Daniel Pineda returned to the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Bantamweight division tonight (Sat., Aug. 15, 2020) at UFC 252, which took place inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the first time since 2014, taking on the Overweight (details) Herbert Burns, winner of five straight (three with UFC) and younger brother of Gilbert Burns.
The fight was promoted to the ESPN+ pay-per-view (PPV) main card after Ion Cutelaba tested positive for Coronavirus and his rematch with Magomed Ankalaev was bumped to a later date (details). And once the dust settled, it was Pineda who rose to the occasion, smashing Burns for almost 10 full minutes before the referee finally pulled him his wounded opponent.
Both fighters touched gloves and Pineda got the action started right after, nailing Burns with a looping overhand right. Burns didn’t like it so he went for a takedown right after, which Pineda was able to escape; however, he sustained early damage to his eye in the scramble. Pineda flipped the script after the escape, taking down Burns and mushing him up against the bottom of the cage to deliver some ground-and-pound. Burns eventually squirmed and pushed Pineda away with his legs, but “The Pit” jumped right back into the Brazilian’s guard. Pineda was able to land a hard elbow to the forehead of Burns while on top, while “The Blaze” seemed unconcerned from the bottom despite the hard shots. Burns created space again with his legs, but Pineda drilled him with a hard right cross. He jumped right back into Burns’ guard again and continued his ground assault until the bell sounded to end the round.
Burns started out the second stanza with a jab, using it to disguise an early takedown. He posted up on Pineda and landed some shots, but Pineda was able to scramble to his feet, only for Burns to corral him back to the ground moments later. Burns worked his way back on top of Pineda along the fence, angling for some type of arm triangle submission. Meanwhile, Pineda boxed his ears then exploded from the bottom and was able to suddenly reverse position, stuffing Burns at the bottom of the cage and drilling him with short shots to the face. Pineda eventually passed guard and rained down punches from a crucifix position. Burns’ arms were trapped, while Pineda bounced unanswered elbows off his face and forehead. Burns grunted, squirmed and wiggled, but he just couldn’t get out from underneath Pineda.
What an impressive performance from Pineda, who dominated the action basically from the jump en route to a decisive finish — on the ground — against a very dangerous submission specialist. Welcome back!
Final result: Pineda defeats Burns via technical knockout in round two (4:47)
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