Having lost three of his last four, Tony Martin knew his back was against the walk Saturday night at UFC on FOX 18.
And the 26-year-old competed just so.
Martin scored a third round technical submission over Felipe Oliveiri, improving to 10-3 in his career and 2-3 with the UFC.
“I knew it was a close fight going into the third,” Martin said. “I was trying to get a takedown because he looked tired. I got the hooks in, rolled him over and put him to sleep.”
After winning his first eight pro bouts, including a decision over Phillipe Nover back in 2013, Martin signed with the UFC. He lost via decision to Rashid Magomedov and submission to Beneil Dariush before submitting Fabricio Camoes.
Last year, his lone fight was a second round submission defeat to Leonardo Santos.
“It was hard to get him down in the first, so I decided to let my hands go,” Martin said. “(That) set up my takedown in the third.”
For Olivieri, the loss dropped him to 14-5 overall. This was his Octagon debut following three straight wins.
“I was comfortable going into the third round with each of us winning a round earlier. I settled in a little too much,” he said. “I wanted to break away from him, but instead he got my back and finished me because of a little mistake. I want to go back, train hard, learn how to illuminate small mistakes and come back harder for a win.”