Hong Kong debuted in highlight-reel fashion at UFC 255 on Saturday.
In the evening’s curtain jerker, Sasha Palatnikov became the first fighter in UFC history to represent Hong Kong – and also the first to record an octagon victory. As the second-biggest underdog on the entire card, Palatnikov (6-2 MMA, 1-0 UFC) picked up the TKO victory over Louis Cosce at 2:27 of Round 3.
With the victory, Palatnikov proved the oddsmakers wrong. On average, across major online sportsbooks, Palatnikov closed a +422 (per BestFightOdds).
After a tough opening round, in which he ate dozens of hard punches, Palatnikov survived and dished out his fair share of punishment in a potential “Round of the Year” candidate.
Cosce (7-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC), who seemingly winded himself with the high-output Round 1, ate a big right hand midway through Round 3. From there, Palatnikov finished Cosce with a series of lefts and rights on the canvas.
Check out Palatnikov’s finish of Cosce in the video below:
The victory was Palatnikov’s second in a row and was his third career win by TKO. Palatnikov’s lone professional loss came to fellow UFC fighter Mounir Lazzez when the two were on the regional scene.
UFC 255 takes place Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. The main card streamed on pay-per-view after prelims on ESPN+/ESPN 2/UFC Fight Pass.