In a classic battle between striker vs. grappler, Vieira wasted no time getting Petrosyan to the ground and showing off his superior skills on the mat. After he finally gained control on the canvas, Vieira shredded Petrosyan’s defense and locked on the head-and-arm choke as time was running out in the opening round.
Vieira tightened up his vice-like grip and Petrosyan eventually tapped out, with the end coming at 4:18 in the first round.
“That fight should have happened last year but unfortunately he got sick,” Vieira said afterward. “I’m very happy with my victory. I respect him a lot. I think he’s the toughest guy I ever fought. I’m so grateful and thankful for this victory.
“I knew that he wasn’t that good in jiu-jitsu but he was high level in striking. I knew that any space that opened to me, I would finish him.”
Following a couple of brief exchanges on the feet, Vieira got inside and scooped Petrosyan up for a beautiful double-leg takedown, but he had to work to keep the fight on the ground. Petrosyan did an admirable job scrambling back to his feet, however he kept giving up his back, which allowed Vieira to drag him back to the canvas repeatedly.
When Petrosyan finally turned around, Vieira lifted him up and brought the fight crashing back down again, but this time he had no intention of giving up the position. Vieira gained control and then passed through Petrosyan’s defense to lock on the head-and-arm choke while he was still in the half-guard position.
It appeared momentarily that Petrosyan might survive, but he had to know there was no escape as he tapped the arm twice to signify that the fight was over.
It was another impressive showing from Vieira, who improves his UFC record to 5-2 with his fifth submission finish inside the octagon.