LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 31: Michael Chiesa makes weight during The Ultimate Fighter Live weigh in at the Palms Casino Resort on May 31, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images via UFC.com)
The finals of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 15 went down tonight to determine whether or not Michael Chiesa or Al Iaquinta would go home with a six-figure Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) contract, a glass trophy, and their first Octagon victory under their belts.
Both men won four fights to get to this point but they also had to fight five times within a 13 week span, this having been the final showdown. They were also both members of Urijah Faber's team, so they trained together throughout the entire season. That just meant they both knew exactly what they wanted to do and exactly what was coming at them.
Ultimately (see what I did there), it was Michael Chiesa's takedowns and mat work that ruled the day, as he put Iaquinta on the floor, took his back and secured the rear-naked choke for the win.
The best story in the TUF house, a man who lost his father the day after he won his fight to get into the competition, pulled it out in the end. His mother was there to celebrate with him, beaming with pride.
As expected, Iaquinta came out aggressive, pushing Chiesa around the cage. This led to a takedown attempt, which was likely the plan all along. He got it, but not enough to work with and they reset back to standing.
This pattern continued throughout the next minute or so until Chiesa jumped on Iaquinta's back and got both hooks in. He started working for the choke with three full minutes remaining in the round.
And with enough time to work, Chiesa sunk it in. Iaquinta did his best to hold out as long as he could but the brain can only go so long without blood pumping to it. Within seconds, he was put to sleep.
Ladies and gentlemen, Michael Chiesa is your Ultimate Fighter for season 15. Take a bow. You earned it.
Remember, too, to check out MMAmania.com's complete ongoing coverage of the TUF 15 Finale by clicking here.