What a comeback!
Okami was able to control the first two rounds, decisively out-striking and out-grappling Boetsch. Heading into the third, it seemed like a certain victory for the former title contender.
However, Boetsch followed his corner's instructions—"Be really aggressive"—perfectly, swarming Okami at the beginning of the third round and eventually earning the knockout.
What We'll Remember About This Fight
Plainly put, it was one of the coolest moments in the history of the sport.
No one saw it coming and people went crazy when it happened.
What We Learned About Yushin Okami
Despite the loss tonight, Okami did look good and it was apparent that he's been working on his striking.
Throughout most of the fight, Okami was able to control the stand-up using a stiff jab and showed improved kicks as well. His grappling also looked solid, as he was able to take Boetsch down with relative ease and advance to dominant positions.
Okami fought well, but he took his eyes off the prize and Boetsch took advantage.
What We Learned About Tim Boetsch
Boetsch might have what it takes to be a contender in the middleweight division.
If it had been a more dominant victory, I would say he is definitely a contender, but it was a relatively lackluster performance from Boetsch until he got the finish.
That said, Boetsch is now just the second man to finish Okami in the UFC and that's a big deal.
Boetsch might not have the skill set that a lot of top contenders do, but if he learns to trust in his power, he could very well be a force at 185 lbs.
What's Next for Yushin Okami
Michael Bisping, Demian Maia or the winner of Jason Miller vs. C.B. Dolloway are all possibilities.
What's Next for Tim Boetsch
Mark Munoz, Chris Weidman or the loser of Wanderlei Silva vs. Vitor Belfort.