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UFC 283 Prelims: Ihor Potieria Vanquishes Retiring Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua in Brazil

Ihor Potieria does not believe in storybook endings.

The Dana White’s Contender Series graduate evened his Ultimate Fighting Championship record, as he cut down Mauricio Rua with punches in the first round of their featured UFC 283 prelim on Saturday at Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro. Potieria (18-4, 0-2 UFC) slammed the door on the Brazilian legend 4:05 into Round 1.

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Rua (27-14-1, 11-12-1 UFC)—who announced his intention to retire prior to the match—cracked the Ukrainian with a left hook but offered little else of substance, the 2005 Pride Fighting Championships middleweight grand prix winner looking painfully slow on the draw at 41 years of age. Potieria clipped him with a right hook that scrambled his circuits, swarmed with punches and forced “Shogun” to his knees and into a defensive shell. More punches followed, prompting referee Herb Dean to intervene.

Debuting Ferreira Stuns Rodrigues


Evolucao Thai standout Brunno Ferreira remained undefeated and did so in spectacular fashion, as he punched out former Legacy Fighting Alliance champion Gregory Rodrigues in the first round of their middleweight tussle. A late replacement for Brad Tavares, Ferreira (10-0, 1-0 UFC) sealed the deal 4:13 into Round 1.

Rodrigues (13-5, 4-2 UFC) pressed the issue from the outset, as he scored with a probing jab and a punching flurry punctuated by a right uppercut. Ferreira, 30, was undeterred. Backed up to the cage, he kept himself of harm’s way and unleashed a brutal straight left on the counter. It connected on the button and sent Rodriguez crashing backward, his head bouncing violently off the canvas. A diving right hand followed and opened a cut underneath the right eye of an unconscious “RoboCop” before referee Fernando Portella could arrive on the scene.

The unblemished Ferreira resume now features eight first-round finishes.

Moises Taps Replacement Costa


American Top Team mainstay Thiago Moises submitted organizational newcomer Melquizael Costa with a face crank in the first round of their lightweight battle. A short-notice substitution for Guram Kutateladze, Costa (19-6, 0-1 UFC) conceded defeat 4:05 into Round 2.

Moises (17-5, 6-4 UFC) followed his customarily methodical path to the winner’s circle. The onetime Resurrection Fighting Alliance champion hit the accelerator after a relatively uneventful first round, secured a takedown and applied his ground-and-pound, opening a cut with a well-placed elbow. Moises then progressed to the back, secured his position with a body triangle and cinched the face crank to generate the desired outcome.

The setback closed the door on Costa’s two-fight winning streak.

Undefeated Bonfim Throttles Lazzez


Cerrado MMA prospect Gabriel Bonfim took care of Mounir Lazzez with a guillotine choke in the first round of their welterweight clash. Lazzez (11-3, 2-2 UFC) bowed out just 49 seconds into Round 1, victimized by a sub-minute finish for the first time in his career.

Bonfim (14-0, 1-0 UFC) was the aggressor from the start, as the two men traded leg kicks before he backed the Tunisian to the fence. The Dana White’s Contender Series graduate ducked under a standing elbow from Lazzez, countered an ill-advised takedown with the guillotine and rolled to a mounted position to force the tapout.

The 25-year-old Bonfim has stopped all 14 of his opponents, seven of them in the first round.

Almeida Annihilates Overmatched Abdurakhimov


Former Thunder Fight titleholder Jailton Almeida disposed of Shamil Abdurakhimov with punches in the second round of their one-sided heavyweight confrontation. Winless since April 2019, Abdurakhimov (20-8, 5-6 UFC) succumbed to unanswered blows 2:56 into Round 2.

The ascending Almeida (18-2, 4-0 UFC) had no issues, outside of a well-timed overhand right from the Russian inside the first 10 seconds. He executed repeated takedowns, moved freely in top position and eventually settled on ground-and-pound as his means to an end. Almeida took down the Fighting Eagle export early in Round 2, progressed to the back, flattened out the 41-year-old and prompted the stoppage with repeated shots to the head.

Almeida, 31, has won 13 fights in a row.

Stamann Spoils Lacerda Debut


Xtreme Couture standout Cody Stamann won fourth time in five outings, as he laid claim to a unanimous decision over former Shooto Brazil champion Luan Lacerda in a three-round bantamweight scrap. Stamann (21-5-1, 7-4-1 UFC) swept the scorecards with matching 29-28 marks from the cageside judges.

Lacerda (12-2, 0-1 UFC) performed well in his promotional debut. He blasted Stamann’s body with kicks from both legs and mixed in a pair of third-round takedowns. However, the spaces in between were mostly ruled by the Michigan native. Stamann was the busier and more efficient fighter, as he uncorked crisp two- and three-punch combinations, along with a consistent jab and the occasional inside leg kick. He did his best work in the middle stanza, where he connected with a counter left hook and targeted the body and head with equal aplomb.

The loss was Lacerda’s first since Aug. 10, 2014 and snapped a run of 10 straight wins for the Brazilian.

Bonfim Knee Wrecks McKinney


Cerrado MMA’s Ismael Bonfim wiped out former Front Street Fights champion Terrance McKinney with a devastating flying knee in the second round of their lightweight encounter. An unconscious McKinney (13-5, 3-2 UFC) nosedived into the canvas 2:17 into Round 2. No follow-up shots were necessary.

Bonfim (19-3, 1-0 UFC) countered beautifully throughout the match, controlled the center of the cage and let the finish come to him. He sent McKinney’s mouthpiece flying with a multi-punch burst in the second round, stepped backward to create some space and unleashed the fight-ending knee to tie a bow on a near-flawless performance.

The 27-year-old Bonfim will carry a 13-fight winning streak into his next assignment.

Relentless Dalby Edges Alves


Former Cage Warriors Fighting Championship titleholder Nicolas Dalby eked out a split decision over “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 3 Brazil winner Warlley Alves in a three-round welterweight tilt. All three judges struck 29-28 scorecards: Derek Cleary for Alves, Fabio Alves and Sal D’Amato for Dalby.

Alves (14-6, 8-6 UFC) connected with the more impactful blows but struggled to keep pace with the steady, resourceful Dane. Dalby (21-4-1, 5-3-1 UFC) leaned on stellar conditioning and responded to power with volume, often answering one or two punches from the Brazilian with three, four and five of his own. He was also effective in the clinch, where he piled up points with knee strikes to the body and legs. Alves turned up the heat in the third round, as he upped his activity against the Rumble Sports product and highlighted a late surge with a vicious straight right. Ultimately, those efforts fell short.

Dalby, 38, has won three of his last four fights.

Surging Nunes Extends Streak


Josiane Nunes overcame six-inch height and five-inch reach deficits to take a unanimous decision from the returning Zarah Fairn dos Santos in a three-round women’s featherweight affair. All three members of the cageside judiciary scored it the same: 29-28 for Nunes (10-1, 3-0 UFC).

In her first appearance in nearly three years, Fairn (6-5, 0-3 UFC) handled her business in a largely one-sided first round. There, she cut loose with inside leg kicks, body kicks and clean combinations from distance, pairing them with right uppercuts, knee strikes and elbows at close range. All the activity came at a cost, as Fairn appeared visibly fatigued by the time Round 2 started. Nunes sprang into action with lunging left hooks and often pinned her counterpart to the fence, where she pieced together three-, four- and five-punch volleys to the body and head. Fairn rallied at points in the third but failed to turn the tide back in her favor.

Nunes has rattled off nine consecutive victories.

Unbeaten Marcos Dismisses Oliveira


Dana White’s Contender Series graduate Daniel Marcos impressed in his Octagon debut, as he put away Saimon Oliveira with a knee strike to the body and follow-up punches in the second round of their bantamweight pairing. Marcos (14-0, 1-0 UFC) brought it to a close 2:18 into Round 2.

Oliveira (18-5, 0-2 UFC) enjoyed some success with outside leg kicks but bled his gas tank dry with failed takedown attempts and ineffective spinning attacks. Marcos had the Astra Fight Team rep on the run with punches midway through the second round, folded him with a knee to the midsection and mopped up what was left with punches.

The 31-year-old Oliveira has suffered back-to-back defeats for the first time as a pro.
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