Remember what I said about Stanislav Nedkov silencing the Brazilian crowd with that knockout over Luis Cane? Yeah, didn't last long. The Brazilians were incredibly vocal as Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira made his way to the UFC cage against Brendan Schaub. There were some concerns about Big Nog's ability to take a punch at this point in his career after two losses to Cain Velasquez and Frank Mir along with a career of taking damage to pull off hail mary submission wins.
Tonight he came out and didn't look particularly good early on. Call it ring rust. Call it old age. Call it just not being the same fighter he once was. But Big Nog wasn't moving light on his feet and was getting punched by Brendan Schaub constantly in the opening round. As the round continued Nog started to warm up and get more comfortable in the UFC's cage. He began to land on Schaub who was leaving his chin open for Nogueira's attacks. The ending came as a surprise to all when Nogueira backed the Hybrid up against the cage and landed a combination that dropped the fighter from the Jackson camp.
This is perhaps the biggest win of Nogueira's career, fighting in front of his home crowd and proving to everyone that he still was relevant in a very young heavyweight division. He stopped Brendan Schaub in less than two minutes and with the win is now 4-2 in the UFC. His overall record is 33-6-1-1. Schaub has to take a step back and figure out where he stands in the division. Riding wins over Gabriel Gonzaga and Mirko Filipovic into this bout, he was 4-1 in the UFC. Now 4-2 and 8-2 overall, his dreams of challenging for the heavyweight title are on hold.