The UFC made it’s debut in Albany, New York on Friday Night, with the main event of Derrick Lewis vs Shamil Abdurakhimov. The fight wasn’t the prettiest one. Abdurakhimov used a slow strategic strategy, where he was catching leg kicks and knees from Lewis to get takedowns, or clinch him against the cage. Abdurakhmiov plan appeared to be working, having him up 3 rounds to zero entering the fourth round. Things changed in the fourth, when Lewis was able to get double underhooks on Abdurakhimov and taking him down to the canvas. Once the fight hit the ground, Lewis eventually got the mount, and rained down heavy shots, on a defenseless Abdurakhimov, until the fight was stopped.
Lewis was visible upset wit his performance in the octagon post fight interview. He called his performance “bullshit” and refused to call out a high ranking heavyweight to be a future opponent.
It wasn’t a big surprise that Francis Ngannou beat Anthony Hamilton in the first round of the co-main event of the evening. However, it was a big surprise that he won by first round submission within the first two minutes of the fight. Ngannou opened the fight with a low kick, which Hamilton caught and took him to the ground. Ngannou scrambled to his feet, and Hamilton rushed him into the cage. Ngannou locked in Kimura, and tripped Hamilton to the ground. Once they hit the ground, he twisted the arm behind Hamilton’s back, and got the quick tapout.
Corey Anderson bounced back from a questionable loss to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua, with a thrashing of Sean O’Connell. Anderson used his strong wrestling skills where he dropped heavy ground and pound on O’Connell. In the second round, Anderson took O’Connell down with a double leg takedown, and unloaded a heavy arsenal of punches and elbows on the downed O’Connell, before the fight was stopped, giving him a second round TKO.
Gian Villante had a much harder time than expected against UFC newcomer, Saparbek Safarov. Villante appeared to be cruising to an easy victory in the first round, after dropping Safarov several times. Safarov appeared to have a left leg injury and on his way out, but he began to fire back and drop Villante. However, in the second round, Villante opened up by attacking Safarov’s injured leg. He followed up his leg attack with power punches, and elbows against a hurt Safarov to get the TKO win.
- Randy Brown over Brian Camozzi by 2rd TKO
- Gerald Meerschaert over Joe Gigliotti by 1st round submission
- Andrew Sanchez over Trevor Smith by Unanimous Decision
- Shane Burgos over Tiago Trator by Unanimous Decision
- Marc Diakiese over Frankie Perez by Unanimous Decision
- Ryan Janes over Keith Berish by Unanimous Decision
- Julianna Lima over JJ Aldrich by Unanimous Decision