In The Ultimate Fighter 16 Finale co-main event, TUF competitors Mike Ricci and Colton Smith faced off to determine the tournament winner. Team Carwin’s Ricci earned his spot in the final round with a first round KO of Neil Magny in the semis. Team Nelson’s Smith advanced from the semi finals with a unanimous decision over Jon Manley.
Colton Smith came out quick in the first round trying to wear Ricci down with his grappling. After diving for a single leg in the opening seconds he never let Ricci establish any offense. Smith held back control on Ricci for a couple minutes before Mike was finally able escape. His wasn’t on his feet for long before Smith got him down again and rode out the rest of the round on top.
Smith landed a low blow early that hurt Ricci. With no call from referee Steve Mazzagatti, Smith sprinted in for a knee. He followed that up with a takedown. Horrible non-call from Mazz. Smith got the back again and went for the rear naked. Ricci got out, but only to be tossed back down by Smith. Smith rode out the rest of the round from back control.
The third round played out much like the first two. Early takedown from Smith that led to him repeatedly attacking for incredibly unsuccessful rear naked chokes. Ricci was visibly gassed late in the second and had nothing left in the tank for the last round. Completely dominant performance by Colton. Colton Smith became the next Ultimate Fighter with a unanimous decision (30-27 x 2, 30-26 ) over Mike Ricci.
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