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MMAjunkie's 'Submission of the Month' for May: A signature choke surprises … again

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With another action-packed month of MMA in the books, MMAjunkie looks at the best submissions from May 2018. Here are the five nominees, listed in chronological order, and winner of MMAjunkie’s “Submission of the Month” award for May.

At the bottom of the post, let us know if we got it right by voting for your choice.

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The Nominees

Aleksei Oleinik def. Junior Albini at UFC 224

Heavyweight submission specialist Aleksei Oleinik (56-11-1 MMA, 5-2 UFC) pulled off his trademark submission once again, this time at the expense of Brazilian prospect Junior Albini (14-4 MMA, 1-2 UFC).

After scoring the first Ezekiel choke submission in UFC history a few fights prior, a bloodied Oleinik grabbed ahold of Albini early in the opening round of their bout and quickly locked in the technique from bottom mount and forced his opponent to tap out seconds later.

Claudio Puelles def. Felipe Silva at UFC Fight Night 129

Felipe Silva (8-2 MMA, 1-2 UFC) battered and bruised a seemingly outmatched Claudio Puelles (8-2 MMA, 1-1 UFC) for the better part of three rounds. Then he tapped out to set his opponent up for a “Comeback of the Year” contender.

Silva utterly battered Puelles for more than two rounds of their lightweight bout. With his eye essentially swollen shut, “El Nino” had one trick left up his sleeve. He turned to attack the leg, locking in a kneebar that saw Silva grimace before reluctantly tapping nearly halfway through the final round.

Aaron Chalmers def. Ash Griffiths at Bellator 200

British reality-show star Aaron Chalmers (4-0 MMA, 1-0 BMMA) made good on his promise to wow fans in his Bellator debut, stopping Ash Griffiths (4-6 MMA, 0-2 BMMA) inside two minutes.

Chalmers got in trouble early when he absorbed a huge punch then got in takedown trouble. He flipped the script quickly, though, seizing a guillotine choke that left Griffiths hanging unconscious before referee intervention.

Gillian Robertson def. Molly McCann at UFC Fight Night 130

Gillian Robertson (5-2 MMA, 2-0 UFC) didn’t mind playing the role of spoiler, traveling to England to choke out Liverpool’s own Molly McCann (7-2 MMA, 0-1 UFC).

After showing her grappling off in the first, Robertson was quickly able to move to the back of her opponent after a second-round takedown. From there, Robertson locked in the rear-naked choke, squeezing until McCann, who refused to tap, went to sleep.

Arnold Allen def. Mads Burnell at UFC Fight Night 130

For the better part of three rounds, Arnold Allen (13-1 MMA, 4-0 UFC) struggled with the wrestling attacks of Mads Burnell (9-3 MMA, 1-2 UFC). Then Allen tapped him out.

Seizing a moment in the third round, Allen latched on to the neck, locking in a power guillotine in standing position. Burnell alertly rushed to get his back to the floor, but Allen adjusted his grip, keeping a front choke in tight and earning a tap from his shocked foe.

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The Winner: Aleksei Oleinik

Call him a one-trick pony if you like, but it’s a pretty damned good trick.

Russian submission ace Oleinik turned again to the rarely seen Ezekiel choke, using it to tap out Albini in the first round.

When the two heavyweights engaged, Oleinik suffered a cut almost immediately, with blood trickling down his face from the start. Seemingly sensing a little bit of desperation with the wound, Oleinik simply grabbed Albini’s neck, locking in an Ezekiel choke and falling to his own back, dragging his opponent on top. Cinching up the hold, which is typically executed in a gi, Oleinik kept his squeeze tight, and after initially relenting, Albini was forced to tap at the 1:45 mark of the first.

“Before traveling to Rio, people said that Brazilian fans did not like foreign fighters inside the octagon,” Oleinik said after the win. “I thought so, but today I saw that it was not true. The fans congratulated me and were very supportive after this win. I have a lot of respect for Albini, before and after the fight. He is a very tough guy. I was just better than him. And at the end of the day, this is a sport. It’s professional. It’s part of it.”



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