Ryan Hall has had his win-streak ended in dramatic fashion at UFC 264 as he has just suffered the very first knockout of his career. The finish came inside the very first round of his fight with Ilia Topuria, a fight that came just a few days shy of two years since the last time he actually managed to make it into the octagon. He was previously scheduled to compete against Dan Ige at UFC Vegas 21 but was unfortunately forced to withdraw from the event at the very last minute due to a hip injury sustained in training.
No doubt the lack of active competition didn’t do Hall any favors leading up to the fight, but he didn’t look particularly slow or unfit as the fight began. In fact, he looked pretty much exactly the same as he has done in his last few UFC fights, employing his recently-developed point-fighting style of kicking and keeping one eye on his opponent’s legs at all times in order to explode into the Imanari roll regularly. Unfortunately, it was Hall’s trademark unusual style that actually led to his undoing this time around.
It’s something that a lot of detractors of Hall’s style have been saying for some time, but there’s only so many times you can roll for the opponent’s legs in one fight before it comes back to haunt you. Once a top-level opponent sees this happening regularly, they’re going to start timing their avoidance of the roll better and open up opportunities for ground and pound. Sadly, that’s exactly what happened at UFC 264 as Ryan Hall went for Ilia Topuria’s legs and immediately after avoiding the roll, Topuria launched into top position and rained down some nasty strikes to register the knockout win.
The UFC 264 replay will soon be available to watch on UFC FightPass, click here to subscribe and watch.
— UFC (@ufc) July 11, 2021