The featured early preliminary bout at UFC 259 on Saturday had flyweights in the spotlight. With the division red hot, it was a big night for the smallest of men’s weight classes. In the first 125lb bout of the evening, the always entertaining former title challenger Tim Elliott returned to take on Jordan Espinosa.
How would Espinosa contend with that awkward style of Elliott? Not well. He spent most of his time on his back, in fact.
Not surprisingly, Elliott vs. Espinosa moved at a good clip when it got underway Saturday. Espinosa connected with a solid left hook about 90 seconds in, which prompted Elliott to tie things up along the fence. After a battle for position, they went back to center, with Elliott just barely avoiding a head kick. That allowed him to get Espinosa down, however, and work on taking the back. Elliott had one leg trapped, and only the fence was keeping Elliott from securing Espinosa’s back. Still, he was in a dominant position, landing punches to the side of the head.
In the second, Elliott secured a takedown within the opening minute. Espinosa was planted on his back, a virtual mile from the cage wall. Elliott stayed heavy, and worked a few elbows into the side of the body. By the time Espinosa did work his way back to the fence, Elliott was once again threatening to take the back. Espinosa survived the round, but Elliott was too fluid. At the end of the round, things appeared to get a little heated with some words exchanged between the pair.
Early in the third, Elliott was back in the driver’s seat. Espinosa was on his back once again. However, Espinosa did manage to land an elbow from bottom that cut Elliott open. That blood actually saved Espinosa from a submission attempt later in the round. But Elliott was dominant, and finished the fight exactly where he had spent most of it — on top, and in control.
Official Result: Tim Elliott def. Jordan Espinosa by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-25)