UFC Vegas 38 went down last night (Sat., Oct. 2, 2021) inside UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada, with Thiago Santos getting back on the winning track after earning a unanimous decision win over Johnny Walker (see it again here). The co-main event fight between Kevin Holland and Kyle Daukaus ended in a “No Contest” after an inadvertent clash of heads sent “Trail Blazer” crashing to the canvas. Though Daukaus wound up submitting Holland a few moments later, UFC officials opted to overturn the win after seeing the replay (complete details here).
Biggest Winner: Thiago Santos
It took a hard-fought, 25-minute war to get Santos back in the win column, but the hard-hitting Brazilian got the job done against Walker. The win was much-needed because the former Light Heavyweight title challenger was on a three-fight losing streak with his last winning coming against current division king, Jan Blachowicz, in 2019. With a victory in his back pocket, Santos now has the pressure off his shoulders by avoiding digging himself in a deeper hole. Currently ranked No. 5, “Marreta” could find himself in the middle of the championship picture sooner rather than later if he can rack up a couple more impressive victories.
Runner Up: Take your pick!
There were several fighters who scored big wins on this card, so let’s go ahead and give them the love they deserve. Alexander Hernandez came out like a bat out of hell, running right over Mike Breeden in the first round to get back in the win column (highlights). Sure, Breeden was a late replacement, but credit is never given to the person accepting a change in opponents. Hernandez adapted and came out on top in spectacular fashion. Also, Casey O’Neill improved to 8-0 (3-0) UFC after securing a dominant second round technical knockout win over Antonina Shevchenko (see it here). And, of course, Niko Price picked up a much-needed win over Alex Oliveira, putting him back in the winner’s circle for the first time in two years after going 0-2-1 during that span. And how can you forget Jamie Mullarkey’s come-from-behind knockout win over Devonte Smith?
Biggest Loser: Alex Oliveira
As he was walking down to the cage, Oliveira was visibly shaken and brought to tears. It is unclear what prompted “Cowboy” to get so emotional, and there is no telling if that affected his performance against Price, who scored the unanimous decision win after 15 minutes of action. Nevertheless, the loss was Oliveira’s third in a row, having last tasted victory in July 2020. It’s a huge hole for the long-time veteran to dig himself out of, and it’s his second three fight losing streak since 2018. Overall, Oliveira is just 2-6 in his last eight fights.
For complete UFC Vegas 38 results and highlights click here.