1 UFC debut fighter who delivered at UFC Vegas 88, 1 who flopped

We noticed two new UFC fighters for every different reasons.
UFC gloves
UFC gloves / Julian Finney/GettyImages

There were five fighters making their UFC debuts on Saturday at UFC Vegas 89. In addition to the five, there was a fighter returning to the UFC for the first time after being cut from the promotion.

Those five fighters were Luis Pajuelo, Steven Nguyen, Darya Zheleznyakova, Andre Lima, and Igor Severino. Of those five fighters, only two won their fights and one was even cut from the promotion in a wildly dramatic way. Oh, and that fighter who was making his return? That was Youssef Zalal and he put on a wonderful performance getting a second-round submission of Billy Quarantillo.

But that batch of debuting fighters had a clear standout and a clear dud. Here's who we think over and underperformed at UFC Vegas 89.

Delivered: Andre Lima

Andre Lima is hands down the star of UFC Vegas 89, even if you include all the fighters who were not making their debuts. And he's the star not for his performance but for what happened to him in the cage and the aftermath immediately following it.

Lima fought Igor Severino in the second fight of the night, both making their promotional debuts after winning their Dana White's Contender Series fights last year. Lima and Severino were in the second round of the fight when Lima said he felt pain in his arm. He says that at first, he thought his arm was getting cut by the cage but after the referee stopped the fight and inspected his arm he saw a very deep and clear bite mark. Severino was disqualified and Lima won, but what we saw before the stop was great.

After the fight UFC president Dana White gave Lima a $25,000 "I got fu*cking bit bonus" and he was all anyone could talk about. After he was done with his post-fight obligations, Lima ran straight to the tattoo shops and tattooed the phrase and the bite mark. The uber-cool move prompted White to add another $25K to the bonus. How cool is that?

Dud: Igor Severino

It's probably not a shock that we have put Igor Severino in the dud spot. It's not every day you get cut from the UFC within hours of your fight. But it's also not every day you bite your opponent. The sad thing was that Severino wasn't doing half bad. In fact, one of the judges even gave him the first round.

It really doesn't make sense that he'd risk his job, and his reputation, instead of just taking the loss. After the fight, White said he was cut from the promotion. FanSided spoke to Lima after the fight and got his reaction to the moment.

“I actually wanted to tell him, ‘Bro, why did you bite me? Why did you do this?’” Lima said. “I really wanted to go up to him and ask why he did that, but they didn’t give us the chance. They really kind of separated us. When I saw that he got me — they did the separation, and I was like, ‘Why did you do that? I wanted a bonus. I wanted this to be the ‘Fight of the Night.’ We had the possibility to do that.’ But then I realized it was a bite.”

So far Severino has not commented publicly about the bite. Perhaps the cat got his tongue.


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