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TUF 27 Finale results: Alex Caceres edges past Martin Bravo in slugfest

Action featherweights Alex “Bruce Leeroy” Caceres and Martin Bravo squared off tonight (Friday, July 6, 2018) from inside the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, live and free on Fox Sports 1.

Caceres opened with kicks, Bravo returning them Caceres’ way. Caceres went down after a kick and Bravo rushed him, put him against the cage for a few moments. Caceres landed a sharp southpaw left but Bravo countered it over the top. Bravo got a takedown, Caceres worked his way back up and Bravo threw him down again. He got back up again, with Bravo working the single-leg to no avail. Caceres separated and circled, landed a huge leg hand that snapped Bravo’s head back. Bravo got a single-leg but mostly because Caceres was focused on a front headlock that didn’t work out. Bravo worked his head free and landed short punches inside Caceres’ open guard. Caceres tried a triangle, then, failing, upkicks. The pace had been frenetic and wasn’t letting up as Bravo tried to make hay in Caceres’ active guard. Caceres kicked and stood. Bravo landed a nice hook that made Caceres’ fro shake but didn’t take the smile off his face. They exchanged punches, both landing. Bravo worked a jab, Caceres was winging his left hand and landed a high kick.

Bravo immediately caught a kick to open the second round but couldn’t get Bruce Leeroy to the mat. He pressured, Caceres circled, Caceres landed a hard left hand and then another that dropped Bravo! He tried to jump on Bravo’s back for a choke, couldn’t get it, took top position, had Bravo’s back for a moment, then Bravo finally stood. Bizarre decision not to try to punch a rocked Bravo, but Caceres was looking for the slick submission. Bravo shot in, got a waistlock. Caceres pushed him off. Caceres circled, whiffed on a left hand, landed one that stunned Bravo again. Caceres slipped a one-two. Bravo kicked his body. Caceres looked for a left that missed, tried a wheel kick, landed a left counter. The trouble with Caceres looking for the finish is that he needed Bravo to throw so he could counter. Bravo landed a right hand and got aggressive, throwing combinations to try to get back in the fight. With twenty seconds left he landed a brief takedown. The round ended with Bravo still pressuring and Caceres trying to counter with his left hand again.

They hugged to start the third. Caceres was looking for the spinning backfist he had landed near the end of the third. Bravo got him down for a second, then got him down completely with a single-leg. He landed several punches before Caceres was able to work his way back to his feet. Caceres landed a side kick and Bravo landed a one-two. They were trading now, rock-em sock-em robots style. Bravo’s one-two knocked Caceres’ mouthpiece out and Caceres looked for a desperation takedown. He landed a good hook and an uppercut when they got back up, but was eating Bravo’s swings in return. Bravo landed a one-two, then another, Caceres’ fro bouncing from the recoil. Caceres landed a high kick, couldn’t slow Bravo down. Bravo whiffed on his own high kick, threw a one-two, landed an elbow in the clinch. Caceres spun for a spinning back kick to the body. They traded hard punches, Caceres slipping some but eating more as they swung straight to the final bell.

“I haven’t been in a fight like that in a while, and props to Martin Bravo, that guy’s a warrior. One love.” said Caceres in the post-fight interview, his face still bloody and swollen. That was quite the war, especially the third round.

Official result: Alex Caceres def. Martin Bravo via split decision (29-28x2, 28-29)

For complete TUF 27 Finale results, including play-by-play, click here