Shavkat Rakhmonov continued his undefeated run and got another finish under his name as he submitted Geoff Neal in the third-round at UFC 285.
The fight started on a balanced note with both fighters trying to get their rhythm going on. Shavkat landed some big punches in the round and relied on his stand-up game rather than going to the ground as most people expected.
In one fact, Shavkat also fought for some time without his mouthguard which the referee only saw when Joe Rogan point it out. Shavkat continued his good run in the second round as well and was outpointing Neal in the stand-up. The Kazakh was having success in the clinch in particular as he was landing punches to the head and the body. Shavkat landed a string of kicks in the opening minute of the third round before Neal came back with a huge punch of his own which wobbled the Kazakh MMA star. Shavkat tried to land a takedown after this exchange but failed to do so. Just seconds after this, Shavkat landed a huge punch which almost ended the fight. The Kazakh fighter then followed up with some vicious elbows which bloodied up Neal. Shavkat soon submitted Neal with a standing rear-naked choke to keep his undefeated record intact.
Shavkat came into the fight on the back on an impressive undefeated streak. He was 16-0 heading into the fight with all his wins coming via finishes. He was also 4-0 in the UFC after making his debut against Alex Oliveira back in UFC 254. After this, Shavkat secured wins over Michel Prazeres, Carlston Harris and Neil Magny before locking horns with Geoff Neal.
Interestingly, before the fight Shavkat noted that he is just one or two wins away from winning the UFC World title. He also noted in another video that he can beat the likes if Islam Makhachev, Kamaru Usman, Leon Edwards, Tyson Fury and Khamzat Chimaev among others in an MMA Fight.
Geoff Neal, on the other hand, came into the fight with a record of 15-4 to his name. He was riding high on a two-fight winning streak having secured wins over Vicente Luque and Santiago Ponzinibbio.
He made his UFC debut back at UFC Fight Night 126 after coming through the ranks of the Dana White Contender Series. After this, Neal secured wins over some big names including Belal Muhammad, Niko Price and Mike Perry. His two losses in the UFC came against Stephen Thompson and Neil Magny.
Ahead of the fight, Neal missed weight for the showdown and had to give a portion of his fight purse to Shavkat. Shavkat, meanwhile, reacted lightly to the missed weight and noted that Neal is a human and humans go through such situations.
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