Roy Nelson knocked Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira out cleanly in the first round of their heavyweight main event.
Nogueira was a sitting duck for Nelson's boxing, and "Minotauro" was dropped twice prior to the final KO blow. Nelson knew that Nogueira was hurt, exhibited patience and finally delivered the huge overhand right that connected flush.
It was a difficult for longtime MMA fans to watch a legend such as Nogueira suffer a brutal KO, but all the credit goes to Nelson. He needed a showing like that and got it.
This is what we learned from the UFC Fight Night 39 main event on Friday.
What We'll Remember About This Fight
The KO—plain and simple.
The Roy Nelson right hand that laid out Minotauro Nogueira was impressive, but not as much as the one Big Country didn't throw as a followup— Jeff Wagenheim SI (@jeffwagenheim) April 11, 2014
Nogueira had been stopped by strikes before—by Cain Velasquez and Frank Mir—but he had never been starched. Now he has.
The final KO blow sent Nogueira down like a sack of potatoes. It was a brutal finish but a sad one. It is tough to see legends go out like that.
What We Learned About Roy Nelson
It is tough to say that, but we didn't learn anything that we didn't already know about "Big Country." A walking mummy was standing across from him, and he obliterated it.
We already knew he has a devastating overhand right. He didn't do anything out of the ordinary. He just took care of business.
Hopefully we learn more about Nelson in his next outing in the UFC.
What We Learned About Minotauro Nogueira
We learned that he should retire. He is old and slow.
The fight clock was a countdown to his extinction as a professional fighter. He was fodder for Nelson.
It was obvious this was a horrible matchup for him, and it was clear as day that it was only a matter of time before Nelson connected with heavy strikes to finish the bout. It happened. It happened brutally.
It's time to send Nogueira out to pasture.
What's Next for Roy Nelson
The top of the heavyweight division looks to be set for the foreseeable future, and this fight would put the winner in contention for later in 2014 or early 2015. Not only that, but the fight would be an excellent co-main event.
Barnett and Nelson's contrasting styles would make for a fascinating fight. That is what we are looking for from the UFC's heavyweights.
Joe Silva should try to book this fight as soon as possible.
What's Next for Minotauro Nogueira
I could act as if Nogueira will return and drop a name or two, but what's next should be retirement.
He is not relevant; he's old and slow. He has nothing left to prove. A return to the cage would be a terrible idea. He should retire.
Serving as a coach and ambassador should be his next role.