MONTREAL -- Consider his recent loss a blip in the past. Jake Ellenberger is once again a real threat in the UFC welterweight division after knocking out decorated veteran Nate Marquardt.
Ellenberger caught Marquardt with a right cross during a combination against the fence, a punch that put his opponent on the ground. He then cracked Marquardt with a series of ground strikes, and one put Marquardt's lights out. Marquardt went from all fours to his hands collapsing underneath him and he fell face first, leading the ref to call a halt to the action.
The knockout took him just three minutes, making it his third first-round KO in his last five wins.
"The adversity you go through makes you realize how much you want it," said Ellenberger, referring to his 2012 loss to Martin Kampmann as he knocked on the door of the No. 1 contender spot.
Ellenberger has won eight of his last nine UFC fights, a stretch that pushes his career record to 29-6. Five of those UFC victories are by knockout.
It was the second straight loss for the former Strikeforce welterweight champion Marquardt, who fell to 32-12-2.