The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 15 may have come to a close with the live Finale taking place tonight (Fri., June 1, 2012) at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, but the card wasn't just for TUF contestants.
Indeed, a featherweight fracas was also booked for the card as Max Holloway made his return after dropping his UFC debut to take on Pat Schilling, who also lost in his first sojourn inside the Octagon. Both men were submitted in the first round.
The going was better this time out, at least for Holloway, who battered and beat down Schilling all over the through three full rounds. By the time it was deep into round three, Schilling was lying on the mat simply waiting for the horn to save him.
Once it came, the judges decision to unanimously award the victory to Holloway by scores of 30-27 across the board was obvious. Maybe as obvious as the pink slip that is probably headed Schilling's way.
Both guys were light on their feet to start. Holloway tried to emulate Justin Lawrence with a head kick knockout but Schilling actually bothered to keep his hands up, unlike John Cofer.
He also recognized his shortcomings standing and grabbed a single leg for a takedown, which he properly executed by turning the corner. Unfortunately, he was immediately reversed and Holloway used his superior position to get back to his feet.
Schilling decided to get cute and throw a spinning back fist and he damn near landed it to excellent results. He just missed, though, and Holloway turned up the pressure. Make no mistake, Schilling was more than willing to exchange in a fire fight but he wasn't having the success he needed to win the fight, instead defending against the fence after a few hard body shots.
The first round ended with Holloway getting buck with a big jumping knee in the corner.
The pressure and pace didn't slow in the second round, as Holloway continued pressing the action while Schilling remained flat footed and on the defensive. The punishment he endured through the first round, especially the many shots to the body he absorbed, took their toll with minutes remaining and Schilling simply laid down. I mean that literally.
There were times when he wasn't doing anything but laying on the mat, waiting for the end. Unfortunately for him, he had another round to get through.
Schilling showed plenty of heart in the final frame, lasting five more minutes despite a shoulder injury, which he told his corner about in between rounds. But Holloway was just too much and he earned the rightful decision.
Remember, too, to check out MMAmania.com's complete ongoing coverage of the TUF 15 Finale by clicking here.