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The Beast is Back

On the Main Card this week, Wildris asked, if we could see a return to dominance by Magomed Ankalaev in his bout with Johnny Walker. Ankalaev was on a 9 fight win streak with 5 stoppages before a draw and no contest in his last two fights. Magomed most likely put himself on the top of the list for 205lb title challengers with his performance on Saturday Night.

This was an immediate rematch of the No Contest in Abu Dhabi last year. A fight I selected as my Marquee Matchup due to the title implications and potential for excitement. The first match was a let down due to the odd doctors stoppage, this fight more than made up for it.

The Final Face Off 📸X:FanScorecard

Magomed learned of Walker’s deceptiveness in their first fight and vowed not to fall prey to his tactics. Walker picked up where he left off in the first match, landing strong leg kicks to open the round. Ankalaev was kept off balance by Walkers unorthodox kicks. Johnny threw too many spinning strikes allowing his opponent to find his rhythm. Halfway through, Magomed started applying pressure and picking Johnny apart. That included a jaw spinning right which brought a smile to Walkers face. A hard cup kick paused the action before moving to Round 2.

When the action resumed, Magomed turned the tables landing his own leg kicks. Ankalaev landed a nice straight to the body reminiscent of their first encounter. It did not double Johnny over this time, nor was Walker able to catch Ankalaev with a flying knee as he did in the previous bout. As the over/under odds for the fight lasting 1.5 round popped on screen, Magomed dropped Johnny with a right. He followed by landing an upper cut to the seated Walker stopping the fight.

Magomed Hunts for the Finish 📸 X:MessiMania X

Magomed challenged for the Vacant Title to close 2022. Afterward this bout he called for the Champ. Could we see an undisputed title fight at Light Heavyweight at UFC 300?


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