Image via Esther Lin of MMA Fighting
Mauricio Rua defeated Brandon Vera by TKO (strikes) at 4:09 of round four
Mauricio "Shogun" Rua and Brandon Vera went to war in the main event of UFC on Fox 4, but Shogun showed the heart to persevere through cardio issues and finally finished Vera in the fourth round. Vera was most definitely in the fight all the way through, but wasn't doing enough to win rounds and couldn't really hurt Shogun all that badly. It was still an excellent bout that capped off one of the best cards in recent memory.
Vera threw a big body kick immediately. Shogun went for a takedown right after that, which was unusual. Shogun looked to pass but Vera kept him in half guard. Vera looked for a guillotine and landed a knee to the body. Vera got up and threw a head kick. Vera locked on a guillotine and fell to his back. Shogun pulled his head out and stepped up some ground and pound. Rua managed to get full back mount with 45 seconds to go. Shogun rode out the round landing punches to the side of Vera's head.
Both men came out throwing in round two and Shogun had Vera hurt against the cage. Vera came back with two solid rights though. Vera landed a straight left and a couple of kicks. Shogun came back with his own damaging shots and looked for knees, but Vera blocked them. Vera dropped to his knees and Shogun took his back. Vera's left eye was busted up. Vera got up and clipped Shogun with a right. The fighters exchanged big strikes in the center, then clinched up against the cage. Vera got a takedown, but didn't do much on top. He rode out the round there.
Shogun came forward right away in the third and clinched up. Rua landed a couple of shots upon separation, but Vera came back with a nice combo. Shogun landed a big knee to the head inside the clinch. Vera was down, but got back up and landed two nice combos. Vera came forward with a head kick and some more strikes, but Shogun got a trip takedown. Rua was tired, but worked methodically from the top for the rest of the round.
Both men resumed the fisticuffs in round four. Vera landed a solid right and Shogun responded with his own before looking for a takedown. After an extended clinch battle, Shogun landed a nice elbow over the top and they reset. Vera landed two nice strafing elbows but Rua responded with a big uppercut. More clinching, then Shogun separated and went to town. A big right hurt Vera and Shogun poured it on, landing a huge right that spun Vera around and sent him spiraling to the mat face-first. Rua jumped on him and pounded him out.