UFC London: Jonathan Pearce Turns Tables on Makwan Amirkhani, Secures TKO Finish

Makwan Amirkhani and Jonathan Pearce, UFC London
Makwan Amirkhani and Jonathan Pearce, UFC London Ceremonial Weigh-In, July 22, 2022 Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

Having returned to the win column in March, Makwan Amirkhani was looking to make it two in a row in the O2 Arena at UFC London on Saturday.

Having gotten the better of Mike Grundy last time out, Amirkhani was paired up with rising featherweight prospect Jonathan Pearce, winner of three straight.

Amirkhani looked solid early, but Pearce would turn the tables later in the fight.

A flood of elbows from Pearce in the opening minute of Saturday’s scrap cut open Amirkhani as he pursued a takedown. Amirkhani stayed on the attempt, holding on with a body lock and dragging Pearce down. The bloodied Amirkhani took the back; Pearce tried to reverse but Amirkhani rolled with it, eventually getting in position for a front choke. Pearce gutted that out, with Amirkhani holding on and going to the ground, looking to tighten up the submission attempt. No dice, and they got back to the feet.

How much energy had Amirkhani spent during that sequence? Not so much that he couldn’t fire a straight right, then pursue another takedown. When they did go down, Pearce came out on top in a scramble; he began dropping more elbows, and finished the frame in control.

Makwan Amirkhani found success with a right hand and an uppercut early in the second, which led to Pearce pursing a takedown. That was flipping the script, as Amirkhani was now forced to fight off his back. On top, Pearce moved to side control, trapping Amirkhani against the fence and firing some knees to the ribs. Pearce added in some ground n’ pound as Amirkhani turned, got to his knees, and powered up. Pearce then took Amirkhani’s leg out from under him, putting him back in the same position and wailing on him with punches and elbows.

Amirkhani was in a bad spot, as he was taking damage and covering up. The ref warned Amirkhani to improve his position, and he certainly tried, but a smashing elbow got through the guard for Pearce, and more punches sealed the deal.

Official Result: Jonathan Pearce def. Makwan Amirkhani by TKO, Round 2, 4:10