Tarec Saffiedine vs. Nate Marquardt for the belt in the final Strikeforce bout of all time. Here goes!
Round one saw the challenger start off well with solid leg kicks. But the real theme on the stanza was a falling away right handed jab by Saffiedine which dropped his adversary momentarily.
Round two saw Saffiedine land a hard knee as Marquardt came forward looking for a takedown. But eventually, the former UFC fighter tripped his opponent to the canvas, only to watch him get right back up. Clinch work ensued, where Marquardt got the better of exchanges of knees by a little bit. Though Saffiedine rallied a little later in the stanza with some nice strikes, Marquardt's cage aggression looking for takedowns and the like may have netted him a close stanza.
Round three saw Saffiedine come on with solid low kicks at the end of a rather uneventful round. That said, based on the ending, I would give the challenger the stanza. Not a lot of action in this one to date. Saffiedine is doing a good job here.
Saffiedine's leg kicks showed on Marquardt's battered left leg as the fourth round started. Marquardt threw a lot of punches in an attempt to stop the low kicks, but instead they came in droves. And that was the story on the round; Saffiedine's leg kicks did serious damage. Thus, going into the final stanza, I had Marquardt needing a stoppage in order to win.
Round five ended up being a striking clinic by Saffiedine, who nailed his opponent with low kicks, punches, clinch work- everything. Heck, he even took him down toward the end of the stanza. Marquardt was game, but the challenger should definitely win this one.
Tarec Saffiedine defeats Nate Marquardt by unanimous decision.