Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Light Heavyweight hitters Jimi Manuwa and Volkan Oezdemir threw down last night (July 29, 2017) at UFC 214 inside Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
Manuwa entered UFC as an older athlete with clear physical talent, and he was thrown into the deep end pretty quickly. When he lost to a pair of top contenders a couple years back, most assumed that was the ceiling of his career, but consecutive knockout wins over Top 10-ranked foes have thrown him back into the mix. Meanwhile, Oezdemir was still an unknown item heading into this match. His previous two wins were fairly shocking, as Oezdemir looked assuming but scored a couple huge wins. If he could pick up his third UFC win in a year, Oezdemir was a bonafide contender.
This one didn’t last long.
Oezdemir came out aggressive, immediately ripping his opponent’s leg with a kick. Oezdemir followed up with a left hook and another kick. The Swiss athlete was throwing heat, and Manuwa wanted little part of it, latching onto his opponent and jamming him into the fence.
From there, it was old school Manuwa for a brief moment, as his trapped his foe and kneed him in the thigh. However, Oezdemir capitalized on a small amount of space to land a left hook and left uppercut. They appeared to be reasonably small shots, but just like his last fight, they had a huge effect.
Manuwa’s knees wobbled, and he stumbled backwards. Oezdemir’s first couple follow up punches missed, but he landed clean with a right when Manuwa planted his feet to swing.
Manuwa went down, and it was all over.
Once again, this is an incredibly bizarre result. Oezdemir has scored another huge win, and no one is really sure how! It’s clear after these last two fights that Oezdemir packs a really surprising amount of power, and he’s able to land hard in short distances.
For what it’s worth, Oezdemir looked nasty on his feet before the finish. He clearly didn’t give a damn about Manuwa’s power or reputation, as he immediately went after the Englishman. “No Time” wasn’t messing around, and it seemed to shock Manuwa a bit.
After this win, Oezdemir is in the immediate title mix. It may be overly quick, but he has earned a shot at the title. If he doesn’t receive that bout, a fight with Alexander Gustafsson would also make sense.
Alternatively, this is a big step back for Manuwa. He left an opening in the clinch, and his opponent capitalized. There’s not much to really analyze on his end; he started slow and got ran over. Either way, Manuwa falters after picking up the two biggest wins of his career, and he’ll have to win some fights to return to the top.
Last night at UFC 214, Volkan Oezdemir continued his rise with a 42-second knockout win. What is next for the Swiss fighter?
For complete UFC 214: “Jones vs Cormier 2” results and play-by-play, click HERE!