Ross "The Real Deal" Pearson stepped foot inside the Octagon in this lightweight matchup versus the young Brazilian prospect, Edson Barboza Jr.
Pearson, a former Ultimate Fighter reality series winner, is a black belt in Taekwondo and a brown belt in Judo with excellent cardiovascular conditioning and developing stand-up skills.
Conversely, Baraboza is most well known for his lethal striking capabilities inside the Octagon. Junior has a black belt in Muay-Thai and six knockout victories to his credit.
An extremely exciting matchup between both athletes, this fight began as anticipated. Exchanging strikes after a brief feeling out period, both Pearson and Barboza landed a few punishing shots in the first stanza.
The second round began with a dynamite overhand right by Barboza which knocked the Brit to the ground. Quickly recovering, Pearson shook off the cobwebs and returned to his feet.
Trading punches, kicks, and knees, Barboza seemed to capture the advantage in this festive matchup between these two strikers. As entertaining as Round 2 began, the second period came to a close with both fighters looking to dominate in the third to secure a victory.
Round 3 began just as the previous two closed. Aggressive from the onset, Barboza displays a wide variety of strikes including spinning back kicks, punches, and flying knees.
Returning his own kicks and favorable punches, Pearson attempted to gain leverage in this highly exciting matchup.
Both competitors battled valiantly and Barboza was awarded the split-decision victory in this tremendous lightweight bout.
Pearson and Barboza both have bright futures within this division. Exhibiting stellar stand-up striking with a wide variety of offensive attacks, continued maturation by both young fighters will result in truly gifted MMA practitioners.
It may be time to test both Pearson and Barboza against a competitor ranked within the top 12 of the UFC lightweight division.
Keep an eye on the development of both young prospects.
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