The main event of UFC Vegas 58 was a five-round battle between Rafael Fiziev and Rafael dos Anjos. By knocking out the Brazilian in the first few seconds of the fifth round, Fiziev sent a powerful message.
However, many MMA fans were not pleased with the fight’s conclusion since they thought it was halted too soon.
— Ashley Easton (@Ashley_Easton14) July 10, 2022
The bantamweight UFC champion Aljamain Sterling offered his opinion as well. According to him, referee Mark Smith ought to have given the bout a bit more time to develop:
“Mark’s usually one of the better refs but that stoppage was way too quick. Tough break. Wish we got to see if RDA could recover. Rough ending to a great fight.”
Marks usually one of the better refs but that stoppage was way too quick. Tough break. Wish we got to see if RDA could recover. Rough ending to a great fight. #UFCVegas58
— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) July 10, 2022
Despite the backing of the crowd, dos Anjos does not agree that the bout was stopped early. In a backstage conversation with Charly Arnolt, the Brazilian repeated the same thing:
“I don’t think so. I gotta re-watch the tape but I don’t think so. He won fair and square.”
During his post-fight interview with Michael Bisping, Rafael Fiziev surprised the MMA crowd by challenging tennis player Rafael Nadal to a duel.
However, Fiziev became serious and challenged Justin Gaethje to a bout at the press conference after the fight:
“I wanna fight with Gaethje… If you’re ready, if you’re not scared, if you don’t take s**t, let’s go.”
Fiziev has won six straight matches. This includes wins over Renato Moicano, Bobby Green, and Brad Riddell. On the hand, Gaethje recently suffered a defeat to Charles Oliveira in a championship match at UFC 274.
A matchup between Gaethje and Fiziev seems logical on paper and would definitely be exciting for MMA fans all around the globe.