Just as Kyle did in February, Cormier felled the giant with a sharp right hand early in the first round of their heavyweight grand prix semifinal on Saturday at U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati. Following his victory, Cormier admitted his hand was “jacked up,” but was unsure of the extent of his injury. Following a visit to his physician, Cormier confirmed the break via Twitter on Monday.
“Just got done seeing [the doctor],” Cormier wrote. “Hand is broken, will be on the shelf for a while. Still looking forward to finishing [the] tourney.”
Strikeforce’s heavyweight grand prix final is rumored to take place sometime in early 2012, which should allow the heavyweight ample time to heal.
Meeting Cormier in the final round will be former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett, who steamrolled Sergei Kharitonov in Saturday’s second semifinal. The man now known as “The Warmaster” stepped inside of the Russian’s powerful punches, executing an outside trip and transitioning immediately into mount. From there, the outcome was never in question, as Barnett picked his shots and eventually locked up an arm-triangle choke to seal the deal.
Cormier also punched his ticket to the finals in impressive fashion, as he succeeded where teammate Kyle failed. The American Kickboxing Academy product carefully dissected the much larger Silva, landing clean shots to the Brazilian’s dome. Cormier’s superior speed spelled the difference, as the two-time Olympian crumpled “Bigfoot” with a perfectly placed uppercut and pounced on his prone opponent with hammer strikes to earn the stoppage at 3:56 of round one.