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For Chris Leben, Most of UFC 116 Victory Is a Blur

In the second round of their UFC 116 fight, Chris Leben and Yoshihiro Akiyama had an exchange of punches that saw Akiyama connect cleanly to Leben's chin, and Leben somehow shake off the punches and keep going.

But while Leben was able to continue and ultimately force Akiyama to tap to a triangle choke with 20 seconds remaining in the third round, he says he wasn't all there mentally after that exchange with Akiyama. In fact, Leben says he couldn't even remember most of what happened in the aftermath of the fight.

"Leaving the Octagon walking back, I turned to my coach, Burton Richardson, and said, 'What was that, about halfway through the second round I finished him?'" Leben said Tuesday on The Daily Line on Versus. "He said, 'No, Chris, you had about 20 seconds left in the third.' That's a sign, definitely, I was rocked. I really don't remember a lot of the fight after the second round. It's kind of a blur. I had a chance to go back and watch it yesterday, and definitely, my knees buckled, my legs gave, it was just one of those things where every time I get hit I wonder if I can hang on. I hung on, but he rocked me, for sure."

Leben and Akiyama really started hitting each other about a minute into the second round, and Leben doesn't seem to remember much of what happened between then and the end of the fight, which means his memory has lost about eight minutes of action in a fight that lasted less than 15.

As Ariel Helwani noted at, that makes Leben's performance all the more impressive. And in addition to being a testament to Leben's toughness, it's also a scary reminder of how much punishment fighters can endure in the cage -- not just to their bodies, but to their brains.

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