Dustin Porier emerged victorious in a bloody battle with Anthony Pettis in the main nevent of UFC Fight Night 120 in Virginia tonight, with the end coming by way of TKO, though it appeared that ‘Showtime’ tapped out.
The main event of the evening is underway in Virginia!
Pettis with an immediate side kick to the body. Poirier taking the center of the cage as Pettis lands a leg kick. Now a body kick.
Poirier feeling out with the jab and then lands a light leg kick. Flying knee attempt from Pettis doesn’t quite find a home. Nice jab from Poirier and then transitions to a takedown, which he sticks.
Poirier trying to keep Pettis down against the cage. Pettis thinking about a guillotine choke, but meanwhile Poirier was trying to pass his guard.
Pettis suddenly transitions to a kimura, but Poirier isn’t phased by it and eventually ‘Showtime’ gives up on it and retreats to his full guard.
Poirier with some ground and pound, but then he stands over Pettis and the former champ does a nice job of sweeping him. Poirier potentially thinking about a leg lock, but it’s not long before they are both back on the feet.
Both fighters landing big punches on the feet here. They clinch up briefly and the nPorier clips Pettis with a strike that seems to wobble him slightly. Pettis survives but he’s sporting some bleeding around his left eye.
Poirier sense that Pettis is in trouble and starts to pour on the pressure and stuns him again close to the cage. Pettis trying to get away with ‘The Diamond’ in close pursuit.
Poirier again lands with powerful shots and Pettis wilts a little again, but then bites down on his mouthpiece and starts swinging back at his opponent and clips him with a nice punch as the round is coming to a close.
They look to exchange strikes to start the second, but then Poirier switches to a takedown, gets him to the cage and then lands it.
Pettis trying for a triangle choke from his back, but Poirier escapes it. Poirier looking for ground and pound, but then he gets stuck in another tringle choke attempt. This time Poirier adjusts and starts to rain down heavy offense, opening up a nasty cut to Pettis’ eyebrow.
Poirier takes Pettis’ back and loosk for a choke, but Pettis manages to transition on top! Pettis still pouring with blood from that earlier cut, but this is a better position for him.
However, Poirier remains calm and soon finds himself back on top. There is so much blood now though that they are struggling to keep hold of each other.
Poirier back on his feet with Pettis clinched and then sweeps a leg to bring his opponent back to the mat. The action is a real mess right now due to the blood that’s being spilled by Pettis and with Poirier back on top the referee decides to take a pause and bring in a doctor to take a look at him.
They take a long time trying to clean him up and inspect the deep cut and then decide he’s ok to continue, so they go back to the ground where they were before with Poirier on top.
Poirier chipping away again with ground and pound and Pettis again locks in a triangle choke. It’s deeper this time, but Poirier manages to slip out and ends the round on top.
As in the other two rounds, after initially looking to strike Poirier quickly bursts into a takedown and gets Pettis down. Pettis immediately looking for submissions, but then finds space to stand. Poirier looking to bring him down again and Pettis tries to roll on top, but isn’t successful.
Poirier takes his back and starts working for the rear-naked choke. Pettis tries to roll on top, but fails and Poirier moves to full mount. However, just at that moment Pettis taps out. It’s not clear why at first as Poirier wasn’t landing strikes or going for a submission at the time.
Pettis appeared to injure himself while trying to escape that twisted up position under Poirier though and that earns ‘The Diamond’ what is officially declared as a TKO victory at 2.08mins of the third round.