Bo Nickal had a tough act to follow when he opened the UFC 290 main card immediately after Robbie Lawler’s retirement fight, but the decorated wrestled rose to the occasion by scoring the most impressive win of his young MMA career.
Nickal had been slated to meet Treasean Gore for his second UFC outing at UFC 290 in Las Vegas, however Gore withdrew from that matchup just days before the fight and threw the chances of the 27-year-old competing in jeopardy.
Undefeated Val Woodburn was pulled from a scheduled Contender Series appearance to step in for Gore, and “The Animal” was tasked with overcoming some historic betting odds when he entered the cage at UFC 290.
Fans were still buzzing from the quick knockout that Lawler scored in his retirement fight against Nico Price wen the two middleweights met to kick off the event’s main card, and Nickal improved to 5-0 by stopping Woodburn just as quickly as “Ruthless” had beaten Price in the night’s featured prelim.
ANOTHER FIRST ROUND FINISH FOR BO NICKAL 💪 #UFC290 pic.twitter.com/IgyYBglxnV
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) July 9, 2023
Nickal has yet to go past the first round since making his MMA debut, and his finish against Woodburn was the second-fastest win of his career after his 33-second pro debut against John Noland.
Twitter Reacts To Bo Nickal’s 38-Second Knockout
Even though most fans were still preoccupied with celebrating Lawler’s victory and epic career when the UFC 290 main card started, Nickal’s quick follow-up win immediately generated praise online.
Nickal and Lawler with back-to-back finishes at 0:38 of the first round.
A passing of the torch.
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) July 9, 2023
You’re bat sh*t crazy If you don’t think @NoBickal isn’t gonna be a world champion #UFC290
— Brendan Schaub (@BrendanSchaub) July 9, 2023
Bo’s hands looked crispy!!! Fast! Congrats brotha @NoBickal #UFC290
— “Wonderboy” Thompson (@WonderboyMMA) July 9, 2023
— Belal Muhammad (@bullyb170) July 9, 2023
BO NICKALLLLL GOD DAMN @NoBickal @betr
— Jake Paul (@jakepaul) July 9, 2023
The future is very bright for Bo. #UFC290
— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) July 9, 2023
Bo Nickels killed it during the fight and after ! #UFC290
— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) July 9, 2023
Vicious knockout to kick off #UFC290, then a reminder to everyone the value of being a good husband and father?!? Bravo, @NoBickal. pic.twitter.com/axQFHBdhPu
— John Morgan (@JohnMorgan_MMA) July 9, 2023
You can check out all of the results and highlights from UFC 290 right here!