2019 PFL Championship Play-by-Play, Results & Round-by-Round Scoring

By Tristen Critchfield Dec 31, 2019
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PFL 2019 New Fighter Showcase:
Brendan Loughnane vs. David Alex Duarte

Round 1

The featherweights touch gloves and this showcase bout is underway. Loughnane is beginning by feeding a steady diet of low kicks to his opponent. The Englishman alternates between inside and outside low kicks before having a high kick blocked. A long right hand connects for Loughnane. Duarte is switching stances on occasion as Loughnane continues to work the lead leg. The Contender Series alum stalks Duarte and lands a pair of solid right hands near the cage. Loughane goes with a side kick to the body followed by a liver kick, then finishes with a solid right. Duarte lands a hook to briefly back his opponent up. Loughnane is really mixing up his kicking attack, as he goes to a spinning back kick to the midsection. The combatants clinch after a Loughnane high kick is blocked, but they quickly separate. Loughnane lands a nice one-two during an exchange, while Duarte struggles to find the range on his punches. 10-9 Loughnane.

Round 2

Loughnane takes the center of the cage and attacks with a kick to the body followed by another low kick. Loughnane lands a low kick and then sticks Duarte with a jab. Loughnane is effective with a low kick-left jab combination. Moments later, a right hand connects. Loughnane backs up Duarte with another right hand. Loughnane finds the range with a kick to the body. Duarte, meanwhile, is struggling to pull the trigger against his opponent’s multi-faceted offense. A straight left lands for Duarte, but he can’t follow up on that success. Loughnane launches a flying knee, then exits the clinch with a left hand moments later. Loughnane is really pressuring in the final 30 seconds, and Duarte shoots for a telegraphed takedown attempt that the English fighter easily avoids. Loughnane lands another right hand before the frame concludes. 10-9 Loughnane.

Round 3

Loughnane lands a jab behind a blocked high kick at the outset. Duarte is throwing punches in more volume early, but he’s largely whiffing. A left hook from Duarte lands on Loughnane’s ear. Loughnane catches a kick and trips Duare to the mat near the fence about a minute into the round. Loughnane goes to work in his opponent’s half guard, landing some ground-and-pound before standing and allowing Duarte to return to his feet. Loughnane keeps the pressure on and lands a body kick. Duarte is winging hooks but isn’t landing much. A one-two connects for Loughnane, who follows up with a body kick. A low kick precedes a two-punch combination from Loughane, and the English fighter remains in total control. Duarte attempts to counter a body kick but again can’t find the range. Loughane ducks under a punch and lands a takedown with about a minute left in the contest. From half guard, Loughane does a nice job creating space to land some ground-and-pound. Duarte’s mouthpiece pops out with 20 seconds to go. Loughnane ends the fight attacking from top position. 10-9 Loughnane (30-27 Loughnane).

The Official Result

Brendan Loughnane def. David Alex Duarte via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) R3 5:00

PFL 2019 Light Heavyweight Championship:
Emiliano Sordi vs. Jordan Johnson

Round 1

Sordi takes the center of the cage, but Johnson lands an uppercut. Sordi comes back with a one-two. About 45 seconds in, Johnson shoots for a single-leg and gets Sordi to the mat. Sordi is right back up to his feet and on the attack, however. A jab by Johnson snaps his foe’s head straight back. A straight right hand by Sordi appears to hurt Johnson, and after eating another punch, the American drops low for a desperation single leg. Sordi is landing punches and hammerfists in rapid fire now as Johnson continues to hang on to his opponent’s leg for dear life. Referee Dan Miragliotta gives Johnson plenty of leeway to recover, but the UFC veteran is offering no means of intelligent defense as the damage accumulates. Johnson lets go of the leg and turtles up as Sordi continues to unload. The fight is halted and Sordi is the first $1 million winner of the evening.

The Official Result

Emiliano Sordi def. Jordan Johnson via TKO (Punches) R1 2:01

PFL 2019 Featherweight Championship:
Lance Palmer vs. Alex Gilpin

Round 1

Gilpin is a replacement for Daniel Pineda, who was removed from the finals due to a pending disciplinary hearing for a failed drug test in relation to his PFL playoff victories in October. It’s a tentative beginning as both featherweights hunt for an opening. Gilpin is pressuring and pokes Palmer in the left eye during an exchange. The action is halted and he’ll be examined by a physician. Palmer checks out and the fight resumes. Gilpin throws a couple high kicks, which creates an opening for Palmer to land a powerful takedown in the center of the cage. Palmer immediately passes to side control. Gilpin reverses the position and transitions to a north-south choke. Palmer is able to escape, but now Gilpin is on top in side control. Palmer explodes to his feet in a scramble, using an underhook to shove Gilpin off of him. Palmer backs Gilpin up with a pair of left hands. The defending check counters a kick with another left hand. Gilpin attempts a flying knee and is taken down near the fence. Gilpin briefly threatens with a guillotine, but Palmer negates it and assumes side control. “The Party” drops some left hands from top position as the round winds down. Gilpin can’t scramble up before the horn. 10-9 Palmer.

Round 2

Palmer presses forward and lands a left hand. Another two lefts land for Palmer as he attempts to combat Gilpin’s pressure. Palmer shoots for a double leg, pulls his man off the fence and lands in side control. Gilpin recovers full guard, then scrambles to his feet. A body kick connects for Gilpin. Palmer changes levels and gets another takedown, but Gilpin is immediately threatening with a choke. Palmer escapes and sets up shop in his opponent’s full guard. Palmer lands three punches to the ribs before attacking the head. Gilpin looks to create space with his guard, but Palmer dives back into top position. Palmer stands near the fence, and he drives Gilpin against the fence when he stands. Gilpin is able to turn off the fence and land a pair of knees to the body. Moments later Palmer gets another takedown and assumes top control with less than 30 seconds remaining. Palmer lands some shots to the body before the bell sounds. 10-9 Palmer.

Round 3

Gilpin again takes the center of the cage, but he eats a lead right hook from Palmer as he attempts to close the distance. Gilpin shoots for a double leg against the fence, but Palmer counters with a crotch-lift and dumps his opponent to the canvas. Now it’s Palmer on top again, floating over Gilpin’s guard as he lands punches to the ribs. Gilpin attempts to kick Palmer off him, but “The Party” dives right back on top. Gilpin continues to attempt to push off with his legs, but Palmer’s top pressure is relentless. Gilpin looks to sit up near the fence, but Palmer takes full mount briefly before his foe recovers guard. Palmer has been stifling this round. Palmer postures up and lands a left hand. Palmer mixes up his shots to the head and body as time ticks down. Gilpin has now answers as the period draws to a close. 10-9 Palmer.

Round 4

Gilpin immediately pressures forward and is taken down within 15 seconds. Palmer sets up in his adversary’s full guard, where he has been for much of this fight. Gilpin is doing his best to land punches from his back, but they don’t have much power behind them. Another scramble ensues, and again Palmer retakes top position at its conclusion. They scoot toward the cage, where Palmer attempts to pass to side control. Gilpin quickly recovers guard. Gilpin attempts to use the fence to stand, but Palmer drags him right back down. Gilpin utilizes a butterfly guard, but Palmer continues to smother. Gilpin is up to a knee but is put down on his back in a matter of seconds. Palmer passes to half guard, landing short punches as the round draws to a close. 10-9 Palmer.

Round 5

Gilpin lands a right hand to counter an inside leg kick from Palmer. Palmer lands a glancing right hand and moments later plants Gilpin on his back — this time about 45 seconds into the round. Palmer is in side control for a moment before Gilpin recovers full guard. Palmer is staying heavy on top while landing occasional short punches to the body and head. Palmer passes to side control after Gilpin attempts to force a scramble. Palmer drops some left hands to the head of his opponent as he maintains side control. Gilpin battles and regains full guard, but he’ll need to do more with two minutes left in the fight. Palmer continues to grind away, as a repeat as PFL featherweight champion is well within his grasp. Gilpin is still trying to stay active, but Palmer remains relentless with his top pressure. Palmer passes back to side control with 30 seconds left. Palmer fires off a few more left hands to the head and that’s where the fight will end. 10-9 Palmer (50-45 Palmer).

The Official Result

Lance Palmer def. Alex Gilpin via Unanimous Decision (50-43, 50-44, 50-44) R5 5:00

PFL 2019 Lightweight Championship:
Natan Schulte vs. Loik Radzhabov

Round 1

Schulte lands a low leg kick and Radzhabov attacks with a punching combination. Radzhabov again counters a low kick with a heavy combination. Radzhabov lands a heavy leg kick. Radzhabov continues to move forward, landing combinations. Schulte answers with a hard low kick. Schulte is picking at the legs of his foe, but so far Radzhabov continues to attack. Suddenly, Schulte buckles Radzhabov with a right hook. Radzhabov stumbles backward and Schulte attacks and drags his foe down near the fence. Radzhabov secures an underhook and scrambles his way up. Radzhabov lands a knee in the clinch. Radzhabov is throwing combinations in close quarters, while Schulte has gone back to attacking with the low calf kick. Radzhabov sticks a one-two and absorbs a low kick in return. Radzhabov lands a leg kick to the thigh. Radzhabov is throwing punches with volume as the round draws to a close. A right hook lands for Radzhabov, then a jab. Schulte briefly stuns Radzhabov with a short left just before the bell. 10-9 Schulte.

Round 2

Radzhabov immediately opens up by landing a hard right hand over the top. Radzhabov is attacking early and Schulte is on the retreat. Radzhabov stalks his man and lands an uppercut. Atter Radzhabov lands a right hand, Schulte is able to get his opponent to the canvas. Radzhabov shrugs Schulte off him with the Brazilian attempts to take his back. Radzhabov is relentless with his punching volume right now. Schulte changes levels from the clinch and gets Radzhabov down. Radzhabov is able to sweep and return to his feet. They’re battling in close quarters and Radzhabov lands a knee followed by a series of uppercuts. Schulte eats them all. Schulte forces the clinch against the cage. Radzhabov lands a right and an uppercut before Schulte drops low for a single leg. He give that up, and they’re back to fighting in a phone booth. Radzhabov digs to the body and Schulte lands a short left hook. Radzhabov lands a knee from the clinch and Schulte answers with one of his own. Radzhabov is still throwing, but his punches seem to have lost some steam. Radzhabov lands a takedown from a rear waistlock as time expires. 10-9 Radzhabov.

Round 3

The lightweights resume trading in close quarters. Radzhabov tries for a takedown but Schulte shrugs it off easily. Radzhabov lands an uppercut and a hook in close quarters. Schulte answers with a left hook. A low kick from Schulte makes Radzhabov move back, but they’re back to fighting in a phone booth. Both men continue to land consistently, but neither seems to be gaining a clear advantage. Radzhabov attempts to drive for a takedown, but Schulte maintains his balance against the fence. Radzhabov with a nice counter right hand. Schulte chops at Radzhabov’s leg and Radzhabov wobbles with the impact. Schulte stuffs a takedown easily. Schulte knocks his foe down with another low kick and he ends the frame in full mount. 10-9 Schulte.

Round 4

Schulte easily defends a shot, but Radzhabov drives his foe into the fence. They separate and Radzhabov is throwing with volume in close again. Radzhabov is exhibiting better movement early until Schulte buckles him with a low calf kick. The Brazilian easily takes full mount with about 3:30 left in the period. Schulte frames an arm-triangle choke but lets it go. Radzhabov is able to return to his feet, but a low kick by Schulte makes him stumble backward. Schulte stuffs a takedown and assumes full mount in an ensuing scramble. Radzhabov attempts to frame a kimura but Schulte defends it and continues to work from half guard. Radzhabov reverses position but gets caught in a guillotine. Radzhabov rolls to his side and is able to escape. However, Schulte is right back in top position with less than a minute remaining. The round ends with Schulte in control. 10-8 Schulte.

Round 5

Schulte immediately pressures forward as Radzhabov starts in the southpaw stance to protect his battered leg. Radzhabov shoots for a single leg as Schulte attempts a leg kick. Radzhabov turns the corner and gets his foe down briefly, but Schulte pops right back up. They’re back in the center of the cage, and Radzhabov lands some uppercuts in tight. Radzhabov changes levels and Schulte defends nicely with a wizzer. However, Radzhabov powers Schulte to the mat. Radzhabov is in side control now, but the Brazilian is able to recover full guard and then sweep into top position. Radzhabov scrambles back up and he’s stuffed on a takedown. Radzhabov secures a front headlock and Schulte defends near the fence. Schulte is down on his knees and Radzhabov briefly transitions to the back. Radzhabov is too high, however and he slips off the top, allowing Schulte to take top position. Radzhabov scoots toward the fence and looks to scramble to his feet. Schulte drags him bag down and looks to advance position. With 15 seconds left, Schulte has a rear waist lock and Radzhabov tries to roll out of danger. Instead, Schulte lands in full mount and finishes the fight in that position. 10-9 Radzhabov (48-46 Schulte).

The Official Result

Natan Schulte def. Loik Radzhabov via Unanimous Decision (49-44, 49-46, 48-47) R5 5:00

PFL 2019 Heavyweight Championship:
Ali Isaev vs. Jared Rosholt

Round 1

Rosholt opens the contest with a pair of leg kicks. Isaev just misses a spinning wheel kick. Isaev shoots behind a right hand and completes the takedown. Isaev moves to side control and Rosholt attempts to hold him close to prevent any damage. Isaev holds on to a side headlock from the position, and Rosholt slips free through the back door and returns to his feet. Rosholt presses Isaev into the cage, looking for an opening to land a takedown. Isaev turns him around and plants Rosholt on his back. Isaev gives up on a choke attempt as Rosholt works back to his feet. Rosholt turns Isaev off the fence and they eventually separate. Isaev throws a spinning back kick but it’s blocked. Rosholt responds with a leg kick. Another spinning back kick attempt by Isaev. The heavyweights exchange simultaneous leg kicks. Rosholt moves forward but Isaev changes levels for a takedown. Rosholt clamps on a guillotine, but Isaev isn’t in any serious trouble. The round ends in this position. 10-9 Isaev.

Round 2

A wheel kick opens the round for Isaev, but it’s only a glancing blow. Rosholt lands a counter left hand and then Isaev shoves the American to the canvas. Isaev just narrowly misses an illegal kick on his downed foe. Moments later, Isaev elevates Rosholt and slams him to the canvas. Isaev isolates Rosholt’s arm in a crucifix position and drops a series of left hands from above. Rosholt escapes the position and now Isaev is in half guard. Isaev maintains control from inside Rosholt’s half guard, landing occasional shots to the ribs of his opponent. Rosholt is showing no ability to return to his feet as Isaev continues to apply pressure from above. Isaev rides out the round from top position. 10-9 Isaev.

Round 3

As he has done previously, Isaev opens up with a spinning back kick, but it doesn’t land. Rosholt throws some heavy punches. Isaev changes levels and powers Rosholt to the canvas less than a minute into the period. Isaev is back in half guard, using forearm pressure on the neck and chin of his foe. Rosholt is able to scramble back up and shoot for a double leg takedown of his own. Isaev defends with a choke against the fence, and Rosholt relents. The heavyweights clinch against the fence, with Rosholt in control. They separate and Rosholt quickly forces another tie up. There’s not much action here as the heavyweights remain in the clinch. Isaev turns Rosholt into the fence, where he lands some short punches to the body. Dan Miragliotta has seen enough and orders the heavyweights to break. Rosholt lands a leg kick in the clinch, and Isaev responds with a solid right hand that backs his opponent up. They tie up in the center of the cage and Rosholt shoves Isaev back into the fence as the round ends. 10-9 Isaev.

Round 4

Isaev lands a spinning back wheel kick to the jaw of Rosholt. The blow isn’t clean, and the American is unfazed as he shoves Isaev into the cage. Rosholt drops low for a single leg, but Isaev defends well. Isaev with a knee to the midsection. Isaev lands a few more knees to the gut as Rosholt controls the position. Isaev pushes Rosholt back, lands an uppercut and forces a break. Rosholt quickly goes back into the clinch, where he’s content to lean on Isaev. Isaev stays busy landing knees while his back is to the cage. Isaev reverses position and shoves Rosholt to the fence. He drops down and puts Rosholt on his back. Isaev goes to work from inside half guard, landing periodic left hands. Isaev picks up the pace of his assault, landing left and right hands and Rosholt appears to be hurt. Isaev pours on the offense, and Rosholt is no longer defending himself. After a stream of unanswered blows, referee Dan Miragliotta has seen enough. This one is over.

The Official Result

Ali Isaev def. Jared Rosholt via TKO (Punches) R4 4:09

PFL 2019 Welterweight Championship:
David Michaud vs. Ray Cooper III

Round 1

Michaud tries a flying knee and eats a couple punches from Cooper as a result. Michaud lands a hook and Cooper secures a body lock. Michaud lands some hammerfists to the head as Cooper attempts to take his foe down. Cooper with double underhooks as he lands a pair of knees to the gut. Cooper still can’t get Michaud down as they continue to battle against the cage. Cooper lands a knee and Michaud grimaces as he is taken down. It’s unclear what hurt Michaud as Cooper assumes top position. Cooper with some right hands to the ribs before passing to half guard. Cooper continues to stay heavy on top as we approach the 1:00 mark. Cooper isn’t doing much to land offense from above, but he’s being allowed to keep the position. Cooper finishes the round on top threatening with an arm-triangle choke. 10-9 Cooper.

Round 2

A right hand and a left hook connect for Michaud, and Cooper quickly shoots for a takedown. Michaud defends and they remain standing. Michaud lands a straight right to the body. Michaud stumbles forward after missing a right hand and Cooper tries to capitalize with a takedown. It doesn’t work and Michaud has Cooper in trouble as he tags him with heavy punches on the break. Cooper fails on a single leg, but the Hawaiian is able to get a rear-body lock and take his opponent down near the fence. Michaud stands and attempts to break Cooper’s grip. Cooper transitions to a single leg and drags Michaud down. Michaud is back up but Cooper maintains his grip. Cooper hurts Michaud with a big punch to the liver. Michaud crumples to the canvas and Cooper unloads with ground-and-pound on his fallen foe until the fight is halted. After coming up short in 2018, Cooper is able to win a PFL championship the second time around.

The Official Result

Ray Cooper III def. David Michaud via TKO (Punches) R2 2:56

PFL 2019 Women’s Lightweight Championship:
Kayla Harrison vs. Larissa Pacheco

Round 1

Pacheco is looking to land her right hand but comes up short on her first couple offerings. The fighters accidentally clash heads, but neither is worse for wear. Harrison catches a kick and secures a body lock against the fence. The American Top Team product trips her opponent to the canvas as Pacheco closes her guard. Harrison creates space to land punches from above. Harrison has passed to side control, and she drops some short left hands. Pacheco is able to recover half guard. Harrison applies shoulder pressure while remaining active with left hands. Harrison is back to side control now with 1:30 remaining. A scramble ensues but Pacheco can’t escape the position. Harrison is still on top in half guard, and she passes to full mount with 20 seconds left. She postures up and lands some ground-and-pound. Pacheco is able to stand just before the end of the round. 10-9 Harrison.

Round 2

Pacheco counters an inside low kick with a right hand but it doesn’t land clean. Harrison lands a left and then explodes for a double-leg takedown against the fence. Harrison remains heavy on top as she attempts to pass guard. She moves to full mount with more than 3:00 remaining. From there, the Olympic gold medalist postures up and appears to be setting up an armbar, but Pacheco smartly scrambles out of danger. Harrison is attempting to take Pacheco’s back. She has one hook in but is impeded by the fence. Harrison is able to work her way to the Brazilian’s back and she has both hooks in now. Harrison transitions back to full mount. Pacheco recovers half guard, but Harrison remains in control. Harrison is back to full mount, where she lands some short lefts to the side of the head. She attempts to posture up to land heavier ground-and-pound, but Pacheco defends well enough. Harrison remains in full mount, however, and she’ll end the frame dropping more punches on her helpless foe. 10-8 Harrison.

Round 3

Harrison wastes little time shooting for a takedown. Pacheco defends against the cage and counters a takedown to end up in control. Pacheco lands a big knee as Harrison powers her way back up. Harrison presses Pacheco against the fence and eventually drags her foe down. The American is in the full guard of her opponent near the fence. Harrison lands some short body punches, stands and attempts to land a big left as she clears Pacheco’s legs. Harrison passes to half guard and pulls Pacheco away from the fence. Harrison postures up and drops a big left hand. Pacheco attempts to land some hammerfists from her back. Harrison remains busy working punches to the head and body before standing. Harrison hesitates for a moment before diving back into Pacheco’s guard, and that’s where the round ends. 10-9 Harrison.

Round 4

Pacheco lands a nice right hand early on, one of her few positive moments of the bout so far. Harrison whiffs on a big overhand left. Pacheco counters a missed left hand by Harrison. Harrison explodes for a powerful double-leg takedown and plants Pacheco on her back with a little more than 3:00 remaining. Harrison now works to take her foe’s back, and she tags Pacheco with some hard lefts to the face. Pacheco is able to turn and now Harrison ends up on top in half guard. Harrison moves to side control, where she lands some punches before the Brazilian recovers full guard. Harrison stands and Pacheco is able to make her opponent stumble with a sweep from her back. That allows Pacheco to stand, but nothing comes of it before the bell. 10-9 Harrison.

Round 5

The first minute is all on the feet, with neither lightweight able to connect. Pacheco is following Harrison around the cage, and Harrison has a takedown stuffed at the 3:15 mark. Pacheco connects with a one-two combination. Pacheco continues to stalk and she sprawls on a takedown. Pacheco tries to lock in a guillotine, but Harrison defends it and drives her opponent into the fence. They separate and Harrison throws a kick on the exit. Harrison lands a left as Pacheco continues to pressure. Finally, Harrison executes a hip toss at about the 1:30 mark. Harrison applies heavy pressure, moving from side control to half guard to full mount. Harrison wants to isolate an arm, but Pacheco is able to scramble out. Harrison briefly takes her foe’s back, but Pacheco rolls to her back. Harrison ends the fight on top. 10-9 Harrison (50-44 Harrison).

The Official Result

Kayla Harrison def. Larissa Pacheco via Unanimous Decision (50-43, 50-45, 50-45) R5 5:00
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