Michael Chiesa has experienced the gamut of emotions. In that time, he earned his dream of getting a slot on the The Ultimate Fighter only to suffer the heartbreak of losing his father to leukemia shortly after beginning the competition. And now, he has captured season 15 of TUF, choking Al Iaquinta unconscious at 2:40 of the first round of the TUF Live Finale.
In doing so, Chiesa won a UFC contract, a Harley-Davidson, and a TapouT endorsement deal.
"This is exactly what i wanted. This has been such a journey and there was no way I was going to sell myself short. There was no way I was losing this fight."
Iaquinta came out with fire early, perhaps realizing a long fight would not be in his best interest while fighting in his third fight in three weeks. The tide turned shortly thereafter when Chiesa took him down and immediately got his back.
He got in his hooks and diligently worked to sink his choking arm under Iaquinta's chin and eventually locked in the rear naked choke. Iaquinta tried to rip Chiesa's hands off him, but couldn't, and went to sleep before tapping for the technical submission.
Iaquinta fell to 5-2-1.