“The Celtic Kid” was pinpoint accurate and deadly with his strikes on Saturday as he just blasted Andre Fialho with repeated punches that were constantly finding a home on the chin. After a blistering combination to put Fialho on his heels, Matthews uncorked a right hook that crumpled the Portuguese fighter and put him down on the canvas to end the fight.
The stoppage came at 2:24 in the second round.
“I’ve had this sort of skill level my entire career, and thank god we were able to bring it to the fight this time,” Matthews said afterwards. “Get used to seeing that. I knew going into this fight it was knock him out or get knocked out trying.”
There was plenty of sharp striking from Matthews in the opening round as he continuously stuck a long punches in Fialho’s face, taking full advantage of his reach against a shorter opponent. While he was eating some hard shots, Fialho was still moving forward and looking to close the distance as he put some serious pop behind his punches.
It seemed like every time Fialho put together a solid combination, Matthews was coming over the top with huge hooks and overhand punches that just kept landing on target. Despite Fialho looking stunned, he refused to back down as he kept stepping right back into the fray but that willingness to test his durability against Matthews’ power ultimately backfired.
After landing numerous shots to back Fialho up in the second round, Matthews cracked his opponent with a left hook that served as the beginning of the end.
With Fialho staggering towards the cage, Matthews just unloaded with a number of huge punches including the right hook that helped him pick up his first true knockout in the UFC.
Following the win, Matthews said he would like to compete on the upcoming UFC Paris card scheduled on Sept. 3 as he looks to build on this win, which moved his record to 4-1 in his past five outings.