Brazilian prospect Luan Santiago headlined Brave CF 11 in an interim title bout against UFC veteran Lucas Martins on Friday night in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and a freak injury stopped him from winning the belt.
Santiago landed the better shots early in the fight, but Martins was able to recover after the second round. The bout was heading to a close decision call, but Martins slammed his opponent in the final seconds of the fifth round. Santiago dislocated his elbow when he hit the ground, and the referee stopped the fight at the 4:56 mark.
Martins won the interim lightweight belt via TKO, and Santiago’s injury saved him from losing the fight. Brave officials told MMA Fighting that Santiago was ahead on the scorecards and would have won via split decision if the fight had gone the distance.
Santiago’s coach Cristiano Marcello told MMA Fighting on Saturday morning that the lightweight talent will likely avoid surgery, and is expected to be cleared to train again in four weeks.
Luan Santiago probably broke his arm from a slam
Lucas Martins won BRAVE CF LW Belt pic.twitter.com/1RKFpGsU6Q
— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) April 14, 2018
“Mineiro” (20-3), who now holds the Brave interim 155-pound belt, extended his winning streak to five with the stoppage. He went 4-3 under the UFC banner between 2013 and 2016, and was let go by the promotion following a win over Robert Whiteford.
Santiago dropped to 12-3 in MMA and suffered the first stoppage defeat of his career, snapping a seven-fight winning streak.