Five Best Fights To Make Following UFC 221

Lawrence Cooper
February 12, 2018

After a heated build-up, Yoel Romero hammered Luke Rockhold into oblivion on the way to a third-round knockout victory at UFC 221 in Perth.

It remains unclear what the UFC has planned for the middleweight division after champion Whittaker was forced off the card with illness and Romero missed weight.

Romero won Sunday's bout in the third round with a powerful uppercut, but he had already been ruled ineligible for the interim middleweight belt after failing to make weight on Saturday. Whittaker has the unenviable task of defeating Romero for an interim title, and now defeating him again in an immediate rematch in his first defense.

Shortly after Romero's win, Whittaker took to Twitter to congratulate his rival in his own language.

That may sound like a lot of time, but for a big, muscular guy like Romero, who is also 40 years of age, it wasn't an easy task.

After a tentative opening round, Romero, a Miami resident by way of Cuba, picked up the pace in the second, darting into range and landing punches in bunches on Rockhold (16-4), a former UFC and Strikeforce champ from Santa Cruz, Calif. Rockhold stayed behind his jab and drilled Romero with leg kicks, while Romero kept the former champion honest with his Olympic-caliber wrestling and punching power.

Welcome win for Moyes
But we nullified them", the Scot told reporters after the game. And we've had a few too many downs and not enough ups. It's great credit to the players.

Romero strung together with handsome punching combinations in the second round and followed up with yet another hellacious offensive chain of movements in the third round.

Afterward, Romero left the Octagon with his arms over the shoulders of two of his team members and appeared to put no weight on his right leg. For Blaydes, he takes another step forward in his development and turns back one of the most seasoned fighters in the division.

UFC 221: How to watch "Luke Rockhold vs. Yoel Romero" live stream.

As good as Romero is, it's not fair to reward him with a title shot.

Rockhold, ranked No. 2, was expecting to put on a better showing than his last fight, when he earned a second-round TKO over David Branch at UFC Fight Night in Pittsburgh on September 16. Meanwhile, Rockhold will be looking to wear Romero out and finish this one in impressive fashion.

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