card:
- Mark Hunt defeats Roy Nelson by KO at 3:00 of the second round
- Myles Jury defeats Takanori Gomi by TKO at 1:32 of the first round
- Yoshihiro Akiyama defeats Amir Sadollah by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Miesha Tate defeats Rin Nakai by unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
- Kiichi Kunimoto defeats Richard Walsh by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Kyoji Horiguchi defeats Jon Delos Reyes by TKO at 3:48 of the first round
- Masanori Kanehara defeats Alex Caceres by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Katsunori Kikuno defeats Sam Sicilia via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:38 of the second round
- Hyun Gyu Lim defeats Takenori Sato by TKO at 1:18 of the first round
- Kyung Ho Kang defeats Michinori Tanaka by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Johnny Case defeats Kazuki Tokudome via submission (guillotine choke) at 2:34 of the second round
- Maximo Blanco defeats Daniel Hooker by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Let's face it: It doesn't take much to be considered a top-notch heavyweight in the UFC these days. If Alistair Overeem has not only escaped the cut line but also continues to get fights consistently, it's obvious there are slim pickings in the division.
Hunt's win over Nelson not only gave him a win over a big name but it also solidified him as perhaps the most exciting fighter in the division.
He has only been in one fight since 2011 that didn't end in a finish, and that bout was against Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva in one of the greatest heavyweight fights ever.
As long as Hunt keeps bringing the excitement, he'll stay in good favor with the company, and fans will continue to enjoy his bouts.
In case you hadn't noticed, Jury is 15-0. In his last five fights, he has defeated Michael Johnson, Ramsey Nijem, Diego Sanchez, Mike Ricci and now Gomi. This latest win was perhaps the most impressive yet.
Gomi is a little long in the tooth, but he's known for his toughness. He had never been knocked out before Saturday. The fact that the fight took place in the Japanese legend's home country makes Jury's performance even better.
Jury found Gomi guilty of impeding his climb to legitimacy in the lightweight division. His fists dished a harsh sentence, and now Jury's name is one of the hottest at 155 pounds in the UFC.
At just 23 years old, Horiguchi is well on his way to higher placement on future UFC cards. If he keeps winning the way he did on Saturday morning, he might reap even sweeter benefits.
Horiguchi is now on an eight-fight win streak, and that includes a 3-0 run in the UFC. On Saturday, he finished Reyes inside the first round. Horiguchi added Reyes to a UFC-conquered list that includes Darrell Montague and Dustin Pague.
The bantamweight division is obviously one of the toughest to make a mark in, so a title shot is still a ways away. But we should keep our eyes peeled for this man in the future.
Follow Brian Mazique on Twitter. I dig boxing and MMA.
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