Nick Newell returned from a two-and-a-half-year layoff, continued his submission ways, and called for a shot in the UFC.
Newell (14-1) posted a first-round submission victory over vet Sonny Luque (10-7) in a 163-pound catchweight fight.
The bout headlined LFA 35, which took place Friday and aired on AXS TV from Arena Theatre in Houston.
Newell, a 31-year-old whose left arm ends right below his elbow, fought for the first time since October 2015. The former XFC champion and WSOF vet had announced his retirement, but before Friday’s headliner, admitted that the thirst of competition compelled him to return.
Newell, whose only career loss came to current UFC lightweight contender Justin Gaethje in 2014, used kicks to set up a takedown on Luque. Once he had his opponent pressed against the cage, Newell used a neck and face crank to force a tap at the 2:10 mark of the opening round.
After the victory, which marked his ninth submission in 14 career wins, Newell reiterated his desire to fight in the UFC.
“Life’s a cold, hard place, and it’ll chew you up and spit you out, but if you make it your bitch, you can do anything” he said. “You can either become a victim of circumstances, or you can create your own. I’m out here. I’m creating my own circumstances.
“I’m one of the best fighters in the world, and I belong in the UFC. That’s it. That’s final. I gave you 14 reasons why I belong in the UFC. I’m one of the best fighters in the world, and I’ve proved it 14 times.”
Full LFA 35 results included:
- Nick Newell def. Sonny Luque via submission (face crank) – Round 1, 2:10
- Jared Vanderaa def. Vernon Lewis unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Jason Langellier def. Thomas Webb via submission (d’Arce choke) – Round 1, 1:10
- Charles Cheeks III def. Rivaldo Junior via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
- Adrian Yanez def. Nathan Trepagnier via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 4:56
- Cheyanne Vlismas def. Karla Hernandez via TKO (elbows) – Round 3, 4:22
- Leomana Martinez def. Casey Jones via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 2:25
- Nick Newell, Sonny Luque preview LFA 35 main event – and Newell's return
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- Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #2638 with Pat Miletich and Jorge Gurgel
Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: LFA 35 results and highlights: Congenital amputee Nick Newell gets face-crank win in return