The light heavyweight title was on the line in the co-main event of UFC 220 on Saturday night at TD Garden in Boston as Daniel Cormier went head-to-head with Volkan Oezdemir.
Cormier (19-1, 1 NC) previously lost the title to Jon Jones at UFC 214 last summer. However, Jones tested positive for Turinabol and the fight was overturned to a no contest with Cormier being reinstated as the 205-title holder. Cormier's only official defeat was in Jan. 2015 to Jones at UFC 182.
Oezdemir (15-1),meanwhile, has taken the UFC by storm since joining the promotion in February of last year. In his three Octagon appearances, Oezdemir has gone a perfect 3-0 with his last two victories over Misha Cirkunov and Jimi Manuwa coming by way of knockout in under a minute.
The challenger began throwing haymakers from a distance out of the gate using his 9-inch reach advantage. Cormier was looking to clinch with Oezdemir to bring the fight to the mat, but Oezdemir managed to remain on the feet as the two men exchanged strikes from close range.
Cormier began finding a home for his right hand and was putting the pressure on Oezdemir as the opening round was winding down. Oezdemir’s right eye was swollen and he appeared to be losing steam as Cormier latched on to a leg to score a takedown and threatened with a rear-naked choke. Oezdemir was saved by the bell.
Cormier opened Round 2 with an early trip and immediately transitioned to mount. Cormier eventually transitioned to the mounted crucifix and was raining down ground-and-pound with no way out for the challenger. Cormier continued to pound away at Oezdemir before the referee was forced in to stop the fight.
The official stoppage came at 2:00 in the second round.
The full UFC 220 results can be seen below:
Daniel Cormier def. Volkan Oezdemir by TKO (punches). Round 2, 2:00 – for light heavyweight title
Calvin Kattar def. Shane Burgos via TKO - Round 3, 0:32
Gian Villante def. Francimar Barroso via split decision
Rob Font def. Thomas Almeida via KO - Round 2, 2:24
Kyle Bochniak def. Brandon Davis via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Abdul Razak Alhassan def. Sabah Homasi via KO - Round 1, 3:47
Dustin Ortiz def. Alexandre Pantoja via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Julio Arce def. Dan Ige via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Enrique Barzola def. Matt Bessette via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Islam Makhachev def. Gleison Tibau via KO - Round 1, 0:57