MASHANTUCKET, Conn. -
Ronaldo Souza spent the end of both rounds one and two looking for the submission. Each time, he lost out to the clock.
Round three was different.
Souza, known better as “Jacare” – Portuguese for “alligator” – had enough time to get position on, work for the submission and hold on until Gegard Mousasi had had enough. That moment came with 29 seconds left in the round as Mousasi tapped to Souza’s guillotine chokehold at UFC Fight Night 50 in Foxwoods on Friday night.
“At first I thought it was going to be much easier to take him down," Souza said.
Souza figures to be next in line for a shot at the middleweight title. Champion Chris Weidman, from Baldwin, will defend his title next against Vitor Belfort on Dec. 6 at UFC 181 in Las Vegas.
"Surely this puts me in line for a title shot and I want to fight the champion," Souza said.
In the first two rounds, Souza was in position to go for either an armbar or kimura in the final minute. Mousasi used all his strength to keep Souza from pulling his arm out from a tucked position to isolate it for the submission attempt each time.
“He was just relentless with his takedowns," Mousasi said. "He did a good job with that. I think I lacked a little bit of a fighting spirit today.”