Miocic stays as UFC heavyweight champ with KO win over Overeem

By Ivan Saldajeno

CLEVELAND--Stipe Miocic impressed in front of his hometown crowd at the Quicken Loans Arena after knocking out Alistair Overeem for the UFC heavyweight championship in the main event of UFC 203 on Sunday.

Miocic averted an early disaster and leaned on his striking prowess to successfully defend his belt against Overeem.

Overeem landed a solid left straight that knocked Miocic down before going for a guillotine choke, but Miocic quickly got loose of the hold and turned the tides from there, eventually pouncing Overeem on a ground-and-pound before the match was halted at the 4:27 mark of Round 1.

In another heavyweight action, Fabricio Werdum inched closer to his possible turn to face Miocic after beating Travis Browne via unanimous decision in the co-main event that had a late drama.

After the final bell was sounded, Werdum and Edmond Tarverdyan, Browne's coach, had a confrontation before cooler heads prevented the two from exchanging blows.

Werdum won on cards, 29-28, 29-27, 30-27.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno