Former UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos made a memorable return to 170 pounds earlier tonight (Sat., Dec. 3, 2022) at UFC Orlando live on ESPN/ESPN+ from inside Amway Center in Orlando, Fla., when RDA stopped battled-tested veteran Bryan Barberena with an impressive second-round submission (rear-naked choke).
Barberena was as game as they come and even looked too calm at times, but dos Anjos was absolutely relentless with his attacks. The former UFC champion relied on heavy grappling along the cage and peppering ground-and-pound that had “Bam Bam” on the defensive quite a bit. RDA was able to transition to the back in the second round and forced Barberena to tap for the first time in his UFC career.
Check out the final moments above courtesy of UFC/ESPN.
Dos Anjos, 38, was coming off a main event knockout loss to Rafael Fiziev this past July so this was a big victory for the Brazilian legend. Despite his recent struggles the former champion clearly has enough gas left in the tank and even called out Conor McGregor in his post-fight interview (shown below).
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