BOSTON — Chael Sonnen caught Mauricio Rua in a submission choke hold in the first round and finished off his main event win at UFC Fight Night 26 at TD Garden in Boston.
The show was the first-ever live event on Fox Sports1.
Sonnen (29-13-1) was coming off consecutive losses in the premier mixed martial arts fighting organization, but the West Linn, Ore., resident came out quickly in the light heavyweight bout.
As Rua (21-8), nicknamed Shogun, tried to get off his back while being hit by Sonnen, he maneuvered into a dangerous position and had to “tap-out,” or submit to Sonnen’s choke with 13 seconds left in the five-minute round.
Choking is a legal move in this sport.
So is kicking someone on the chin, and that’s what Travis Browne did to Alistair Overeem in their heavyweight fight. Overeem of Hounslow, England, had Browne on the verge of collapse with an intense flurry of punches in the opening 90 seconds.
Browne was able to retaliate and gradually steady himself. He had already gotten off several side kicks to Overeem’s head that were partially blocked. Then the 6-foot-7 Hawaiian lashed out his left foot straight ahead that caught the 6-4 Englishman right under the jaw. Overeem staggered back before falling. Browne was quickly on top of him and landed two quick shots before the fight was stopped with 50 seconds left in the first round
The TD Garden was nearly filled with a vocal and involved crowd by the time the night ended.
UFC President and CEO Dana White, a 1987 graduate of Hermon (Maine) High School, has said he is working to bring the UFC to Bangor, Maine, in the near future.
Steve Craig can be reached at 791-6413 or at: