In one of the more bizarre fights in recent MMA history, Robbie Lawler, who appeared to have seriously injured his right leg, drilled Melvin Manhoef with a short right followed by a left as the Dutchman was falling to the mat (3:55 mark).
Manhoef was out cold even though he seemed to out-land Lawler 30-to-1 (officially CompuStrike had it Manhoef 27-3) over the course of three-plus minutes. Jorge Ortiz saved the downed opponent at 3:33, as Manhoef wasn't even moving at that point.
Lawler showed zero offense and allowed Manhoef to tee off on his lead leg. He was limping badly and his leg was being kicked into the air.
"It's sore now but not bad enough where I couldn't plant and twist, and throw a a nice hard punch," Lawler told Cagewriter. "I was limping during the fight. He was definitely tearing my leg up. He's a K-1 caliber guy. He's really good and really explosive. He goes out there and looks to inflict pain."
Just the before the magical punch, Lawler's leg went flying again, but he came across with the big right and down went Manhoef.
"I feel really good. This guy is a killer," said Lawler, who admitted Manhoef was putting a beating on his leg. "I knew I would have a chance to catch him. His hand seems to drop when he goes to finish somebody."
Lawler said he was hurt but never thought about quitting.
"It's not something I want to do. I feel like I should go down on my shield. I just thought if I could lure him in and get him close I could land some punches."
This was a much-needed win for Lawler (19-5), a former EliteXC middleweight champ. He was upset by Jake Shields in June and his reputation suffered. Manhoef (24-6) is a vicious striker but he's one-dimensional, and yet Lawler entered the fight as a minus-180 underdog.