Shavkat Rakhmonov submits Stephen Thompson for first time ever with four seconds on clock, demands next title shot | UFC 296 (2024)

Shavkat Rakhmonovperhaps the future of the Welterweight division — took a major step up in competition against former two-time title challenger, Stephen Thompson, tonight (Sat., Dec. 16, 2023) during UFC 296’s pay-per-view (PPV) main card inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Rakhmonov is downright nasty in every aspect of mixed martial arts (MMA), a ruthless finisher who has been surging up the 170-pound ladder. His impressive finished of top-ranked contender, Geoff Neal, in his last appearance (watch highlights) more or less put the entire division on notice. Thompson, meanwhile, is a unique Karate-based striker who — despite being in the twilight of his career at age 40 — can still give elite opposition tough fights given the right style match up.

Unfortunately for “Wonderboy,” though — and the rest of the weight class, really — “The Nomad” is downright ridiculous. And he proved that once again this evening, scoring a very patient second round rear-naked choke submission win (watch it here).

Thompson got the action started with a soft low kick, as Rakhmonov attempted to get a bead on “Wonderboy” and his awkward approach. And with just about one minute melteed off the clock, Rakhmonov was able to get the Canadian pressed up against the fence, apparently looking to get the fight down to the ground as early as possible. Thompson put up a solid defense standing, with Rakhmonov content to just pepper him with short hooks to the face as “Wodnerboy” struggled to remain upright. Rakhmonov was able to pull his leg away and use that as an opening to drill Thompson in the face. It wasn’t pleasing to watch — fight fans began to voice their collective displeasure — but it was controlling and mildly effective. Thompson finally broke free with about 45 seconds on the clock, drilling Rakhmonov with a solid body kick. He followed it up with a nice overhand right before the tepid round came to a close.

Thompson opened up the second round action with his legs, launching from all angles and then landing another nice overhand right. Rakhmonov had felt enough, attempting a takedown in the middle if the Octagon and following Thompson all the way to the fence ... just like the first round. Rakhmonov worked overtime to get Thompson to the ground and he was finally successful with about three minutes remaining in the second stanza. Rakhmonov pinned Thompson’s arm, which was behind Thompson, to the floor and then methodically worked his way to a rear-naked choke. It was in, and it looked like Thompson was done, but he was able to squirm to his side. But, while in side control, Rakhmonov was bouncing hard elbows off the side of his head. Thompson attempted to get back to his feet, defending a d’arce choke, but scrambling right into a rear-naked choke. And with less than 10 seconds remaining on the clock, Thompson decided he had no other choice but to tap rather then go down for an early nap.

It was not a flashy win, but rather a methodical, clinical display of high-level technique and grappling. Rakhmonov knew Thompson’s best chance at victory was on the feet ... and he did what he had to do to get the win on his terms.

Title shot next?

Final result: Rakhmonov def. Thompson via rear-naked choke — WATCH HIGHLIGHTS!

LIVE! Watch UFC 301 PPV On ESPN+ Here!

RAUCUS RETURN TO RIO! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to Farmasi Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sat., May 4, 2024, featuring Flyweight champion, Alexandre Pantoja, defending his belt against undefeated challenger, Steve Erceg, in the pay-per-view (PPV) main event of the evening. UFC 301’s co-main event features “The King of Rio,” Jose Aldo, returning to the Bantamweight division for the first time in almost two years to take on Jonathan Martinez. UFC 301’s PPV main card (see it here) will also feature Anthony Smith vs. Vitor Petrino, Michel Pereira vs. Ihor Potieria and so much more. It’s must-watch action! UFC 301 start time scheduled for 6 p.m. ET (Prelims) and 10 p.m. ET (PPV).

Don’t miss a single second of EPIC face-punching action!

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 296: “Edwards vs. Covington” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

Shavkat Rakhmonov submits Stephen Thompson for first time ever with four seconds on clock, demands next title shot | UFC 296 (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Chrissy Homenick

Last Updated:

Views: 5890

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (54 voted)

Reviews: 85% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Chrissy Homenick

Birthday: 2001-10-22

Address: 611 Kuhn Oval, Feltonbury, NY 02783-3818

Phone: +96619177651654

Job: Mining Representative

Hobby: amateur radio, Sculling, Knife making, Gardening, Watching movies, Gunsmithing, Video gaming

Introduction: My name is Chrissy Homenick, I am a tender, funny, determined, tender, glorious, fancy, enthusiastic person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.