In the main event of UFC Fight Night 26, Chael Sonnen (28-13-1, 7-6 UFC ) surprised many with an early submission win over former UFC light heavyweight champion Shogun Rua (21-8, 5-6 UFC). Sonnen was a slight underdog entering the bout, but it was how he finished the fight that was unexpected. He employed his wrestling-heavy game with success early, then caught Shogun in a tight guillotine. It looked like he'd be able to pop out, but Chael kept squeezing and got Rua to tap. The finish came at 4:47 of the first round.
The win was Sonnen's first at 205 in over seven years, and brought an end to his two-fight losing streak (both title fights). He called out Wanderlei Silva after the bout. Shogun dropped his second in a row and his third of four overall, and is in danger of dropping out of the light heavyweight top ten for the first time in many moons.
What was the high point of the fight?
The finish, without a doubt. It was so improbable that many jaws (including mine) just dropped.
Where do they go from here?
Sonnen has a ton of options going forward from here. He can fight at middleweight or light heavyweight (though he did officially say he was returning to 185 after this bout). He wants a fight with Silva, and Silva seems to want it was well. Bouts with Vitor Belfort or Lyoto Machida are also solid options at whatever weight they choose to do it at.
The loss was clearly pretty devastating for Shogun. Many think he should just retire, but I think he still has a lot to offer and can beat a lot of top guys. The fight wasn't really decided by anything in terms of his documented weaknesses (cardio, knees, etc) - he just got caught in a tight submission he couldn't escape from. He's still popular and could rematch Antonio Rogerio Nogueira or Dan Henderson on a big show. I'd also like to see him fight Rafael Cavalcante.
Watch now, later, or never?
Now. It's short, has some good action, and a great finish. What's not to like?