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Aliaskhab Khizriev punches out Rousimar Palhares with brutal KO in 58 seconds

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Aliaskhab Khizriev finishes Rousimar Palhares with strikes at Fight Nights Global 85.
@Grabaka_Hitman, Twitter

Aliaskhab Khizriev stayed undefeated in style.

The 29-year-old Russian welterweight became an interim titleholder at Fight Nights Global 85 in Moscow, Russia, on Friday, needing just 58 seconds to put away UFC veteran and former World Series of Fighting champion Rousimar Palhares in the evening’s co-main event.

Before the match even began, there was a cloud over Palhares, who came in overweight for the title bout and was thus ineligible to capture gold himself. When the bell rang, Khizriev immediately caught Palhares with a head kick that stunned “Toquinho” and followed up with some fierce ground and pound.

Palhares survived the initial flurry and was able to briefly work his grappling, even getting into position for one of his infamous heel hooks. However, Khizriev slipped free — possibly with some assistance from the fence — and resumed his ground assault until the referee was forced to wave off the bout less than a minute into round one.

Khizriev is now 10-0 as a professional and the win over Palhares presumably puts him next in line to face undisputed FNG welterweight champ Georgiy Kichigin.

For Palhares (19-9-1), this was an unfortunate outing in what has been an often weird and winding career. During his run with the UFC, his reputation as a feared submission artist was overshadowed by a failed drug test and two instances where he was accused of not letting go of a heel hook even after the referee signaled for a stoppage. The second incident resulted in the UFC releasing him.

Palhares would go on to success in the WSOF promotion, only to see that bridge burned when he was again admonished for not releasing a submission hold, this time in a August 2015 championship win over Jake Shields. Officials subsequently handed Palhares an indefinite suspension.

Even Palhares’s FNG run has been anything but smooth. After defeating Aleksei Ivanov by first-round heel hook in his debut with the promotion last July, he lost a controversial split decision to Shamil Amirov that was later overturned to a draw by the Russian MMA Federation.

Palharaes is now 1-3-1 in his last five fights.