Bryan Battle KOs Takashi Sato in 44 seconds

Bryan Battle scored one of the most brutal head kick knockouts in recent memory against Takashi Sato at UFC on ESPN 40.

Battle (8-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC), “The Ultimate Fighter 29” middleweight winner, dropped down to welterweight and had a sensational debut. He landed the perfect head kick on Sato (16-6 MMA, 2-3 UFC) just 44 seconds into their bout on Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.

Check out the replay of the finish below (via Twitter):

After the win, Battle said he felt the head kick was something he could connect with on Sato – who hasn’t been finished with strikes since 2015 – inside the octagon.

It’s crazy,” Battle said in his post-fight interview with Michael Bisping. “It’s something that we saw, it’s something we anticipated. I didn’t see it happening quite so soon. That was probably the most beautiful strike I’ve ever thrown.”

During his post-fight interview, Battle named Bryan Barberena as a matchup of interest, but delivered a more poignant callout of the undefeated Ian Garry.

“I’m not saying this man’s ducking me, but at least he’s being protected,” Battle said of Garry. “I want you. I want all the clout. Neither one of us ranked, nothing is holding us back.”

There was no immediate reaction from Garry, but there was one from Barberena (via Twitter):

Up-to-the-minute UFC on ESPN 40 results include:

Bryan Battle def. Takashi Sato via knockout (head kick) – Round 1, 0:44 Cory McKenna def. Miranda Granger via submission (Von Flue choke) – Round 2, 1:03 Mayra Bueno Silva def. Stephanie Egger via submission (armbar) – Round 1, 1:17

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC on ESPN 40.

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