Al Iaquinta is back.
In the co-main event of last night’s (Sat. April 22, 2017) UFC Nashville main event, Iaquinta took on the first ever winner of The Ultimate Fighter, Diego Sanchez, and made quite the statement in his first Octagon appearance in over two years.
While Sanchez may have put the pressure on the lightweight veteran early, Iaquinta was able to maintain his composure and perfectly execute two hooks that would send Diego Sanchez into another dimension. After the hellacious blows, Sanchez was left slumped over on the canvas while medical personnel attended to him.
Many expected Iaquinta’s come back to be a highly-contested one given Sanchez’s history of resilience and heart, but the Ray Longo MMA product was just too much for the veteran’s chin to overcome. You can check out the full fight video highlights, which includes the spectacular finish, here below:
Since departing from the world of MMA, Iaquinta decided to take up work as a realtor selling houses, a much different line of work from playing a game of punch-face and seeing who goes to sleep first. After coming to terms with the UFC on a new deal after a two-year layoff, Iaquinta resumes his journey to become the 155-pound champion of the world.
Despite the term of ‘ring rust’ being tossed around often when a fighter returns from a lengthy layoff, Iaquinta put all of that to rest after taking out one of the sport’s most durable and battle-tested veterans of all time.
The New Yorker is now on a five-fight win streak over some of the biggest names in the sport, and could be looking at challenging a top contender like Dustin Poirier or former champ Eddie Alvarez next. Who do you want to see Iaquinta get back into the Octagon against? Let us know in the comments!