Walt Harris and Mark Godbeer finally got a chance to meet in the octagon at UFC 217
Madison Square Garden in New York City played host to UFC 217 on Saturday, with three title fights and the return of Georges St. Pierre. Earlier in the evening, a pair of big men collided, as Walt “Big Ticket” Harris faced Mark “Hand of” Godbeer.
The potential for fireworks was always a factor in the heavyweight division, and fans were no doubting hoping for a big finish between Walt Harris and Mark Godbeer. The pair were originally scheduled to meet at UFC 216 in Edmonton, Alberta, but the bout was pushed back when Harris stepped up on short notice to face Fabricio Werdum on that very same card. Harris was submitted by the former heavyweight champion that night, but walked away free of damage, and the pair against Godbeer was quickly rebooked for New York.
Godbeer flashed a high kick early, which fanned; Harris was a little more accurate with his strikes, connecting with a hard kick to the body. “The Big Ticket” was looking to make something explosive happen, and took Godbeer to the ground, working from half guard. Harris would control the round for some time, before they finally made it up. A low knee by Harris landed on Godbeer, which was made worse when the ref came in to pause the action, only for Harris to throw a head kick at Godbeer as his head was turned. As the ref had clearly called time, the blow was clearly illegal, and Harris admitted it was his fault after the action had stopped. Godbeer was unable to continue, and the fight was called by the doctor.
The final result: a DQ victory for Godbeer. Is New York cursed when it comes to MMA finishes?
Mark Godbeer def. Walt Harris by DQ (illegal kick), Round 1, 4:29