Yoel Romero was engaged in a close battle with Chris Weidman tonight at UFC 205, right up until the moment early in the third round when ‘The Soldier Of God’ launched himself across the Octagon with a flying knee that dropped the former champion like a stone.
Weidman with an early leg kick from range. Body kick for Weidman now. Weidman darting in and out looking for openings to strike.
Romero with a body kick. Weidman briefly feels out for a takedown, but is brushed aside. Body kick for Weidman. Weidman with a single leg takedown and he gets Romero down. Romero scrambles back to his feet, but Weidman hangs onto the leg and looks to get him down again.
Romero is agile though and stands back up swiftly and moves away. Body kick for Weidman, then another and a third. He barrels into a takedown attempt, but Romero stuffs it.
Good work rate from Weidman. He lands another kick. Romero just being patient, biding his time to unleash his explosive power.
Superman punch for Romero and a counterpunch from Weidman. Weidman reaches for the single leg again, but doesn’t get it and Romero punches him for it.
Body kick for Romero. Single leg takedown lands for Weidman. He tries hard to keep Romero there, but isn’t able to. He remains latched to his back though as he stands and moves over to the cage as the round comes to a close. Good round for the former champion and Romero needs to pick up the pace to match him.
Romero has too much water on him for the referee’s liking, so has to towel off before round two. Romero looking to press forward, but eats a nice body kick from Weidman.
Weidman working for a takedown, but Romero defends and stuffs it. Leg kick for Weidman. Left hands miss for Romero, but he does land a leg kick.
Leg kick for Weidman now and a body punch. Jab connects for Weidman too, then the leg kick again. Overhand left for Romero clips Weidman.
Body kick for Weidman. Now another one on the other side. Step in knee to the body for Weidman and then a kick. Romero got eyepoked in amongst that which forces a brief stoppage.
Romero steps forward with a rapid-fire jab. Nice right hand for Weidman. Solid body kick for Romero, but Weidman catches it. He can’t take him down from it though.
Romero reaches for the takedown, but it’s Weidman’s time to stuff that. Romero does land a very nice trip takedown shortly afterwards, but Weidman gets up immediately.
Romero presses Weidman up against the cage. He’s got the former champ’s back and lands a couple of knee strikes to the back of his thighs.
Still a minute to go and Romero drags WEidman to the mat, but he pops right up to his feet. Finally Weidman manages to get some space, but as he tries to fully break free, Romero hunts him down and takes him down in the center of the Octagon and that’s where the round ends. Romero finally showing off some of his Olympic wrestling skills as he works his way back into the fight.
Body kick for Weidman and then a hard one to the leg as Romero does likewise. Flying knee for Romero out of nowhere floors Weidman hard!! Weidman ducked into that one as he was trying for a takedown.
Romero lands a few more ground and pound strikes, but Weidman’s already done – the fight’s over. Huge TKO victory for Romero with 23 seconds of the third round gone and Weidman is absolutely pouring with blood from a gash to his head as a result of that highlight-reel flying knee. That’s a nasty wound, but thankfully he is ok to stand for the decision being read out.
What a crazy finish, completely out-of-the-blue, and that puts Romero in a strong position to call for a title shot against Michael Bisping, but what a heartbreaker for Weidman on his own home soil in NYC.