Donald Cerrone finally gets that knockout win he so desperately needed 1 year ago

Donald Cerrone finally gets that knockout win he so desperately needed

It took over a decade in professional MMA for Donald Cerrone to suffer consecutive losses.

When Donald Cerrone finally lost two in a row, the third defeat came swiftly after.

If his unbeaten 2016 was one of the high points of his career, last year may have been the nadir. Jorge Masvidal knocked him out twice in one fight, Robbie Lawler got the nod over three rounds and then a rising star by the name of Darren Till introduced himself to the American audience by flattening him.

If he lost a fourth on the bounce, particularly if he was another brutal finish, there would have been serious question marks about his future in the sport. So when he got matched up against Yancy Medeiros for UFC Austin's headline act, it was universally accepted as a must-win for the Denver native.

Another incentive for beating the Hawaiian was that it presented him an opportunity to enter the UFC history books.

A win would have seen him amass a total of 20 victories in the UFC, tying the record held by Michael Bisping and Georges St-Pierre. Also, a finish would see him equal the record of 14 set by Anderson Silva and Vitor Belfort.

Despite all these reasons to get the win at all costs, despite Medeiros causing some trouble with his stand-up in the early exchanges, when the Hawaiian slipped to the canvas, he was let back up. Medeiros got back to his feet laughing at the sportsmanship, and the two high-fived and hugged it out before going back to war.

Before the end of the round, karma rewarded Cerrone. The fight-ending sequence began with a vicious combination that cut Medeiros' legs out from under him. The right hand stumbled him backwards and saw him fall face-first onto the canvas. A few punches from the top position later and Herb Dean had seen enough.

After the bout, there were no callouts. Cerrone simply sent Medeiros over the cage to receive a greeting from his grandmother sitting in the crowd.

All class, in victory and defeat.