Thomas Almeida Finishes Albert Morales with Strikes (UFC Sao Paulo Results)
Thomas Almeida bounced back from his first career loss to Cody Garbrandt in his last outing by finishing Albert Morales on Saturday in the Fight Night Sao Paulo co-main event.
Morales entered the fight unbeaten, taking on No. 11-ranked Almeida in front of Almeida's hometown crowd at the Ginásio do Ibirapuera. “The Warrior” had nothing to lose and fought that way.
Morales came out looking to set the pace. He pressed forward while Almeida was content with counter striking in the early going. He put together punches in bunches, looking to score the upset.
Almeida picked his shots and as the first round played out he began to find his range. He landed a combination that had Morales looking to get the fight to the ground. He didn't get the takedown but was able to take Almeida's back. Almeida shook him off and delivered an uppercut. Morales answered with a right hand at the end of the round, but Almeida had the momentum heading into the second frame.
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The pace slowed a bit in the second round with both fighters being more calculated with their attack. Almeida hurt Morales with a combination and poured on the offense. He delivered a flurry of punches that had Morales out on his feet. Almeida continued to land shot while the referee gave Morales every opportunity to get back into the fight. Almeida went to the body and Morales crumbled to the canvas. The end came at the 1:37 mark of the second round.
“It's great to fight here in Sao Paulo. I'm back. My last fight, I wasn't happy at all with it,” said Almeida following Saturday's win. “I love to fight here at home.”
“Albert is a really tough guy. He can take a lot of shots, but I was really there physically and mentally, so everything was good for me,” he added.
The 25-year-old Brazilian got back in the win column, but didn't want to call out anyone.
“I don't like to say any names. I don't like to challenge anyone. I want a top ten fighter, and then a top five, and then maybe for the belt,” he said.