It was a good night for Joe Lauzon after walking out of the cage with a third round submission victory over Jamie Varner. The Bridgewater native leaves the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California with $100,000 in win bonuses. His opponent, Varner takes home $50,000, as does returning welterweight Mike Swick.
Lauzon and Varner put on an instant classic in what proved to be the frontrunner for “Fight of The Year”, with both men splitting rounds early on. Varner came out hard in the first, hurting J-Lau and outboxing him for the duration of the opening period. The Reality Self Defense product came out guns blazing in the second stanza, badly hurting the former WEC Lightweight Champion on multiple occasions. In the third and final period, the two men forced several several scrambles, but it was Lauzon who took home the victory with a triangle choke, forcing a tap at 2:44. The performance saw both men leave the octagon 50k richer, winning a “Fight of The Night” bonus with Lauzon taking an additional 50k for his triangle choke.
Mike Swick also won 50k, taking home the “Knockout of The Night” bonus in his first fight in over 30 months. “Quick” weathered the early storm as TUF veteran DaMarques Johnson got the better of the returning veteran early on. Swick would have none of it in the second period, a knee tap from the AKA product followed by two hard punches from “Quick” left Johnson unconscious 80 seconds into the second period.