We open up the main card with a pair of Ultimate Fighter middleweight alums, as Brad Tavares (10-1) puts his three-fight win streak on the line vs. Bubba McDaniel (21-6). McDaniel hasn't lost since 2010, spanning seven fights. The referee will be Dan Miragliotta.
Round 1: No touch of gloves, and Tavares starts things off with a kick to the lead leg, followed by one to the body. McDaniel using the Jon Joneskicks to the shin/kneecap. McDaniel unable to score the takedown, and Tavares makes him pay, landing a pair of stiff strikes. Tavares catches him with a right from in close, but allows McDaniel to get back to his feet. Unsure if Tavares actually thought he might have been out there or not, as he seemed to hesitate. McDaniel gets him to the mat, but only for a brief moment. Redness and swelling on the lead leg of McDaniel from the few hard shots landed by Tavares.
Round 2: Tavares goes right back to peppering the lead leg, getting a smile out of McDaniel. Tavares drops him again, as he keeps coming in too close and too fast, easily getting countered and dropped. McDaniel with a takedown off a flurry of strikes. Tavares secures a takedown of his own off a body lock in a very uneventful round.
Round 3: McDaniel finally shows some life, firing out to start the round with a burst of energy. Tavares secures a body lock, and McDaniel breaks free. Tavares catches McDaniel straight to the groin, and "Bubba" goes down hard. We even get a "FOX Cam" replay of the strike; not good for Bubba. McDaniel with a left-right combo that leads into a takedown, which he scores with, and quickly advances his position. We go under three minutes, and McDaniel has to know he needs a finish to secure the win. McDaniel put the grind on, but was never in position to finish Tavares.
Brad Tavares def. Bubba McDaniel via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
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