UFC Lightweights Rafaello "Tractor" Oliveira and Yoislandy "Cuba" Izquierdo opened up UFC 148 last night in Las Vegas, Nevada. The bout was streamed live on Facebook. Oliveira came into the bout in desperate need of a win after back-to-back losses in the UFC. "Tractor" got the win he needed with a solid, if unspectacular performance that displayed his ability to control an opponent on the ground but not a whole lot more.
Izquierdo was able to land some blows on the feet and managed to spectacularly reverse one Oliveira take down but otherwise was unable to do a great deal. He did manage to win one round on all three judges' cards so that's something.
What was the high spot of this fight?
Definitely the lateral drop roll through that Izquierdo used to reverse a late in the first round take down attempt by Oliveira. It looked very much like a lateral drop as Cuba used Tractor's momentum to throw him over the top and escape the take down.
Where do these guys go from here?
Oliveira has escaped a trip back to the Brazilian regional scene because a third straight loss would have almost certainly gotten him cut from the organization. His win didn't do much more than keep his UFC career alive for another day though. This is his second run in the UFC (he went 1-2 with the organization in 2009-2010) and it's likely to be the 30-year-old's last shot. Look for Oliveira to fight on upcoming Brazilian cards. He'd be an excellent opponent for one of the competitors of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil.
Izquierdo drops to 0-2 in the UFC. I'd put 50/50 odds on his being dropped by the promotion but don't be surprised to see him called back as a short notice replacement, especially if he picks up a win or two on the regional circuit.
Watch it now, later or never?
Never. Watch the highlight reel of Izquierdo's lateral drop throw over if you can find it online but skip the rest.
SBN coverage of UFC 148