The Professional Fighters League (PFL) returns for their first event of 2021 with PFL 1. The fight card features the featherweights and lightweights and in the main event, Anthony Pettis battled Clay Collard.
Anthony Pettis (24-10) is riding a two-fight winning streak and signed with the PFL after fighting out his UFC contract. The former UFC lightweight champ earned decision wins over Alex Morono and Donald Cerrone after being submitted by Diego Ferreira and losing a decision to Nate Diaz.
Clay Collard (18-8) is returning to MMA for the first time since April of 2019. Since then, the UFC veteran has been a professional boxer under the Top Rank banner. He had six boxing fights in 2020 and eight in 2019.
Round one starts with a glove touch and the two trade kicks. Collard continues to land some leg kicks. Clay Collard is chasing down Anthony Pettis and lands some heavy shots and they clinch. Pettis lands a nice kick, and Collard returns with a hard left hand that connects flush. Collard is bringing the fight to Pettis and is landing some good shots to the head and body. Pettis throws a cartwheel kick that is partially blocked and ends up on his back but gets back up. After some exchanges, Pettis slips and ends up on his back and Collard has him stacked landing some leg kicks and punches. He gets up and they exchange some punches, good round for Collard.
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Round two begins and Pettis lands a good right hand and lands a good body kick. The two have been going back-and-forth with kicks, a much slower pace than the first round. Pettis lands a good knee and Collard follows it up with a flying knee which is blocked. Collard lands some vicious body shots and goes up top and drops Pettis. He lands some ground and pound but Pettis gets back up. Collard is bringing it on Pettis at the side of the cage. Collard drops Pettis again and is back landing some vicious ground and pound. Pettis tries for a triangle off his back but Collard survives. What a round for the pro boxer.
Round three starts and Anthony Pettis is visible beat up. Collard lands a low kick and Pettis has blasted the body early in the third. A big right hand from Collard stuns Showtime again. This has been a picture-perfect fight for Clay Collard so far. “Cassius” has been able to keep Pettis on his backfoot and against the cage and the same is happening in the third round. Out of nowhere and Pettis lands a head kick that drops Collard and follows it up with a knee that Cassius eats. Just 40 seconds left, Collard is looking to survive and gets up and eats another head kick and the fight is over.
Official result: Clay Collard defeats Anthony Pettis via unanimous decision (29-27 x2, 29-28)
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