Polish powerhouse Mateusz Rebecki took on Roosevelt Roberts at UFC 295, marking the debut of the latter’s second UFC stint.
Roberts had appeared on the newest season of ‘The Ultimate Fighter,’ where he learned under Michael Chandler on the way to a split decision loss in the semi-final. That fight, his two-fight winning streak outside the UFC, and his eight-second knockout in his first TUF fight were enough to get him another shot with the promotion when they needed someone to replace Nurillo Aliev on short notice for this fight. However his opponent was a man who entered on the draft of a fifteen-fight, nine-year winning streak, Mateusz Rebecki. As a result, the oddsmakers had the Pole as an eight-to-one favorite coming into the bout.
Mateusz Rebecki came out with his foot on the gas, pressing forward and throwing massive punches. When Roberts’ hands came up to defend, Mateusz shot for a double leg and landed it easily, settling in full guard. Roosevelt was not easy to hold down, as he worked to sweep and then stood up from a tough position, but when he got to his feet Rębecki grabbed a back body-lock and used his strength to drag Roberts down.
Mateusz immediately got both hooks in and established back control. Roberts kept his hands up by his head to defend and then suddenly spun to get on top, but Rębecki activated his trap and went for an armbar. Roberts stacked him but the submission was locked in and Roosevelt was forced to tap, after which he held his arm in pain.
Mateusz Rebecki continued his rise with his third straight UFC win, and his first by submission. He can expect a relatively big fight in the stacked lightweight division to come next as he asked for after the fight. He does have to move fast to have a chance at a belt at thirty-one years old. Still, he clearly has potential to make waves at 155-lbs.
In his post-fight interview Rebecki called for Dana White to make a UFC event in Poland, which is not a ridiculous proposition with all the Polish and European fighters in the UFC.
Official Result: Mateusz Rebecki def. Roosevelt Roberts by Submission (armbar) Round 1, 3:08