When the match-up was announced, it promised violence. Holy cow did it deliver.
In the main event of UFC 195, champ Robbie Lawler and challenger Carlos Condit brought a ton of skill, experience and grit into the Octagon with them, and every bit of it was on display for the entirety of their five-round fight.
Right from the outset, Lawler came out looking to establish control of the cage by taking the center and back Condit against the fence. But the former WEC champ’s offense was ridiculously varied, and came in the form of kicks, punches, knees and elbows, and the volume with which he threw far eclipsed what Lawler was putting out.
Round 1 saw Condit catch Lawler off balance with an uppercut, and if that was any sort of signal of momentum, it was quickly erased when Lawler dropped Condit with a cross.
Still, the volume Condit hit Lawler with was relentless, and though when Lawler landed he landed hard, it made Rounds 3 and 4 a toss up.
Then came Round 5. Urgent, and fully aware that he needed to make magic happen, Lawler was apex predator hunting down food, swinging bolos that clearly had Condit stunned. Condit fired back, stopping Lawler in his tracks many times with knees and punches, but the champ shook it off and kept coming.
When time expired, both men slumped against the cage exhausted.
The scorecards gave Lawler the split decision, but it’s hard not to imagine a rematch being inevitable. It was a fantastic fight.