What mattered most at UFC Fight Night 232 on the UFC Apex in Las Vegas? Listed here are a number of post-fight musings …
Joanderson Brito solutions Jonathan Pearce’s plea
Not everybody watching could have caught it on the printed, however Joanderson Brito turned the tables on Jonathan Pearce in one of many quickest moments of karma in current reminiscence.
With Pearce controlling the motion from high place within the second spherical, he began trash speaking Brito (16-3-1 MMA, 4-1 UFC) and telling him to “stand up and do one thing.” Properly, Brito answered the decision. Moments later, he stood up, locked in a slick ninja choke submission and compelled the faucet. It was a wild scene because the Brazilian then took his pants off in a Derrick Lewis-style celebration.
It was an enormous win for Brito, who now has 4 straight finishes within the featherweight division. He’s a reputation to maintain tabs on, whereas Pearce’s inventory takes a blow. The MMA Junkie Under-the-Radar Fighter of the Year from 2022 was compelled to take a protracted break from competitors because of an ACL harm. His five-fight profitable streak was ended, and he was taught a lesson in focus and humility.
Myktybek Orolbai’s intriguing debut
Though the turnover on the very high has been sluggish and at occasions agonizing, the UFC light-weight division has a powerful of a crop of names on the rise, and Myktybek Orolbai could now be a part of that.
We don’t wish to get too excited based mostly off one efficiency, however Orolbai’s (12-1-1 MMA, 1-0 UFC) dominant effort en route to a neck crack finish of Uros Medic was spectacular, particularly when accomplished as a alternative on simply 4 days’ discover. Furthermore, he did it at welterweight, when he’s usually a light-weight.
The Kyrgyzstan-born fighter already has a UFC-ready talent set, and it appears he could possibly be aggressive at both 170 or 155 kilos. If he follows by way of on his plan to return to the latter, he might have a superb probability at being a possible power as soon as he will get extra expertise at this stage below his belt.
Amanda Ribas is her greatest self at strawweight
Amanda Ribas returned to the strawweight division with a blinding end of top-10 ranked Luana Pinheiro, and it proved as soon as and for all that is the burden class for her – as long as the lower down is protected.
Ribas (13-4 MMA, 7-3 UFC) has jumped between 115 kilos and 125 kilos throughout her octagon tenure. She’s 2-2 when preventing on the latter, and elevated her UFC file at strawweight to 5-1 with the third-round TKO of Pinheiro, which got here after touchdown a superb spinning kick.
It appears Ribas is now comfy with the concept of what she must be doing together with her profession. She has the expertise and knowhow to beat a tough begin like she did towards Pinheiro, then decide up the tempo to get the job accomplished. With the proper dedication and dedication, she will be able to actually flirt with the highest 5 of the burden class, which she’s accomplished earlier than. Let’s see if she will be able to keep the main focus to make a run, as a result of the instruments are there.
Paul Craig’s fashion sees ceiling in second division
The primary occasion consequence was one which’s seemingly going to comply with Paul Craig for some time. He was fully overmatched in his greatest space by Brendan Allen on the bottom, and it set up his submission loss within the third spherical of his first headlining alternative.
It was shades of among the roadblocks Craig (17-7-1 MMA, 9-7-1 UFC) bumped into throughout his mild heavyweight stint. He was all too comfortable to surrender place and take harm in hopes of catching his opponent in a mistake, and when it didn’t occur, he was toast.
After Craig shined in his middleweight debut earlier this yr, the optimists believed his measurement and energy within the division would widen his room for error and provides him completely different benefits. Which may nonetheless be the case towards lots of 185-pound fighters, however towards a surging contender on the rise in Allen, he was made to look out of his depth.
Craig’s opportunistic submission expertise stays a driving power of his sport, however merely dropping down 20 kilos wasn’t the repair he wants to achieve the highest. His drop-off in talent by way of wrestling and total placing are elements of the sport he nonetheless must work on. However together with his thirty sixth birthday simply over every week away, it’s exhausting to not marvel if it’s too late.
Brendan Allen’s inventory continues to rise at 185
This column has been a spot of reward for Brendan Allen for a number of years at this level, and he continues to stay as much as the excessive expectations positioned on him.
Though many different individuals have been sluggish to come back round on Allen (23-5 MMA, 11-2 UFC), his efficiency towards Craig began to open eyes and switch heads that he’s a contender to be taken severely within the middleweight division.
There’s been a few tough factors for Allen throughout his UFC tenure, however these are beginning to really feel like a distant reminiscence after his third-round submission of Craig, which prolonged his total profitable streak to 6 fights, together with 4 by rear-naked choke.
Discovering criticisms for Allen on this one are robust. He confirmed some evolution on the toes, and went straight into the fireplace towards the strongest level of Craig’s sport – then completed him there. What extra might you ask for him out of the 27-year-old? Not a lot.
The popularity and alternatives Allen has been working towards are beginning to come round for actual now, and the following stage of his profession goes to be probably the most critical. Title eliminators, title pictures, title defences and extra are proper inside his grasp, however that is the level-up fighters traditionally have probably the most hassle coping with. I’m assured Allen is provided for it, however solely time will inform.
For extra on the cardboard, go to MMA Junkie’s occasion hub for UFC Fight Night 232.