The UFC Fort Lauderdale main event delivered as both men threw down for 25 minutes, with Jack Hermansson coming out on top.
Jacare Souza has been one of the top middleweights in the world for a long time. The multiple-time jiu-jitsu world champion was 7-1 in Strikeforce, defending the promotion’s title once against Robbie Lawler. Souza won his first five fights in the UFC, four times by stoppage, including a submission win over Gegard Mousasi. His winning streak was stopped by a split decision in a number-one contender fight against Yoel Romero. Since then, he is 4-2 and has won two of his last three fights with knockouts over Chris Weidman and Derek Brunson.
Jack Hermansson, a former Cage Warriors champion, is on quite the run right now with three straight stoppage victories. After going 13-2 outside the UFC, he began his Octagon career with a 3-2 run with two stoppages. After a loss to current light heavyweight title contender Thiago Santos, Hermansson has knocked out Thales Leites, and submitted Gerald Meerschaert and David Branch. The Branch victory happened less than one month ago and lasted just 49 seconds.
Jack Hermansson was very active in the first round, knocking down Jacare Souza then locking in a very tight guillotine. The guillotine has become Hermansson’s signature move, but Jacare has seen it all in the grappling world and defended well. Souza broke out but Hermansson controlled him in the clinch.
Hermansson dominated the second round. He caught an early kick from Souza and stayed in guard for the remainder of the round. He kept Souza’s expert grappling at bay with constant and hard ground-and-pound.
Souza woke up in round three. He was much more productive on the feet. Several of Hermansson’s takedowns were stuffed and Souza was able to rock him twice before knocking him down at the end of the round.
Hermansson seized back momentum in the fourth round. On the feet, he stayed on Souza like glue with constant strikes. Souza was still active, but was unable to hurt Hermansson like in the last round. Hermansson clinched up with Souza towards the end of the round, but they broke apart and exchanged straight punches to the bell.
Hermansson went to the clinch early then got the takedown, but Souza popped back up quickly. Souza started going to the body with punches and Hermansson didn’t have an answer. An overhand right rocked Hermansson. Souza pressured him, but Hermansson was able to take him down to stop the onslaught, riding out top position to the final bell.
Jack Hermansson def. Jacare Souza by Unanimous Decision (48-47 x2, 49-46)