UFC 249’s feature prelim was an all out war between Donald Cerrone and Anthony Pettis, one that ended with “Showtime” earning a 29-28x3 decision over “Cowboy.” It wasn’t the result Cerrone wanted, but it surely beats getting knocked out in under a minute like in his last fight.
While Cerrone got off to his usual slower start, by the third round he was dishing out as good as he was getting. If Pettis hadn’t somehow absorbed a thunderous head kick late in the fight like it was nothing, things could have easily gone the other way.
The win moves Pettis to 2-0 against Cerrone, but “Cowboy” ain’t mad. In fact, the two self-professed friends were back to smiling and hugging from the moment the final bell sounded. The bromance continued into the night as they took photos together backstage and even met up to share a beer in the fighter hotel. Because that’s just the “Cowboy” way.
The win snaps a two fight losing skid for Pettis, who has been struggling to win consistently against top competition over the past five years. But as this fight showed, he’s still got what it takes to dig deep and win the tough striking battles. How will he fare against more strategic opponents willing to drag him to the canvas, though?