Strikeforce: Miami Live Play-By-Play & ResultsStrikeforce came to the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida tonight for Strikeforce: Miami, which was headlined by a pair of title bouts. Nick Diaz became the first Strikeforce Welterweight Champion by defeating DREAM champ Marius “The Whitemare” Zaromskis in the night’s main event.

Elsewhere, Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos successfully defended her Strikeforce Women’s Lightweight (145-Pound) Championship against Marloes Coenen, while former NFL Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker won his MMA debut. has live play-by-play from the event.


Strikeforce Welterweight Championship

Nick Diaz vs Marius “The Whitemare” Zaromskis

Round 1:
Zaromskis rushed in with a diving kick and followed with a pair of quick combinations. Diaz answered with a flurry and rocked Zaromskis with a left hook. The fighters traded more quick punches and Diaz got the better of the exchange. Diaz clinched and landed knees to the leg of Zaromskis. He battered Zaromski’s right leg with nearly three dozen knees. Diaz got Zaromskis down briefly, but Zaromskis stood and the two traded punches.

Diaz backed Zaromskis up with punching flurries, but Zaromskis answered with a one-two and a knee to the body. He rocked Diaz with three big punches and Diaz fell to his back. Zaromskis blasted him with hammerfists, but Diaz recovered. Diaz, bleeding from the mouth, battled back to his feet and Zaromskis tagged him with more punches. Diaz fired back with strikes of his own.

Diaz caught a kick and clinched as the crowd chanted his name. Zaromskis broke free and landed a one-two to the body, but was rocked by a pair of combinations from Diaz. More punches found the mark for Diaz as Zaromskis backed up. Diaz teed off with punches to the head and body against the cage and he dropped Zaromskis with a short right hook. Referee Troy Waugh stopped the fight.

Winner: Nick Diaz by TKO (Punches) at 4:38 of round one. He improves to 21-7-0, 1 ND and becomes the first Strikeforce Welterweight Champion.


Strikeforce Women’s Lightweight (145-Pound) Championship

Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos vs Marloes “Rumina” Coenen

Round 1:
Coenen opened the fight with a front kick to the face and Santos answered with a pair of overhand rights. The fighters clinched against the cage and Coenen just missed with a standing elbow. She landed a nice right hook and Santos clinched. She slammed Coenen to the mat and Coenen quickly regained guard. Coenen worked for an armbar, but Santos punched free. More punches followed from Santos as Coenen looked for submissions.

Santos missed with a diving punch and Coenen landed a trio of upkicks. The fight returned to the feet and both landed punches. Santos got the better of the exchange and mixed in leg kicks. The fighters traded punches and Coenen landed knees in a clinch. Both landed knees to the body and Coenen scored with a standing elbow. Santos replied with a flurry of hard punches. 10-9 Santos.

Round 2:
Coenen scored with a nice lead left hook in round two, but fell to the mat after a three-punch flurry from Santos. Coenen recovered and threw upkicks, but Santos picked her up and tried for a powerbomb. Santos worked from Coenen’s guard and landed a handful of punches from the top, but Coenen kicked her off with more upkicks.

Back on the feet, Santos landed quick punches and followed with a body kick. A stiff jab and a combination landed for Santos and she stuffed a takedown. Coenen pulled guard and tried for an armbar, then a triangle choke. Santos powered out and landed short strikes from the top. Coenen defended well until the bell. 10-9 Santos.

Round 3:
Coenen began the final round with a leg kick and Santos replied with a one-two. Coenen clinched and rushed Santos into the cage, but Santos circled away and landed a combination. Santos threw Coenen to the mat and scored with punches to the body. She postured up and landed short strikes, but Coenen defended well.

Coenen regained guard and tried to set up an armbar or triangle choke, but Santos stood up and rained down a series of punches. Coenen tripped Santos and rose to her feet. Coenen landed a huge right hand that did not faze Santos at all and Santos answered with a spinning back kick. Santos pushed the pace with punches and stuffed a takedown. She struck from a standing position over Coenen until referee Jorge Ortiz jumped in for what looked to be an early stoppage.

Regardless, Santos was in control of the fight and put on a very impressive performance.

Winner: Cristiane Santos by TKO (Punches) at 3:40 of round three. She improves to 9-1-0 and remains the Strikeforce Women’s Lightweight Champion.


Herschel Walker vs “Dangerous” Greg Nagy

Round 1:
The fighters circled and Walker landed a stiff jab and a leg kick. Walker landed more kicks and began to taunt Nagy. He stuffed a takedown and Nagy began to bleed from the nose. Walker took partial back control on the ground and then moved to mount briefly. He blasted Nagy with punches and postured up.

Nagy tried to set up a submission, but Walker pushed Nagy’s foot almost entirely behind his head. More punches landed for Walker and he spun free of a heel hook attempt. He grabbed hold of a front head lock and moved to side-control. Walker isolated Nagy’s arms and landed short punches. Given the fighters’ limited experience, the opening round was decent. 10-9 Walker.

Round 2:
Walker opened round two with leg kicks and Nagy clinched. Walker slammed him to the mat and landed in side-control. Walker landed weak strikes and took Nagy’s back. Nagy rolled back over and Walker moved to a high mount. Nagy tried to escape out the back, but could not. Nagy scrambled slowly to his feet and Walker landed a knee.

Nagy tried to take Walker down, but Walker sprawled out and defended. Nagy wound up on his back with Walker in side-control. He took Nagy’s back and flattened Nagy out. Walker struck from the top and added hammerfists as Nagy rolled to his side. Walker took mount and punched until the bell. Nagy did absolutely nothing in the entire round. 10-8 Walker.

Round 3:
Nagy walked forward and threw a pair of big right hands in the final round, but Walker took him down. The crowd grew restless as Walker worked from Nagy’s guard and Nagy tried for an armbar. Walker avoided danger and moved to mount. The crowd booed as nothing happened.

Walker managed to move Nagy away from the cage and landed punches as Nagy turtled. Finally, referee Troy Waugh mercifully stopped the fight. Walker’s victory was met with a mixed reaction from the crowd. The fight was about what was expected, but it was anything but world-class MMA.

Winner: Herschel Walker by TKO (Punches) at 2:17 of round three. He improves to 1-0-0.


“Ruthless” Robbie Lawler vs Melvin “No Mercy” Manhoef

Round 1:
Manhoef walked Lawler down and Lawler threw a jumping kick. Manhoef answered with a hard kick of his own and continued to back Lawler up. Manhoef targeted the body with a kick-punch combo and followed with a knee. Huge kicks and punches backed Lawler up again and Manhoef hurt him with a combination of power punches and a body kick.

More leg kicks followed for Manhoef and Lawler winced in pain. Manhoef teed off with brutal kicks to the legs and a flurry to the body. Three more leg kicks hurt Lawler, but Manhoef dropped his hands and Lawler countered with a right hook. Manhoef staggered and Lawler knocked him out cold with a left hand. Incredible comeback win for Lawler, who was limping badly after the fight.

Winner: Robbie Lawler by KO (Punches) at 3:33 of round one. He improves to 17-5-0, 1 NC.


Bobby “The Dominator” Lashley vs Wes “A Whole Show” Sims

Round 1:
Sims opened the fight by holding his hand high in the air and asking for a test of strength. Lashley ignored him and the fighters traded sloppy punches. Lashley scored a takedown and landed short punches from Sims’s guard. Sims tried for an armbar, but Lashley evaded danger.

More short punches found the mark for Lashley and he postured up to land more damaging strikes. After more shots, Sims rolled over and referee Troy Waugh prematurely stopped the fight as Lashley landed a handful of weak hammerfists. Poor stoppage to a lacklustre fight.

Winner: Bobby Lashley by TKO (Punches) at 2:06 of round one. He improves to 5-0-0.


Undercard Fights:

Jay “The Thoroughbred” Hieron defeated Joe “Diesel” Riggs by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) after three rounds. He improves to 19-4-0 with the win.

Michael Byrnes Jr. defeated Dave Zitanick by Majority Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-29) after three rounds. He improves to 1-2-0 with the win.

Joe Ray defeated John Clarke by TKO (Punches) at 3:14 of round one. He improves to 1-0-0 with the win.

David Gomez defeated Craig Oxley by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) after three rounds. He improves to 1-2-0 with the win.

Pablo “The Hurricane” Alfonso defeated Marcos “Parrumpinha” da Matta by Submission (Armbar) at 1:47 of round one. He improves to 6-2-0 with the win.

Hayder Hassan defeated Ryan “Who Dat” Keenan by KO (Punch) at 2:42 of round two. He improves to 3-1-0 with the win.

John Kelly defeated Sabah Homasi by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) at 2:48 of round two. He improves to 4-0-0 with the win.


Capped off by a pair of exciting title fights, Strikeforce: Miami was a decent event overall, but lacklustre fights featuring Herschel Walker and Bobby Lashley left a lot to be desired.