Manon Fiorot impressed in her promotional debut at UFC Fight Island 8, finishing Victoria Leonardo with a TKO in the second round.
The UFC Fight Island 8 card was a rare mid-week event for the UFC, and if there was an underlying theme, it was new beginnings. The card had a healthy batch of newcomers, with a full seven fighters stepping into the octagon for the first time. That batch included the show openers, Victoria Leonardo and Manon Fiorot, who faced off in a flyweight bout.
Leonardo might have been the more familiar face to start the night, having found her way to the UFC after competing on Dana White’s Contender Series. Prior to that, the New Jersey native plied her trade for LFA, Bellator, and Invicta FC, making her no stranger to fighting on a larger stage.
Fiorot was more of a question mark — but one with considerable upside. The French fighter, a kickboxing and karate champion, was also a IMMAF amateur champ in 2017.
Fiorot got off to a hot start with kicks to the body and some leg kicks. Early on we see the striking advantage of Fiorot, who smoothly avoided Leonardo’s return fire. Fiorot caught Leonardo with a head kick and followed up with a few more lengthy kicks. Leonardo began charging in against her opponent, but that just gave Fiorot more chances to hit her. Leonardo tried again and was able to force a clinch, but that did not last long as Fiorot separated and connected with a big elbow. Fiorot then rocked Leonardo with a combination after a brief clinch then clinched again to land a knee and some punches.
Round two started with Leonardo throwing out some kicks, then Fiorot caught her with a right hand. Leonardo came in with another kick but dropped her hands, leading to a two-punch combination for Fiorot. Fiorot came charging in with a flurry of punches and briefly clinched up with her opponent. Leonardo continued to throw kicks, but they were doing little more than keeping Fiorot away from her. Fiorot fought through that range and took Leonardo down against the fence. They were there briefly before Leonardo pushed her off. A counter-right landed for Fiorot, then she hit Leonardo with a high kick, leading to the finishing combination against the fence, as the fight was stopped on the feet with Fiorot unloading punches on Leonardo.
— UFC (@ufc) January 20, 2021
Manon Fiorot def. Victoria Leonardo by TKO (Head Kick and Punches) in Round 2 (4:08)