T.J. Grant and Mike Easton took two preliminary bouts at UFC on Versus 6 in Washington, D.C. on Saturday night.
Grant takes controversial win
In T.J. Grant's lightweight debut, he won over Shane Roller via a controversial submission.
Grant got the takedown, and then the fighters took turns on top in a strong display of grappling. As the round near its end, Grant controlled Roller through side control and then finished the round out by laying several strikes on Roller's head.
The second round started with Roller showing better stand-up, but Grant stopped the striking with another takedown. At first, Grant controlled the grappling battle, but then he gave up his position to Roller. With the round ending, Grant grabbed an armbar during a scramble. He came close to straightening out, but the round ended before the Roller had to tap.
Grant cut Roller's nose early in the third round with a big right hand. Roller took the fight to the ground, but that ended up being his undoing. Grant caught Roller in a guillotine, but when Roller popped his head out, Grant switched to an armbar. Referee Fernando Yamasaki stopped the fight seconds after that, but Roller did not tap.
The fight was stopped at 2:12 in the third round. Afterwards, Grant said that Roller yelled out in pain, and that's why the fight was stopped, but that was not clear from the tape. Roller was understandably angry after the bout.
"I don't know. We were getting in the scramble, he got the armbar and tried to defend it, and that's when the referee stopped it," Roller said after the fight. Roller admitted that he moaned, but didn't think it was a stoppage.
Easton wins debut in front of home crowd
Hometown fighter Mike Easton won his UFC debut with a TKO of Byron Bloodworth. He started slow, but came on strong in the second.
Easton showed early that he works with Dominic Cruz, as he had great footwork early in the first round, but Bloodworth was able to land kicks with ease. Easton's strikes were not as damaging.
In the second, Easton found his rhythm and was able to land more combinations. He controlled the clinch, then landed a knee to the body that made Bloodworth crumble to the ground. Easton finished the fight with three hard lefts at 4:52 in the second round.
"We work a lot of boxing in my camp, and we just came prepared," Easton said after the bout.