The TUF 13 Finale took place earlier this evening at the Pearl at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event aired live on Spike TV at 9pm ET/6pm PT. The broadcast was preceded by a prelim special on Facebook starting at 6:30pm ET/3:30pm PT. All six preliminary fights were shown.
In the main event, Anthony Pettis looked to keep his title shot hopes alive against Clay Guida.
In the co-main event, Tony Ferguson and Ramsey Nijem went to battle for the TUF 13 crown.
Tim Credeur and Ed Herman returned to action in a middleweight bout.
Kyle Kingsbury took on Fabio Maldonado in a light heavyweight match-up.
TUF 13 cast members Chris Cope and Chuck O’Neil met in a welterweight match-up.
Results, recap and bonuses after the jump.
- Tony Ferguson def. Ramsey Nijem via KO (Punch) at 3:54 of Round 1
- Clay Guida def. Anthony Pettis via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Ed Herman def. Tim Credeur via TKO (Punches) at :48 in Round 1
- Kyle Kingsbury def. Fabio Maldonado via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Chris Cope def. Chuck O’Neil via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Jeremy Stephens def. Danny Downes via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-26, 30-26)
- Shamar Bailey def. Ryan McGillivray via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- George Roop def. Josh Grispi via TKO (Punch) at 3:14 of Round 3
- Clay Harvison def. Justin Edwards via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
- Scott Jorgensen def. Ken Stone via KO (Punches) at 4:01 in Round 1
- Reuben Duran def. Francisco Rivera via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:57 in Round 3
Recap & Thoughts
Chris Cope vs. Chuck O’Neil: What do you get when you appear on TUF, fail to make it to the finals, but throw down with everything you’ve got in just about every fight on the show? If you’re O’Neil and Cope, you get a second chance on the main card of the finale. Amidst a constant chorus of “Woo!” from the audience (Cope’s catchphrase, and apparently the tax we must pay to see him compete), these two pecked at each other for three full rounds with a variety of strikes. Early on it was competitive, but as O’Neil faded, Cope further removed the lid from the can of whoopass and began landing everything – spinning back-kicks, spinning backfists, overhands, everything. When time ran out Cope took the unanimous decision, which means we will be hearing “Woo!” again.
Kyle Kingsbury vs. Fabio Maldonado: Brazilians are a funny lot. Or, more accurately, Brazilians who are a product of their country’s dense grassroots MMA system. To succeed there, one is going to have either ridiculous skill in jiu-jitsu or ridiculous skill in boxing or Muay Thai, or, more often than not, both. Plus, when you finally get called up to fight in the United States, you’re going to have the kind of experience and calm under fire that’s priceless in the cage. Such is the case with Maldonado, who took on TUF 8 washout Kingsbury in a long, drawn out battle that went the distance. Standing fearlessly in the pocket and peppering the American with fists, Maldonado shut Kingsbury’s eye and met all of his takedowns with submission attempts and reversals. The only knock against his performance was his lack of urgency (really, the dude has been here before) inexplicable tactic of letting Kingsbury latch onto his neck and knee him repeatedly – a mistake that no doubt prompted the judges to unjustly award the unanimous decision to the American when time expired.
Tim Credeur vs. Ed Herman: We’ll probably never see Herman or Credeur fight for a title, but the TUF almost-weres are still good for the occasional face-punching party. Tonight, the party was hosted by Herman, who served his foe a tray of hors d’oeuvres that included uppercuts and… well, just uppercuts. Credeur fell, and the follow-up punches had the referee stepping in at :48 of the first round.
Clay Guida vs. Anthony Pettis: It must suck to earn a shot at the lightweight title with a WEC championship belt and a gravity-defying kick, only to have that shot wither away due to circumstances way beyond your control. But Pettis isn’t one to wallow in “suck”. No, he’s one to get off the bench and get out there and play – which, in this instance, means taking on an always-tough Guida and risking his status as “top contender once Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard fight for the twentieth time”. So how did it work out for him at the TUF 13 Finale? Well, Round 1 saw Pettis mostly fighting off his back, working for triangle chokes that Guida was constantly cognizant of. Pettis had slightly more success in the second frame by virtue of time spent on the feet, although he still could not avoid going to the ground. In the final round Pettis managed to finagle his way onto Guida’s back off a failed throw, but it was a short-lived advantage, as the “Carpenter” wiggled out and took Pettis’ back himself. The bell rang with Guida working for the choke, and the judges awarded him the unanimous decision. Sometimes gambles pay off, and sometimes they don’t. Poor Pettis goes home now with his claim to the lightweight crown lying in a wastepaper basket somewhere in the Palms Casino in Las Vegas.
Tony Ferguson vs. Ramsey Nijem: Ah yes, the ultimate Ultimate Fighter Season 13 fight, which pitted hard-charging Ferguson against hard-charging Nijem. From what we’ve seen of both men, we knew going in that Nijem could wrestle and throw big punches, and Ferguson could land punches with laser-like accuracy. What we did not know – and what this match-up showed us – is that Ferguson can wrestle as well, a talent he used to counter Nijem’s fistic onslaught whenever the heat became too much to bear. For a good portion of the opening frame Ferguson kept his opponent off balance, first with takedowns and then with leather from deep within the pocket. Then came the knockout, which saw Ferguson dropping Nijem with a left hook and following it up with a few more on the ground. The referee stepped in at 3:54 of Round 1, making Ferguson the latest – and clearly most dangerous in long while – Ultimate Fighter.
Scott Jorgensen vs. Ken Stone: It was a nice, competitive bantamweight battle that former contender Jorgenson and Stone gave us – that is, until Jorgenson found his foe’s “off” button while dropping bombs from within Stone’s guard. Prior to that knockout, though, the two were dinging each other up on the feet, and when Jorgenson nailed the takedown, there were submission attempts and ground and pound galore. But Jorenson’s got power, and at 4:01 of the first round, Stone was snoozing.
Josh Grispi vs. George Roop: It’s hard to believe that in the not-too-distant past Grispi was in line for a shot at Jose Aldo’s featherweight belt. I mean, he is tough and aggressive and relentless in his grappling assault, but, as Dustin Poirier showed us at UFC 125, he needs some serious work on his cardio and standup. Roop seemed to have gotten the memo on these shortcomings, and after weathering Grispi’s storm in the first part of Round 1, he spent the rest of the bout judiciously dispensing kicks, knees and knuckles to just about every part of Grispi’s body. Grispi did manage some offense in the third, getting Roop down and trying to do his thing. Unfortunately for him, Roop was soon back up and kicking his ass again, and the end came at 3:14 of the round when Roop landed a punch to the gut that sent Grispi to the canvas.
Submission of the Night: Reuben Duran
Knockout of the Night: Tony Ferguson
Fight of the Night: Kyle Kingsbury vs. Fabio Maldonado