Image via Esther Lin of MMA Fighting
defeated by submission (triangle choke) at 2:24 of round three
There was some criticism about a Jamie Varner vs. Joe Lauzon fight being on the UFC on Fox 4 main card. Well, both men silenced everyone with one of the better fights of 2012. Both of them were all over each other for the first two rounds and the third was more of the same until Lauzon locked up a triangle after an incredible scramble. Varner fought it off valiantly, but Lauzon switched it up a bit and elicited a tap.
Varner got off to a good start early, landing a few strikes to Lauzon's body and head. Varner landed a nice overhand right that wobbled Lauzon about 90 seconds in. That woke Lauzon up a bit and he started to open up with his own arsenal. Lauzon was landing his right, but Varner came back with his own counter that dropped Lauzon. Varner jumped into Lauzon's guard and almost ended up in an armbar. Lauzon rolled over to his knees and Varner landed some knees to the body to end the round.
Varner leg kicks opened round two. Varner tried a slick sweep kick that stumbled Lauzon a bit. The Worm was firmly in control of the striking over the two minutes of the round. He looked for a bodylock takedown but Lauzon fought it off. Varner went for a guillotine but Lauzon got around onto his back. Varner stood up and shook him off. Varner was landing shots, but Lauzon had a huge burst of energy and he swarmed all over Varner, landing punches and getting a takedown. Some elbows to the side of the head had Varner in some danger, but he was able to get back up. Lauzon got him back down with full back mount and almost sunk in a choke. He then switched to mount with 30 seconds to go. Varner popped out the back and dumped Lauzon on his head. Varner ended the round in Lauzon's guard.
Varner asked for a time out early because he forgot his mouthpiece. Lauzon had a takedown attempt stuffed by Varner. Varner responded with a takedown of his own. Lauzon hit a sweep and they got back to the feet. Varner was more active on the feet, but Lauzon blocked them all. An awesome sequence led to the finish - Varner got a takedown, Lauzon hit a sweep and took his back, Varner slid back out into Lauzon's guard, but Lauzon immediately locked on a triangle. After re-adjusting, he got the tap.