Florian Defeats Cope in Opening Seconds of 2nd Round
At The Ultimate Fighter™ Season 2 finale at The Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Kenny Florian scored perhaps the most impressive victory of his mixed martial arts career, submitting four-time World Muay Thai champion Kit Cope with a rear naked choke at 37 seconds of the second round. The high energy fight kicked off the night.
It was actually the second win of the night for Florian, who forced Cope to tap out to an armbar just as the horn ending the round sounded. The win was a satisfying one for the classy Florian, who took some good natured trash talk from Cope leading up to the bout.
Cope had won his last two MMA fights on the ground and had been working hard on his ground game for the last couple of years. He even got the help of ADCC Absolute Champ Dean Lister, MMA veteran Dennis Hallman and former UFC Champ Tito Ortiz to help him with his grappling.
“This was a good opportunity to finally demonstrate my ground game to everyone,” said Florian.
Early on, Florian showed a strong beard as he traded with Cope en route to clinching with his foe against the fence. “It was my strategy to use strikes to get inside on him,” said the Jiu-Jitsu ace. “I try to mix it up.”
The strategy paid dividends late in the round as Cope tired from the consistent pressure and Florian took him to the mat. With 30 seconds left, Florian got into the mount position and then, as the clock ticked, he transitioned into the armbar. Cope resisted and then tapped, but the referee ruled that the round had ended before the tap. He tapped just as the round ended and injured his arm in the process by holding out for too long
But with his shoulder battered, Cope’s demise was inevitable, and even though he fought back with his only remaining weapons – his feet – once Florian got inside and got the takedown, it was over. Florian said, “I knew he was tired and he looked deflated going into round 2. I immediately pressured him against the fence and took him down with another single leg takedown. I worked to his back and secured the Rear naked choke where Kit was forced to tap out only 37 seconds into round 2.”
“I stayed focused on the fight itself and concentrated on nothing else, but executing my game plan. Kit was strong in the beginning and desperately tried to avoid the ground. Once on the ground, Kit was not able to put up much of a fight.”
The win brings Florian’s MMA record to 6-2.
Posted on Sunday, November 6th, 2005 in Updates.
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