The UFC octagon was on “Battle Island” in Abu Dhabi on Saturday for UFC Battle Evening: Moraes vs. Sandhagen. It was the third consecutive occasion within the EAU as a part of the combat promotion’s five-event run on Yas Island.
High ranked bantamweight contender Marlon Moraes faces No. four ranked Cory Shandhagen within the combat card’s foremost occasion. Moraes, a former title challenger and WSOF bantamweight champion, entered the bout having gained 5 of his final six fights. Sandhagen was seeking to rebound from a loss to No. 2 ranked Aljamain Sterling in his final outing.
Sandhagen made a press release by ending Moraes early within the second spherical. Within the opening body, each fighters had their moments. Sandhagen switched stances commonly and moved laterally on the surface. Moraes seemed to land counter strikes and linked with a number of proper arms. Neither fighter had a transparent edge on the finish of the primary body.
Within the second spherical, Sandhagen landed a kick that prompted instant swelling beneath Moraes’ eye. In entrance of a crowdless venue, Sandhagen stated, “his orbital is broke.”
Moments later, Sandhagen threw a jab adopted by a spinning again kick that dropped Moraes. Sandhagen adopted the Brazilian to the canvas and completed with a sequence of proper arms.
“That is placing in that onerous work throughout quarantine when you’ll be able to’t go to the fitness center and all you’ll be able to hit is the bob. I added that into my sport throughout a bizarre time. At all times working. Onerous work pays off,” Sandhagen stated in regards to the kick that led to the end.
With the win, Sandhagen desires to combat for the title in his subsequent outing. Champion Petr Yan and Aljamain Sterling are anticipated to fulfill later this 12 months and “The Sandman” desires to face the winner.
“The one different guys which have an argument is TJ (Dillashaw) when he will get again in January and Frankie (Edgar). All of the respect to each of these guys, however I need that belt. I need the belt and people are the one two guys forward of me. I need the winner of (Petr) Yan and (Aljamain) Sterling,” he stated.
Within the co-main occasion, former light-weight contender Edson Barboza picked up his first win as a featherweight by defeating Makwan Amirkhani by unanimous determination.
Within the opening body, each fighters have been rigorously choosing and selecting when to throw offense. Barboza linked along with his leg kicks and Amirkhani responded with counter punches. Because the spherical neared its finish, Barboza landed a tough kick to the physique. Amirkhani shortly powered ahead and secured a takedown.
Within the second spherical, Barboza dominated Amirkhani. He dropped “Mr. Finland” twice with straight proper arms. Within the closing moments, Amirkhani secured a takedown like he did within the first body.
Amirkhani was capable of put Barboza on his again early within the third spherical however was unable to mount sufficient offense to maintain him there. The referee stood them up for inaction and Barboza went again to touchdown strikes. Seconds earlier than the top of the spherical, Baroza held his arms up in victory.
“I anticipated precisely like that. He tried to maneuver somewhat bit, tried to take me down, however I am at all times prepared. I am very blissful. I am very, very blissful to get my W,” stated Barboza following the win.
Together with his first featherweight win underneath his belt, Barboza requested a extremely ranked opponent for his subsequent combat. He objective is to get to a title combat and grow to be the 145-pound champion.
“I wish to be a champ. I am right here to be a champ. Guys, I am able to be a champ. Please give me a high 5, high six, no matter. I am prepared,” Barboza stated. “Anyone. High 5, high six. I am able to go.”