(“Fedor, it’s an honor to fight you. And Scott, no matter what happens tonight, I’ll be violently sodomizing you later.” Photo courtesy of CombatLifestyle. For more photos from this album, click here.)
There might not be much on the line in the grand scheme of things, but make no mistake — Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson is a superfight. It’s rare that two MMA fighters with so many combined accolades step into the same cage to do battle. Thanks for coming by tonight and watching it with us.
Also on the card: the 135-pound women’s title fight between Marloes Coenen and Miesha Tate, and a pack of heavy-hitting supporting players like Robbie Lawler, Tim Kennedy, Paul Daley, and Scott Smith.
Live round-by-round results from the Showtime broadcast of Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Henderson will be piling up after the jump beginning at 10 p.m. ET. Refresh the page for all the latest and let your thoughts be heard in the comments section, even if they’re relatively stupid thoughts like, “DAAAAYYUM HE GOT NOCKED THE FUGGOUT!!1!” Come on in…
Henderson said that beating Emelianenko would mean more than any accomplishment in his career. The text poll asks us if Fedor will retire if he loses tonight. (Correct answer: If it is God will. Next question.)
Scott Smith vs. Tarec Saffiedine
This is Smith’s second fight at welterweight, after getting KO’d with the quickness by Paul Daley in his 170-pound debut in December.
Round 1: Smith stalking with the jab. Leg kick Saffiedine. Another. And again. Smith can’t reach him yet. Left straight from Saffiedine. He tries a body kick, then lands the leg shot. They clinch up, and Saffiedine sneaks in some knees to the body. Dirty boxing from the Belgian. Smith is stuck with his back against the cage. Saffiedine slugs to the body and head and rolls out. Leg kick Saffiedine. Saffiedine clinches and knees, then fires a head kick that lands. Smith clinches up and they’re back on the fence. The ref breaks ‘em. Inside leg kick and a right hand from Saffiedine, and Smith returns a kick. Leg kick Saffiedine. Smith lands a leg kick but eats a punch. Saffiedine tries a hook kick that gets a cheer from the crowd and the round ends. Easy 10-9 for Tarec.
Round 2: Saffiedine comes out at a higher rate of speed, bouncing around, landing leg kicks. Smith returns a leg kick, and Saffiedine drills him with a head kick. They clinch momentarily. Saffiedine pounces when Smith misses a leg kick, and assaults him with punches, kicks, and knees from all angles. Smith is rocked from a punch combo but stays on his feet. Saffiedine blasts him with a set of elbows from a clinch. Saffiedine nails Smith with another head kick, and Smith dives for a leg to change the level of this fight. Saffiedine stays on top of him, throwing punches to his temples. Saffiedine moves around to Smith’s back and looks for a choke. Smith escapes to his feet. Nice lead uppercut from Saffiedine, followed by a kick and more punches. They clinch on the fence to the bell. Another one in the bag for Saffiedine. Smith is woefully outgunned tonight. He’ll need another one of his miraculous comebacks.
Round 3: Jabs and a leg kick from Saffiedine. Another sharp shot to Smith’s leg. Saffiedine throws the lead uppercut again. A kick to the head, and some nasty hooks from Tarec. Smith fires an overhand right but misses. Saffiedine jabbing to the body. Leg kick from Smith. Dead-on left straight from Saffiedine. Smith chasing, Saffiedine avoiding. Leg kick Saffiedine, and a right hand. Brazilian kick from Saffiedine. Saffiedine throws a leg kick that clearly stings Smith. Smith charges in with a superman punch but misses. A head kick with bad intentions also misses. Smith is trying to finish this fight with one shot, but Saffiedine wisely keeps his distance to survive until the bell. A closer third round where Saffiedine really just wanted to protect his victory, but he’s got this one for sure.
Tarec Saffiedine def. Scott Smith via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27 x 2).
Did Fedor replace Tanya the translator? Fail, bro.
Paul Daley vs. Tyron Woodley
Big opportunity for the undefeated Woodley, who came in on short notice for Evangelista Santos.
Round 1: Woodley in his low wrestler’s stance. He tags Daley first with a right. Woodley catches a kick and clinches up with Daley, pushing him against the fence. Woodley takes a knee to the balls and Big John McCarthy pauses the action. Well that’s one way to get a dude off of you. They restart in the center of the cage. Woodley aggressive with kicks, and shoots in. Daley defends the takedown, but his back is against the fence again. They trade knees. Woodley working on Daley’s legs. Woodley chages position, still looking for the takedown. The ref breaks ‘em. Daley fires some punches, Woodley dodges and clinches again. Daley with knees to the body. He rolls out and swings. Daley dives in throwing leather, then initiates the clinch himself. Woodley briefly has a headlock, but Daley slips out.Knees to the body from Woodley. There’s the horn. Tough one to score.
Round 2: Daley stuffs another takedown. He lands a knee to the gut in a clinch. But Woodley returns two of his own. Woodley finally gets Daley to the mat after some effort. Woodley in Daley’s guard. Not much action from either fighter. Woodley throws a few punches to Daley’s head and body as Daley locks him down. Daley trying to work his way to his feet, but Woodley keeps his top control. Big John stands them up with 20 seconds left. Daley swings an uppercut. Woodley shoots, Daley sprawls and ends the round on top of Woodley, throwing down a couple punches.
Round 3: Daley lands a right, but eats a knee. Both guys brawling. Daley gets wrapped up while charging in with a knee, and Woodley takes him down, winding up in half-guard. Elbows from the top from Woodley. Daley tries to kick off, but Woodley sticks on him. Woodley hangs onto a leg as Daley gets to one knee. Daley gets up, fires a knee, slugs Woodley when Woodley goes low, and briefly gets on top of Woodley’s back, throwing down punches. Woodley gets up and eats a knee going back in. Daley sprawls and…goes for an omoplata on the ground? Woodley works out of it and gets in Daley’s guard. There’s the bell. Even though he’ll probably lose the decision due to Woodley’s wrestling, Daley decides not to punch Woodley after the bell.
Tyron Woodley def. Paul Daley via unanimous decision (29-28 x 3). “GLORY TO GOD! HALLELUJAH!” shouts Woodley’s mom.
Tim Kennedy vs. Robbie Lawler
Round 1: Teep from Kennedy. Lawler lands a right hook but simultaneously gets kicked in the nuts. He takes a few seconds to gather himself and jumps right back in. Kennedy shoots, Lawler stuffs it and skates away. Lawler stuffs another takedown and throws some punches on the break. Kennedy relentless with the takedown attempts and winds up on Lawler’s back. Lawler twists out of the position but winds up in a front headlock. Kennedy tries to take the back, and Lawler escapes to his feet. Kennedy with a lightning fast punch/takedown combo. Kennedy in side control, then steps to mount. Lawler rolls out and gets to his feet. Kennedy throws a head kick. There’s the horn.
Round 2: Knee kick and leg kick from Kennedy. Kennedy shoots, Lawler sprawls. Tim might be shooting in from too far away. Looping right from Kennedy. Lawler grazes Kennedy with an uppercut as Kennedy shoots in. Kennedy, tenacious as ever, sticks on Lawler until he converts the takedown, but there is a geyser of blood pouring out of his face. He may have gotten his nose shattered from that uppercut. Kennedy in Lawler’s guard. Kennedy slugging from the top. Lawler gives one back from the bottom. Hammerfists and elbows from Kennedy. More punches. He takes the round, but damn, he’s bleeding like a stuck pig.
Round 3: Kennedy ducks some punches and looks for the shot, but Lawler evades. Knee kick from Kennedy. Kennedy kicks and looks to clinch up, but Lawler tosses him off. Lawler stalking. He throws the flying knee, but Kennedy dodges. Leg kick Kennedy. Lawler needs to pull the trigger, but isn’t. Kennedy rushes in with a knee, and gets nailed by an uppercut. Kicks from Kennedy. Kennedy clinches and converts the takedown. Heavy ground and pound from Kennedy. Kennedy keeps Lawler on his back to the last bell. “It’s just blood!” Kennedy explains to the judges.
Tim Kennedy def. Robbie Lawler via unanimous decision (30-27 x 3)
Kennedy brings in one of his Wounded Warrior buddies in the cage to put this whole cage-fighting thing in perspective. Kennedy says he wants Jacare again, and doesn’t like judges.
Marloes Coenen vs. Miesha Tate
Coenen is amped the hell up in her walkout, slapping fans’ hands like she’s trying to break them. When she’s in the cage, it’s her usual death-stare.
Round 1: Tate takes the center of the cage. She comes in to clinch and works some foot stomps against the cage. Tate is warned for holding the fence. They separate. Coenen lands a wide left hook. Tate shoots, Coenen fires a knee. Tate takes Coenen down but Coenen has her head. She looks like she has a deep choke, but Tate slips out. Tate puts her knee on Coenen’s arm and establishes a dominant side-control position. Tate to north/south, but ain’t doing much with it. There’s the horn.
Round 2: Tate clinches up immediately. Coenen with a knee to the body. And another. Tate going hard for Coenen’s leg. Coenen flips Tate to the mat and takes her back, setting up a body triangle. Coenen looking for the choke, softening Tate up with punches and elbows. Coenen working the body now. Tate tries to return an elbow behind her. Coenen gets some distance when Tate rolls, and fires down some punches before going back to the choke-hunt. Tate survives to the horn, but clearly loses the round.
Round 3: Coenen lands a sharp right. Body kick from Coenen. And another. Tate gives one back. Coenen lands a hard leg kick but Tate catches it and takes Coenen down. Short elbows from Tate. Tate stacking up. She goes back in, they trade some punches on the ground, and Big John stands them up. Tate gets another takedown. Again, she can’t accomplish much with the position. Some punches her and there from Tate. Coenen sweeps Tate and gets on top, but the round ends.
Round 4: Leg kick Coenen. Tate charges in with punches, but Coenen avoids and lands the leg kick again. Tate lands the takedown again. She gets to side-control. Coenen with elbows into Tate’s grill. Tate steps over to the other side to set up an arm-choke…and gets it! Miesha Tate is the new Strikeforce Women’s Bantanweight champion. Coenen had never been submitted before, and she’s really, really not happy about it.
Miesha Tate def. Marloes Coenen via submission (arm-triangle choke) 3:03 of round 4. The new face of women’s MMA, y’all. Sarah Kaufman will be Tate’s first challenger, in a rematch of their fight from 2009, which Kaufman won by decision. By the way, “Women’s Bantamweight” makes a lot more sense than “Women’s Welterweight.” I mean, it’s 135 pounds, okay? Let’s not confuse ourselves.
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson
Is Fedor getting boos during his introduction? Savages.
Round 1: Fedor and Hendo start off throwing bombs! Henderson slips to the mat but lands a nasty left hook after bouncing to his feet. He rushes in with a superman punch and has Fedor on his heels. They clinch, slowing down the frantic opening. Fedor is bleeding already. Henderson throwing knees to the legs of Fedor, who is looking very mortal right now. Knee to the body from Hendo. Fedor with some punches to Henderson’s head. Henderson shakes out and goes for the homerun left hook. Fedor charges in with a right hand and tries to grab a leg but Henderson dashes away. Fedor slugging now and knocks Henderson down! Fedor pouring it on, but Henderson slips out, and pops Fedor with an uppercut from behind that knocks Fedor flat! Henderson starts to jackhammer some punches but Fedor is already unconscious. Holy crap, what a wild ending. Hendo is the man.
Dan Henderson def. Fedor Emelianenko via TKO, 4:12 of round 1.
Henderson says he hopes Fedor keeps fighting. He’d like to defend his light-heavyweight belt next, but it’s pretty much up to Zuffa at this point. Gus Johnson allows Fedor an ovation from the crowd and asks if the fight was stopped prematurely. Fedor says he feels it was. Now we’re letting Fedor take us through the replay, through an interpreter. Cripes. Just retire already. Gus asks Fedor how he feels about his future. It’s God’s will, duh.
And I’m out. Instead of dwelling on Fedor’s future, let’s talk about Dan. Where can he go from here?
- Gesias Cavalcante def. Bobby Green via split decision (29-28 x 2, 28-29)
- Tyler Stinson def. Eduardo Pamplona via KO, 0:15 of round 1
- Alexis Davis def. Julie Kedzie via unanimous decision (30-27 x 2, 29-28)
- Derek Brunson def. Lumumba Sayers via submission (rear naked choke), 4:33 of round 1
- Gabriel Salinas-Jones def. Bryan Humes via submission (brabo choke), 1:19 of round 3