Viral knockout sensation Joaquin Buckley found himself on the business end of one on Saturday at UFC Fight Night in Abu Dhabi. Buckley (12-4), who rose to overnight fame in 2020 with a spinning-back kick to knock Impa Kasanganay out cold, lasted just over two minutes in his middleweight bout against underdog Alessio Di Chirico (13-5) via highlight-reel finish inside Etihad Arena.
Di Chirico, a 31-year-old native of Italy, snapped a three-fight losing skid by catching Buckley with a right high kick to the side of the head as the 26-year-old leaned in to attack. Di Chirico followed with a series of hammer fists until referee Keith Peterson jumped in at 2:12 to stop the fight.
The finish came after a slow and tactical start to the contest. Buckley had blocked an early head kick attempt but was hit with a knee to the chest shortly before the finishing kick landed.
Di Chirico was emotional both after the stoppage and during the post-fight interview.
"I am so happy to be interviewed by you, but I have to remind myself after three fights I didn't get an interview that I don't like that you only interview the winner," Di Chirico said to UFC's Jon Anik. "This is not correct. MMA is about two people, always."