For all of the iconic wars that Stephan Bonnar has been a part of during his time with the UFC, sometimes people forget that he started out as a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt with great ground skills.
Bonnar got to show off his dominant groundwork winning a lopsided unanimous decision over Kyle Kingsbury to kick off the UFC 139 main card.
Normally a fan of standing and banging with opponents, Bonnar knew his best chance to win his fight on Saturday night was to get the much less experienced Kyle Kingsbury on the mat and punish him there.
Once Bonnar got Kingsbury to the ground, it was a clear mismatch.
Bonnar passed Kingsbury’s guard at will and got in the north-south position several times in the fight, but just couldn’t lock on a choke or submission to finish it.
The crowd became restless with the ground fight by round three, but Bonnar was simply overwhelming from the opening bell and never let up until the final horn sounded.
Bonnar may be known for his knock down, drag out style, but to his credit he fought a much smarter game plan and strategy to pick apart Kingsbury from start to finish.
“I’m not used to fans booing during my fights,” Bonnar admitted after the win. “It’s hard to get wins in here, I thought I had good control on the ground so I didn’t want to risk getting knocked out or something silly.”
Apparently, with the new style he showed off at UFC 139, Bonnar also got a little perspective.
Over the last few months, Bonnar and fellow former ‘Ultimate Fighter’ season 1 housemate Josh Koscheck almost got embroiled in a legal battle after Bonnar’s clothing company made shirts with Koscheck’s likeness on them without his permission. The two fighters engaged in a Twitter war, and even talked about fighting each other at middleweight at one point.
Following his win on Saturday, Bonnar took the high road and squashed the beef by simply saying ‘I’m sorry’.
“I had this big plan to get this win and call out (Josh) Koscheck, but something about fighting makes you be honest with yourself, and the truth is he asked me not to make those shirts and I did anyways. So, Koscheck I apologize, you taught me a valuable lesson,” said Bonnar.
“So from now on moving forward, fighters got to approve of the shirts and they get paid on every one sold.”
Bonnar was humble in his apology, but most importantly he picks up his third win in a row in the UFC.