Derek Brunson engaged in verbal warfare with Uriah Hall in the lead up to their fight on Saturday night but he got the last word with a devastating first round knockout in the co-main event from Hidalgo, TX.
Brunson and Hall had exchanged messages via Twitter and through interviews in the lead up to the fight and it was clear that this was much more than a grudge match between two top-10 middleweights.
Known as a notoriously slow starter, Hall came storming out of the gates looking to attack Brunson, but instead he got locked in a clinch with the former college wrestler against the cage.
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After the separation, Brunson stalked forward with his strikes and before Hall knew what hit him, a monstrous left hand blasted him in the jaw and sent the former "Ultimate Fighter" finalist crashing to the canvas.
Hall’s head snapped back as Brunson got on the ground to follow up with strikes until referee Herb Dean saw enough to stop the fight.
As soon as the fight was over, Hall seemingly bounced back up to his feet to complain that he wasn’t given a chance to recover, but it was hard to deny the nasty knockdown that precipitated the end of the fight.
The win moved Brunson to 5-0 in his last five fights with four of those ending by first-round TKO as he continues to climb up the middleweight rankings.
Brunson is certainly poised for a big fight following his latest win and it’s going to be hard to deny him a matchup against one of the top middleweight fighters in the world as he continues his climb towards title contention.