Dubai: Mixed Martial Arts is an unforgiving sport and Dubai-based Tunisian fighter Mounir Lazzez learnt it the hard way when he suffered a crushing first round TKO delivered by the heavy hands of Brazil’s Warlley Alves in the co-main event at UFC Fight Island 8 in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday night.
Alves, who was returning to the Octagon after a year filled with injuries, wasted no time to teach Lazzez (10-2 MMA, 1-1 UFC) and a thing or two about MMA.
The action took place at a well-attended Etihad Arena, and Alves, who exploded right from the opening bell with close-range punches and devastating body kicks to get the stoppage at 2:25 seconds.
The savage defeat will have awakened Lazzez, who has dreams of a long career in the UFC and hopes of one day becoming a champion. What he didn’t know was that it doesn’t come easy and that it’s a rocky path to the top.
And sometimes you fall.
In a sense, the defeat will do more good than harm to the hungry Tunisian fighter’s aspirations, for he did hint at his genius when executing a spinning elbow that caught Alves’ attention.
Lazzer is good, no doubt about it and he has proven in the past that nothing is too outrageous for him to attempt in the Octagon. The Alves loss, hence, was in a way progress for the Tunisian who trains at the Team Nogueira Dubai Gym/ Physical Fitness Center in Dubai.
After the win Alves, who improved to 8-4 in the UFC, rushed to speak to UFC boss Dana White and the turned to legendary fighter-expert commentator Daniel Cormier to shout out: “I’m here, I’m back!”
“I don’t like marijuana guys. I don’t like that,” he said. “I hate that, because it’s a bad example for the sport. Nate Diaz, fight with me because I’ll prove it.
“Winners don’t use drugs. You’re a marijuana guy. I’m not like that. Let’s go, Nate Diaz.”
Before 8th ranked Michael Chiesa (18-4 MMA, 11-4 UFC) employed his superior grappling to beat Neil Magny (18-4 MMA, 11-4 UFC) by a lopsided unanimous decision in the main event, it was Umar Nurmagomedov, a cousin of legendary Khabib to steal the spotlight with a second-round submission victory over Sergey Morozov (16-4 MMA, 0-1 UFC).
With Khabib in his corner for the debut, the young Numagomedov displayed the family’s trademark high-end top game to overwhelm the more experienced Morozov.
Following the win, Umar was joined by Khabib, who served as his translator, saying: “He talked about me. Nine years ago today, on January 20, 2012, I beat my opponent like this with this choke.
“Today, he did this. But I did it in the third round. He did it in the second round.”
UFC Fight Night: Main
Michael Chiesa vs. Magny vian unanimous decision 5:00
Warlley Alves def. Mounir Lazzez via TKO (body kick, punches) – Round 1, 2:35
Ike Villanueva def. Vinicius Moreira via knockout (punch) – Round 2, 0:39
Viviane Araujo def. Roxanne Modafferi via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)
Matt Schnell def. Tyson Nam via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Lerone Murphy def. Douglas Silva de Andrade via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Omari Akhmedov def. Tom Breese via submission (arm-triangle choke) – Round 2, 1:41
Ricky Simon def. Gaetano Pirrello via submission (arm-triangle choke) – Round 2, 4:00
Su Mudaerji def. Zarrukh Adashev via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Dalcha Lungiambula def. Markus Perez via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Francisco Figueiredo def. Jerome Rivera via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Mike Davis def. Mason Jones via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Umar Nurmagomedov def. Sergey Morozov via technical submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 3:39
Manon Fiorot def. Victoria Leonardo via TKO (head kick, punches) – Round 2, 4:08