Sergio Pettis’ performance on Saturday night could portend the future of a flyweight division in flux.
With the UFC’s 125-pound weight class’ future in question, several fighters have been cut, and several others have moved up to 135.
Pettis did the latter for his fight UFC on FOX 31, returning to bantamweight after a seven-fight stint at 125. But he looked too small against a bigger and stronger Rob Font, who earned a unanimous decision at Fiserv Forum in Pettis’ hometown of Milwaukee. The judges’ scores were 30-27 across the board.
Font made his intentions known early, as the Boston-area competitor found a home with his jab. He landed the jab at will, keeping Pettis from getting any offense untracked. Font scored a takedown later in the round and dishes out offense from the top position.
The pattern continued in the second, as Pettis’ right eye slowly started to shut. Font continued to use his jab and footwork. Pettis managed a late takedown, but Font adjust and got Pettis into a Kimura in the round’s closing seconds.
It was all but academic in the final round, as Font again controlled the bout on the feet and the mat.
“Watch out for Sergio Pettis, that kid is super young and he’s a beast,” Font said. “I got my jab going but he was a lot slicker with the head movement than I thought he’d be. I didn’t get the finish but I got the ring time and I got the ‘W.’”
With the victory, Font improved to 16-4 with his eighth career decision victory and has won two of his past three. Pettis 17-5 has dropped two straight and three of four.