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6/27/16: Top Five Fights, Finishes, and/or Performances From MMA’s June 2016 Schedule
Much like in May, there were a few great fights in June with several more great finishes. With the June schedule complete, today I look at the month’s best in MMA, from fights to individual finishes/moments/performances. Have others that stand out to you? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org!
5. Michael Chandler knocks out Patricky “Pitbull” Freire (Bellator “Dynamite 2”): Michael Chandler scored a nasty KO over Patricky “Pitbull” Freire last Friday night on Spike, landing a perfect right hand to the jaw that sent Freire out cold. It was a ridiculously loud punch and crash, as both sounds just blasted out of speakers in the moment. It was the highlight on an otherwise fairly lackluster month for Bellator in the cage.
4. Dan Henderson knocks out Hector Lombard (UFC 199): One of the year’s best knockouts from a ridiculousness and creative standpoint, Dan Henderson’s short back elbow to Hector Lombard’s temple brought a violent end to their already violent fight in California. Henderson survived nearly getting stopped several times in that fight, and in the midst of a scramble showed insane power in a small space with that perfectly landed strike. It was just the best highlight reel finish of the month.
3. Steve Bosse vs. Sean O’Connell (UFC Fight Night 89): Now, this was every bit as violent as Henderson-Lombard, but Steve Bosse and Sean O’Connell refused to be put away in one of crazier brawls we’ve seen in some time. There wasn’t a ton in the way of skill and technique here, just two extremely tough guys with little concern for their brains throwing everything they could possibly think of at one another. Far from the prettiest fight, it was nevertheless extremely entertaining.
2. Marco Polos Reyes vs. Dong Hyun Kim (UFC 199): Speaking of relentless offense with little in the way of defense, an even better display of that opened up the UFC 199 card to kick off the month. Marco Polos Reyes and Dong Hyun Kim exchanged blows early and often, each of them hurting the other badly throughout the course of the fight. That Reyes found a way to finish the fight in the third round only elevated things. It was exciting start to finish, and the very best event-opening fight you could hope to see.
1. Michael Bisping knocks out Luke Rockhold (UFC 199): Not the very best highlight, not the very best fight, but it was the absolute biggest and best moment of the month when Michael Bisping shockingly knocked out Luke Rockhold. He took the UFC Middleweight Championship fight on short notice, then took advantage of an overly confident and cocky champion. He caught him with a perfect left hand, followed up with some more on-point strikes, and now sits as the UFC Middleweight Champion himself.
[Photo (c) Jake Roth via USA Today Sports]
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