“Boi” and De Castro traded strikes for two rounds before the Cape Verde heavyweight switched strategies in the final stanza, deciding to clinch the whole round. The referee separated them multiple times over the last five minutes, but De Castro would immediately get back to the same position.
A “frustrated” Felipe had his hands raised in the end with an unanimous decision, and criticized his opponent for not engaging in a stand-up battle with him.
“He cowered a little bit,” Felipe said in Portuguese at the post-fight press conference in Abu Dhabi. “Actually, I understand him feeling like there’s a heart attack coming, feeling tired. I got a bit tired as well. I could have knocked him out, but unfortunately he started getting close to the fence.
“Going to the fence and trying a takedown or doing some dirty boxing is one thing, throwing some little punches and a knee, but he was throwing himself over me on the cage with that big belly and doing nothing, so I got a bit frustrated.”
Victorious in the UFC for the first time, Felipe decided to issue a challenge to Raphael Pessoa, who lost by knockout to Tanner Boser in July, by calling him a “creonte.” Inspired by a 1980’s Brazilian soap opera character named Creonte, who was known as a traitor, Carlson Gracie decided to use that term to refer to jiu-jitsu practitioners that switched teams.
“Something I always defend is being loyal to those who were always with me,” Felipe said. “He made his whole career (with one team) and when it was time to cut the bigger slice of the pie, he dumped (his coach) and went to another team. That’s unacceptable to me. And this guy is our friend, Domingues, so I want to unleash this anger.”