Edwin Figueroa vs. Francisco Rivera
We kick-start things in the bantamweight division, as Edwin Figueroa (9-1) seeks a third straight UFC victory when he faces Francisco Rivera (8-2), who is unbeaten in his last four fights. The referee will be Kim Winslow.
Round 1: Figueroa working the inside leg kicks, as Rivera is very tight in his posture. Figueroa catches him with a nice little combo coming in, and lands a huge right. Figueroa with another overhand right, followed by a body shot and Rivera is looking to re-group. Figueroa catches him with a left and sends Rivera straight to the ground, and he pounces. Rivera throws up a leg, but is unable to get a submission locked in and we’re back to the feet. Rivera with a kick that nearly floors Figueroa, as his lead leg completely buckled under his weight. Combo connects from Figueroa, and Rivera answers with a kick to the body. Figueroa catches him once again, and now Rivera goes for a takedown, which he gets, as we go under two minutes. Rivera quickly passes and is in side-control. Figueroa works to his feet and gets free. Head-kick connects by Rivera, though he was unable to get full force behind it, and follows up with a takedown.
FightLine scores the round 10-9 for Figueroa
Round 2: Rivera moving much more sound this round, throwing leg kicks and mixing his punches up. Figueroa catches a kick and takes him down, but Rivera quick works for a triangle choke. Figueroa avoids the choke and moves into an offensive position. Strong right hands landing by Figueroa inside the guard. Rivera uses his mat skills to slide back to his feet midway through the round. Rivera fakes a combo and lands a solid kick, and follows up with a pair of uppercuts, as Figueroa looks tired. Vicious right lands by Rivera as his opponent comes in too slowly. Figueroa winces, as he either took a punch or a poke to the left eye. Big overhand right from Rivera, and now we have a slug-fest, as they are just standing and trading. Rivera gets the best of it, unloading on Figueroa, who retreats and eats a vicious hook. More rights and lefts, and the referee steps in as blood is pouring from the head of Figueroa.
Francisco Rivera def. Edwin Figueroa via TKO (strikes) at 4:20 of Round 2