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UFC 144 Results: Anthony Pettis Defeats Joe Lauzon by Head-Kick Knockout

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Andrew MahlmannCorrespondent IFebruary 26, 2012

As commentator Joe Rogan emphasized post-fight, Anthony Pettis utilized perfect technique in landing a spectacular and brutal head kick to knockout out fellow contender Joe Lauzon in the first round.

It was enough to earn Pettis the lone Knockout of the Night award and bonus among competition from other memorable knockouts during the night.

Lauzon is a sturdy UFC contender who is considerably seasoned for his age. Both fighters have a propensity for first-round aggression, but the polish and technique of Pettis showed through.

Coming in with a semi-feinting one-two punch combo, Pettis threw up a lightning-fast head kick that connected shin on jaw, dropping Lauzon instantly.

Lauzon's motor reflexes wanted to kick in, but as Pettis followed him to the ground with some solid punches to the head, the referee realized he had no recourse but to protect Lauzon from further trauma. 

With Benson Henderson being crowned the lightweight champ at the end of the night, and Pettis being the last man to defeat him, it looks like Pettis' path to the title might finally be set.

Originally scheduled to fight for the UFC lightweight championship, circumstances led him to a UFC debut against Clay Guida, where Pettis' offense was stifled and he fell victim to a decision loss.

A rebound victory over Jeremy Stephens, and now a big knockout over Lauzon, Pettis has staked a legitimate claim to the crown.

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