In the co-main of UFC 224, an apparent welterweight title eliminator between Jacare Souza and Kelvin Gastelum went the distance.
The co-main fight of UFC 224 featured an interesting matchup of styles as Jacare Souza took on Kelvin Gastelum. Souza, a former Strikeforce champ, represented a dangerous submission ace, and was as tough as they come. Ultimate Fighter winner Gastelum, meanwhile, was the young, hungry lion on the rise.
How did this dynamic play out?
The first round started, and Jacare immediately shot for a takedown. He got into the clinch and looked for a sub but couldn’t get it. Jacare looked to grab a leg but couldn’t finish the takedown, so he pulled guard instead. Jacare swept and landed on top in side control. Jacare then moved into full mount! Gastelum got him back into half guard, but he ended back up in full mount and looked for a head and arm choke. However, he could not secure it and switched to an arm-bar. That, he almost had! Gastelum was simply trying to survive and Jacare almost had it again! The round ended as Gastelum survived the arm-bar.
Round two started out with Gastelum landing some hard shots. Jacare looked for a takedown and a clinch but it wasn’t there. Kelvin Gastelum was landing numerous hard, accurate shots which led to him knocking down Jacare! Souza was hurt and trying to survive, but soon enough they were back on the feet with Gastelum is looking for the finish. Proving a wily veteran, Souza took his time on the ref stand-up when Gastelum refused to get in his guard. Still, Jacare was looking hurt and tired. He pressed forward regardless and hit Gastelum with a big left hook, but Gastelum appeared unfazed. It was a back and forth fight as Jacare stumbled backs to his corner.
Round three started with Kelvin Gastelum moving forward and Jacare landing a big right. Gastelum looked unfazed by every big shot he took. The Brazilian, meanwhile, still appeared tired but refused to back down. He was still moving forward looking to land strikes; Jacare then opted to shoot and got a takedown — only for Kelvin to reverse him! They were back on the feet trading shots to close out the round, and heading to the judges, it could be anyone’s fight now.
When the scores were read, it was Gastelum getting the split decision win in hostile territory!
— UFC (@ufc) May 13, 2018
Kelvin Gastelum def. Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)