A total of four fighters were offered UFC contracts at the conclusion of the seventh episode of “Dana White’s Contender Series” this year.
Vitor Petrino, Gabriel Bonfim, Karl Williams, and Ismael Bonfim were all offered UFC contracts following their victories Tuesday at the UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.
Petrino Lands Knockout Victory In Main Event
Vitor Petrino had one of the more impressive appearances of the evening, overcoming adversity and also showcasing his sharp striking abilities to defeat Rodolfo Bellato.
Petrino knocked Bellato out with a left hook, connecting with the shot as a counter to a missed spinning backfist attempt. He landed another strike on the ground to the head of Bellato before the referee stepped in to end the fight.
Petrino was consistently landing the better shots during the two-round fight, using his boxing to cause visible damage on Bellato.
Despite his good striking Petrino did have to work past getting hurt in the first round. Bellato was able to connect with a hard right cross in the fourth minute of the bout for a knockdown, but Petrino was quick to recover and continue his performance.
Petrino’s record is now a perfect seven wins, with just one fight going the distance.
Coincidentally, Bellato’s previous loss also came to Petrino in 2019. He picked up a trio of first-round finish wins before his rematch on Tuesday.
Bonfim Secures Rare Submission
Undefeated welterweight Gabriel Bonfim secured a rare von flue choke against Trey Waters to secure a UFC contract on Tuesday night.
Bonfim attempted the choke shortly after scoring a takedown. Waters attempted a guillotine choke from his back, but Bonfim was able to pass into half guard to alleviate the pressure of the choke and apply a submission of his own.
Prior to the sudden submission sequence, Bonfim and Waters were in a close stand-up battle.
Bonfim earned his 13th victory as an undefeated fighter on Tuesday. He earned the vacant LFA Welterweight Championship in his prior fight, submitting Eduardo Garvon in the first round of a fight in March.
Waters is also coming off an LFA fight, defeating Benjamin Bennett via stoppage three months ago.
Williams Controls Lawson For Fourth Win of 2022
Heavyweight Karl Williams was able to out-wrestle Jimmy Lawson for a decision victory on Tuesday night.
Williams took Lawson down many times during the fight and kept him grounded for large portions of the bout. He remained active in these positions, often searching for submussions.
The fight on Tuesday continued a busy 2022 for Williams. The bout was his fourth victory in the year, including a previous appearance on PFL’s “Challenger Series.”
Lawson, a former freestyle wrestler, entered this card with a four-fight streak of finish wins.
Bonfim Out-Lands Veteran Abbasov
Ismael Bonfim, the older of the Bonfim brothers, earned a contract by defeating lightweight veteran Nariman Abbasov in a unanimous decision outcome.
Bonfim’s striking skills earned him the victory. He notably had Abbasov stunned in the opening round. He connected with a left hook in the third minute, scoring him a knockdown.
The successful striking from Bonfim continued in the later rounds, allowing him to nearly sweep all three scorecards by the end.
Bonfim is joining the UFC roster after a strong run in Brazil recently. He has recently appeared at LFA’s events in the country, winning twice under their banner.
Abbasov had an unusual amount of experience for a “Contender Series” competitor, entering the show with more than 30 professional appearances.
Tuesday was his first pro loss since 2016.
Bleda Leaves Without Contract Following Win
Tereza Bleda, the sole winner on the night that didn’t walk away with a contract, going three rounds against Nayara Maia for a unanimous decision win.
Bleda’s skills on the ground allowed her to win the fight. She took Maia down in every frame and controlled her for various minutes afterward.
Bleda nearly finished the fight late, hurting Maia with ground and pound in the closing minutes. She notably dropped Maia with a knee to the body while in a clinch position, then continued to score with punches while in half guard afterward.
The victory was Bleda’s sixth win as a pro since debuting in 2020. Her previous victory was in late 2021 when she beat Mabelly Lima to become the OKTAGON Flyweight Championship.
Maia took her first pro loss in the outcome. Previous wins on her record came from regional Brazilian promotion Budo Sento Championship.
Main Card (8:00PM EDT / 5:00PM PDT) (ESPN+ / UFC Fight Pass Canada)
Bout 5: Vitor Petrino def. Rodolfo Bellato via TKO, Strikes (RD 2, 3:36)
Bout 4: Gabriel Bonfim def. Trey Waters via Submission, Von Flue Choke (RD 1, 4:13)
Bout 3: Karl Williams def. Jimmy Lawson via Decision, Unanimous
Bout 2: Ismael Bonfim def. Nariman Abbasov via Decision, Unanimous
Bout 1: Tereza Bleda def. Nayara Maia via Decision, Unanimous