UFC on ESPN+ 39 results: Bryce Mitchell’s takedowns make difference against Andre Fili

Bryce Mitchell said he wasn’t going to lose in his new camouflage shorts, and that proved true in his fight with Andre Fili on Saturday at UFC on ESPN+ 39.

An endless stream of takedowns and top control were the keys to Mitchell’s (14-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) win. He took Fili (21-8 MMA, 9-7 UFC) down time after time over the course of 15 minutes, doing enough work to get the unanimous decision win by scores of 29-28, 30-27 and 30-27.

The featherweight bout was the UFC on ESPN+ 39 co-main event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. It streamed on ESPN+.

Mitchell wasted no time taking the fight to the ground. Fili resisted the initial shot, but found himself grounded less than a minute in and forced to fight off his back. Mitchell applied some serious pressure, advancing and adjusting positions and eventually securing the mount position with less than two minutes remaining. He landed some solid punches, but Fili did a solid job of fending off serious trouble before escaping to his feet with roughly 45 seconds remaining. Mitchell countered with another takedown right away, and concluded a dominant grappling round from on top.

In the second round, Mitchell was forced into more of a standup fight. Fili denied his first several takedown entries, and was able to land some strong punches and kicks that Mitchell didn’t react well too. Mitchell then changed course, and charged his way into a takedown that led to sustained top control. He chipped away with ground-and-pound as he tried to advance positions. Fili scrambled back up to his feet late, and landed a still shot that forced Mitchell to drop to his back.

With the fight potentially hanging in the balance in the final frame, Mitchell was determined to get his takedowns. He succeeded, putting Fili on his ground multiple times in the first few minutes. Fili was able to stand up and land strikes in between the first few takedowns, but Mitchell made sure he kept it down there in the latter stages of the round. He finished the fight with nearly 10 minutes of top control time, and although it frustrated Fili, it was the game plan Mitchell needed to get his hand raised.

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