Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweights Antonio Silva and Soa Palelei slugged it out last night (Aug. 1, 2015) at UFC 190 inside HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Silva entered this bout in a must-win situation. He had not won a fight in years, spending most of his time inside the Octagon getting knocked cold. In order to keep competing inside the Octagon, "Bigfoot" needed to return to the win column.
While Silva's back was against the wall, this was Palelei's opportunity to spring into the Top 10. By defeating the former title challenger, "Hulk" could announce himself as a Heavyweight to watch.
Instead, he showed that climbing the rankings is likely far beyond his reach.
To watch Bigfoot Silva vs. Soa Palely full fight video highlights right now click here.
Palelei wasted little time in shooting for a single leg takedown and got in deep, but "Bigfoot" defended nicely. Once Silva moved back into the center of the cage, the Brazilian began to take control of the stand up, as Palelei looked rather awkward on his feet.
Despite Silva's advantage on the feet, the fight ended up back in the clinch with Silva pressuring his opponent into the fence. Palelei capitalized nicely with an overhook throw and landed in top position. From there, he rocked the massive Brazilian just before the time ran out.
"Bigfoot" looked a bit unstable walking back to his corner.
Despite the shaky ending to the first round, Silva came out aggressively. Pushing his opponent into the fence, Silva then tee'd off on his opponent. Mixing together uppercuts, straight punches, and knees in a knockdown very reminiscent of his victory over Alistair Overeem, Silva toppled his opponent and sent him to the mat hard.
While this is the best Silva has looked since his draw with Mark Hunt, that's not saying much at all. Silva, while clearly the superior fighter on his feet, still looked slow. Plus, the way in which Palelei tossed him through the air doesn't say good things about his strength.
And if the bell to the first round would've been another minute later, the fight likely would've ended then.
Nonetheless, Silva is back in the win column, even if it did require one of the best style match ups possible for him. After this fight, Silva should absolutely not receive a step up. Instead, he should take on another fringe top 15 grappling specialist without much striking ability, such as Alexey Olenik.
Frankly, Palelei is just not very good. When he gets on top of his opponents, he's absolutely ruthless and can dispatch his opponent with ease. However, his takedown ability is just barely above average, and his striking is really mediocre.
How does such a monstrous-sized fighter not know how to throw heavy punches on his feet?
Silva is massively declined and rather fragile. That's well-known at this point, yet "The Hulk" barely threw any strikes standing up except for some jabs with nothing behind them. Once the first takedown failed, Palelei should have bit down on his mouth guard and threw some real punches.
He only needed one solid connection.
Instead, Palelei found a way to lose against a pretty shot opponent. After this loss, Palelei will probably go back to knocking out lower tier or debuting UFC heavyweights that can't stop a double leg. It appears that's the only type of fighter that Palelei can consistently beat.
Last night, Antonio Silva rallied to knock out Soa Palelei. Can the Brazilian get his career back on track?
For complete UFC 190: "Rousey vs Correia" live results and play-by-play, click HERE!