Jonathan Peace passed the test of one of the sport’s longest-standing gatekeepers in Darren Elkins, handily winning a decision at UFC Orlando.
An old guard vs. new match-up at UFC Orlando saw featherweights Darren Elkins and Jonathan Pearce in action.
Elkins, the veteran, was entering pro fight number thirty-eight, and looking for his second win of 2022. JSP, meanwhile, had won four straight under the UFC banner, and was a budding star in the 145lb weight class.
Darren Elkins wasted no time pushing the pace, shooting for a takedown on Jonathan Pearce immediately. Elkins was able to to get Pearce down, but could not establish full control on the mat. Pearce got out from under Elkins and began piecing him up. Elkins was rocked briefly then had to avoid a flying knee. Pearce’s advantage on the feet was crystal clear as Elkins was reduced to winging haymakers and hoping for the best. Pearce landed a takedown of his own near the fence. He postured up and threw punches to end the first round on a high note.
Elkins started the second round with a shot for a takedown that Pearce defended well. On the feet, Elkins landed a few punches that got the attention of Pearce. Pearce was able to swing things back in his direction and landed strikes of his own. He strung together a multitude of uppercuts, then shot for a takedown and postured up to land heavy ground and pound. Elkins, as he does, survived the push for a stoppage, but had to eat strikes from his back for the remainder of the round.
Elkins was forced to dig deep in round three as he was clearly down two rounds. During a takedown attempt, Elkins was caught by an elbow that cut him open right next to the left eye. The doctor checked the cut and gave him approval to continue fighting. From there, it was a typical Darren Elkins fight. He pushed and pushed with little left in the tank as Jonathan Pearce landed strikes with ease. The fight ended with an exclamation point, as Pearce landed several elbows then took Elkins down to land a few more shots as time expired.
Jonathan Pearce def. Darren Elkins by Unanimous Decision (30-27 x2, 30-26)