UFC 300 results, highlights: Jiri Prochazka rallies to stop Aleksandr Rakic, calls for title shot

Written by on April 16, 2024

Former light heavyweight champion Jiri Prochazka’s combination of frightening power and a willingness to endure heavy damage continues to be a problem for the 205-pound division. 

Prochazka (30-4-1) shook off a TKO loss to Alex Pereira in a vacant title bout last November by never breaking as Aleksandar Rakic systematically picked him apart in Round 1 of their featured preliminary bout at UFC 300 on Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. 

After succeeding in luring Rakic into a brawl in Round 2, Prochazka shook off a badly damaged left leg due to calf strikes and a cut around his right eye to finish Rakic (14-4) via brutal ground and pound after flooring him with clean punches to earn an exciting TKO at 3:17 of the round.

The victory firmly placed Prochazka back into the title mix at light heavyweight after being forced to vacate his title in 2022 following a right shoulder injury that shelved him for 17 months. After the fight, Prochazka called out the winner of Saturday’s UFC 300 main event between Pereira and former champion Jamahal Hill. 

“No matter who will win tonight in the main event, I want to face the champion,” Prochazka said. “Let the better [man] tonight. It doesn’t matter who.”

Rakic, a 32-year-old native of Austria, shook off a nearly two-year layoff due to a torn ACL suffered in a 2022 loss to former champion Jan Blachowicz. But Rakic looked the part of a perennial title contender by how well he controlled distance in the opening round as he picked Prochazka apart in an equally technical and violent manner. 

But Prochazka, who took issue pre-fight with Rakic claiming he is not the cosplaying samurai he appears to be, was never deterred by the damage, even as his lead leg was compromised early. Prochazka, true to form, dropped his hands to open Round 2 and was willing to take Rakic’s best punches in order to get close enough to exchange. 

The gamble paid off as he hurt Rakic with clean punches before a flying knee set Rakic up to be dropped and finished. 

“These talks about me like I’m not a samurai, that’s true. I’m not a samurai,” Prochazka said. “I’m a guy from the Czech Republic but we all need to live and be inspired by something. And this is inside of me. 

“I’m not a samurai but I’m living with these rules and I believe with the dreams in my head and I want to prove to anyone that I can make it.”

Prochazka, 31, improved to 4-1 since making his UFC debut in 2020. The victory was also his 12th straight stoppage win in a streak which extends back to 2016. 

The post UFC 300 results, highlights: Jiri Prochazka rallies to stop Aleksandr Rakic, calls for title shot first appeared on CBS Sports.

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