Hyun Kim put forth arguably the best performance of his Octagon
career Saturday, dominating Paulo
Thiago from bell to bell at
UFC on Fuel TV 6.
The main card attraction took place at Cotai Arena in Macau and was
highlighted by Kim’s superior grappling, which carried him to a
unanimous decision victory.
The Korean “Stun Gun” wasted no time in taking advantage of
Thiago’s willingness to give up his back. Kim sunk in his hooks
early in the first frame and rode his fellow welterweight for
nearly the entire period while threatening to lock up a rear-naked
Thiago would mount more of a defense in the second round, but at no
point was the Brazilian able to turn the tide while pinned in a
cradle position against the cage. Rather, he was forced to fend off
Kim’s smothering grappling attack, including a tight brabo choke
attempt at the end of the frame.
Round three might have been Kim’s most impressive period in the
cage. While it took the judoka more time to secure Thiago’s back
than it did in round one, Kim inflicted more damage on his foe
while in the position of dominance, raining down punches,
hammer-fists and two-handed chops, a la Kazushi
“I researched [Thiago] with my team, and we knew that he [would be]
a little bit weak from the inside position if I got his back, so we
went with that,” Kim told Fox Sports after his victory.
A four-year Octagon veteran, Kim is now quite familiar with the jet
lag that comes with fighting in the United States, an aspect of the
fight game that Kim says likely affected both him and his opponent
“I think maybe the time difference made [Thiago] a little bit
weaker than he usually is,” said Kim. “The difference between
fighting here and [fighting in the United States] was like the
difference between night and day.”
Kim’s victory puts him back in the win column following a one-sided
defeat to Brazilian jiu-jitsu ace Demian Maia
this past July. Maia took the fight to Kim in that UFC 148
encounter, quickly closing the distance and scoring with a trip
that caused Kim to injure his ribs, bringing the contest to a close
in just 47 seconds.
Now healed and coming off his dominant victory over Thiago, “Stun
Gun” did not hesitate when asked whom he would like to face
“I want Demian Maia.”