Canada’s Jesse Ronson returned to action against Brazilian Joaquim Silva in a lightweight bout at UFC Vegas 61 on Saturday.
Ronson had missed all of 2021 due to a USADA suspension stemming from a failed drug test, then lost his return bout this past April when he was submitted by Rafa Garcia at UFC on ESPN 34.
Ronson opened the action with a side kick to the body, and had to contend with a high kick from Silva fired in response. Ronson kept his guard up, and had a noticeable size advantage over Silva.
The kicks continued, both men firing low. Ronson flashed a front kick that fell short then fanned on a leg kick. Range, clearly, was still an issue for both men. The feeling out process continued throughout most of the open round, with Ronson finally moving in to land a combo with about 90 seconds left. Wrestling in the opening round, meanwhile, was all but an afterthought. Silva would land his best punch, a right hand, in the final 30 seconds of the round while Ronson returned fire with a kick. Just before the buzzer, Silva fired a jump knee that caught Ronson, hurting him!
Ronson appeared to have recovered in the second, but a clearly invigorated Silva kept up his attack. Stance switches, jabs from south paw, and another flying knee were the key — and it was the knee that dropped Ronson! Silva piled on with ground n’ pound, as Ronson covered up. The ref gave the Canadian a good chance to recover, but it was over off that second flying knee.
The win snaps a two-fight skid for Silva, who moves to 5-3 inside the octagon.
Official Result: Joaquim Silva def. Jesse Ronson by TKO (flying knee and punches), Round 2, 3:08