MMAjunkie's 'Submission of the Month' for September: Another Von Flue for you

With another action-packed month of MMA in the books, MMAjunkie looks at the best submissions from September: Here are the five nominees, listed in chronological order, and winner of MMAjunkie’s “Submission of the Month” award for September.

At the bottom of the post, let us know if we got it right by voting for your choice.

* * * *

The Nominees

Michael Prazeres def. Mads Burnell at UFC Fight Night 115

Although the victory was marred by a failed trip to the scales, Michel Prazeres (23-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) did pick up a nice submission win over octagon newcomer Mads Burnell (8-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC).

In the final round of the welterweight bout, Prazeres muscled the fight to the floor and spun to position for a north-south choke. He locked it in to become the first fighter in UFC history to earn multiple wins with the technique.

Instagram Photo

Sarah Moras def. Ashlee-Evans Smith at UFC 215

After more than two years away from the octagon, unheralded underdog Sarah Moras (5-2 MMA, 2-1 UFC) shocked Ashlee Evans-Smith (5-3 MMA, 2-3 UFC) with a first-round submission in their women’s bantamweight bout.

Once Moras positioned herself for an armbar, she refused to let go of the limb. Evans-Smith tried desperately to work free, but Moras rolled and adjusted and stuck with the hold until she flipped her opponent to her back and cranked the arm to get the tap.

Ketlen Vieira def. Sara McMann at UFC 215

Undefeated Brazilian contender Ketlen Vieira (9-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC) earned the biggest win of her career, scoring a gutsy submission win over former women’s bantamweight title challenger Sara McMann (11-4 MMA, 5-4 UFC).

After surviving a storm in the opening round, Vieira managed to get a takedown and top position on Olympic medalist McMann in the second frame. Vieira worked into an arm-triangle choke on the left side, squeezing and somehow earning the tap despite being unable to clear McMann’s half-guard.

Instagram Photo

Rafael dos Anjos def. Neil Magny at UFC 215

Former UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos (27-9 MMA, 16-7 UFC) may soon find himself challenging for a welterweight belt following an impressive first-round finish of Neil Magny (19-6 MMA, 12-5 UFC).

Dos Anjos picked up his first submission win in more than five years when he established top position early in the first round and went to work. He sliced through Magny’s defense and locked in an arm-triangle choke. Magny initially relented, but eventually the squeeze from the Brazilian was too much, and he was forced to give up.

Instagram Photo

Ovince Saint Preux def. Yushin Okami at UFC Fight Night 117

Ovince Saint Preux (21-10 MMA, 9-5 UFC) was successful in his fifth UFC main event when he defeated short-notice opponent Yushin Okami (34-11 MMA, 13-6 UFC) with his specialty submission in the opening round.

Saint Preux made the most of his advantages, using his size and strength to capitalize on an Okami mistake. He locked in a Von Flue choke to end the light heavyweight bout, finishing a fight in the octagon with the technique for the third time.

* * * *

The Winner: Ovince Saint Preux

Just call him “Ovince Saint Flue” at this point.

Saint Preux finished Okami with a Von Flue choke quickly in the first round of the UFC-Japan headliner. It was Saint Preux’s third Von Flue choke in the UFC and second straight – and there have been only five of those finishes in UFC history.

Okami shot for a takedown in the first few seconds, but Saint Preux stuffed it and got on top in half-guard. The fight was basically over as soon as Okami shot for that takedown.

Saint Preux wrapped Okami’s neck up and tried to step over to full mount. He couldn’t get there and settled back into half-guard to try to work ground-and-pound from up top. Saint Preux went to work for his Von Flue choke – and he got it. Okami never had an opportunity to tap. He was out cold.

Saint Preux said he’ll keep working to get back to a light heavyweight title shot, which he had in 2016 for the interim belt against Jon Jones.

“I pretty much knew the choke was there when he put his hand around my head and I basically trapped his glove,” Saint Preux said. “After that, it was just waiting for him to pass out.

“Pretty much, I have to keep on doing what I’m doing tonight and get ready for another fight (if I want another title shot).”

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Filed under: Bellator, News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

UFC Fight Night 115 winner Michel Prazeres says weather to blame for weight miss

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

ROTTERDAM – Fighting overseas can be quite the inconvenience. After all, long flights, different food and climate changes can add stress to an already tense week.

But for some, it might mean meeting places and people they wouldn’t get to know otherwise. That was the case for Brazil’s Michel Prazeres (23-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC). The lightweight, of course, isn’t mad about adding a fifth straight win to his streak with the third-round submission of Mads Burnell (8-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC) on Saturday.

But when it came time to break down his solid UFC Fight Night 115 display, Prazeres chose to discuss his fight-week experience instead.

“I’m happy not only because of my performance, but also because I’m getting to know Rotterdam,” Prazeres said after the preliminary-card bout, which streamed live on UFC Fight Pass from Ahoy Rotterdam in the Netherlands. “I come from a very humble family in Belem, Brazil. I’m in the military police.

“To me, it’s a dream to be here in the Netherlands, get to know this first-world country. Brazil is very beautiful, but the culture here is beautiful as well, and the people are very polite. I was very happy to get to know them, this other vibe and these great people.”

The Rotterdam experience wasn’t all positive, though. Prazeres said he had a tough time dealing with the city’s weather. The result of that, the Brazilian explained, was the three-pound weight miss that we saw on the scales on Friday.

“We arrived to a very cold hotel, and I’m from a very warm region,” Prazeres explained. “So I struggled with that to make weight, the local weather.”

Prazeres apologized to both the UFC and Burnell for the miss, which he knows was “irresponsible.” And, should he be called to fight under similar circumstances again, he said he’ll make sure to arrive early and adjust properly.

While he did lose 20 percent of his purse due to that, Prazeres walked away with his second finish in a row – to cap off a five-fight winning streak. Now, with some solid standings in a highly competitive division, the lightweight hopes he’s earned some good will.

“I’d like (UFC matchmaker) Sean Shelby and the UFC people to put me against a top-15 opponent,” Prazeres said. “I don’t have a specific name. But if they put me against a top-15 I’ll say yes. And I’ll fight happily, as I usually do.”

To hear more from Prazeres, check out the video above.

And for complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 115, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos
Source: MMA Junkie

UFC-Rotterdam results: Michel Prazeres earns north-south choke finish of newcomer Mads Burnell

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While the victory was marred by a failed trip to the scales, Michel Prazeres did pick up a nice submission win over octagon newcomer Mads Burnell.

The catchweight bout took place on the prelims of Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 115 event, which streamed live on UFC Fight Pass from Ahoy Rotterdam in the Netherlands.

The two grapplers quickly clinched to start, and Burnell was forced to settle on his back under the powerful Prazeres. Both men showed slick moves as they transitioned in search for offensive positions, though Prazeres kept himself on top. The two briefly worked to the feet, but Prazeres wasted no time in changing levels and driving his opponent again to the canvas. Prazeres kept his pace high on the floor, looking to advance, and Burnell did his best to counter until the bell.

The second started with a few spirited striking exchanges, including a crisp left from Burnell. A dazed Prazeres immediately show forward and exposed his neck, but Burnell had to let it go as they tumbled to the floor. From there, the powerful Prazeres simply dominated the positioning, refusing to allow Burnell any chance of a counter or escape.

In the final round, the two again opened with a few spirited strikes, but Prazeres muscled the fight to the floor, spun to position for a north-south choke and squeezed until he got the finish 89 seconds into the frame.

Prazeres (23-2 MMA, 7-2 UFC) now owns a five-fight winning streak that includes two consecutive finishes. Burnell (8-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC) sees a three-fight winning streak snapped in his UFC debut.

Up-to-the-minute UFC Fight Night 115 results include:

For complete coverage of UFC Fight Night 115, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Why Michel Prazeres isn't mad about UFC champ Conor McGregor's absence

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Since beating Eddie Alvarez to take the UFC’s lightweight belt in November 2016, Conor McGregor has yet to defend it.

Of course, one can understand why his focus would be in other areas; after all, turning down a boxing showdown for the ages with legendary boxer Floyd Mayweather is not something many people would do. But on the other hand, his fellow lightweights – especially the ones closer to the top  – haven’t really been excited about his absence.

Some peers, in fact, went as far as questioning the validity of McGregor’s reign, using terms like “Paper Champ.” And it didn’t help that McGregor never got to defend the 145-pound belt he’d earned over Jose Aldo before his two-division ambitions spoke louder.

But one lightweight who isn’t mad about McGregor’s (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) M.I.A. status is UFC Fight Night 115’s Michel Prazeres (22-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC).

“McGregor needs to enjoy his belt,” Prazeres told MMAjunkie. “He has other focuses. And it’s even better that he doesn’t defend it. Because it makes the division more competitive in pursuit of this belt. I think it’s all strategy.”

Prazeres meets Mads Burnell (8-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) on Saturday at Ahoy Rotterdam in the Netherlands. The UFC Fight Night 115 preliminary-card bout streams live on UFC Fight Pass, like the remainder of the event. While Prazeres missed weight at this morning’s early weigh-ins, the bout is still on.

The Brazilian has had a sneaky but steady rise in the UFC’s 155-pound division. Since a UFC Fight Night 60 loss to Kevin Lee in February 2015, he’s beat four straight opponents: Valmir Lazaro, J.C. Cottrell, Gilbert Burns and Josh Burkman. Before Lee, he was riding two straight wins.

At 34, Prazeres is understandably satisfied with his progress.

“I’ve been in a very good rise,” Prazeres said. “I started working on my mistakes and making less errors in the fights. It’s been showing. I’m feeling very good ahead of this fight. Very good.”

UFC newcomer Burnell is not yet the type of name who’ll propel you to great heights in the promotion– unlike Prazeres’ original opponent, notoriously tough Islam Makhachev, who had to pull out on short notice.

Still, a five-fight winning streak in a highly competitive division is not too shabby of an accomplishment. For now, that’s what he’s focused on. But, in the future, he does have an idea.

“In the near future, I really want to meet Kevin Lee again,” Prazeres said, before Lee was slated to meet Tony Ferguson in a UFC 216 interim title bout. “Because the altitude really got to me, I didn’t have a good weight cut. I’d really like the opportunity to fight him again.”

For more on UFC Fight Night 115, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Video highlights: UFC Fight Night 115 weigh-ins, where 1 fighter missed weight in Rotterdam

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

ROTTERDAM – Check out the video highlights from today’s UFC Fight Night 115 early and official weigh-ins, where one competitor missed weight.

The weigh-ins took place at the UFC host hotel in Rotterdam, Netherlands, and preceded the day’s ceremonial affair. UFC Fight Night 115 takes place Saturday at Ahoy Rotterdam, and the entire event streams on UFC Fight Pass.

Headliners Stefan Struve (28-8 MMA, 12-6 UFC) and Alexander Volkov (28-6 MMA, 2-0 UFC) both made without issue; Struve weighed 264 pounds, and fellow big man Volkov tipped the scale at 251 pounds.

Lightweight Michel Prazeres (22-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC), though, failed to make weight for his bout with Mads Burnell (8-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC). Prazeres, who weighed 159 pounds (three pounds over the 156-pound limit for lightweights), was fined 20 percent of his purse, which goes to Burnell.

Check out the full highlights above.

And for more on UFC Fight Night 115, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Michel Prazeres meets newcomer Mads Burnell, not Islam Makhachev at UFC Fight Night 115

With Islam Makhachev unable to compete, a lightweight bout between Michel Prazeres and UFC newcomer Mads Burnell has been finalized for September’s UFC Fight Night 115 lineup.

UFC officials today announced the switch that resulted in Prazeres (22-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) vs. Burnell (8-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC).

UFC Fight Night 115 takes place Sept. 2 at Ahoy Rotterdam in the Netherlands. The event airs on FS1 following early prelims on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.

Losing Makhachev as an opponent is a blow to Prazeres’ attempt to climb up the 155-pound rankings. He’s currently riding a four-fight winning streak in the lightweight division and his only setback in more than four years came against rising contender Kevin Lee. Moreover, the Brazilian is coming off his first stoppage win under the UFC banner, a first-round submission of Josh Burkman at UFC Fight Night 106 in March.

Burnell, meanwhile, is a 23-year-old prospect from Denmark who is riding a three-fight winning streak. He has earned all of his career stoppage victories by way of submission and is coming off a finish via Japanese necktie. The UFC debut will mark the end of a 10-month layoff for Burnell.

The latest UFC Fight Night 115 card now includes:

  • Stefan Struve vs. Alexander Volkov
  • Germaine de Randamie vs. Marion Reneau
  • Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Rob Wilkinson
  • Bryan Barberena vs. Leon Edwards
  • Darren Till vs. Bojan Velickovic
  • Felipe Silva vs. Mairbek Taisumov
  • Mads Burnell vs. Michel Prazeres
  • Desmond Green vs. Rustam Khabilov
  • Francimar Barroso vs. Aleksandar Rakic
  • Nick Hein vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov
  • Abdul-Kerim Edilov vs. Bojan Mihajlovic

For more on UFC Fight Night 115, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Trio of fights, including Desmond Green vs. Rustam Khabilov, set for UFC's return to Rotterdam

The UFC’s return to the Netherlands has started to build with the reported addition of a trio of bouts.

According to reports from Dutch news outlet MMADNA.nl, the UFC’s “Fight Night” event in Rotterdam in September will feature Desmond Green (20-5 MMA, 1-0 UFC) vs. Rustam Khabilov (21-3 MMA, 7-2 UFC) and Islam Makhachev (14-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) vs. Michel Prazeres (22-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) at lightweight, plus Abdul-Kerim Edilov (16-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC) vs. Bojan Mihajlovic (10-5 MMA, 0-2 UFC) at light heavyweight.

The UFC’s “Fight Night” event in Rotterdam in the Netherlands takes place Sept. 2 and is expected to stream in full on UFC Fight Pass. The card is headlined by Stefan Struve vs. Alexander Volkov.

Desmond Green

Green, a Bellator veteran and former Titan FC featherweight champion, made his promotional debut earlier this year against Josh Emmett at UFC 210 in Buffalo and took a split decision, giving him five straight wins. His most recent loss came in September 2015, when he was outpointed by Andre Harrison in an attempt to reclaim Titan’s 145-pound title.

After starting 3-0 in his UFC tenure with wins over Vinc Pichel, Yancy Medeiros and a “Fight of the Night” decision over Jorge Masvidal, Khabilov dropped two straight for the first time in his career. He was submitted by Benson Henderson in the UFC Fight Night 42 main event, then lost a split call to Adriano Martins. But since then, he has bounced back with four straight unanimous decision victories over Norman Parke, Chris Wade, Leandro Silva and most recently Jason Saggo at UFC 206 this past December – though Khabilov missed weight for that fight.

Islam Makhachev

Makhachev has won back-to-back fights since suffering the lone loss of his pro career, a knockout against Adriano Martins at UFC 192. In his lone fight of 2016, he took a decision from Wade in Texas. And at UFC 208 in February, he cruised past Nik Lentz, including a pair of 30-25 scores.

Michel Prazeres

Brazil’s Prazeres has won four straight and six of his past seven. Five of those six wins have come by decision against Jesse Ronson, Mairbek Taisumov, Valmir Lazaro, J.C. Cottrell and Gilbert Burns. But in March, he picked up a “Performance of the Night” bonus for a north-south choke submission of Josh Burkman at UFC Fight Night 106.

Bojan Mihajlovic

Serbia’s Mihajlovic is in need of a rebound after dropping his first two fights in the UFC. He faced a tough test in his promotional debut at UFC on FOX 20 in Chicago nearly a year ago and was knocked out by Francis Ngannou in 94 seconds. At UFC Fight Night 103 in January, he was stopped by a Joachim Christensen TKO in the third round. Mihajlovic had come to the UFC on a 10-fight winning streak on the heels of an 0-3 start to his pro career.

Edilov will make his UFC debut on the strength of a 10-fight winning streak that five rear-naked choke stoppages and five TKOs. The 25-year-old Russian has 15 finishes in his 16 career wins with a near-perfect split of eight knockouts and seven submissions. He hasn’t lost in more than four years.

With the additions, UFC “Fight Night” in Rotterdam now includes:

  • Stefan Struve vs. Alexander Volkov
  • Islam Makhachev vs. Michel Prazeres
  • Desmond Green vs. Rustam Khabilov
  • Abdul-Kerim Edilov vs. Bojan Mihajlovic

For more on UFC Fight Night in Rotterdam, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie