The UFC 217 Exclusive Fight Pass Prelims witnessed Curtis Blaydes going to war with Oleksiy Oliynyk, but a bit of weirdness occurred when Blaydes threw an illegal soccer kick that hit Oliynyk in the ear, which ultimately resulted in the bout being stopped, as Oliynyk said he couldn’t continue. Ricardo Ramos opened up the show with a spectacular spinning elbow finish of Aiemann Zahabi in the 3rd round of their bantamweight tilt.
Exclusive Fight Pass Preliminary Card:
Curtis Blaydes def. Oleksiy Oliynyk by TKO at 1:56 of round 2: Heavyweight
Blaydes blasted a double leg takedown right off the bat, but Oliynyk was quick to return back to his feet. The big men traded on their feet for a bit, but Blaydes blasted another double leg to find top position, albeit briefly. Blaydes started to land with his combos, and dropped his foe with a heavy uppercut, but toughed his way back to his feet. Blaydes landed some big ol’ bombs on his opponent, but Oliynyk refused to go down as the round expired.
Oliynyk came out throwing haymakers before getting taken down by another Blaydes double leg. Blaydes stood up and threw a soccer kick that grazed the ear of Oliynyk, so the referee stopped the action to have the doctor take a look. The fight was stopped soon after the doctor entered the cage, and a bit of confusion ensued.
Watch Blaydes land some bolos on Oliynyk as the opening round came to a close:
Ricardo Ramos def. Aiemann Zahabi at 1:58 of round 3: Bantamweight
Zahabi was first to clinch up and get an early takedown, but Ramos showed some incredible scrambling ability to make it back to his feet. Ramos starting unleashing a leg kick attack that had Zahabi limping a bit. Zahabi wisely closed the distance, and controlled Ramos against the cage for a bit, but Ramos broke free and scored a pretty takedown before the round ended.
Zahabi pressed forward in the second round, landing routinely with the right hand. Ramos scored with a couple of the same leg kicks we saw in the 1st frame, but they were nowhere near as effective this time around. A stinging jab was the story of the closing moments of the round as Zahabi stuck Ramos on multiple occasions.
Zahabi again brought the pressure to kick off the final frame, and was finding a home for his rear uppercut behind his jab. Just as Zahabi had his opponent backed up to the cage, Joe Rogan stated that it looked like Ramos was going to spin, and sure enough, Ramos uncorks a spinning elbow that knocked Zahabi cold. Yikes! Wowsers!
Check out this phenomenal spinning elbow from Ramos that sent Zahabi to another dimension: