Anderson Silva battered and destroyed Rich Franklin to win the UFC middleweight title when they met at UFC 64 in 2006. Franklin got another crack at the belt at UFC 77 on Oct. 20, 2007, but the bonus was that he was fighting at home at US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio.
It was a nightmare of a homecoming for Franklin, though, who absorbed another brutal beating from Silva.
Silva pummeled Franklin so badly in the first round that Franklin was literally dragged to the corner by his coaches. They would have been wise simply to surrender, because all sending Franklin out for the second did was subject him to more punishment.
"The Spider" unloaded with powerful strikes in the second before the bout was mercifully stopped at 1:07 of the second round, and Franklin headed to a local hospital before making the trip home.
Light heavyweight Stephan Bonnar, who defeated Eric "Red" Schafer on the undercard, was left shaking his head at Silva's performance. "He's one bad dude," Bonnar said. "He's a bad-ass dude."
UFC announced during the card that it had signed former NCAA wrestling champion and pro wrestling star Brock Lesnar to a multi-fight contract. Lesnar had only one MMA fight at the time.
Former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia won a dull fight over Brandon Vera that was significant because it was the first loss of Vera's career. Vera was handicapped by a broken left hand he suffered in the first round.
Middleweight Demian Maia made his UFC debut and won submission of the night with a first-round choke of Ryan Jensen.
Quoteworthy: "I want to head butt him every time I talk to him because he wants to fight at light heavyweight." – UFC president Dana White, on Anderson Silva's longstanding desire to fight at light heavyweight.
Matt Grice def. Jason Black, split decision
Josh Burlman def. Forrest Petz, split decision
Demian Maia def. Ryan Jenson, submission (rear naked choke), 2:40 R1
Yushin Okami def. Jason MacDonald, unanimous decision
Alan Belcher def. Kalib Starnes, TKO, 1:39 R2
Stephan Bonnar def. Eric Schafer, TKO, 2:47 R2
Alvin Robinson def. Jorge Gurgel, unanimous decision
Tim Sylvia def. Brandon Vera, unanimous decision
UFC middleweight championship: Anderson Silva def. Rich Franklin, TKO, 1:07 R2