The Ultimate Fighter 22 Finale took place last night (Friday, December 11, 2015) at the Chealsea inside the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, Nevada and was headlined by a featherweight contest between Frankie Edgar and Chad Mendes. Overall from a betting perspective, seven favorites won while three underdogs came through according to the closing odds at 5Dimes Sportsbook. Here’s a quick recap for each fight. Favorites That Won In the main event of the evening, Frankie Edgar surprised everyone by not just beating top featherweight contender Chad Mendes, but by knocking him out in the first round. Mendes attacked Edgar’s legs early with some heavy kicks in a hope to slow down his movement, but Edgar blasted Mendes with a left hook which put him down for the count. Edgar was a -130 (Bet $130 to win $100) betting favorite and Mendes was +120 (Bet $100 to win $120). In a lightweight battle, Tony Ferguson and Edson Barboza put on a war for the ages. Ferguson landed an illegal upkick in the first round and had a point deducted, and Barboza punished him with a variety of diverse strikes. Everything changed in the second round after both men traded brutal elbows. Barboza was cut badly and as he began to fade, he shot in for a takedown, which landed him in a tight Ferguson D’Arce choke and forced him to tap out. Ferguson was victorious as a -145 betting favorite while Barboza was a +135 dog. In a lightweight bout, Evan Dunham put on a clinic against Joe Lauzon. The veterans had an entertaining scrap which was primarily held on the feet, but Lauzon couldn’t keep up with Dunham’s pace as he was outstruck for 15 straight minutes. Dunham was victorious at -185 while Lauzon lost a decision at +170. In the featherweight division, Tatsuya Kawajiri put on a show against short notice injury replacement Jason Knight. Kawajiri repeatedly took the larger Knight down and was able to avoid getting in trouble inside his opponent’s rubber guard en route to winning a unanimous decision. Kawajiri came through as the -265 favorite while Knight lost as the +145 underdog. In a welterweight bout, Ryan LaFlare outworked Mike Pierce in what was primarily a stand-up fight. LaFlare used his speed and length to land over twice as many strikes as Pierce, although Pierce had him wobbled on multiple occasions, it wasn’t enough as LaFlare walked away with a unanimous decision. LaFlare came through as the -210 favorite while +190 underdog Mike Pierce was defeated. Flyweight Geane Herrera put himself on the map with an extremely entertaining battle against a game Joby Sanchez. Sanchez was the more technical striker but Herrera was loading up on huge shots and connecting as well. The bout ended after Herrera landed a huge left hand to put Sanchez down for the count. Herrera came through as the -125 favorite while Sanchez was the +115 underdog. In the opening bout of the evening in the featherweight division, Chris Gruetzemacher and Abner Lloveras put on an entertaining back-and-forth scrap that saw “Grits” walk away with a unanimous decision victory on the judges’ scorecards. Gruetzemacher held serve as the -140 betting favorite and Lloveras was defeated at +130. Underdogs That Won In the co-main event of the evening, Ryan Hall utilized some incredibly unorthodox and impressive jiu-jitsu to outwork Artem Lobov over the course of three rounds. Hall was able to masterfully take Lobov’s back on a few occasions and while he threatened with submissions, he wasn’t able to finish the Russian, although he would go on to win a unanimous decision. Hall looked amazing as a +150 dog while Lobov lost as a -160 betting favorite. In a lightweight bout between two TUF 22 competitors, Marcin Wrzosek and Julian Erosa put on a very competitive back and forth bout featuring several submission attempts, takedowns and sweeps. Erosa did just enough to earn the split decision nod from the judges when it came time to announce the scores. Erosa was victorious despite being a +110 dog while Wrzosek was defeated as a -120 favorite. In the heavyweight division, Gabriel Gonzaga defeated Konstantin Erokhin in one of the worst fights of the year. Neither man was able to pull the trigger in a very tentative fight, but Gonzaga did slightly more than his foe, winning an ugly unanimous decision. Gonzaga comes through as the +125 underdog, while Erokhin failed to cash as the -135 favorite.
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