Brad Tavares earned a unanimous decision victory over Elias Theodorou tonight at the TUF 25 Finale in a fight that was closely fought from start to finish.
Theodorou circles and lands an early kick. Punch and a kick from him too. Tavares looks for his first strike and Theodorou ducks underneath looking for a takedown, but is brushed aside.
Right hand for Tavares. There’s an exchange in cloe and Theodorou launches a kick, but Tavares swoops for a takedown and gets Theodorou down.
Theodorou moves to Tavares back as he’s in a turtled position, but ‘The Spartan’ does well to work his way back to his feet and get back to striking range.
Kick upstairs from Theodorou is blocked by Tavares. Theodorou reaches for a takedown, but settles for the clinch. Tavares pressing him to the cage though and then they jockey for position before splitting up.
Front kick to the body from Theodorou. Now one to the leg. Right hand lands for Tavares. Left for Theodorou.
Another clinch initiated by Theodorou. Tavares lands a solid knee to the body. Another couple of knees land for Tavares. They break apart and Theodorou launches a kick upstairs.
Theodorou with another kick. Now a body kick from Tavares. Kick off the upper arm for Theodorou. Another kick to the body for him, then one to the other side and Tavares looking to respond with punches as the round ends.
Leg kick for Tavares knocks Theodorou off-balance a little. Now Theodorou with a kick off his own. He’s looking for a takedown now, but not managing to get Tavares so far.
However, Theodorou drives to the cage and presses Tavares there. He continues looking for the takedown, but Tavares stuffs his takedown and Theodorou lands awkwardly on his face.
Back on the feet they go and Tavares gets the better of an exchange. Theodorou back into the clinch and walks Tavares over to the cage. Theodorou backs off the clinch with a punch.
Theodorou with an elbow strike that’s blocked. Theodorou lands a takedown, but Tavares immediately gets to his feet. Theodorou keeping Tavares head down though and landing some knees to his shoulders before he gets fully upright and moves away.
Another clinch, but not too much doing from here this time. Theodorou continuing to utilize his kicking game from range. Tavares misses with a head kick.
Oblique kicks from Theodorou now. He tries for a takedown, but Tavares greets him with a knee to stifle that attempt. Leg kick for Theodorou.
Head kick attempt from Tavares. Left hook lands for Theodorou at the end of the round as Tavares comes charging in.
Tavares doubles up with the jab to start, but Theodorou is in on a takedown. Tavares stuffs that one, but Theodorou goes straight back in for another attempt and this time he hoists Tavares up and brings him down.
Tavares proving to be difficult to keep down though and he’s soon partially back up. Theodorou not giving up on the attempt and Tavares attempts a switch that doesn’t quite pay off, but allows him to stand.
Theodorou remains clinched up and is working for yet another takedown and lands it. Tavares back up again and Tavares landing a few knees before working to a single leg attempt.
Tavares defends that and improves his position so that he’s eventually able to take Theodorou’s back with more than 90 seconds remaining.
Tavares trying for a rear-naked choke, but it’s more across Theodorou’s face than anything else. Theodorou free from that and scrambles.
Tavares clinging on to an arm here in a position where Theodorou could get on top. He briefly does, but Tavares performs a nice switch to get back on top.
They scramble to their feet and both men are looking to land big shots at the round comes to a close.
Extremely close fight here, but the judges have come to a unanimous decision that Tavares is the winner (29-28 x3).