NEW YORK — Liz Carmouche made sure the UFC’s first event in the Empire State got off to an octagon-rattling start Saturday night.
Carmouche and her bantamweight opponent, Katlyn Chookagian, didn’t exactly wow the Madison Square Garden crowd in the first round as they felt out each other. But Carmouche dropped the hammer in the second round.
As the UFC pointed out, the body slam looked even more vicious in slow motion.
Chookagian, to her credit, didn’t quit after the hellacious takedown, catching Carmouche with a third-round kick that could’ve ended the fight.
“When Katlyn landed the kick in the third round, I was worried,” Carmouche said in quotes distributed by the UFC. “I didn’t feel like the fight would be stopped, but I knew it might sway the judges.
It didn’t, though, as Carmouche won in a split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28).
“I didn’t anticipate the takedowns coming as easily,” Carmouche said. “I really wanted to stand and bang with her, but the takedowns came natural, and I decided to exploit that.”
Thumbnail photo via Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports Images