Raulian Paiva


Outlasts opponent in FOTY contender
July 24, 2021
Paiva defeated Kyler Phillips via majority decision (29-28, 28-28, 29-28) at UFC on ESPN 27 on Saturday in Las Vegas.
There is so much to say about this fight that wouldn't fit in the headline. Paiva ate three or four clean shots on the chin and looked to be well on his way out of this fight before (and after) the bell rung for the end of Round 1. Things looked to be going similarly in Round 2 before a clean shot from Paiva dropped Phillips. From there, Paiva simply wouldn't let his opponent breathe, pressuring him and landing shots. Unfortunately, the win was not without controversy, as it seemed implausible to most that only one judge gave Phillips a 10-8 in the first frame. Nevertheless, Paiva's obvious toughness, power, and ability to get in the face of his opponent are real assets that he can use as he tries to make a run at bantamweight. He improves to 21-3-0 in professional MMA as a result of the victory.
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Moves up to 135 to face Phillips
June 27, 2021
Paiva will step in for Raphael Assuncao and take on Kyler Phillips at the UFC event scheduled for July 24, Marcelo Barone of Combate reports.
Paiva is riding a two-fight winning streak but recently had a matchup against David Dvorak scrapped due to weight-cutting issues. With this matchup set to be contested at bantamweight, Paiva will hopefully have an easier time hitting his mark on the scales. He draws no cakewalk in Phillips, however, as his opponent is 4-0 under the UFC banner with two post-fight bonuses on his resume. Paiva will be giving up a three-inch reach advantage to an opponent with statistical advantage in striking offense and defense. Phillips has also shown solid wrestling during his time with the company, but Paiva sports an impressive 80 percent takedown defense. It remains to be seen if that will hold up with the move up in weight class.
Pulling out of fight
May 21, 2021
Paiva will no longer be fighting Saturday against David Dvorak at UFC Vegas 27 after enduring a draining weight cut process that ended up sending him to the hospital, Damon Martin of MMAFighting.com reports.
Paiva was reportedly admitted to a hospital for dehydration and low blood pressure but has already been cleared and is said to be feeling better now. The 25-year-old apparently passed out Thursday after using a sauna and woke up in the hospital. Paiva was hesitant to say whether he thinks the UFC will continue to allow him to compete in the flyweight division after going through multiple ambitious weight cuts since joining the UFC roster.
Returning in May
February 12, 2021
Paiva (knee) will face David Dvorak in a flyweight matchup at a UFC event scheduled for May 22, Marcel Dorff of MMADNA reports.
Paiva underwent surgery on his ACL in September but will return to the Octagon in May. He most recently defeated Zhalgas Zhumagulov via unanimous decision at UFC 251 in July. Dvorak has won his last 16 fights, most recently defeating Jordan Espinosa via unanimous decision in September. The two fighters are even in height, but Paiva has an advantage in reach.
Undergoing knee surgery
September 12, 2020
Paiva is set to undergo surgery on his ACL and will no longer fight Amir Albazi on Oct. 31 Marcel Dorff of MMADNA reports.
It's not clear how long the Brazilian will be sidelined, but ACL procedures generally require eight to 12 months of recovery time. Paiva has gone 2-2 since signing his UFC contract in August of 2018.
Facing Albazi in October
August 18, 2020
Paiva (20-3-0) is scheduled to face Amir Albazi (13-1-0) in a flyweight fight set for Oct. 31 at the UFC event in Las Vegas, Marcelo Barone of GloboEsporte.com reports.
Paiva has gone 2-2 since earning a UFC contract in August 2018 via Dana White's Contender Series, with both of the victories coming in his last two fights. He'll have his work cut out for him in his matchup with Albazi, who defeated Malcolm Gordon via triangle choke in his promotional debut back on July 18.