25 years ago in Denver, Colorado the Ultimate Fighting Championship held its inaugural event. McNichols Sports Arena played host to UFC 1 on Nov. 12, 1993. On Saturday, the fight promotion celebrated 25 years where it all started.
11,426 spectators attended UFC Fight: Korean Zombie vs. Rodríguez at the Pepsi Center in downtown Denver generating $946,706.78 in gate receipts. Those in the arena witnessed Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone set records for the most wins and finishes in UFC history in the card’s co-main event.
Cerrone faced Mike Perry in a welterweight bout the didn’t make it out of the first round. Perry secured a takedown. Cerrone reversed the position but Perry regained top position in a scramble. Cerrone quickly looked to set up a triangle choke before transitioning to an armbar forcing Perry to tap out. Following the fight, Perry revealed that he suffered a broken arm due to the submission.
“The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung and Yair Rodriguez headlined the event and put on an instant classic. The two battled back and forth for nearly 25 minutes. Behind on the scorecards, Rodriguez scored one of the greatest knockouts in combat sports history with one second remaining in the final round. During an exchange, Rodriguez connected with an upward elbow that face-planned the Korean star.