In the featured prelim at UFC Vegas 17, former lightweight champion, Anthony Pettis (24-10), took on Alex Morono (18-7, 1 NC). Pettis was entering the fight on the final fight of his current contract with the UFC.
Showtime entered the fight just 1-2 in his last three fights. There was a lot of pressure on the former champion and Alex Morono was looking to be the spoiler. When the fight got underway, it looked like Morono would do just that.
In the opening seconds at UFC Vegas 17, Pettis fell down while throwing a kick. Morono was able to pounce and get on top of Pettis. For the entire first round, Morono was able to control Pettis.
In the second round, Pettis started to open up with his striking. The former UFC champion looked really comfortable on the feet and he outstruck Morono to secure the second round.
In the third round, Pettis was again getting the better of the standup. In the final seconds of the third round, Pettis almost secured a showtime finish when he rocked Morono with a spinning back kick.
Last UFC fight?
All three judges scored the fight for Pettis 29-28. It was a massive win for Pettis and a great way for him to close out his current UFC deal. At this moment, it appears that Pettis will be testing the free agent market.
I don’t think the UFC is going to be the most aggressive in the pursuit due to the announcement of upcoming cuts. If I had to pick a favorite, I think Bellator is the clubhouse favorite to land Anthony Pettis.
Pettis’ younger brother Sergio already fights for Bellator. Sergio Pettis fought in the UFC prior to making the jump over to Bellator. I think that Anthony might just do the exact same thing.
Time will tell, but there’s a very real chance that we’ve seen Pettis for the final time inside the octagon. He can hold his head high knowing he’s had plenty of showtime moments including capturing the lightweight title.