Alexandre Pantoja got the better of a high-octane battle with Brandon Royval tonight at UFC On ESPN 29, getting the better of the ground battle in the opening round and then going back to the well in the second round with even more success, find a rear-naked choke submission finish.
Inside leg kick for Royval and then thinking about a knee, but Pantoja gets in close, gets to Royval’s back and drags him to the mat.
Lots of scrambles here as Royval attempts to get away from Pantoja’s clutches. Several rolls from Royval, but Pantoja stays on him.
Now Royval finds space to work for a heel hook. Pantoja defending, but Royval is also landing a few hammerfists and elbows then goes back to the submission attempt.
Royval changes to an ankle lock, but Pantoja starts to work free and then as they scramble back up, Pantoja remains latched onto his opponent’s back against the cage.
Pantoja drags Royval down to the mat again, but yet again there’s a scramble and we go back to striking range.
Royval with a body punch. Now he’s working for his first takedown of the fight. They quickly go back to the feet though.
Nice straight for Pantoja. Royval looking energetic on the feet, but a punch catches him in the eye. He wants a stoppage to recover, but the ref waves the fight on as t was a closed fist and he quickly gets back to business.
Royval with a flurry of punches with not a whole lot of power behind them, instead focusing on the volume work and constant pressure to end the round.
Pantoja pressing forward with punches and attempting a takedown that doesn’t pay off. Pantoja with a body kick. Royval with a knee to the body.
Pantoja throwing heavy leather as he marches forward. He attempts another takedown and doesn’t get it. He gets up and Royval is back to that volume punching game, pushing an incredible pace.
However, Pantoja clinches up and drags Royval down on top of him as he did in the opening round. Pantoja gets the body triangle in and starts working for a rear-naked choke.
This choke looks tight and it’s only getting tighter as Royval desperately tries to get out, then is forced to tap out before he passes out at 1.46mins of the second round, handing Pantoja a big win in an intense flyweight fight.