LOS ANGELES — Brendan Schaub was brought to the Metamoris 2 jiu-jitsu card at UCLA’s historic Pauley Pavilion in order to bring MMA crossover promotion to the pay-per-view event.
But those who tuned in to Schaub’s fight with Roberto “Cyborg” Abreu out of curiosity probably weren’t converted into new fans. Abreu, a four-time World-No Gi tournament gold medalist, toyed with the UFC star for 20 minutes en route to a decision victory from the judges.
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Schaub clearly didn’t want to engage on the ground with Abreu, who spent much of the fight sitting on the mat and goading Schaub to come into his wheelhouse. The first few times Schaub attempted to engage, “Cyborg” went for leg locks, from which Schaub quickly scampered to safety.
This continued for much of the fight, causing the crowd at Pauley Paviilion, which watched most of the evening’s action in silent respect, to turn on Schaub, including one heckler who told Schaub, a brown belt, that he might earn his blue belt some day.
Things did heat up over the final two minutes, which featured more action than the first 18, as the two exchanged words and taunts. But time wound down and Abreu was awarded the decision.
After the match, Abreu somehow managed to call out Schaub for his lack of engagement while also doing so without escalating the tension.
“Every time we step on the mat I got there to fight,” Abreu said. “Sometimes I fight people who are supposed to be better than me, but make sure to give it 100 percent. Brendan thank you so much for the match, but next time, try to finish, try to fight.”
“Cyborg’s a great competitor and a true champion,” said Schaub, who had much of his post-match interview drowned out by the crowd. “Things didn’t go according to plan.”
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