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Lineker shows off power with KO of McDonald

Not just anybody can take Roberto Duran’s nickname, but John Lineker has certainly proven worth with his massive punching power, especially for the Bantamweight division. The No. 8 contender in the division was able to pull off the first round knockout of Michael McDonald, the No. 5 contender in the division who missed all of 2014 and 2015 with injuries but returned in Janyary with a second round submission victory over Masanori Kanehara at UFC 195.

But it was Lineker’s night to shine as he won his fifth-straight fight and ninth our of his last 10 fights.

Neither guy seemed particularly willing to engage early as they circled each other for the first minute of the fight before finally engaging in a brief combination. Both guys had to respect their opponents power, but a massive over-hand right and a disastrous flurry hurt McDonald. McDonald was able to get away and landed some punches of his own, but Lineker kept the pressure on and knocked McDonald out with a left hook. McDonald dropped immediately. Lineker pounced on McDonald to finished off the fight, but it was over as Lineker once against defied physics as he displayed massive power at 135-pounds.

Tony Ferguson avoids upset against Lando Vannata in FOY candidate

What a war it was between No. 3 lightweight contender Tony Ferguson and the unknown Lando Vannata, who made his UFC debut after fighting only on lower-level MMA cards. Vannata showed he absolutely belonged in the octagon, but Ferguson was able to gut out a tough fight and pick up a second-round submission victory to keep his momentum alive with an eight-straight victory, possibly setting up a fight against Eddie Alvarez for the UFC Lightweight title.

The 25-year-old Vannata does not even have a Wikipedia page and only got a picture on UFC.com on the day of the fight, but displayed incredible striking against Ferguson. Officially, Vannata only knocked Ferguson down one time, but Vannata had Ferguson down several times as his movement caused Ferguson to stumble.

Early in the first round, Vannata landed a spinning elbow that hurt Ferguson and stayed aggressive. Ferguson was able to survive because of his jab and hard kicks that kept some distance. With a minute left in the first round, Vannata rocked Ferguson with a kick to the left side of Ferguson’s head, followed up with some hard punches and hammer fists. It appears Ferguson was about to lose to the massive underdog, but he was able to roll out of the danger, grab onto Vannata’s leg and held on for the final seconds before the bell signaled the end of the round.

Ferguson was able to recover between rounds and opened the second round with a stiff jab. Vannata still kept the pressure on, but the jab was pushing his opponent back, bloodied Vannata’s nose and wore him down.

Vannata was eating the big shots, even keeping his hands down and taunting Ferguson at times, but eventually it cost him. Vannata put his head down after a shot, Ferguson immediately ran in and hooked a guillotine, spun him to the ground and closed out the fight with a d’arce choke for the victory.

Tim Boetch picks up much-needed win over Josh Samman

After three-straight losses and six losses in his last eight fights heading into Wednesday night’s UFC Fight Night clash against Josh Samman, there was reason to believe the 35-year-old veteran could have been at risk of having his UFC contract dropped, but a second-round TKO victory showed he still has some dazzling power in his hands.

Samman pushed Boetch up against the cage almost immediately in the fight, but was unable to out-muscle the veteran. Boetch instead turned it around and got Samman on the ground. He followed with some had ground and pound even though Seman was able to control posture with a butterfly guard and wrist control.

The two got back to their meed about a minute later, but Samman once again tried to push Boetch up against the cage, again failed to out-muscle Boetch.

In the second round Samman was urged to avoid the clinch, but Boetch caught a body kick, took him down to the canvas and began his ground and pound with some hard elbows. Boetch tried to go for a kimura, but gave up on that and stuffed Samman into the corner and ended the fight with a flurry of brutal right hands and elbows that left Samman spewing blood, becoming the first fighter to knock Samman out.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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