Claudio Puelles was just about down and out… until he wasn’t.
The 22-year-old lightweight went from the verge of being KO’d to picking up his first UFC win in memorable fashion as he submitted Felipe Silva with a kneebar midway through the third round of the opening bout at UFC Chile.
Puelles, the youngest fighter competing at the Movistar Arena in Santiago on Saturday, showed off his ground skills early, going for a guillotine and a leg lock in round one, but the second frame was contested primarily on the feet and Silva looked to be in complete control. There were moments where it seemed Silva was on the verge of putting Puelles away.
However, when the action hit the mats again in the final frame, Puelles attacked the legs again, this time securing a kneebar submission victory at the 2:23 mark of round three.
With the win, the native of Molina, Peru improved to 8-2 as a professional, while Silva suffered his second straight loss by knockout or submission.