Kalinn Williams’ 30-second knockout of Abdul Razak Alhassan at UFC Fight Night 182 was one for the highlights, a finish so memorable it led SportsCenter’s Top 10 on Saturday night.
More importantly, it allowed Williams to further establish a foothold in the Las Vegas-based promotion. After debuting in the Octagon with a 27-second KO of Alex Morono at UFC 247 in February, “Khaos the Ox Fighter” wanted to prove he was no flash in the pan.
“This feels amazing. This is more important than that first one for me,” he said. “I came in with a splash, let the division know, let the world know I was here and this one just let everybody know it wasn’t no fluke. This is more important than my debut. That’s why I took the time to just dedicate all my time to it. I put a lot of stuff on hold, muted my life, my social life, just put everybody on the backburner and was just focused. Here we are.”
Williams’ singular focus certainly paid off, as he countered an Alhassan leg kick with a powerful right hand that had his opponent’s head bouncing off the canvas. Williams landed one more follow-up blow referee Mark Smith could intervene — but it wasn’t really necessary.
“I didn’t know it was going to go this fast,” Williams said. “I’m not a mind reader of course, but I knew it was either going to be him or it was going to be me, and it wasn’t going to be me.”
Most savvy observers expected that Williams vs. Alhassan would be a brief and violent affair, and the welterweight contest lived up to its advance billing. Alhassan has 10 first-round finishes to his credit, but this night belonged to Williams, who is currently riding the momentum of an eight-bout professioanl winning streak.
“This dude had 10 wins, 10 knockouts in the first round. I hope he is all right,” Williams said. “This is a sport, so I never want anybody to really get seriously hurt, but while I’m in there, it’s really kill or be killed, but outside of it, it’s all love. I hope he’s alright, but, like I said, he’s a knockout artist himself and I just knocked out a knockout artist. I let my hands speak for themselves.”
Just 26 years old, the Murcielago MMA represenative had already built a solid resume on the regional scene over the past three years. Now he’s just proud to see his hard work pay off on the biggest stage of them all.
“This was the year that really changed my life,” Williams said. “I’ve been grinding for a minute, all the hard work and dedication, all the years, it amounted up to this moment. A lot of people slept on me and here I am.”