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Brian Ortega produced a Muay Thai masterclass to dominate Korean Zombie and steal the show on Fight Island

INSIDER logoINSIDER 10/18/2020 (Alan Dawson)
a close up of Guillaume Perret: Brian Ortega dominated Korean Zombie. Photos by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images © Provided by INSIDER Brian Ortega dominated Korean Zombie. Photos by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
  • Brian Ortega returned the performance of a lifetime at the Flash Forum in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.
  • The Californian produced a Muay Thai masterclass which bamboozled his opponent Korean Zombie.
  • Ortega had not fought for two years but showed on Fight Island that he had been busy leveling up his skillset.
  • He even landed an extraordinary, highlight-reel spinning elbow which you can watch below.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

FIGHT ISLAND — Brian Ortega produced a Muay Thai masterclass to dominate Korean Zombie and steal the show on Saturday.

The two featherweights brought their storied rivalry to a close at the behind-closed-doors Flash Forum on Fight Island, an ongoing festival of UFC events in a quarantined bubble on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.

Ortega and Korean Zombie's story contains an open-palm slap, an accusation of cowardice, and a promise from the American that their 145-pound brawl would be so bloody that they'll both end up in a local hospital.

There had been question marks regarding Ortega's ability to perform having been absent from the UFC for a two-year period.

But the jiu jitsu expert answered that by showing a new, highly-evolved, and technically-proficient version of himself which the media, fans, and the industry as a whole had not seen before.

Ortega brought in a new-look training team and it appears the introduction of Jason Park, a striking coach and strength specialist, paid dividends in competition.

To demonstrate the ingenuity, technical nous, and knowledge of time, space, and range, Ortega threw and landed an audacious spinning elbow late in the second round which was so powerful it dropped the normally durable Korean Zombie to the ground.

Watch it here:

Korean Zombie had seemingly recovered by the third round but Ortega was back to picking his opponent apart with a varied shot selection which included body kicks, leg kicks, and a body punch.

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Replay Video

By the fourth, Ortega had split Korean Zombie's face open. And, if it hadn't been clear by the time it got to the fifth, the only way Korean Zombie could win would be by scoring a hail-Mary knockout.

The problem for him was that this was Brian Ortega 2.0. A polished version who had not only been drilling attacks to compliment his extraordinary Brazilian jiu jitsu base, but who had also shown defensive awareness throughout the contest.

This was Ortega's fight. A signature win.

Ortega landed 129 strikes from 214 attempted. Korean Zombie had only landed half that for an accuracy of 38%.

It was a striking masterclass.

The win advanced Ortega's pro MMA record to 15 wins (three knockouts, seven submissions, and five decisions) against one loss, and pushes him toward a shot at the UFC featherweight championship against current ruler Alexander Volkanovski.

Read more:

A fast-rising 24-year-old fighter showed off his raw power by smacking his opponent around the Octagon in brutal fashion

Said Nurmagomedov forces a 51-second knockout with some of the fastest, nastiest ground-and-pound you'll see on Fight Island

A Canadian fighter called Gillian Robertson messed up her opponent's eye and said later that she was really happy she did that

Jun Yong Park shattered a UFC record during a merciless battering on Fight Island

Guram Kutateladze scored an upset victory over an unbeaten fighter but refused to accept the win, saying: "It wasn't my fight."

A 26-year-old American on Fight Island is rumored to have had more street fights than Jorge Masvidal and Kimbo Slice combined

Read the original article on Insider


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