January 26, 2009
It was a rough fight that delivered a rough ending. WEC lightweight champ Jamie Varner and Donald Cerrone traded shots standing with the champ getting the better of the action on the ground over the course of four-plus rounds. Varner was headed towards what appeared to be a unanimous decision win when he got hit by an unintentional knee on the ground. The fight was stopped by referee Josh Rosenthal and when it went to the cards, Varner actually got a split decision (49-46, 49-46 and 47-48). Heading into the final round, judges Nelson Hamilton and Richard Berstrand had it 4-0 nothing while Alejandro Rochin had the fight tied at two rounds a piece and gave the shortened fifth round to Cerrone as well.
The crowd overrun with idiots booed Varner loudly during the post-fight interviews in the cage which is odd because the fight was named WEC 38 Fight of the Night:
"I'm better than that, I'm better than that. I broke my hand in the second or third round," said Varner as the booing got louder. "Boo me, (expletive) boo me."
The knee that Cerrone threw was inches from being legal. Varner pinned against the cage began to stand-up and was in a squatted position when he dropped back down to his knees. That's when Cerrone connected to the right side of Varner's face. Varner put his head down on the mat, the doctor was called in and the fight was stopped. Varner had trouble rising to his feet for a few minutes after the stoppage.
Cerrone stuggled to stay off the mat for most of the first two rounds and was on the losing end of the exchanges standing. His chances went out the window in the middle of the third round when he got caught with a punch/poke in the right eye. It appeared that Cerrone couldn't see as he winced and blinked the remainder of that round and for much of the fourth.
Both fighters appeared beat to hell in the post-fight press conference. Cerrone looked like he was going to fall asleep and his speech was slurred because of a swollen face. He opened the conference by blowing a huge wad of blood into a tissue. "The winner" Varner broke his right hand and was taken from the San Diego Sports Arena on a stretcher. He was unable to walk because of what he thought was a broken foot.
The event drew nearly 8,000 and did a gate of $516,560. Post-fight award bonuses were given to Urijah Faber (Submission of the Night), Jose Aldo (Knockout of the Night)and Cerrone and Varner (Fight of the Night).
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