It was an awkward finish, but Dustin Poirier got the high-profile win he's been seeking by finishing Anthony Pettis via TKO due to injury in the main event of UFC Norfolk. Pettis seemed to have sustained an injury to his ribs during a grappling exchange and tapped out at 2:08 in the third round.
As expected, the fight was very entertaining as Poirier and Pettis threw down. Poirier landed a good combination towards the end of the first round and then landed some hard ground-and-pound in the second, which opened up a nasty cut over Pettis' eyebrow. With blood leaking into both of his eyes, Pettis didn't give up and reversed the position and landed some shots of his own. Pettis constantly attacked with submissions, but Poirier was able to defend every attempt and maintain the dominant position. In the finish, Poirier had Pettis' back with a body triangle, Pettis spun his body but Poirier stayed mounted on top of him, and Pettis tapped from the pain of the injury.
After the fight, Poirier demanded the winner of Eddie Alvarez vs. Justin Gaethjie, which is scheduled for UFC 218 on Dec. 2. Poirier fought Alvarez competitively in May and seemed to be winning the fight until Alvarez landed illegal knees, ending the fight in a no-contest. Both Alvarez and Pettis are former lightweight champions, so Poirier believes his past two performances have him one win away from the first title shot of his career. Poirier and Pettis earned Fight Of The Night honors for their efforts. Pettis has lost five of his last seven fights.
In the co-main event, Matt Brown knocked out Diego Sanchez with a vicious elbow. Sanchez came out aggressively with takedowns, eventually looking desperate as Brown fended off every attempt. Brown then caught a leg kick from Sanchez, loaded up and landed a right elbow, knocking out Sanchez cold. It was believed that this would be Brown's retirement fight, but he didn't commit to retirement and said he will take some time to discuss it with his family. Check out the highlight-reel KO below:
Full results from the event can be found below:
- Dustin Poirier def. Anthony Pettis via TKO (injury) at 2:08 of Round 3
- Matt Brown def. Diego Sanchez via KO (elbow) at 3:44 of Round 1
- Andrei Arlovski def. Junior Albini via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
- Cezar Ferreira def. Nate Marquardt via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
- Raphael Assuncao def. Matthew Lopez via KO (punch) at 1:50 of Round 3
- Clay Guida def. Joe Lauzon via TKO (punches) at 1:07 of Round 1
- Marlon Moraes def. John Dodson via split decision (30-27, 27-30, 30-27)
- Tatiana Suarez def. Viviane Pereira via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)
- Sage Northcutt def. Michel Quinones via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Nina Ansaroff def. Angela Hill via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Sean Strickland def. Court McGee via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
- Jake Collier def. Marcel Fortuna via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
- Karl Roberson def. Darren Stewart via submission at 3:41 of Round 1