One night after proposing to his girlfriend, Alex Nicholson (6-2) was set to compete against Misha Cirkunov (11-2) in a light heavyweight scrap at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas for UFC Fight Night 82.
The two 205-pounders met at the center of the Octagon. “The Spartan” threw out a spinning body kick and spinning backfist early. Cirkunov landed a body kick. He ducked under a spinning backfist and pressed his opponent against the fence. Cirkunov once again capitalized on a bad spinning attempt. Referee Herb Dean warned Nicholson of a kick that went below the belt. The fight resumed and Cirkunov landed a stiff straight left hand. The round ended with Cirkunov landing a hard elbow in back mount.
Round two began and Cirkunov didn’t appear to be fresh as mentioned by Brian Stann, who thought the Xtreme Couture fighter may have been dealing with an injury. Regardless, he was able to once again gain top control, but this time he forced a tap with a rear naked choke. The submission looked more like a nasty crank that cracked the jaw of his opponent. You could hear the crack on the replay and Cirkunov mentioned he heard it before the tap.
You can watch the gruesome finish here, but be warned it’s a little brutal:
Final Result: Misha Cirkunov def. Alex Nicholson via submission (rear naked choke) – R2, 1:28