Umar Nurmagomedov remained undefeated by delivering an absolutely brutal first-round knockout over Raoni Barcelos at UFC Vegas 67.
Best known for his grappling dominance, Nurmagomedov looked ready to trade strikes on Saturday, but a kick to the body followed by a short left hook was all he needed to separate Barcelos from consciousness. As soon as the punch landed, Barcelos fell backwards in a heap as Nurmagomedov followed him to the ground, with the referee quickly rushing in to stop the contest.
The end came at 4:40 in the first round.
Afterward, Nurmagomedov actually apologized for his follow-up punch after Barcelos crashed to the canvas but before the referee had time to intervene.
” I feel a bit bad. I didn’t see [he was out],” Nurmagomedov said. Nurmagomedov said, “I did it very quickly. It was emotional. I feel bad. Win, and I am happy. First time I do a [knockout] in my life. Crazy.”
Both bantamweights appeared ready to exchange strikes when the fight started, with Nurmagomedov setting up a variety of kicks while Barcelos fired back with power in his hands. Nurmagomedov looked comfortable on his feet and never appeared to even contemplate a takedown in the moment.
As the bantamweights traded on the feet, Nurmagomedov started digging to the body with kicks and this forced Barcelos into defending. Nurmagomedov returned to his midsection, but this time he used the left hook and slapped Barcelos.
It was an emphatic finish from arguably the best prospect in the 135-pound division, as Nurmagomedov moved to 16-0 with the victory. The win also led to Nurmagomedov calling out anybody and everybody in the bantamweight division to step up to his challenge with hopes that he’ll compete again in March.
” I’ll be available for March,” Nurmagomedov stated. I told [them I would fight] anyone, why doesn’t my division say anything? I want to fight with anybody. Where are you guys? I’m here. March, I will be ready.”