A last-minute roster switch proved fortuitous at the recent UFC 291 event, when an anticipated face-off between Stephen Thompson and Michel Pereira was canceled due to Pereira’s mishap on the scales. But the ensuing disappointment was short-lived, with heavyweights Derrick Lewis and Marcos Rogerio de Lima stepping in to fill the gap in the main card.
Lewis, launching the match in a style reminiscent of Jorge Masvidal, delivered a stunning start to the fight. A perfectly executed flying knee sent his opponent to the mat, allowing Lewis to seize the upper hand and start raining blows from his advantageous top position.
It seemed as if the bout would conclude in record time, yet de Lima valiantly strove to regain his footing.
Lewis's Knockout Breaks UFC Records and Ends Losing Streak
Despite de Lima's efforts, Lewis maintained his relentless attack, prohibiting any escape from the precarious bottom position.
Within a breath-taking 32 seconds of the fight, Lewis scored his 14th victory by knockout under UFC's aegis. This feat propelled him into the top spot, surpassing Matt Brown for the record of all UFC knockout wins. In stark contrast to Tony Ferguson's struggle against an unranked adversary, Lewis dominated the bout against the unranked de Lima.
This triumph marked the end of his three-fight losing streak and was his first victory since December 2021.
Celebrations and Future Prospects
The post-fight celebrations added another layer of spectacle to the event. Lewis, ever the entertainer, discarded his shorts and broke into a dance in his underwear before a sold-out crowd at Salt Lake City’s Delta Center.
The crowd roared in approval, capping off an unforgettable week for Lewis which saw him arrive at the weigh-in sporting a well-defined six-pack, a precursor of the powerful performance to follow.
The icing on the cake was Lewis's revelation post-fight that his UFC contract had concluded, leaving fans in suspense about his future in the octagon. But fear not, the 38-year-old heavyweight has expressed his desire to ink a new deal with the UFC.
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