Mendoza: A thing of beauty

·2 min read

Pssst... did you see that perfectly timed high head kick unleashed by Leon Edwards which separated Kamaru Usman from his senses with the clock ticking down at the final round at UFC 278 for the welterweight championship?

It was a true thing of beauty and it really doesn’t get any better than that.

THE KICK. The defending champion was winning the fight on the cards until Edwards decided he wanted a more dramatic ending.

Both fighters fought evenly in the first two rounds, but by the third, Usman had started to dominate.

He applied relentless pressure and Edwards appeared to slow down. Usman looked like a fresher fighter in the final round, but then it happened.

Edwards faked the left kick as if it were directed at Usman’s midsection, and as Usman dropped his right arm to defend, Edwards whipped the kick to Usman’s head and he dropped like he had been shot in the head.

The fight was a rematch of their earlier encounter back in 2015 where Usman won.

Entering the fight, Edwards (20-3) was a betting underdog while Usman (20-2) was understandably the favorite especially after coming off impressive wins against the likes of Colby Covington and Jorge Masvidal.

And that’s why anything can happen in a fight and you can’t afford to become careless. Unless you hear that damn bell ring signaling the denouement of the match, you still have to be on guard for every remaining second.

LAKERS. Just had to interject some NBA stuff here, as I was really surprised that the Los Angeles Lakers agreed to take in Patrick Beverly after releasing Taylor Horton Tucker and Stanley Johnson.

My surprise comes not from the fact that they acquired Beverly as any team could always find good use for a pit bull of Beverly’s caliber, but rather on the unlikely possibility of him co-existing with the Lakers’ current superstar point guard Russell Westbrook.

Westbrook’s beef with Beverly is well-documented and there is no love lost between these two mercurial personalities.

Or could this possibly be the harbinger of a Westbrook trade, a clarion call for many Lakers fans.

To this Last Rounder, Westbrook’s tremendous capacities have not in any manner diminished. He is just miscast as a point guard in a Lakers team that has Lebron James as its focal point on offense. Even at an advanced age, James does a lot of things that Westbrook does-only better. He can rebound, pass and score and clearly is a better shooter.

VERBATIM. “They’ll be playing with me. I made the playoffs last year. They didn’t” - Patrick Beverly @BleacherReport

LAST ROUND. It’s on my bro, Ramsey, who celebrates his birthday this week. Have a good one and cheers, bro!