Much like Joaquin Buckley did earlier in Saturday’s gala, Cory Sandhagen ended his fight against Marlon Moraes in spectacular fashion in the UFC Fight Island 5 final in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Sandhagen threw a well-placed reverse kick to send Moraes to the mat in the second round, before finishing the job with ground and pound a few seconds later.
Spectacular evening on Fight Island
“I worked hard during the lockdown. I tried to add that to my arsenal. Work pays off. I was here to win and I was just thinking about it. Now is the time to celebrate, ”said the winner.
This victory could give him a chance in the world championship in the bantamweight soon, but he believes that Aljamain Sterling will have that opportunity before him against champion Petr Yan.
“The only others who could be in front of me are TJ Dillashaw when he comes back and Frankie Edgar. I have a lot of respect for them but I want this belt. “
In his last fight, against Aljamain Sterling at UFC 250, Sandhagen had the opportunity to position well for a possible world championship fight by winning, but he quickly lost to submission. It was then for him a first defeat in eight fights.
Last December at UFC 245, Moraes for his part defeated Jose Aldo by split decision, but it was Aldo who then earned a title shot.
K.-O. of the year for Buckley
On the preliminary card, Joaquin Buckley will undoubtedly walk away with a performance bonus of $ 50,000 thanks to his victory over Impa Kasanganay.
Buckley gives us the K.-O. of the year
He managed the K.-O. of the year with a reverse kick in the second round, and certainly one of the most beautiful in UFC history.
As Kasanganay held Buckley’s left ankle in the air after blocking his kick, the latter gave himself a push and made a dramatic spin to violently hit his rival’s face with the other foot. Kasanganay fell heavily to the ground and it was over.
Finally a victory for Barboza
In the semi-final of the evening, Edson Barboza defeated Amirkhani by unanimous decision (30-26, 30-27, 29-28).
Barboza, who had lost his last three fights, asked to face someone in the top-5 or top-6 after their victory.
After a tighter first round, Barboza dominated the second. He notably threw two solid straight lines which brought down Amirkhani. The latter managed a takedown at the very end, but it was too late to turn the tide in this round.
Amirkhani then managed to seat Barboza on the third engagement and then work on the ground without doing much damage. Upon returning to his feet, Barboza hit the target again a few times.