Unfortunately, the UFC on ABC 3 program did not entertain us with the main fight of the evening as it entertained us with most of the other matches on the program. The match between Yair Rodriguez and Brian Ortega ended in the first round, but the stoppage came in a way we never like to see.
Brian Ortega and Yair Rodriguez stressed all week that they are friends and that they do not prefer confrontation. However, once they got the signal to start the match, friendship was put aside and both went for the win.
Ortega reached the clinch relatively quickly, pressed Rodriguez against the cage, and was looking for an opportunity to take the fight to the ground floor. Yair seemed calm and for the most part, we watched Ortega throw occasional knee strikes from the clinch, while Yair hit Ortega’s “calf” with his heel in a somewhat strange but ingenious way. Four minutes before the end of the round, Ortega took the fight to the ground floor, and just when it seemed that Yair might be in big trouble, Ortega separated from Rodriguez who tried to catch him in a lever, and after separating from Rodriguez, Ortega laid down and he grabbed his shoulder. It was the end of the fight because Brian’s shoulder “popped” and he could not continue the fight.
As for Brian, he has now lost two in a row and three in his last four appearances. However, no one will particularly regret such a defeat.
Rodriguez said after the fight that it was an accident and that he prefers to win in a different way. He added that he is ready to give Ortega a rematch, but that he will let the UFC decide what’s next for him.
A truly unfortunate ending to the main fight of the night. We watched a great event through the remaining 11 matches, and it’s a real shame that the main fight of the evening didn’t arrive or flare up. That’s how Rodriguez won, and whether the UFC will give him the promised “title shot” after this kind of victory is hard to say. Josh Emmett could profit from this as he is the other legitimate contender to be the next challenger and his win over Calvin Kattar is still more significant than this win over Ortega.
No one expected the match between Brian Ortega and Yair Rodriguez to end in the first round, especially not the way it did. After a little more than four minutes of the fight, Ortega’s shoulder “popped” during a “grappling” sequence, and that was the end of the fight.
Yair Rodriguez said right after the match that he is ready for a rematch, and Brian Ortega also expressed his desire for it if Rodriguez does not get a “title shot”. We almost didn’t get to see anything from these two, and we’re sure they would have watched a great match if there hadn’t been such an interruption.
In those four minutes, Rodriguez landed 23 significant shots, and Ortega landed one less. It was a fairly even match. Rodriguez seemed a bit more refined in the stance, but that was expected. Ortega was trying to get a takedown, and shortly after the first successful takedown, there was actually a break.
“The grip was tight on my arm and there was a dislocation. There was no ‘armlock’ or any kind of intervention, none of that. It was a freak accident. It’s the first time in my career this has happened, the first time ever, actually,” Ortega began in a conversation with Megan Olivi after the match, and then expressed additional disappointment.
“Everything went in my favor. I won every minute of that fight. I stuck to my tactics. The world saw that I needed to show what I do best, which is grappling and control. As soon as we ended up on the ground, my hand popped out.”
In the continuation of the conversation, Ortega added “how he will pray to God that he does not have to undergo surgery” in order to return to performances as soon as possible. He pointed out that he has already undergone shoulder surgery twice and knows how difficult it is to go through all that.