Make it three straight now for the former UFC heavyweight titleholder after his latest win over Derrick Lewis, via second-round TKO, in the main event of UFC Wichita on Saturday.
The 35-year-old dos Santos (21-5) looked sharp from the opening bell, using feints and leg kicks to soften Lewis (21-7, 1 NC) up. All the while, dos Santos appeared to be wary of Lewis’s vaunted knockout power.
“Cigano” scored the first major blow of the bout, landing a huge overhand right that staggered Lewis. He whiffed on a follow-up and nearly ate a counter left from Lewis, but for the most part dos Santos avoided the worst of what Lewis had to offer, including a few impressive high kicks that were blocked.
Near the end of the first, dos Santos landed a spinning kick to the mid-section that had Lewis hunched over in pain and the effects of that strike appeared to carry over into the second round. There, dos Santos picked his spots and eventually connected with another big right hand that left Lewis turtled up against the fence. Dos Santos fired away with punches until Lewis fell to his knees and referee Herb Dean waved the bout off as Lewis failed to defend himself against dos Santos’s follow-up strikes.
The official time of the stoppage was 1:58 of round two.
Post-fight, dos Santos led the crowd at InTrust Bank Arena in singing “Happy Birthday” for his son and then declared his intention to challenge for the heavyweight title again.
“I don’t care as long as I get active,” dos Santos said. “I want fights, UFC. Man, to tell you the truth, how can these guys be in front of me in the rankings? They put me back there, I don’t know why, but that’s fine, that’s fine, I’m here to fight again and regain my belt.”