Following a preliminary card anchored by a women’s 135 lbs bout, the Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman main card also featured a women’s 135 lbs main event. Former Strikeforce 135 lbs champ Miesha Tate was victorious on the preliminary card and the lady that defeated her for the title, Ronda Rousey made her first title defense in the main event.
Ovince St. Preux vs. TJ Cook:
Home-grown MMA prospect Ovince St. Preux came into this bout as a heavy favorite and quickly showed why, being a hair quicker and stronger than Cook right off the bat. While the initial minutes of the fight were slow, a vicious three-punch combination by OSP sent Cook to the mat and a fraction of a second from forcing the referee to step in and stop the fight, yet Cook showed his grit as he powered his way off the mat and put the pressure back on a clearly fatigued OSP. While the late rally was a sight to behold, OSP snagged a late takedown and took a 10-9 score for the round.
The second round began with both fighters playing tentatively with the other as early exertions appeared to have taken their toll on both men’s gas tanks. OSP took to launching violent rear-leg kicks with minimal set-up, while Cook threw counter uppercuts at the fleet-footed fighter. With two minutes to go, OSP landed a solid double leg takedown and showed his lethal top game, alternating between heavy ground and pound and searching for an arm-triangle, ending the round on top.
The final round began with Cook looking dejected and exhausted, yet he had no time to recover as OSP launched a massive left hook out of nowhere, completely flattening Cook with a single blow.
Ovince St. Preux wins by 3rd Round KO (left hook)
Lumumba Sayers vs. Anthony “Lionheart” Smith:
A fight that we all thought would be fireworks on the feet, turned out to be anything but, as Sayers looked to lock up a fast takedown on Smith early. Smith proved to be more nimble on the mat than most would think though, setting up a sweep into mount and chaining guillotine and arm lock attacks on the slippery Sayers. While Sayers managed to rush Smith in an exchange, he over-pursued the largely uninjured Smith, who locked up a triangle and forced the tap in the last-minute of the round.
Anthony Smith wins via 1st Round Submission (triangle)
Tarec “The Sponge” Saffiedine vs. “Relentless” Roger Bowling:
The fight started like a game of cat and mouse, with Bowling launching monster body punches and lunging hooks, as Saffiedine did his best to limit the damage he took while slipping in his own varied offense. As the round went on, Saffiedine began to land the better strikes of the two men, keeping Bowling on the outside with leg kicks, and switching to vicious clinch knees when Bowling worked inside.
The second round started much like the first, albeit with a short break for an eye poke to Bowling in the first minute. Saffiedine and Bowling both started landing more frequently, with the formers dexterous leg strikes and the latter’s inside body punches and shallow hooks. With the rapid pace slowing towards the end of the round, Bowling was able to find mild success with a quick takedown and more body shots that appeared to be paying off as endurance was becoming a major factor.
With a bit of pep replenished, both men came out for the final round ripping a variety of offense standing, with Saffiedine’s sharp leg kicks taking a toll on Bowling’s base and movement. With the fight being almost too close to call, Bowling made a fatal error, shooting for a lazy takedown that Saffiedine used to take his back from a front headlock position, ending the round with an RNC on his bloodied foe.
Tarec Saffiedine wins via Unanimous Decision (30-27×3)
Ronaldo “Jacare” De Souza vs. Derek Brunson:
Jacare and Brunson opened their fight in fast and furious stand-up fashion, but we wouldn’t see much of the vocal Brunson in this one. In a “color me surprised” moment of the night, Jacare avoided Brunson’s high-risk striking attack and landed a dazzling counter punch, sending the oncoming Brunson to the mat. While Brunson was able to recover and stand, Jacare was ready with yet another hook and a diving shot on the mat that put Brunson out cold in 40 seconds.
Jacare wins via 1st Round KO (punches)
“Rowdy” Ronda Rousey vs. Sarah Kaufman:
In an outcome you could have written last week, the fight starts and ends as all of Rousey’s bouts. With a total disregard for Kaufman’s punching accuracy and power, The Strikeforce champion moved forward, secured the clinch, a quick takedown and the armbar. While Kaufman looked to block the signature move, her grip could only save her for a scant 42 seconds before she was forced to tap to the female fighting sensation.
Ronda Rousey wins via 1st Round Submission (armbar)
Strikeforce: Rousey vs Kaufman preliminary card results.