Two of the UFC's most promising featherweight talents collided last night (June 22, 2012) as Cub Swanson battled Ross Pearson in the opening bout of the UFC on FX 4 main card in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Ross Pearson entered the bout with all the hype, having been a previous winner of The Ultimate Fighter who had dropped down to 145 pounds after a close decision loss to Edson Barboza.
Both men were on one-fight winning streaks, but it would be Cub Swanson who surprisingly not only reigned surpreme, but actually scored a stoppage victory over "The Real Deal."
So how did the Greg Jackson-trained fighter pull it off? And what happens next for both men?
Follow me after the jump for our Cub Swanson vs. Ross Pearson UFC on FX 4 post-fight review and analysis:
Both men looked to exchange strikes early, but it would be Swanson who was getting the better of the trading of punches. Time and time again, it seemed that he was the one who was consistently connecting first at the beginning of striking exchanges.
This bloodied up Pearson's mouth and forced the Team Alliance MMA-trained Brit to make an adjustment and start mixing in takedowns to go along with his boxing.
Pearson was able to secure takedowns in both the first and second round, but Swanson did a good job of neutralizing his attack and forcing The Ultimate Fighter season nine winner to give up on his offense and actually back away.
In the second round, Swanson continued to land the first shots, bloodying Pearson's nose to go along with his mouth. Once Pearson entered the pocket for the last time, Swanson made him pay, cracking him with a solid pair of right hands and then putting "The Real Deal" down onto the canvas with a heavy hook. As Swanson looked to swarm, the referee put a stop to the action.
For Ross Pearson, this loss has to be absolutely devastating. He initially dropped down to featherweight not only because he felt he was more suited for that weight but also because he felt he could be a contender there. This stoppage loss put a huge halt to those plans and brings into question some of his chin strength I'm sure. This is now the second time that Pearson has been hurt badly standing in a fight against an experienced opponent.
I would like to think that Pearson still can turn it around. There are a ton of potential fights out there. Fellow UFC on FX loser Joey Gambino would be a possibility. As could surprising loser Hatsu Hioki or perhaps the upcoming Yuri Alcantara vs. Hacran Dias loser.
For Cub Swanson, this was perhaps the highlight of his career thus far. Swanson made sure to give this bout every inch of respect it deserved. He really worked his speed and technique in the stand-up, making sure to get off first in every exchange and then punishing Person whenever he got the chance. When he hurt Person, he pounced and put the TUF 9 winner away.
So what did you think, Maniacs?
Did Swanson surprise you with his superior stand-up technique? Were you impressed with his gutsy performance especially after being taken down on multiple occasions?