Bo Nickal was expected to dominate, and he did.
Much like every other fight of his MMA career thus far, Nickal took care of business Saturday night at UFC 290, dispatching the debuting Val Woodburn via knockout 36 seconds into the fight.
WOW! Bo Nickal KOs Woodburn in 36 seconds!!! pic.twitter.com/rc8QksTh1k
— FTB VIDS (@anotherFTBacct) July 9, 2023
Nickal is how 2-0 in the UFC and 5-0 overall in his professional MMA career.
None of his pro fights have gone past the first round, and few people thought Woodburn would be an exception. Not only was Woodburn (7-0 in MMA career) going into his first UFC fight, he was doing so on less than four days notice. Nickal’s UFC 290 opponent was supposed to be Tresean Gore, but Gore announced on the Fourth of July that he was withdrawing due to injury.
Nickal’s first UFC fight didn’t last long. Nickal (1-0) beat Jamie Pickett (13-9) with a submission 2:54 into the first round. This moved him to 4-0 in his professional MMA career. Nickal’s fights have lasted a combined five and a half minutes.
Neither of Nickal’s scheduled UFC bouts have gone without a hitch. The Penn State great, who won three national championships and was a national runner-up the year he didn’t win, was supposed to fight Pickett in December. But an injury forced Bo Nickal to withdraw.
At Penn State, Bo Nickal ended his career 120-3, becoming a four-time All-American and winning the 2019 Hodge Trophy, which is wrestling’s version of the Heisman.
We don’t yet know when Nickal will fight again, and the competition will surely get tougher as his UFC career progresses. Nonetheless, thus far, Nickal is giving people reason to be excited about him, and every win brings him one step closer to his goal of becoming a UFC champ.