The lone newcomer on the UFC 296 card was heavyweight Shamil Gaziev, a Contender Series winner booked opposite Martin Buday.
Buday had won his first four fights in the promotion, while Gaziev had run up a perfect 11-0 record to start his professional fighting career.
The bout came down to a battle between an unbeaten fighter in Shamil Gaziev, and a man who had never been finished in Martin Buday.
Right away, Gaziev got his hands busy backing up Buday against the cage. He was very aggressive in throwing combinations. Buday tried to slow the fight down clinching up but it didn’t last long. The right cross from Gaziev continued to find home and Buday was curling up. All the damage delivered by Gaziev was adding up and soon Buday was leaking. After a pause for the doctor to look things over, Gaziev got the takedown. Gaziev kept it there for practically the rest of the round landing a ton of ground and pound doing a lot of damage.
In round two Gaziev was visibly breathing heavily but still pressed forward. He ended up hurting Buday early with an elbow. Buday was clearly hurt and was covering up, back to the fence, as Gaziev was busy still throwing up top and to the body. The ref eventually saw enough and the fight was called. With the win, Shamil Gaziev came out on top in his debut, and gets bragging rights in being the first to stop Buday.
Two rounds is all it took!
— UFC (@ufc) December 16, 2023
Official Result: Shamil Gaziev def. Martin Buday by TKO (punches), Round 2, 0:56