It’s one thing to compete and inflict damage on an opponent en route to a victory, it’s the nature of mixed martial arts. But more often than not, as bad as it sometimes looks, both fighters emerge from the contest in good health and able to leave the Octagon on their own accord. But when Jairzinho Rozenstruik is involved, it is different. Rozenstruik downright hurts people and leaves them a lot worse for wear in the aftermath .
It’s violent, but it’s exactly what the fans are here to see. Hence the vote of confidence from the UFC for putting him in yet another main event this past Saturday against Augusto Sakai. Win or lose, you can count on a highlight reel finish when Rozenstruik steps in the Octagon.
Ahead of the main event booking, Rozenstruik was coming off a five-round decision loss to Ciryl Gane. Although he lost that fight in the judge’s eyes, he walked away from the fight a victor based on what he had gained from going all five rounds for the second time in his UFC career. The extra in cage experience accrued over the past couple of fights has been very beneficial for Rozenstruik, and it showed in his performance against Sakai.
— UFC (@ufc) June 6, 2021
Rozenstruik has always looked composed throughout his UFC career, but the confidence and composure he demonstrated on Saturday night was greater than ever. He controlled the center of the octagon from the very beginning. In the past, Rozenstruik has tended to get wild and charge in with horrible intentions and ferocity. Most of the time, it resulted in his opponent nearly getting decapitated and the ref frantically calling a halt to the contest.
While the approach works for him over 90% of the time, it’s the other 10% that Rozenstruik seems to have become cognizant of. As we saw in the fight against Francis Ngaanou, the uber aggressive approach against a fellow devastating power puncher can just as easily land you on the wrong end of a horrific blow. While Rozenstruik certainly didn’t charge forward on Ngannou, he did respond by engaging in a firefight when Ngannou launched an attack, rolling the dice and letting the bombs fly in hopes to be first.
But he wasn’t first, and instead, ended up getting viciously beaten by the scariest individual on the UFC roster. It was the type of result that can have a great deal of impact on a fighter’s career, the type of knockout that can result in the competitor never returning to the same form. But for Rozenstruik, it was just another day at the office. Throughout his extensive professional kickboxing career, getting knocked down and getting back up is just what you do.
"I want to fight somebody that is above me. It's a short list but I'm ready."
Jairzinho Rozenstruik (@JairRozenstruik) discusses where he thinks his first round KO of Augusts Sakai puts him in the heavyweight division 🔊⬆️
Final #UFCVegas28 Results ⬇️:
— UFC News (@UFCNews) June 6, 2021
In the win over Sakai, Rozenstruik showed a lot more restraint and efficiency in his attacks. He picked his spots, and instead of exploding whenever he was in range, he waited for the right time. The newfound patience has earned him yet another first-round knockout for his record. The heavyweight division is a crazy place, and with the victory, Rozenstruik finds himself primed to move right back into the top five. Being in that position means it could be a matter of being just one more impressive victory away from a title shot.
There are matters to be settled between Stipe Miocic and Francis Ngannou, but once that’s sorted, there are only a few other fighters ahead of Rozenstruik in the rankings. With nowhere to go but up, the rest of the heavyweight division has officially been put on notice. “Bigi Boy” is starting another ascension up the rankings and leaving destruction in his path.