Featherweight action kicked off the UFC 266 prelims, and the bout ended with Jonathan Pearce earning a dominant submission victory.
A featherweight scrap between Jonathan Pearce and Omar Morales kicked off the UFC 266 preliminary card on Saturday.
The Las Vegas event saw the promotion back at the T-Mobile Arena, with a full house of fans eagerly awaiting the two title fights atop the marquee.
Pearce and Morales, however, had the job of opening up the show. Both men were coming off single wins: Pearce over Kai Kamaka III last November, Morales against Shane Young earlier this year.
Round one kicked off with Pearce putting lots of pressure on Morales, looking for big right-hands upstairs. Morales on the other hand was far more patient, trying to time Pearce as he darted in.
Pearce eventually shot in on a double leg, and was able to get Morales down with about half the round remaining. Morales did a great job of getting back to his feet soon after. However, Pearce found the recipe for success in that takedown, as Pearce spent the rest of the round taking Morales down and drowning him with pressure.
In round two, Pearce started with that same pressure once again, looking for a takedown and getting it, but he was nearly d’arced in an ensuing scramble. Pearce recovered, and soon completed another takedown, making his way to the back, where he looked for a rear-naked-choke. Morales did a good job of fighting it off, but then had to fight through an arm-triangle choke, and he was soon going through the rear-naked choke again.
LOCKED it in TIGHT 🔒@JSPMMA gets the job done in the second!
— UFC (@ufc) September 25, 2021
Pearce eventually put the squeeze on, and Morales was forced to tap. A great performance by Jonathan Pearce who has rebounded greatly since his UFC debut.
Official Result: Jonathan Pearce def. Omar Morales by submission (rear-naked choke), Round 2, 3:31