Image via Esther Lin of MMA Fighting
In the third bout of the UFC 143 main card, Josh Koscheck didn't look great but he managed to squeak out a split decision victory over a game Mike Pierce. Pierce outstruck Kos over the course of the fight, but Josh used timely takedowns and a few power shots to get the razor-thin victory. While some people were screaming robbery, the fight just came down to an extremely close second round that honestly could have gone either way. The final scores were 29-28, 28-29, 29-28 in favor of Koscheck.
The bout sets up Koscheck for a possible shot at interim champ Carlos Condit (who he was originally scheduled to meet on this card) if Condit chooses to defend his title before Georges St. Pierre returns from injury. One of the biggest pieces of news in terms of Kos came after the fight though, when he stated that he had left American Kickboxing Academy. Pierce can't seem to get over the hump when he faces top-level opponents, and where he goes from here is somewhat unclear.
What was the high spot of this fight?
It was a battle of grinders, and not a lot was going on. The most interesting part was probably when Koscheck poked Pierce in the eye after receiving an earlier warning, but referee Herb Dean elected not to take a point from him. It ended up making a big difference on the outcome.
Where do these guys go from here?
Koscheck didn't look very good at all, but he picked up the W anyway. He has now won two straight bouts since his return from a long orbital injury layoff, and has re-established himself as a top contender. Could he get a shot at Condit's interim belt? Maybe. Now that he has left AKA, the possibility of a Josh Koscheck vs. Jon Fitch fight was floated as well, but seems unlikely. A bout with Nick Diaz (if doesn't choose retirement) is a definite possibility as well.
Pierce is now 5-3 in the UFC, with all his losses being in close fights with top-shelf talent. He is clearly a guy that can give almost any 170 pounder fits, but a combination of some bad luck and coming up a tiny bit short has slowed his ascent in the division. A bout with former training partner Rick Story would be very interesting and the bad blood would definitely add some flavor to the matchup.
Watch it now, later or never?
Never. Koscheck's post fight speech (where he flipped off the crowd) was the only entertaining thing that happened.
More Bloody Elbow coverage of UFC 143: Diaz vs. Condit in the full entry.
- UFC 143 Results: Dana White Talks Carlos Condit's Next Fight, Nick Diaz' Retirement - Josh Nason
- UFC 143 Results: Mike Pierce Tolls A Warning Bell For Josh Koscheck Like He Did For Jon Fitch - Kid Nate
- UFC 143 Results: Nick Diaz Vs. Carlos Condit Event Fight Video Highlights - Anton Tabuena
- UFC 143 Results: The Career Of UFC Welterweight Champion Carlos Condit - Fraser Coffeen
- UFC 143 Results: Sunday Morning Perspective - T.P. Grant
- UFC 143 Results: Does Fabricio Werdum's Mauling Of Roy Nelson Mean He's Ready To Contend In The UFC? - Kid Nate
- UFC 143 Results Video: Dana White Talks Condit Vs. Diaz, Koscheck Vs. Fitch, More At Post-Fight Scrum - Kid Nate
- UFC 143 Results: Carlos Condit, Gameplanning And The MMA Fan - Brent Brookhouse
- UFC 143 Results: Carlos Condit And Greg Jackson Solved Nick Diaz - Kid Nate
- UFC 143 Results: Winners, Losers, And Other Thoughts - Matthew Roth
- UFC 143 Results: Thompson, Poirier, Werdum And Nelson Take Home $65,000 Fight Night Bonuses - Kid Nate
- UFC 143: Condit vs. Diaz Full Fight Video Highlights - Brent Brookhouse
- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit Results And Post-Fight Analysis - Brent Brookhouse
- UFC 143 Results: Judges' Score Cards From Carlos Condit Vs. Nick Diaz - Kid Nate
- Nick Diaz: 'I'm Outta This S**t', Retires From MMA After UFC 143 Loss To Carlos Condit - Kid Nate
- UFC 143 Results: Carlos Condit Wins Interim Welterweight Title Over Nick Diaz In Thrilling Affair - Tim Burke
- Bad Boy Presents Bloody Elbow Radio - Episode 132: UFC 143 Results Review - Matt Bishop
- UFC 143 Post-Fight Press Conference Video And Coverage - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Fabricio Werdum Beats Up Roy Nelson, Takes Unanimous Decision - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Josh Koscheck Picks Up Razor-Thin Split Decision Victory Over Mike Pierce - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Renan Barao Takes Unanimous Decision Over Scott Jorgensen - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Ed Herman Submits Clifford Starks In Round Two - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Dustin Poirier Submits Max Holloway - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Edwin Figueroa Beats Alex Cacares By Split Decision In Weird Fight - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Matt Brown Stops Chris Cope In The Second Round - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Matt Riddle Picks Up Split Decision Victory Over Henry Martinez - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Rafael Natal Wins Unanimous Decision Over Michael Kuiper - Tim Burke
- UFC 143 Results: Stephen Thompson Knocks Out Dan Stittgen With Deadly Head Kick - Tim Burke
- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit - Live Results And Play-By-Play For PPV Main Card - Brent Brookhouse
- UFC 143: Diaz Vs. Condit - Live Results And Play-By-Play For Undercard Fights - Brent Brookhouse