For the first two rounds of this fight at UFC Fight Night 35 Derek Brunson appeared to be posing real problems for Yoel Romero, but in the final minutes the Cuban finally found his groove on the feet and landed some brutal blows en-route to a late TKO finish.
Brunson throws out a kick but misses. He does find a home for a punch soon after though. It’s not long before Romero returns fire though, scoring with a nice punch of his own and then springs up with a flying knee strike.
Romero coming forward, but Brunson lands a takedown on the decorated wrestler, though Romero is back upright straight away.
Brunson looking for more punches as he feels his way into this fight. Romero hunting for the head too with his hands.
Then Brunson unleashes a huge head kick and it seems to connect, yet Romero just eats it and continues on, pushing Brunson back with a teep kick.
Romero reaches down for a takedown, but Brunson gets away. Brunson tries another head kick, but it’s not effective this time.
Romero goes for an upward elbow. He then gets Brunson down, but only for a moment. Brunson throwing more strikes and it’s not clear if he made a connection or Romero stumbled, but either way Romero is briefly on the canvas.
Brunson doing really well so far and he’s not intimidated by Romero’s wrestling background at all. In fact as they clinch up close he hoists Romero up and dumps him to the mat. Romero tries to counter with a kimura, but Brunson slips out of it quickly as the round draws to a close.
They start to exchange to begin round two and soon after there’s a brief stoppage after Romero somehow manages to punch Brunson’s groin!
They get back to it and Romero’s starting to throw some power punches. Brunson lands a good elbow though and then styles from range with punches and fade aways.
Punches for Romero and then lands a flying knee to the body, but Brunson shrugs as if it didn’t hurt. Romero catches him with another punch.
Brunson blasts forward and lands another takedown. This time he’s able to keep Romero on his back and works from half-guard, then gets to full mount.
Not a whole lot happening at first from Brunson from this position, but then he does posture up and rain down a few blows. Still measured though and Romero manages to get back to half-guard.
Romero scrambling now and manages to get back up-right. He tries to get a takedown of his own to even the score, but it’s stuffed.
They clinch against the cage and Romero attempts another takedown, but all credit to Brunson who’s stuffs it again – he’s doing really well in the wrestling department tonight against the former Olympic medalist.
Light taps to the leg from Brunson early in the third round. He tries a takedown, but it’s a bit half-hearted and doesn’t come off and there’s signs he might be tiring a little here.
Romero starting to stalk him a little, but he’s being a bit hesitant with his strikes and Brunson tries to pick him off from range.
Suddenly a big left hand lands from Romero. That one definitely hurt, but Brunson’s digging in and tries to fire back. Romero senses he’s suddenly gaining the upper hand though and he lands some more heavy blows including another monstorous left hand, then another that puts him down.
All of a sudden Brunson’s in dire straits here and Romero chips away at him on the ground looking for the finish. Brunson covers up so Romero targets the body, raining down a series of nasty elbows to the mid-section and with Brunson offering no resistance the referee has no option but to bring an end to the fight!
Big comeback for Romero here after coming off second-best at times in this fight and that leaves him 3-0 in the UFC to date.