TUF 16 Finale Fight Card
- Roy Nelson vs. Matt Mitrione LATEST UPDATE
- Mike Ricci vs. Colton Smith
- Pat Barry vs. Shane del Rosario
- Melvin Guillard vs. Jamie Varner
- Dustin Poirier vs. Jonathan Brookins
- Mike Pyle vs. James Head
- Marcos Vinicius Borges Pancini vs. Johnny Bedford
- Rustam Khabilov vs. Vinc Pichel
- T.J. Waldburger vs. Nick Catone
- Reuben Duran vs. Hugo Viana
- John Cofer vs. Mike Rio
- Tim Elliott vs. Jared Papazian
Sherdog.com will report from The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas at approximately 5:35 p.m. ET/2:35 p.m. PT with play-by-play and live results of the UFC TUF 16 Finale which is headlined by a heavyweight grudge match pitting Roy Nelson against Matt Mitrione.
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Papazian rushes toward Elliott right after the bell but quickly gets taken down. Elliott tries a guillotine and lets it go just as quickly. Elliott takes a kick to the body and tangles up with Papazian, winding up on top in the ensuing scramble with Papazian trying to squirm out underneath. Elliott looks for a topside guillotine, gets pushed out by Papazian and comes back down to his opponent’s guard. Another scramble and Elliott again winds up on top, but gives up the position in order to attempt another guillotine. Papazian is safe from the choke but caught in a headlock as he leans from Elliott’s right to left. Papazian pops his head free and Papazian tries to shove him into the cage. Papazian goes to throw a knee as Elliott is falling backward, but the strike lands just as Elliott’s posterior hits the ground. Elliott looks to be dazed and out of sorts but it allowed to continue. He clubs Papazian with a straight left and the momentum of the fight turns in an instant. Elliott tries to finish with punches, can’t; he takes the back, can’t secure it, stays on top and winds up in mount. He gets some ground-and-pound off before Papazian escapes with about a minute to go. Papazian clinches Elliott into the fence to throw knees but Elliott escapes and charges just before the horn signals the end of a wild first frame.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-8 Elliott
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-8 Elliott
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-8 Elliott
Elliott seems to have shaken the cobwebs off and comes out strong in round two, first looking to box and then taking Papazian to the canvas. He busts Papazian up with stiff shots on the ground, and when they get back to their feet, Papazian is leaking blood from his nose and forehead. Elliott spins him back down to the ground but Papazian is quicker to pop up this time. Elliott keeps him on the fence, doesn’t get any offense going before Papazian shoves him away. Elliott leaps at Papazian with a body kick and follows with a one-two. Now it’s Papazian coming forward with an uppercut, and Elliott feints a spinning kick. Papazian grazes with a jumping knee, follows it with an uppercut as the round hits the 2:00 mark. Papazian stifles the next takedown attempt and moves backward to dodge punches. Elliott gets off a kick to the breadbasket and pulls up short on some flicking punches. A left-right-left combo from Elliott precedes a single-leg which has Papazian struggling to his feet at the horn.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Elliott
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Elliott
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Elliott
Elliott shoots for a takedown, then tries to snare Papazian in a guillotine mid-sprawl. Papazian denies the choke and shoves him back to take top position, so Elliott goes behind Papazian’s back to grab for a foot. They stall out in an awkward position, neither man with an advantage, so ref Chris Tognoni stands them up. Papazian gets dropped with another straight punch and Elliott hops into full mount almost instantly to try and finish. Papazian is covering up, turning away and defending himself, but not offering anything in return as Elliott rains downs punch after punch. Sinking in his hooks, Elliott takes back mount and keeps the punishment coming, further bloodying Papazian, who flips back over. Elliott goes from mount to the back again and works for the rear-naked choke with 1:45 left in the fight. Papazian is a bloody mess, hanging on to Elliott’s right arm with both hands to defend the choke. Elliott relents and Papazian struggles back up, only to eat a nasty elbow and get taken down again, allowing Elliott to finish on top with ground-and-pound. Papazian and Elliott walk toward each other after the horn, jawing, and have to be separated by the ref.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-8 Elliott (30-25 Elliott)
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Elliott (30-26 Elliott)
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-8 Elliott (30-25 Elliott)
Official result: Tim Elliott def. Jared Papazian via Unanimous Decision (30-25, 30-25, 30-26) R3 5:00
John Cofer vs. Mike Rio
Rio presses his man into the fence and leans on Cofer, keeping things slow early with occasional dirty boxing. They break up after a minute and it’s the southpaw Cofer on his back foot, using head movement and popping the flat-footed Rio with punches. The “Wolverine” hits the deck but Cofer can’t capitalize, as Rio once again leans him against the cage and goes low for a leg. Cofer shoves him off and they’re back to striking with 2:00 left in the round. Cofer comes over the top with a straight left and Rio decides to shoot again. He pulls Cofer to the ground and Cofer quickly begins throwing elbows and punches from his open guard. Rio pops him with a left hand and Cofer uses a heel hook attempt to sweep to top position. Cofer drops a few elbows and Rio closes his guard, then throws a hard elbow from underneath. Cofer punches at Rio’s body and Rio tries a heel hook of his own just before the horn.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Cofer
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Rio
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Cofer
Rio comes at Cofer aggressively, swinging hard, hooking punches and hitting a takedown after about a minute. Cofer gets Rio to back out with an omoplata and they stall out as Rio stands over his prone opponent. Ref Kim Winslow wants a restart and Cofer stands up to begin socking Rio with his left hand again. Rio lands a left of his own and Cofer responds with a hard kick to the body. Botching a trip attempt, Rio finds his back pressed into the fence with Cofer throwing hard knees in the clinch. Rio turns him around with the Thai plum, Cofer escapes and Rio shoots a long single-leg. The takedown doesn’t come at first but Rio keeps after it and brings Cofer to the ground before taking his back. Rio has both hooks in with one minute left in the round; he loses the position when Cofer stands and shakes him off. Cofer on top now, and he manages a couple elbows before Rio pushes him off and stands up. It’s arm punches from Rio and more knees from Cofer as the round ends.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Rio
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Rio
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Rio
Cofer cracks Rio with another straight left hand and turns away a takedown, but Rio spins him to the ground on the second attempt. Cofer puts Rio in his closed guard and swings his legs up for a triangle. Rio shucks the legs and passes to side control, north-south position, back to side control. He leans right to left on Cofer and elbows the body while Cofer tries to buck free. Rio is attacking Cofer’s left arm; he loses the grip but gains an armbar as Cofer tries to escape and Rio comes over the back. Cofer stacks him up and frees his arm, and now it’s Cofer on top with 1:40 remaining. Rio catches Cofer sleeping with his arm laid in Rio’s guard. Rio sits up and then rolls to his back again, stretching out Cofer’s right arm while his left is trapped as well. Cofer can only wiggle his fingers to signal his submission to the armbar.
Official result: Mike Rio def. John Cofer via Submission (Armbar) R3 4:11
It’s a tentative start to the fight with both bantamweights feinting in the orthodox stance. After 55 seconds, Viana blitzes and knocks Duran to the ground with a left hook. Duran recovers quickly and stands back up, but he’s soon dazed by another shot from the Brazilian, this time a right hand. Duran closes the gap and pushes Viana against the fence with double underhooks. Viana gets over-unders and turns Duran around, then gets off the fence. Viana takes the center and stalks Duran around the outside, swinging hard punches but not connecting. A right hand from Viana lands to the body, and the next one comes over the top to drop Duran again. One more time, Duran gets back to his feet, apparently having shaken off the shot quickly. The next overhand right from Viana sends Duran face-planting, and referee Steve Mazzagatti steps in to call the fight.
Official result: Hugo Viana def. Reuben Duran via KO (Punch) R1 4:05
The welterweights clinch up and Waldburger takes the outside, shoving Catone against the fence with an overhook. Catone walks off the fence and throws knees in the clinch, turning Waldburger around. They switch positions again, Waldburger trying for a takedown but settling for pushing Catone on the outside. Now midway through the round, Catone puts Waldburger on the ground. Waldburger hops up but can’t escape Catone’s pressure against the fence. Now a kimura attempt puts Catone on the defensive and Waldburger pulls guard in an attempt to finish the armlock. They stand back up with Catone holding Waldburger’s back via waistlock, so Waldburger takes a knee, swerves around and reverses. Catone hits the switch and takes Waldburger’s back before the round expires.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Catone
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Catone
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Catone
Catone has a left high kick deflected, but Waldburger comes straight forward to drop Catone with a stiff right hand. Waldburger follows the dazed New Jerseyan to the ground and grabs for an arm, then switches to a triangle. Waldburger throws a few elbows, adjusts the hold, and it’s now a deep, deep triangle. Catone still appears to be conscious even as Waldburger pulls on his head to finish. A few seconds more in the choke and referee Herb Dean recognizes that Catone has gone out cold.
Official result: T.J. Waldburger def. Nick Catone via Technical Submission (Triangle Choke) R2 1:04
Khabilov gets inside on a single-leg, struggles with Pichel against the fence for a moment and then spins the Californian to the ground. Pichel struggles back up once, gets suplexed back to the ground, gets up again and Khabilov ragdolls him onto his head. Pichel stands once again, but Khabilov just trips him down and briefly takes full mount. Pichel gives up his back, stands and Khabilov suplexes him onto his head, this time appearing to daze Pichel badly. A few more punches from Khabilov knock Pichel cold and ref Chris Tognoni waves this one off. Khabilov records and impressive knockout in his UFC debut.
Official result: Rustam Khabilov def. Vinc Pichel via KO (Suplex and Punches) R1 2:15
Bedford elevates Vinicius with a single-leg and the Brazilian snares Bedford’s head in a loose guillotine. Extracting his head, Bedford sets up in his opponent’s open guard while Vinicius scoots backward toward the fence. Side control for Bedford now but he doesn’t hold the position long as Vinicius squirms underneath, then closes up his guard. Vinicius uses butterfly guard to push Bedford away, and Bedford opts to let Vinicius back up. Bedford sticks his jab in Vinicius’ face, has an uppercut blocked. A right hand from Bedford sends Vinicius to the ground and Bedford tries to pound him out from top position. Vinicius survives the assault but Bedford is able to take side control and works for a crucifix. Vinicius gets back to his feet and is met by knees from Bedford, who digs an underhook and puts Vinicius on the fence to finish the round.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Bedford
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Bedford
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Bedford
Bedford gets a kick in the groin just a few seconds into the round and takes a minute to recover. When they resume, it’s Bedford pressing the action, forcing Vinicius to back up toward the cage. Bedford lands a straight right and Vinicius crumbles with his back to the cage. The Brazilian grasps for a leg as Bedford swarms him with punches and lands a soccer kick to the body. A couple more punches make Vinicius go limp and ref Kim Winslow is forced to intervene.
Official result: Johnny Bedford def. Marcos Vinicius via KO (Punches) R2 1:00
Mike Pyle vs. James Head
The rangy welterweights throw long punches, with Head pushing the action and keeping Pyle on the perimeter, then scoring the first significant strikes of the fight with straight punches. Another combo lands for Head and Pyle responds with a hard right hook. Still on the outside, Pyle eats another right hand before being muscled into the fence. Pyle grabs the Thai plum and drills Head with a knee to the body, then one to the face that sends the Oklahoman to the ground right away. Pyle socks him with a half-dozen follow-up punches before ref Steve Mazzagatti steps in to rescue Head from any further damage.
Official result: Mike Pyle def. James Head via TKO (Knee and Punches) R1 1:55
The southpaws come out swinging punches with Brookins throwing to the body and Poirier swinging combinations to the head. Brookins gets Poirier against the fence and appears to daze him with a right hand, and they explode in a flurry of punches with Brookins swinging wildly, trying to hurt Poirier further. Poirier weathers the storm and slows the pace with a double-leg. Brookins steps out, waits for Poirier to come forward and zaps the “Diamond” with another wide right. Standing elbow from Brookins now and Poirier responds with a hook as they move off the fence. Brookins lands a left straight and Poirier gets off a good right hook before Brookins hustles him into the fence. They don’t stay there long, and when they split, it’s Poirier on the advance, trying to mug Brookins with uppercuts in the Thai clinch. A hook clips Brookins, who staggers but stays on his feet. Poirier presses him against the fence, steps back and unloads with punches. Brookins shoots and leaves his neck exposed, and Poirier wastes no time in slapping on a brabo/D’arce choke. It’s immediately tight and Brookins has no choice but to tap out.
Official result: Dustin Poirier def. Jonathan Brookins via Submission (Brabo Choke) R1 4:15
The UFC has announced that Jamie Varner has fallen ill and this fight has been canceled.
Del Rosario opens up with a kick to the body and Barry returns fire with a leg kick inside. Barry ducks under a punch as del Rosario comes forward and clinches up. Del Rosario gets the outside position as they tie up on the fence and works Barry’s thigh with knees. A single-leg almost downs Barry, who is able to stay vertical with the help of an unseen cage grab. Del Rosario stands him up and grinds away with thumping punches to the body and knees inside. They break off and del Rosario lands a leg kick, answered by a cracking kick from Barry. Charging for another takedown attempt, del Rosario winds up working for the double-leg against the fence. He gets the takedown on second effort and hops on Barry’s back, then tries to finish with a no-hooks rear-naked choke. Del Rosario is high on Barry’s back and slips off when he tries to finish with an armbar. He switches to an omoplata, then gives that up to take back control again. Barry sweeps on top just before the horn.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 del Rosario
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 del Rosario
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 del Rosario
Del Rosario comes forward swinging an uppercut. Barry stuns del Rosario with a huge overland left, smells blood and blitzes. A right hook lands on the temple and another right on the jaw puts del Rosario down for the count, slumped against the fence.
Official result: Pat Barry def. Shane del Rosario via KO (Punches) R2 0:26
Colton shoots a single-leg and gets sprawled on, then elbowed in the side of the head by Ricci. He stands back up and puts Ricci on the fence with underhooks, then drags him to the ground and hops on the kneeling Ricci’s back. Ricci stands up with the wrestler still latched on his back, but Smith loses his hooks. Ricci kneels and tries to scrape Smith off with the help of the cage. Smith gets his hooks back in and Ricci is forced to play defense as Smith hunts for the rear-naked choke. Ricci sits up and Smith has his back to the fence, punching over Ricci’s shoulder and trying to soften him up. Suddenly, Ricci twists around and stands back up. Smith wraps him up again and uses a waistlock to drag him back down.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Smith
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Smith
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Smith
Ricci appears to catch a kick in the groin, but ref Steve Mazzagatti doesn’t recognize it and Smith attacks. Ricci continues to protest even as Smith grabs a single-leg and moves him around the outside. Smith can’t get him down and they clinch on the fence. He takes Ricci down on the second effort, then moves to take his back when Ricci posts and tries to stand. Ricci defends the hooks, so Smith stays on the rear and knees him in the thigh. One hook in for Smith now and he goes for the RNC. He doesn’t have his arm under the throat and Ricci is able to escape out the backdoor. Smith gets the waistlock as they stand and tosses Ricci right back down. Smith is again unable to secure the choke but remains glued to Ricci’s back until the end of the frame.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Smith
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Smith
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Smith
It’s just a matter of seconds before Smith has Ricci on the ground again and is working to secure the Canadian’s back. Ricci again tries to escape by leaning into the cage, but it only allows Smith to get his hooks in. Smith tries the RNC, still can’t get under the chin. Now Smith comes off to the right side, threatening with an arm-triangle choke. He ditches it in favor of full mount, Ricci rolls and they’re right back where they started. Two minutes left now and it’s looking like a lost cause for Ricci, who can’t get away from Smith’s stifling back control. Ricci goes for broke with an armbar attempt in the last 20 seconds, but Smith slips loose and fittingly finishes the fight on Ricci’s back.
Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Smith (30-27 Smith)
TJ De Santis scores the round 10-9 Smith (30-27 Smith)
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Smith (30-27 Smith)
Official result: Colton Smith def. Mike Ricci via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26) R3 5:00
Herb Dean is the third man in the cage for tonight’s main event. The southpaw Mitrione snaps off jabs while Nelson tries to get through with big right hands. Mitrione kicks Nelson’s body, has a high kick blocked, and Nelson hugs him against the fence. They move slowly along the outside as Nelson tries to trip him up. Mitrione turns it around and sends a knee up the middle, then exits with an elbow. Mitrione has another head kick blocked but gets through with a snappy right hand. Nelson swarms Mitrione with punches and “Meathead” loses his mouthpiece but keeps fighting, kicking at Nelson’s body and legs. Nelson stuns Mitrione with an uppercut and knocks him to the floor with a left-right combo. Mitrione goes fetal, covering up while Nelson bombs with punches from the standing position. Referee Dean recognizes that Mitrione is finished and steps in to end the assault.
Official result: Roy Nelson def. Matt Mitrione via TKO (Punches) R1 2:58