The first bout of the evening pits Omari Akhmedov against Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos – two men without a ton of Octagon experience but hungry to get some. Dos Santos starts off taking the center of the cage, and after about a minute he’s got his range enough to land a few punches. Akhmedov doesn’t like that and initiates a takedown – but he doesn’t have his opponent down long before Dos Santos is hunting for a heelhook. Akhmedov winds up on bottom, yet this time around it’s his turn to threaten with a sub, and he nearly tears Dos Santos’ arm off with a kimura. They scramble back to their feet, and for the rest of the round a confident Dos Santos is throwing flashy kicks while Akhmedov is countering with hooks.
Dos Santos comes out for Round 2 throwing fire, and he drops Akhmedov with a right hand ablaze. Akhmedov is tough as nails, though, and turns an autopilot-takedown attempt into an opportunity to press his foe against the cage and feed him leather. Still, the Brazilian continues to get the better of the exchanges, and Akhmedov’s subsequent takedown attempts find him fending off more subs. The round winds down with the duo trading punches.
Dos Santos seems to have it all figured out by Round 3. The timing on his jab has him touching Akhmedov whenever he wants to, he knows exactly where Akhmedov ducks to whenever the right hand comes in, and whenever Akhmedov lunges in for a takedown, Dos Santos is ready with a barrage of knees. That’s the story of the round, and the story of how the fight eventually ended, with Akhmedov cowering against the cage taking punishment and referee Dan Miragliotta jumping in for the stoppage.
Elizeu Zaleski dos Santos def. Omari Akhmedov via TKO (Punches and Knees) at 3:03, R3