Urijah Faber notched up one final win tonight against Brad Pickett at UFC On FOX 22 before calling time on his long and distinguished career.
Urijah Faber’s retirement fight is underway! Low leg kick from Pickett. Huge support from the Sacremento crowd for their favorite, ‘California Kid’.
Faber with a big right hand and a left behind it. Nice jab for Faber. Pickett still looking for Leg kicks, though now he tries for a stepping left hook and misses.
Low kick for Pickett that knocks Faber off-balance. Pickett comes in and Faber tries to clinch up, but he’s not able to keep it there.
Kick for Faber. Left hook lands for him. Faber with a solid right. Pickett being caught out by Faber’s speed at this stage.
Faber tries for a takedown, but Pickett not only defends it, but then transitions to a takedown of his own.
Faber nicely able to manufacture a way back to his feet. Faber lands a huge left hook that drops Pickett. Faber hesitates, thinking that the fight might be obver, but it’s not and Faber follows him down to the mat.
Faber takes Pickett’s back and starts blasting away with some huge ground and pound blows. Ref isn’t in a hurry to stop the fight, so Faber works for a rear-naked choke, then transitions to get into full mount.
Big elbows dropped by Faber and that opens up a nasty cut. Now he’s on Pickett’s back again as the round draws to a conclusion. There was a few moments thre where it looked like Faber might be on the verge of finishing the fight, but he’ll have to do it all over again in the second. Credit as always to Pickett for his toughness.
Faber just grazing Pickettt with a left hook. Low kick for Pickett. Now it’s Faber with a kick. Faber ducks under a winging punch from Pickett.
Low kick again for Pickett. He’s had some success with that. More of those follow. Faber tries for a single leg, but doesn’t get it. Faber with a right hand.
Now a left hook for Faber. Pickett tried for a knee, but Faber saw it coming, catches it and uses it to dump him to the mat close to the cage.
Faber in Pickett’s full guard with a little more than half the round remaining. Pickett trying to land elbows from his back. He gets enough space to scramble to his knees, but Faber keeps him there and then spins in an attempt to take his back.
Pickett turtled up and then manages to escape back to his feet. Both men miss punches and then Pickett lands a left hook. Faber almost catches a leg kick from Pickett.
Faber with a punch and then bundles Pickett to the mat. Faber threatens with a choke, but Pickett defends and gets upright.
Leg kick for Faber. Jab for Pickett. Final 10 seconds of the round and Faber spins around to Pickett’s back and drags him to the mat.
Faber five minutes away from victory in his last ever fight here. Will he play it safe, or throw caution to the wind and go for one last big finish inside the distance?
Head kick grazes for Faber. Another one is blocked. Faber now changes things up with a takedown attempt and he lands it.
Plenty of time for Faber to work here. He lands a few blows downwards, but Pickett scrambles to his knees and then gets upright.
Push kick for Faber. Glancing jab. He lands a well timed takedown in the middle of the Octagon. Faber moves to side control, but not for the first time in the fight Pickett scrambles to his knees.
Faber able to put him back on his back though and returns to side control. He’d love to get that final guillotine choke finish, but so far it’s not presented itself and Pickett is defending well.
Faber dropping down some hard elbows. Big right hand and then Pickett frees himself and they go back to striking range.
Kick for Faber and he eats a blow that drops him backwards to the mat. He just rolls, stands and smiles though – more of a knockdown than properly getting dropped.
Faber eats a couple of kicks and then works for a takedown, but it’s stuffed.
Final 30 seconds. Pickett still looking for leg kicks. Pickett with a flying knee attempt, but Faber avoids that and drags Pickett to the mat.
Pickett reverses the position in the final seconds and Faber lands a couple of elbows from his back.
No doubt about the winner here, Faber gets the unanimous decision (30-26 x3) to ends his memorable career on a high note.
Faber looked sharp tonight and came extremely close to finishing Pickett in the opening five minutes.
Some would say that this was proof that there’s still plenty of fight left in ‘The California Kid’, but one of Faber’s strengths has always been that he’s got a good head on his shoulders, and he’s smart enough to know that it’s almost best to quit while you’re ahead.