UFC 144 Results Recap: Tiequan Zhang Vs. Issei Tamura

Image via Esther Lin of MMA Fighting

In the opening bout of UFC 144, Issei Tamura made his case for a performance bonus by knocking out Tiequan Zhang with one huge punch in their featherweight bout. The end came at 32 seconds of the second round. Tamura looked very good for the whole fight, stumbling Zhang with a punch early in the first and doing some good work on the ground to take the stanza. Zhang landed a couple of kicks early in the second, but was soon unconscious on the mat.

The bout was the only fight scheduled to be streamed on Facebook, but was also shown on the pay-per-view right after the main event. Tamura didn't end up winning the knockout of the night bonus, but you can bet that he was compensated somehow by the UFC for that. Issei picked up the win in his UFC debut, while Zhang dropped to 1-2 inside the octagon.

What was the high spot of this fight?

Obviously the knockout. You don't see many one-punch knockouts at the lower weights, and this one was a thing of beauty.

Where do these guys go from here?

Tamura was a late replacement for Leonard Garcia and was sort of an afterthought going into the bout, but no one is going to forget him after that. He'll obviously get another shot in the organization, but it remains to be seen if he can be a force in the featherweight division or not. A bout against the guy he replaced, Leonard Garcia, could be interesting for a Fuel card or something.

A lot of people are calling for Zhang to be released considering his only UFC win is over Jason Reinhardt. But due to the fact that he's the only Chinese fighter on the roster and has only lost two in a row, it seems very likely that he'll fight again in the octagon. While it's clear he won't be a title contender anytime soon, he could be a good test for a debuting 145er in his next bout.

Watch it now, later or never?

Now. The first round was fairly entertaining, and the knockout was awesome. This card was full of great fights though, so it might slip down the list a bit due to the irrelevancy of the fighters. Still though - sick finish.

More Bloody Elbow coverage of UFC 144 in the full entry.

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