Charles “Do Bronx” Oliveira da Silva was born October 17, 1989 in São Paulo, Brazil. He has a 3rd degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and is the current no.3-ranked lightweight contender in the UFC.
Oliveira’s most recent domination of Tony Ferguson at UFC 256, has aligned him for a potential lightweight title shot and catapulted him onto the global audience’s radar.
Across his coveted career, amassing 39 professional MMA bouts, “Do Bronx” has accumulated an almost unrivalled catalogue of post-fight bonuses. Since his UFC debut in 2010, Oliveira has earned the most Performance of the Night bonuses in UFC history (10); he holds the most submission victories in UFC history (14) which surpasses Demian Maia and Royce Gracie; and he is also tied for most finishes with none other than Donald Cerrone (16). Suffice to say, he is a fight-ending performance machine!
Stylistically, you can bet on Oliveira’s fights on being grappling masterclasses, some of which are included in these rankings. His nickname “Do Bronx” – translated from Portuguese as “The Ghetto” – stems from his martial arts upbringing in the impoverished Guarujá favela of São Paulo.
At brown belt, he joined Macaco Gold Team where he would earn his black belt but retained his nickname as “Charles of the Bronx” wherever he went. With his relentless, and offensive Jiu-Jitsu style, the “Do Bronx” nickname is still as relevant today as it was two decades ago – he still carries that same slick submission game into every octagon bout.
So, without further ado, let’s pin down Charles “Do Bronx” Oliveira’s Top 5 MMA Finishes! (in descending order)
- Vs. Darren Elkins – UFC on Versus 2 (Aug. 1, 2010)
- Vs. Hatsu Hioki – UFC Fight Night 43 (June 28, 2014)
- Vs. Clay Guida – UFC 225 (June 9, 2018)
- Vs. David Teymur – UFC Fight Night 144 (Feb. 2, 2019)
- Vs. Kevin Lee – UFC Fight Night 170 (March 14, 2020)
This fight was Oliveira’s UFC debut at just 20 years-old in the lightweight division. Entering the organisation with a perfect 12-0 record, the bout with Elkins was already pushed back by 6 weeks due to visa issues that Oliveira encountered. However long overdue, he made his octagon debut.
Within 15 seconds of round one, Oliveira was backed up against the cage. Then, chain wrestling from a single leg to a double leg takedown, Elkins landed in Oliveira’s guard.
Charles immediately pushed his left foot up against Elkins’ right hip to create space and pummelled his left leg through to locking up a triangle. As he pulled down on Elkins’ head to control his posture, Elkins stacked him as Charles cut the angle, wrapping the right leg.
Elkins fell to his side, still ensnared in the triangle, as Oliveira extended the left arm for a simultaneous armbar. The tap came only 41 seconds into round one.
Back before ‘Performance of the Night’ was introduced in 2014, Oliveira claimed the ‘Submission of the Night’ for a $40,000 post-fight bonus.
After greeting the crowd in English in his octagon interview, Oliveira’s Portuguese translator relayed, “When I put on the triangle, it was already done.” How’s that for confidence in your UFC debut?
Heading into this fight, this time in the featherweight division, Oliveira was an unranked fighter. On top of that, Hioki boasted 37 professional MMA fights and had never been submitted as a BJJ black belt himself. Having claimed two consecutive post-fight bonuses preceding the Hioki bout, Oliveira was on the hunt for a third.
Round one was characterised by back and forth submission attempts from both fighters: flying triangles, guillotine chokes and D’arce chokes. The most impressive of the grappling was a textbook Harai Goshi judo throw from the clinch by Oliveira.
In round two, once again, the grappling was phenomenal. After takedowns from both athletes, an eye poke on Oliveira, and an attempted rear naked choke from Hioki, Charles found a front headlock position towards the end of the round.
Wasting no time, “Do Bronx” locked up an anaconda choke with modified leg positioning that would typically be seen in a Peruvian necktie. At 4 minutes, 32 seconds of round two, Oliveira would deliver Hioki’s first ever submission loss in MMA.
For his awesome display, Charles received a $50,000 ‘Performance of the Night’ bonus, making it three in a row, as well as rising to no.18 in the featherweight division rankings. Most significant was that Hioki had never been submitted…and has never been submitted since.
This time at lightweight, Oliveira was the short notice replacement as Guida’s opponent. This was due to Bobby Green dropping out 11 days before the bout, citing a knee injury.
Early in round one, Oliveira was calm under the signature pressure from Guida, displaying excellent technical boxing and a series of flashy kicks. Amongst these exchanges, Guida walked onto a well-timed jab from Oliveira, resulting in a cut.
During a frantic clinch sequence, Oliveira landed a stunning knee which rocked Guida, leaving him no option but to panic wrestle.
He shot a double leg takedown whilst backed up against the cage, which Oliveira sprawled on until he secured a guillotine choke grip and fell back into guard. Seconds later, Guida tapped out at 2 minutes, 18 seconds of the very first round.
With almost clockwork predictability, Oliveira received the $50,000 ‘Performance of the Night’ bonus tying Royce Gracie’s record of 10 submission victories.
In his octagon interview, Charles asked for a return to featherweight to fight in his home town of São Paulo 3 months later. His wish was granted and he defeated Christos “The Spartan” Giagos via rear naked choke in front of his native fans.
This fight accounted for Oliveira’s fourth fight into his current 8-fight winning streak at lightweight. In his home country of Brazil, he walked into this fight ranked no.13 with aspirations of breaking into the top 10.
In round one, at 25 seconds, Charles received a significant eye poke that resulted in Teymur being deducted a point early on. Moments after the fight resumed another eye poke landed, leaving “Do Bronx” frustrated and pleading with referee Jerin Valel.
After a second recovery, round one would proceed with more striking than we’re used to seeing from Oliveira. Aside from a back take to a leg attack, we witnessed him get the better of the striking exchanges on the feet, pushing the pace and looking to channel his anger energy to punish Teymur for his earlier eye pokes.
Round two was a more one-sided affair. Landing a perfectly-timed lead elbow, Oliveira followed up with a pinpoint right uppercut and left hook that forced Teymur to turn his back.
After follow-up strikes and the referee almost calling a TKO, Teymur turned back around to attempt a clinch. Oliveira immediately jumped on an anaconda choke and dragged his battered opponent to the ground. He circled round with his legs to apply finishing pressure and got the tap at just 55 seconds of round two.
This exhibition of striking and grappling earned Oliveira another $50,000 ‘Performance of the Night’ bonus, making it 4 consecutive wins and 4 consecutive post-fight bonuses. Now ranked no.10 in the lightweight division, the only way from here was up.
Coming into this fight, everything was stacked against Oliveira. He was already the betting underdog when Kevin Lee weighed in 2.5lb (1.1kg) overweight, converting the bout to a 158.5lb (72kg) catchweight.
To compound those odds, this event was the first behind closed doors at the dawn of the COVID-19 pandemic, cancelling media days and ceremonial weigh-ins on 2 days’ notice. Nonetheless, Oliveira was set for his first ever main event headliner.
Round one began with Oliveira executing an impressive flying kick to Kevin’s face before engaging in grappling exchanges. Charles launched multiple attacks from bottom position including an extensive inside heel hook sequence and an attempted triangle, winning the round 10-9 across all scorecards.
Round two saw Oliveira land some damaging shots including a powerful right uppercut that stunned his opponent. Lee landed a takedown only to enter a chain of submission attempts from an armbar to an omoplata, (shoulder lock) to a triangle, which he managed to defend.
Round three opened with Lee catching a low kick and chaining a single leg takedown. However, this would be the fight-ending sequence as Oliveira locked up a guillotine from an unusual flattened out, bottom half guard position.
The tap would come at 28 seconds of round three and would be followed by Lee scrambling to continue fighting with default warrior reflexes forgetting that he’d just been choked out!
Post-fight, “Do Bronx” claimed the $50,000 ‘Performance of the Night’ bonus, making it 7 wins and 7 stoppages in a row, and called out both Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov. On December 12, 2020, Oliveira would defeat Tony Ferguson to become the no.3-ranked lightweight contender and line himself up for a future title shot.