Costa Philippou won for the first time in the Octagon at UFC 133, taking a split decision from Jorge Rivera. The judges saw it 29-28, 28-29, 29-28.
The fight started with a clinch and some boos from the crowd in Philadelphia. Philippou clinched, then he moved the fight back to the ground. Philippou moved into sideguard, but Rivera moved back to his feet. After clinch work, Mario Yamasaki broke the two up and restarted the fight.
In the second round, Philipou clipped Rivera with an uppercut, knocking him to the ground and tried to finish with several strikes while on the ground. He couldn't finish, Rivera came back to make him pay. Rivera then came back, and took control of the fight with several punches to the face. The fight went back to the ground, and Philippou tried to finish the bout with an omoplata, but the rounded before he could finish.
The two showed off more BJJ in third, as Rivera tried for a triangle choke, but Philippou snuck out and put the fight on its feet, where they exchanged blows in the final minutes.
Afterwards, Philippou was happy with his win but disappointed with his performance.
"The fight was not that good," he said to UFC commentator Joe Rogan. He was disappointed that his omoplata didn't make Rivera submit.
"Pretty close, but close was not enough."
- Jorge Rivera