Mauricio Rua vs Paul Craig was the first fight on the main card at UFC 255. The light heavyweight bout saw former champion and future Hall of Famer Mauricio Rua take on ‘Bearjew‘ to settle the scores. The two men fought for the first time almost a year ago. The fight ended in a draw.
‘Shogun’ has been in the UFC for over a decade now. He has fought the best that the UFC has had to offer. However, at 38 years of age the Brazilian MMA pioneer proved that he still has what it takes to compete with younger fighters even though the decisions did not go his way.
Paul Craig emphatic with a win over ‘Shogun’: “Tonight is my night”
Paul Craig banked on his wrestling to secure a win tonight. He landed four out of eight attempted takedowns tonight. He worked his way through the positions and got on top of Rua, who was flattened out on his stomach.
BEARJEW 🏴@PCraigMMA forces Shogun to tap from strikes in RD 2️⃣.[ Get the #ESPNPlus PPV: https://t.co/5hyUH7SOn5 ] pic.twitter.com/l4380ldjuJ
— UFC (@ufc) November 22, 2020
‘Bearjew’ landed a series of unanswered punches, which led to ‘Shogun’ tapping. Subsequently, the referee stopped the fight.
Speaking at the post-fight interview, ‘BearJew’ said, “You know it’s taken a year to get this fight. I’m just glad to share the octagon with him. And you know what he is a legend, we seen that tonight. I had him in some dangerous positions, but he’s just too experienced. Been too long in the turf, but tonight was my night.”
In the first fight, Craig took the bout on two weeks’ notice and was not able to showcase himself properly. A full training camp meant that ‘Bearjew’ could train, and it paid off as he secured a dominant and decisive victory over Rua.
"I'm just glad to share the Octagon with him. He's just a legend but tonight was my night." – @PCraigmma
— UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) November 22, 2020
In the fight, he landed 54 total strikes with 61% accuracy and 29 significant strikes with 51% accuracy. With his win over ‘Shogun’, Craig has moved to 2-0 since his split draw against the former champion.
If he can maintain performances such as tonight it won’t be long before he is able to break into the top 10 at light heavyweight.
What did you make of Paul Craig’s performance tonight? Let us know in the comments below.
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