The headliner of The Ultimate Fighter China Finale saw welterweight monsters Dong Hyun Kim and John Hathaway square off. It was billed as a contender's bout between two young guns in the division who can be considered dark horses against fellow 170ers.
The fight was great, as both men got in their shots and put on a great performance. However, it was Kim who floored Hathaway with what can only be described as a Knockout of the Year candidate of a spinning back elbow.
What did we learn from this fight? Let's take a look.
What We'll Remember about This Fight
The finish. Kim was able to tag Hathaway earlier in the fight but not break through the seemingly indestructible chin of the Brit.
Then it happened.
Kim unleashed a spinning back elbow that was as accurate as the shot of a Delta sniper. The strike landed right on the button, sending Hathaway into an immediate state of unconsciousness.
What We Learned about Hathaway
He is a tough guy, despite the fact he had an extended layoff period. Hathaway was competitive throughout the fight and just got caught by a highlight reel technique.
If he competes more often than he has been, Hathaway has a chance to stick around the top 20. He is well-rounded and even showed he could take down the well-balanced Kim.
What We Learned about Kim
The man can strike too, ladies and gentleman.
It wasn't long ago that Kim was the grinding fighter that always went to decision. It was take you down, hold you down, collect the paycheck.
Two fights in a row, he has rendered a man to extreme unconsciousness. Not only is he powerful but his technique is coming around as well.
Kim: “There’s no stopping. I’m going to continue to go forward, forward, forward."— UFCONFOX (@UFCONFOX) March 1, 2014
What's Next for Hathaway?
Despite the loss, we should still hold Hathaway in high regard. He needs to rebuild himself back up, so a date with a guy like Dan Miller or Mike Pierce would make sense at this point.
What's Next for Kim?
Kim likely isn't going to get a title shot next, but he can certainly earn one with his next win. Put him in the cage with Rory MacDonald, who was a winner last weekend, to fight for the top contender spot against the winner of Robbie Lawler-Johny Hendricks.