Jack Hermansson is no joke on the ground.
In a return to the win column in the UFC Fight Island 2 co-main event, Hermansson made quick work of former interim title challenger Kelvin Gastelum with a nasty heel hook submission at just 1:18 into the opening round.
After suffering a loss to Jared Cannonier in his last outing, which snapped a four-fight win streak, Hermansson got back on track in a big way with his win on Saturday night.
“Every time I step in here, it’s so much pressure,” Hermansson explained. “Everything I do in my life is for this goal, becoming the best in the world.”
The fight played out in rapid-fire succession as Hermansson looked for a body lock takedown during the opening exchange, which Gastelum recognized and reversed with a beautiful throw of his own. After landing on top, Gastelum didn’t get back to his feet quickly enough and that ultimately spelled his doom.
Seizing on the opening with a grappling exchange on the mat, Hermansson saw Gastelum’s leg exposed and he grabbed onto the ankle before adjusting into the heel hook position. With his knee being torqued from the submission, Gastelum tried to twist free momentarily but then he was forced to tap out or risk further damage being done to his leg.
It was an important win for Hermansson, who appeared to be moving towards title contention prior to his setback against Cannonier this past September. With the submission victory against Gastelum to move his record to 5-1 in his past six fights, Hermansson is already calling his shot about what comes next.