FightPost MMA Fighter of the Week: Ilia Topuria
By Dan McConnell
An all European main-event this weekend in the middleweight division, headlined the UFC’s latest card in Las Vegas.
Late replacement Marvin Vettori of Italy beat Sweden’s Jack Hermansson in a mini-classic between the two middleweight contenders.
However, this weeks FightPost MMA Fighter of the Week award winner was hidden deep in the pre-lims and impressed me the most.
Newly signed featherweight Ilia Topuria defeated Damon Jackson with an impressive TKO win inside the first round.
Topuria first caught my attention at Cage Warriors 94 in 2018, when he submitted Brian Bouland with a quick and slick anaconda coke.
Due to missing weight, he was unable to lift the vacant Cage Warriors bantamweight title on his promotional debut, despite this impressive debut.
The German born fighter, has two Georgian parents who moved to Spain when he was just 15 years. Now at the age of 23, the featherweight is making his name known on the biggest stage of all.
Topuria went 5-0 in the regional scene before making his Cage Warriors debut in 2018, and went on to fight for Brave CF to take his record to 8-0.
His two UFC victories over Youssef Zalal in October and Damon Jackson this weekend kept his unbeaten streak going.
El Matador’s wins include 7 submissions, 2 KOs and 1 decision taking his overall record to a still undefeated 10-0.
One of the most talented European fighters right now, and one to certainly watch in 2021.