(Watch on UFC Fight Pass)
This could very well be one of the most underrated fights of all time.
I just remember staring at the TV screen wondering how the hell the two men were still fighting. Vicente Luque and Bryan Barberena went on strike for nearly 15 straight minutes.
“Bam Bam” soaked up damage in the first round before knocking Luque down in the first. That’s when Barberena’s tenacity shone through, as Luque recovered quickly and nearly submitted him twice in the final moments of the round.
But the first round wasn’t even what made this fight great. That was all that happened next and how it ended.
More Desert Island Fights: Part 1 | Part 2
I counted Luque as the fighters started again in the second frame. Barberena was at the start and was starting to make the fight ugly. A real fight broke out – with Luque using his elbows and knees to smash Barberena as Barberena choked him. The pace was crazy.
Luque capped off a wild third round with a devastating knee down the middle that knocked Barberena out of the fight with just six seconds left. Then Luque hit his trademark arc celebration. I was on my feet and couldn’t believe that Luque was actually capable of finishing Barberena.
This fight made me a big fan of Luque and Barberena. It was a crazy awesome fight that is often forgotten.
Israel Adesanya vs. Kelvin Gastelum
UFC 236 – Atlanta, Georgia – April 13, 2019