The TUF 27 finale main card is underway, and Alex Caceres and Martin Bravo just went to war! After a close first round, Caceres found his groove in the second, dropping Bravo and then hurting him again with the same left cross. Bravo rallied in the final frame, pushing the pace and getting his own striking going to make it a dog fight. The crowd showed ample appreciation, roaring away as the athletes brawled it out for the closing moments of the fight, but there can only be one winner, and tonight it was Alex Caceres.
Roxanne Modafferi won her rematch with Barb Honchak tonight by finding the top position in the second round, and dropping elbow after elbow until the referee was content to call it off. Julian Marquez and Alessio Di Chirico threw some heated middleweight leather at one another over the course of fifteen minutes to open up the main card. When the dust finally settled, it was Di Chirico who walked away with the split decision victory.
Alex Caceres def. Martin Bravo by split decision (29-28 x2, 28-29): Featherweight
The featherweights exchanged kicks to start the bout as there was no feeling out process to be had. Bravo was able to secure a takedown but not able to hold down Caceres for very long. Caceres landed a couple shots on the feet but gave up another takedown, this time maintaining the position for longer than before. Caceres got back up and landed a few sneaky body punches before the round ended.
The straight punches of Caceres scored early in the second round, dropping Bravo inside of the first minute. Caceres opted to follow his foe to the ground and was unsuccessful in finding a finish, so he returned to his feet but Bravo seemed to have already recovered by then. Another stiff cross connected for Caceres, but somehow Bravo remained standing and continued to throw.
Bravo opened the final frame by chasing down a single leg and turning it into a double to get the fight to the ground. Caceres bounced right back up and Bravo started to chain his punches together. Bravo started to push the pace as Caceres started to slow down. The war of attrition waged on with each man getting in their licks but also absorbing their fair share of damage. The featherweights slugged it out down the stretch as the crowd roared in appreciation.
The shortest distance between any two points is a straight line:
— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2018
Roxanne Modafferi def. Barb Honchak by TKO at 3:32 of round 2: (W) Flyweight
Modafferi showed up with her patented jerky style of standup, and actually landed some effective strikes, but also got pieced up quite a bit because of it. Just when Honchak started to look comfortable on the feet, Modafferi blasted a takedown into the half guard. Modafferi struggled to pass into side control despite how hard she was working at it.
Modafferi found the full mount inside of the first minute of the second round and quickly unleashed punches in bunches. Honchak did regain the half guard, but Modafferi dropped quite a few strikes which opened up the pass into full mount. Bow after bow dropped onto the skull of Honchak until the referee stepped in and stopped the fight.
Modafferi is a bit of a problem on the ground:
— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2018
Alessio Di Chirico def. Julian Marquez by split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28): Middleweight
Both middleweights were down to go right at it, winging calculated haymakers at one another. Di Chirico landed a mean body kick and followed it with a heavy right hand that briefly staggered Marquez. Just when it looked as if Di Chirico was finding his groove, Marquez responded with some heavy strikes of his own to back off the Italian fighter. Di Chirico snuck in a takedown inside of the final minute of the opening round, but Marquez was quick to explode back to his feet.
Marquez started the second stanza with aggression, throwing heat right at his opponent while pressing forward. Wisely, Di Chirico worked a takedown up against the cage, which slowed down some of that aggression of Marquez. Di Chirico caught a switch kick and used it to plant his foe on the floor, and although Marquez diligently worked his way off the ground, Di Chirico took him right back down. Di Chirico landed a few ground strikes here and there before the round expired.
Marquez pressed forward in the final frame as Di Chirico backpedaled away looking to counter. The counters were few and far between for Di Chirico, as the pressure of Marquez was just too much. Like a terminator, Marquez continued to walk through whatever his opponent sent his way in order to deal out his superior power. Di Chirico was able to score a takedown late in the fight, but Marquez got back up and got his terminator on to finish the round.
Check out this twirling madness:
**It should be noted that Marquez missed weight, clocking in at a whopping 190 pounds to Di Chirico’s 186 pounds
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