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UFC 198 Aftermath: Can Stipe Miocic break the heavyweight title curse?

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UFC 198 Aftermath: Can Stipe Miocic break the heavyweight title curse?

The lineage of the championship belt won by Stipe Miocic on Saturday night traces all the way back to the Superfight title, the one created in the UFC’s earliest days as a way to promote fights between stars outside of what had turned into a rigid tournament format.

The belt, first held by Ken Shamrock in 1995, gave way to the current heavyweight title at UFC 12, when Superfight champ Dan Severn lost to UFC 11 tournament winner Mark Coleman.

And when Miocic scored a one-punch knockout of Fabricio Werdum to claim the belt in front of 45,000 fans to win the championship in Curitiba, Brazil, a 21-year streak going all the way back to Shamrock continued.

Werdum dropped the belt in his first title defense, meaning Miocic inherits a lineage in which no fighter has successfully defended the title more than twice.

Not Randy Couture, who had three title reigns to his name.

Not Tim Sylvia, who held the belt when all the best heavyweights competed in PRIDE, but could still only manage two defenses before losing to a 43-year-old Couture.

Not Brock Lesnar, who defended the belt against Frank Mir and Shane Carwin before being felled by the 1-2 combo of Diverticulitis and a rising Cain Velasquez.

Not Velasquez, who conventional wisdom held would be that elusive, dominant heavyweight champion. Even given wide berth by the UFC for frequent injuries, he got clipped by Junior dos Santos to end his first reign, then was finished by Werdum last year as he attempted to make his third defense of his second reign.

Werdum, for his part, openly talked about going on a run that would leave no doubt he was the greatest heavyweight of all-time, and given his resume in winning eight of his previous nine fights, he seemed to be on solid footing. Instead, he took ….View full article

Source:: mma fighting