Jacare Souza Retains His Strikeforce Middleweight Belt

Ronaldo Jacare Souza

Strikeforce champion Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza

Jacare Souza retains Strikeforce middleweight title.

Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza faced adversity early against Robbie Lawler in the co-main event of the “Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg” card Saturday at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, but came through with a submission win to retain his title.

Souza was able to get Lawler down early in the fight and advance his position without difficulty. But Lawler worked his way back to his feet and had the middleweight titleholder hurt due to a flying knee and a series of punches.

Souza fell to the canvas and Lawler swooped in, but was unable to do anything from the top position.

In the second round, Souza again scored an early takedown. On the ground he showed his slick submission skills, but Lawler was able to fend off the submission attempts, including escaping from two arm bars from the Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt.

Lawler wouldn’t be able to escape from the rear naked choke in the third stanza and was forced to tap out when the Brazilian sunk the choke in under his chin.

“I came here prepared for everything,” said Souza following the title defense. “I have great coaches, great friends, training partners. I feel great right now.”

Souza would like to return to action in Strikeforce as soon as possible.

“Whoever Strikeforce wants I’ll fight,” he said. “I can’t wait to fight again.”

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