TEAM FABER'S MICHAEL CHIESA (7-0) VS. TEAM CRUZ'S JUSTIN LAWRENCE (3-0)
Round 1 - Referee Josh Rosenthal in the cage this time around. Lawrence stays well away to start, looking to kick. A slip lets Chiesa lock the body, and he immediately looks for the takedown. Lawrence tries to grab the fence and is warned for the infraction. Chiesa is locked tight and transitions to an armbar attempt. Lawrence does a good job of staying tight and eventually pulls free. Cruz wants his fighters to stand, but Lawrence doesn't pull away when he has the chance. Chiesa looks for a triangle and then a kimura. Lawrence solid in defense, but he has yet to do much in terms of offense. Halfway mark. Chiesa still searching for options from his back. It's an open guard, but Lawrence's wrist is trapped, and he can't stand. Lawrence finally pulls free to punch, but Chiesa throws the legs up and looks for a triangle. Lawrence's right hand is trapped in the hold and may be providing some space. he survives until the bell. Lawrence was on top for most of the round, but he was never in control. MMAjunkie.com gives the first to Chiesa, 10-9.
Round 2 - The fighters trade a few kicks to open. Lawrence lands an overhand right, and a stiff left wobbles Chiesa. Faber calls for Chiesa to relax, as he seems to be throwing a few wold strikes to start. Chiesa snatches a kick, but Lawrence shows great balance by staying upright. Still, Chiesa is in tight and looking for a takedown. He doesn't get it, so he backs away. Both fighters look a little tired. Lawrence looks for a big overhand right. Chiesa misses a spinning backfist and eats a counter shot. Two minutes left. Lawrence is on the attack, and Chiesa looks to be fading bad. Faber begging for a takedown. Lawrence digs to the body. A second shot to the ribs drops Chiesa. Lawrence follows to the floor but doesn't punch, allowing Chiesa to tie things up and slow it down. Lawrence had a chance to finish and missed it. Time winding down. Lawrence on top, but he won't finish. We should be looking at overtime. MMAjunkie.com gives the second to Lawrence, 10-9.
Round 3 - It is even, and we go to sudden victory. Lawrence closes the distance quickly and scores a takedown. Chiesa immediately shifts his hips and scores a sweet sweep to top. He's in mount, and Lawrence looks exhausted. He covers up and rolls a bit, but he's done. Rosenthal gives him a moment to fight back, but he never does. Fight's over.
Michael Chiesa def. Justin Lawrence via TKO (punches) - Round 3, 1:02.