Former defensive end / linebacker Ovince Saint Preux made the most of his unique circumstances in the main event.
Saint Preux defeated Mauricio “Shogun” Rau Saturday in Uberlandia, Brazil, in the Light Heavyweight division for UFC Fight Night 56. He finished him off in only 34 seconds.
This is the biggest win in his career because he came into an environment where the crowd was completely against him. Rau, a Brazilian native, had the crowd on his side, but this did not prove to be enough for a fight that was not even supposed to happen.
Jimi Manuwa was the original opponent for Rau, but he broke his foot a week prior to the fight. Preux was scheduled to be the co-main event with Francimar Barraso, but was ultimately called up to fight “Shogun.”
Both fighters were coming off losing matches. Rau got knocked out by Daniel Henderson in Natal, Brazil, and Saint Preux lost a unanimous decision to Ryan Bader in Bangor, Maine.
These were two fighters coming off disappointed bouts, but many believed the experience of “Shogun” would outmatch the up and coming Saint Preux.
Preux very quickly proved this to be wrong when he caught him with a strong left hook that then sent Rau to the ground of the octagon. He then landed 12 quick punches for the upset TKO.
Preux (17-6) makes this his eighth win via TKO. His other wins include 5 by submission and 4 via unanimous decision. He also improves to 4-2 on foreign soil.
He was ranked tenth in the Light Heavyweight division coming into the fight, but look for him to rise after Saturday’s win.
Edited by Will Lomas