In the UFC on FOX 31 main event, the company’s #4 ranked lightweight Kevin Lee and the #8 ranked Al Iaquinta went the full 25 minutes in a back and forth affair. Each man had their moments, but when the dust settled, it was who walked away with the unanimous decision victory.
Iaquinta opened the bout with a takedown feint into a spinning elbow. Lee got his punches going, finding Iaquinta just at the end of them. Iaquinta started wearing it a bit on the face, bleeding just under his left eye.
Lee pressed forward in the second act, ultimately planting Iaquinta on his back. Lee quickly took the back with the body triangle engaged and began to score with crafty ground strikes. Iaquinta remained calm and found his moment to escape back to his feet. Iaquinta pressured forward, walking down his foe behind his jab as Lee seemed to be slowing down.
Iaquinta came out aggressive in the third frame, backing up Lee with his strikes. Around the midpoint of the round, Lee blasted a takedown, but Iaquinta refused to concede the position and worked to stand back up. Lee’s second attempt resulted in him taking the back like he did in the second round. This time, Iaquinta was unable to escape the position before the round ended.
Iaquinta started tagging Lee with his hands in the fourth round, and then set up a beautiful head kick that registered. Lee spent the bulk of the round defending, throwing little volume of his own. It was a pretty strong round for Iaquinta.
Lee shot in on a single leg early in the final round, and was relentless with trying to take the fight down to the ground. Iaquinta continued to fight off the takedown and managed to free himself into open space. Lee cracked his opponent with a clean head kick, but Iaquinta ate it without issue and pressed forward. Iaquinta started landing in the final 30 seconds but Lee was able to skirt out of the way to avoid getting rocked.