While the Ultimate Fighter 27 Finale at the Pearl Theatre in Paradise, Nevada, on Friday provided plenty of action, the fight of the night was the middleweight bout between Brad Tavares and Israel Adesanya.
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After all, Adesanya (13-0) was putting his perfect record on the line against Tavares (17-4).
Below is a look at this weekend"s action from Nevada.
Full Ultimate Fighter 27 Finale Results
Middleweight: Gerald Meerschaert def. Oskar Piechota (submission)
Featherweight: Steven Peterson def. Matt Bessette (split decision)
Featherweight: Bryce Mitchell def. Tyler Diamond (majority decision)
Lightweight: John Gunther def. Allan Zuniga (majority decision)
Lightweight: Luis Pena def. Richie Smullen (submission)
Flyweight: Montana De La Rosa def. Rachael Ostovich (submission)
Middleweight: Alessio Di Chirico def. Julian Marquez (split decision)
Flyweight: Roxanne Modafferi def. Barb Honchak (TKO)
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Featherweight: Alex Caceres def. Martin Bravo (split decision)
Featherweight: Brad Katona def. Jay Cucciniello (unanimous decision)
Lightweight: Mike Trizano def. Joe Giannetti (split decision)
Middleweight: Israel Adesanya def. Brad Tavares (unanimous decision)
Would this be the night Adesanya suffered his first career loss? While there were moments early on where it appeared as though that might be the case, Adesanya walked out of the Octagon victorious once again.
The first round featured both fighters exchanging blows throughout, with neither gaining much of an edge. The action heated up when Adesanya made a bold strike near the end of the round to bring both fighters to the mat, although Tavares was able to counter.
Thank you, Israel Adesanya, for bringing some fun back into this event. I don’t even care if it fails spectacularly.
Adesanya came out stronger in the second and seemed to gain some control of the fight. His quick strikes made it difficult for Tavares to protect himself. Adesanya did, however, receive a warning for fingers to the face, but by the end of Round 3, he had gained a sizable edge in significant strikes.
Body shot drops Tavares!
Stylebender lands a nasty liver kick, but Tavares recovers! #TUF27 https://t.co/YyAufXq5gN
HUGE right hand backs Tavares up.
Stylebender looking sharp through three rounds! #TUF27 https://t.co/xBFJBiAoki
Tavares—who had won his previous four fights—didn"t give in, though. He came out aggressive to start Round 4 and had Adesanya in a tough spot. But by the end of the round, it was Tavares who was bloodied, as Greg Beacham of the Associated Press pointed out:
Israel Adesanya looks like the truth. He just opened a big cut on Brad Tavares' eyebrow with a vicious short elbow.
That elbow still ...
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Stylebender #TUF27 https://t.co/zXeRXU4N5C
Tavares put up a good fight, but the 6"4" Adesanya"s size and quickness was too much over the course of five rounds. As a result, the New Zealander kept his perfect record intact.