We were all waiting in anticipation for this immense battle, but unfortunately for us, it ended after just the first round. Justin Gaethje confirmed that he was expecting to obliterate his mate Cowboy Cerrone in the lightweight division.
The spectacular performance that was expected to go down between Justin ‘The Highlight’ Gaethje and Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone did not go as we were expecting. Why? After months, the former WSOF champion apparently decided that he would only stay in the ring for one round…
After his two epic defeats against Poirier and Alvarez, Gaethje had to decide which would be better. Getting a bonus award would be good but winning with a knockout without taking too much damage would be better. After two straight wins in the first round against James Vick and Edson Barboza, he seemed to be finding it quite difficult to continue this series with his fight against the Cowboy.
Revenge after 7 years
It has to be said that Donald Cerrone is an opponent that The Highlight knows quite well since the two men trained together in 2012. At the time, the Cowboy was already a world-class fighter, while Gaethje was only just making his transition into MMA. So it wasn’t surprising when he was taken down with a beautiful knockout.
But as has been previously explained, Justin has really changed since then. From the start of the main event at UFC Vancouver, he lacerated his opponent’s legs with powerful leg kicks, as is normal for him. After countering quite a few quick combo attacks, the Cowboy did land a few touches but didn’t do much damage.
And less than one minute before the end of the round, Gaethje managed to land a perfect counter-right to his jawline. He then followed this up with several uppercuts and then an effective ground and pound, even stopping twice and looking to the ref thinking he had knocked his friend out, before the referee finally decided to interfere.
With this knockout in the first round The Highlight won a bonus award which brought him even closer to a money fight against Conor McGregor, and maybe even a title shot against Khabib…