Five fighters made their Octagon debuts on Saturday afternoon at UFC Vegas 56: Volkov vs Rozenstruik and no fighter at the event had more than 13 career fights in the UFC. Nonetheless, it was quite the show for those who remembered it was an early card (as opposed to the usual evening timeslot for Fight Night). Much of the UFC was definitely watching and checking in on Twitter during the event, helping #UFCVegas56 trend. Here’s what the buzz was about.
Love for the Uppercut
It didn’t earn him any of the Performance of the Night bonuses, but Tony Gravely’s uppercut knockout of Johnny Munoz was certainly an early candidate for one of the honors. The win was huge for Gravely, and with just more than a minute spent in The Octagon, he is more than fresh should he want to pick up another fight quickly. Fellow bantamweight Adrian Yanez took to Twitter right after the shot, saying, “Always appreciate an uppercut KO #ufc”.
Fireworks On the Main Card
After the build-up of the preliminaries, it was finally time on Saturday for the main card to start. Top-five welterweight contender Belal Muhammad, along with fight fans around the world, shared his anticipation for not only the main card but the first contest, a battle between Alonzo Menifield and Askar Mozharov. “This bout to be fireworks,” he tweeted. The sentiment was immediately realized when Menifield forced referee Herb Dean to call the fight with just 20 seconds left in the first round after Menifield had Mozharov restricted in a crucifix while hammering him with shots. Fireworks indeed.
“Very Entertaining” Fight of the Night
One of the fighters making their debut at UFC Vegas 56 was Lucas Almeida, who served as the lead-in to the co-main event along with Michael Trizano. It was a solid bout from the beginning, with both fighters having the upper hand at times through the first two rounds. Herbert Burns took to Twitter with his early analysis, stating, “Very entertaining fight so far between Trizano and Almeida! #UFCVegas56”. Though Almeida would be the one to have his hand raised in the end, both he and Trizano earned an extra $50,000 each for the entertainment they provided, taking home the Fight of the Night bonus.
Pushing the Pace in the Co-Main Event
From start to finish, the battle between Movsar Evloev and Dan Ige was a busy affair, as projected by UFC lightweight Charles Rosa on Twitter. “This gonna be a good scrap,” he said, “both guys can push the pace #UFCVegas56”. For much of the bout, Ige was on the defensive as Evloev outstruck him 144-47, and 68-42 with the significant strikes. Evloev also took down Ige a whopping nine times. It surely was a good scrap.
A Controversial Ending to the Night
With so many strong fights preceding it, and with the anticipation for a battle that usually comes with a heavyweight contest, fight fans were ready for a brawl. However, we’ll never know just what the fight could have been, as it was controversially called early. After Jairzinho Rozenstruik was sent to the fence after taking a right-hand blow from Alexander Volkov just two minutes into the fight. With Volkov raining shots onto a Rozenstruik who was going toward the mat, referee Herb Dean stepped in and broke up the action.
Rozenstruik immediately debated the decision and continued his campaign against the stoppage on his Twitter afterward. “…I’m disappointed that it was stopped,” he tweeted. “It definit[e]ly was a troubling situation, but I was far from giving up the fight.” He further noted that since he suffered no notable damage, he’s looking to fight soon. Just how far he will drop in the standings if at all, remains to be seen.
UFC Vegas 56 Fight Card Results
- #7 Alexander Volkov TKO’d #8 Jairzinho Rozenstruik – Round 1
- #13 Movsar Evloev defeated #10 Dan Ige – Unanimous Decision
- Lucas Almeida TKO’d Michael Trizano – Round 3
- Karine Silva submitted Poliana Botelho by D’Arce Choke – Round 1
- Ode’ Osbourne KO’d Zarrukh Adashev – Round 1
- Alonzo Menifield TKO’d Askar Mozharov – Round 1
- Karolina Kowalkiewicz submitted Felice Herrig by Rear Naked Choke – Round 2
- Joe Solecki defeated Alex da Silva – Majority Decision
- Damon Jackson defeated Daniel Argueta – Unanimous Decision
- Benoit Saint Denis submitted Niklas Stolze by Rear Naked Choke – Round 2
- Tony Gravely TKO’d Johnny Munoz – Round 1
- Jeffrey Molina defeated Zhalgas Zhumagulov – Split Decision
- Rinat Fakhretdinov defeated Andreas Michailidis – Unanimous Decision
- Erin Blanchfield submitted JJ Aldrich by Guillotine Choke – Round 2