Early flooring doesn't faze Diaz
Just seconds after the start of UFC Fight Night 19's main event, the explosive Guillard floored Diaz with a heavy right hand in the center of the Octagon. While Diaz lay on his back waiting for the follow-up assault, Guillard motioned him back to his feet, seemingly indicating that this was one fight he wasn't about to give away by pursuing his opponent out of his own comfort zone. But a round-and-a-half later, he did exactly that, shooting for an ill-advised takedown attempt that landed him in the guillotine choke that would force him to submit at 2:13 of the second round.
Despite all the trash talk and blustering gestures from Diaz, he found out early on that Guillard wasn't a man he wanted to trade blows with. The New Orleans fighter may have been giving up a significant height and reach advantage, but he was by far the quicker and more effective striker, scoring with kicks to the body and sharp punch combos to the head, one of which opened a gash over Diaz's right eye midway through the first.
That's when Diaz seemed to conclude that he needed to get the fight to the mat, and while he was able to put Guillard down several times, he wasn't able to keep him there long enough to mount any offense. Fortunately for Diaz, he didn't need to. Guillard made it easy for him when he attempted a double-leg takedown attempt and stuck his head directly into Diaz's armpit, practically begging to be choked. Diaz complied and, just like that, his two-fight losing streak was broken.
For Guillard, it marked the seventh submission defeat of his career, with his only other loss coming by way of decision back in 2004. But after the way he seemed to be in complete control of this fight -- and in the main event on live TV -- it may be the hardest one yet for him to stomach.
In the night's other prominent lightweight bout,
The closest Maynard came to finishing an opponent in his last five fights came in the third and final round, when "The Bully" locked on a kimura that appeared to have Huerta in serious trouble. But, as Maynard twisted his shoulder like a wet towel he was trying to ring out, Huerta stayed calm and somehow reversed the position after looking like he might have suffered a debilitating injury.
As courageous a finish as it was, it wasn't enough to send Huerta out of the UFC on a win. The fighter-turned-actor could find no answer to Maynard's patient stand-up game in the early rounds, and two of the three judges gave all three rounds to Maynard.
Elsewhere on the card:
• Former WEC welterweight champ
• In a back-and-forth middleweight battle,
• In the light heavyweight division, former Marine
• Xtreme Couture product
• UFC rookie