Look out heavyweights, Jailton Almeida is coming. The Brazilian grappling specialist excelled in his first UFC Fight Night main event, submitting Jairzinho Rozenstruik in Round 1 of their Charlotte headliner on Saturday.
"When I come down with the pressure, no one can get me," Almeida said through an interpreter post-fight.
Almeida described the fight as grappler vs. striker in a pre-fight interview with CBS Sports. That is exactly how it played out. Almeida scored a double leg takedown early in Round 1, secured the mount and punched away at his foe. The strikes forced Rozenstruik to turn his back, presenting Almeida with a rear-naked choke for the finish.
Almeida is stitching together a heavyweight resume reminiscent of Khamzat Chimaev at welterweight and middleweight. Almeida has absorbed just two strikes in five UFC fights. Similarly, Chimaev absorbed one lone strike in his first four UFC victories. Almeida's five consecutive finishes are the second-highest among active UFC fighters, behind only fellow heavyweight Sergei Pavlovich. Almeida should expect to enter the UFC's official heavyweight Top 10 after dispatching Rozenstruik (No. 9).
Looking ahead, Almeida suggested a fight against Tai Tuivasa later this year, possibly in Abu Dhabi or Brazil.