Belal Muhammad and His Three Losses in the UFC

Published 06/12/2021, 12:03 PM EDT


Belal Muhammad is one of the most promising prospects in the UFC welterweight division. He’s returning to the octagon at UFC 263 after his eye-poke debacle against Leon Edwards in March. However, he is fighting another amazing fighter in Demian Maia.

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He has an amazing record of 18-3 and is a great all-around fighter. This fight against Maia will have a lot of eyes on him as welterweight superstar Nate Diaz is also fighting on the card. Incredibly, a middleweight title fight between Israel Adesanya and Marvin Vettori makes this one of the most stacked cards in recent memory.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JUNE 20: (L-R) Belal Muhammad punches Lyman Good in their welterweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on June 20, 2020, in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)

Muhammad has a great opportunity here, and he’ll try to put in a great performance. Maia might be 43, but he still has a lot of fight left in him. He can take some inspiration from the three fights Muhammad lost.

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Belal Muhammad vs. Alan Jouban: A loss in his MMA debut

Muhammad had just won the Titan FC Welterweight Championship, and this was enough to warrant a move to the UFC. However, his UFC debut went horribly wrong when he lost to Alan Jouban via unanimous decision in 2016. However, despite the loss, he put in a brilliant performance, and the fight was awarded fight of the night honors for that event.

It was a very close fight, with both fighters landing over 100 strikes in the three-round affair. However, Jouban edged it with his three knockdowns, and even though Muhammad took Jouban down twice, it didn’t make a difference.

Watch this story: UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya’s Journey To The MMA Pinnacle.

His second loss against Vicente Luque

Muhammad had earned himself some new fans after the Jouban fight, and he didn’t let them down after beating Augusto Montano via TKO in his very next fight. This led to a high-profile match against Vicente Luque, but it would go horribly wrong for Belal.

The American got knocked out in the first round. The fight lasted all of 80 seconds, and it was a huge blow to Belal’s popularity. However, he put himself back together after that vicious knockout and strung together an impressive run of four wins in a row.

Belal Muhammad vs. Geoff Neal: A closeout

His last loss came against Geoff Neal in January 2019. He was outclassed for the entirety of the fight as Neal stopped all of his takedown attempts. He also knocked Muhammad down twice in the fight to get a unanimous decision win after three rounds.

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Two judges gave all three rounds to Muhammad, while one judge gave two rounds to Neal. He was outstruck and out-wrestled by Neal in the fight, and he has made major improvements since then. Since then, he hasn’t lost a fight, and it will be interesting to see how this fight against Maia turns out.

Do you think Belal Muhammad can beat Demian Maia?

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Aniket Awasthi

310 articles

Aniket Awasthi is a UFC author at EssentiallySports. This STEM undergraduate combines an insatiable urge to write with his admiration for MMA and the UFC in general to enhance his journalism. He calls charismatic names like Chael Sonnen and 'The Count' Michael Bisping as his favorite fighters, but he is a great admirer of the rise of Israel Adesanya ever since he fought Rob Wilkinson at UFC 221.

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