UFC Rochester: Grant Dawson’s First Career Decision Motivated Him to Finish Trizano

Grant Dawson fought to a decision in his last fight, which motivated him to stay far, far away from the judges at UFC Rochester.

Rochester, NY — As feather’s in your cap go, besting an undefeated fighter who won The Ultimate Fighter on a season of undefeated fighters is a pretty good one. That was the case Saturday at UFC Rochester, when Grant Dawson got the better of Mike Trizano, submitting the TUF champ no less. Trizano had won TUF 27, a season of fighters who had never lost. He came into the Rochester card at 8-0. He left down missing that 0.

Dawson recapped the fight with media members including Cageside Press following the bout, saying that “it was exactly what we expected.”

“I wasn’t scoring a lot of takedowns in the first round. We knew he was going to be tough with his takedown defense… in the first round. As soon as I got him down at the end of the first, we walked back to the corner and I knew. I could see a little wobble in his step and I could see him thinking, ‘Man, am I going to be able to keep this up?'” Heading into the second, Dawson recalled thinking that “the second round is going to be our round, and if it goes a third, we’re going to get him in the third.”

“I’m known as a ground-and-pound fighter, I’m known for throwing a lot of strikes, I average about 105 strikes per round,” Dawson explained. “So my last fight, I really wanted to show that. I wanted to hit somebody so bad, I wanted to ground-and-pound so bad that I wasn’t worrying about control at all. So moving into this next fight, the whole focus was once we get the takedown, establish position, and then ground-and-pound. He was doing a really good job holding my wrists so I couldn’t get any ground-and-pound off. So I was pulling his head up and that allowed me to sink in the choke.”

On that previous fight, with Julian Erosa at UFC Wichita, Dawson noted that the fight “was my first decision ever. As an amateur, as a pro, my first decision ever and I did not like it. I was like, ‘Wow. 15 minutes? That sucked.'”

Which gave him added motivation in Rochester. “I wanted to make a statement with [Trizano]. If you add his amateur record to the fights he had in the house to his pro record, he’s 18-0. Undefeated in 18 fights, nobody’s even come close to beating him. So, not just getting the win, but getting a finish really put a stamp on my name.”

Next up, said Dawson, “we want a quick turnaround, go for August. That’s what we’re shooting for. My toe is jacked up and my eye is jacked up. So I want to get those two fixed, and as soon as I can get back to training, we’ll hit Sean Shelby up and see what we can get.”

Dawson mentioned Shane Young as a fight that “still intrigues me. He’s super exciting, I’m super exciting, I think that has bonus money written all over it. But that doesn’t matter. I just want to get my eye and my toe fixed.”

Watch the full UFC Rochester post-fight press scrum with Grant Dawson above!