In a night full of finishes, Al Iaquinta picked up the biggest win of his young career as he slammed the door on Ross Pearson with a devastating second-round TKO in Australia on Saturday.
Iaquinta stepped into the fight as an underdog to the former Ultimate Fighter winner, but showed the confidence of a seasoned veteran as he stood toe-to-toe with the British banger.
The first round was very evenly matched, but Pearson showed his hand when he started stepping forward to throw his punches and left his jaw exposed time after time. Iaquinta tried to time an uppercut a few times in the opening stanza, but just couldn’t connect flush to do the necessary damage.
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The second round saw Pearson do the same thing as he dove forward looking for a combination and this time Iaquinta countered with a huge right hand that sent the Brit tumbling towards the canvas. Iaquinta didn’t let up when Pearson popped back to his feet as the New York native then unleashed a barrage of strikes against the cage.
Pearson finally crumbled to the mat and Iaquinta continued throwing haymakers until the referee swooped in for the stoppage. The end came at 1:39 in the second round.
"I said I’m coming in here to strike," Iaquinta said. "I’m going to make the lightweight division humble."
It’s a huge win for Iaquinta (10-3-1), who picks up a victory over an established veteran while showing that he really could be a threat in the lightweight division. 2015 should be a very good year for the latest fighter out of the Serra/Longo camp in New York.