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UFC 291 video: Roman Kopylov freezes Claudio Ribeiro with brutal head kick, calls out Sean Strickland

Roman Kopylov had to survive some danger in his first round against Claudio Ribeiro, but he rebounded in spectacular fashion with a picture perfect head-kick at UFC 291.

Ribeiro’s misread of Kopylov’s attack opened him up for the left high kick, forcing a stoppage 33 seconds into the second round of Saturday’s preliminary-card fight at Delta Center in Salt Lake City.

Check out the finish below.

Kopylov afterward called out “the gangster of the weight class,” Sean Strickland, for his next fight.

Ribeiro felt the power of Kopylov’s left leg on several occasions when his Russian counterpart launched it into his flanks as they traded strikes. That combined with Kopylov’s accurate punching had him in trouble midway through the first as several shots got through and he lurched to the canvas fence.

Yet the Brazilian managed to rebound with a well-placed right hand that hurt Kopylov, sending him reeling backward as Ribeiro sought the finish. Kopylov managed to survive, and time ran out before Ribeiro got another chance.

As it turned out, that would be Ribeiro’s last gasp before the head kick met his left hook, setting up the knockout by Kopylov.

“My left leg never lets me down,” the Russian said afterward.

Kopylov has now won three straight after back-to-back losses started his UFC career. Contender Series vet Ribeiro drops to 1-2 in the octagon after a stoppage win against Joseph Holmes in his previous outing.

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