UFC on ESPN+ 30 rookie report: Grading the newcomers at ‘UFC Fight Island’

Fighters from around the globe dream of the day they’ll step into the UFC octagon for the first time. For four athletes, Saturday’s UFC on ESPN+ 30 event marked that special moment in their respective careers.

Check out this week’s rookie report to see what kind of first impression they made on the sport’s biggest stage from Flash Forum on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.

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Carlos Felipe

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JULY 19: (L-R) Carlos Felipe of Brazil punches Serghei Spivac of Ukraine in their heavyweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on July 19, 2020 in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Division: Heavyweight
Result: Serghei Spivac def. Carlos Felipe via majority decision (28-28, 29-27, 29-27)
Record: (8-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC)
Grade: D

Carlos Felipe bounded out of his corner for his UFC debut with bags of enthusiasm. But, despite an encouraging start, the Brazilian ended up on the wrong end of a majority decision against Moldovan Serghei Spivak.

Felipe looked full of energy at the start of the first round as he looked to establish his boxing straight away. He enjoyed some success with it, too, as he connected with a number of fast punches.

But as the fight wore on and Felipe’s pace started to ease off, Spivak got a foothold in the matchup and, when the Moldovan switched from striking to wrestling in the final round, the Brazilian had no answer as he lost an ill-tempered matchup on the scorecards.

The pair looked ready for a fourth round after the decision was read, but the damage had already been done and Felipe had suffered his first professional loss.

Next up: Nightmare debut for former TKO champ

Original article: https://mmajunkie.usatoday.com/2020/07/ufc-on-espn-30-rookie-report-grading-the-newcomers-at-ufc-fight-island/

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