UFC lightweight champion BJ Penn (pictured) retained his title on Saturday in the main event of UFC 101, submitting Kenny Florian in the fourth-round of their championship headliner to cap off the pay-per-view event, which took place at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia.
After stunning Florian several times over the first three rounds and stifling the challenger’s takedown attempts, Penn got a takedown of his own before taking Florian’s back. After softening him with kicks to the body, Penn secured a rear naked choke and Florian was forced to submit 3:54 into the fourth frame.
Penn (14-5-1) rebounds from a January welterweight loss to champion Georges St-Pierre by winning his fourth-straight fight at 155-pounds, while the loss for Florian (11-4), his first in nearly three-years, snaps a six-fight winning streak.
In the UFC 101 co-headliner, UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva returned to the light heavyweight division and silenced his critics, following up back-to-back lackluster wins with a first-round knckout of former 205-pound champ Forrest Griffin.
After an aggressive start by Griffin that saw him miss with a head kick attempt, Silva tagged Forrest with punches, sending him to the canvas twice, and taunted him to attack, leaving his hands at his waist. As Griffin again pressed forward Silva backpeddled, but connected with a compact right that sent Forrest to the canvas for a third and final time as the referee immediately stepped in and stopped the fight.
Knocked unconscious by the awkward-yet-powerful punch, Griffin quickly returned to his feet and ran out of the Octagon while Silva celebrated his return to form. “The Spider” (25-4) extends his win streak to 11-straight overall, including 10-straight UFC victories, while Griffin (16-6) has now lost two-straight.
In other main card action, Aaron Riley, Ricardo Almeida, and Kurt Pellegrino all picked up unanimous decision wins, while Johny Hendricks knocked out Amir Sadollah in just 29-seconds in a controversial stoppage.
The complete results for UFC 101 were:
- B.J. Penn (c) def. Kenny Florian via submission (rear naked choke) — Round 4, 3:54
UFC Lightweight Championship
- Anderson Silva def. Forrest Griffin via KO (punch) — Round 1, 3:23
- Aaron Riley def. Shane Nelson via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Johny Hendricks def. Amir Sadollah via TKO (strikes) — Round 1, 0:29
- Ricardo Almeida def. Kendall Grove via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Kurt Pellegrino def. Josh Neer via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- John Howard def. Tamdan McCrory via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Alessio Sakara def. Thales Leites via split decision (29-28, 27-30, 29-28)
- Matthew Riddle def. Dan Cramer via unanimous decision (29-27, 30-26, 30-27)
- George Sotiropoulos def. George Roop via submission (kimura) — Round 2, 1:59
- Jesse Lennox def. Danillo Villefort via TKO (cut) — Round 3, 3:37