The Rio native Vitor Belfort (21-9) continues his climb to a middleweight title shot as he submits Anthony Johnson (10-4) in the first round in Rio, Brazil. Though Johnson did not make the agreed 186 lb. limit, Belfort agreed to take the fight as Johnson could not be over 205 lbs. the morning of the fight. Here is the full nights play-by- play.
Johnson comes forward catches a leg and takes him down. Rumble in the guard now. Vitor throws up the legs and Johnson quickly rises. Rumble lands a big overhand dropping into the guard. Not too much action from the guard and Ref. stands them. Vitor stuffs the double-leg, Johnson switches to the single on the fence. Vitor drops punches from the sprawl. They reset again. Rumble shoots in and eats a knee. Johnson rushes through it though and gets the takedown. Ref. Mirgliata stands them again. Johnson shoots again and Vitor stuffs, slides to the back and gets the hooks in. Johnson turns on his belly trying to cover. Belfort gets the RNC deep and Johnson taps! It’s all over!
Vitor Belfort defeats Anthony Johnson via submission (rear-naked choke) Round 1, 4:49 seconds
Belfort has made it clear that he is looking for a title shot following his defeat over the larger Anthony Johnson. The bout gives Belfort his second victory in a row since losing to current middleweight champion Anderson Silva via KO front kick in the first.