On Saturday, April 13, the UFC held The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

In the night’s main event former WEC champion and UFC title challenger Urijah Faber took on fellow wrestling stalwart Scott Jorgensen in a bantamweight affair. Both fighters were looking to inch their way back to title contention, having suffered defeats to both UFC champion Dominick Cruz and interim champion Renan Barao. Faber scored a big win over Ivan Menjivar at UFC 157 in February, while Jorgensen snapped a two-fight skid with a submission win over John Albert at UFC on Fox 5 in December.

Also on the main card women’s bantamweights Miesha Tate and Cat Zingano locked horns to determine next challenger for Ronda Rousey’s title, as well as a coaching slot on The Ultimate Fighter 18.

The promotion crowned the reality show’s 17th winner as middleweights Uriah Hall and Kelvin Gastelum squared off for the six-figure contract.

The event featured a total of 12 bouts. The main card aired live on FX beginning at 9 p.m. ET, while the preliminary card was split between a 7 p.m. ET broadcast on Fuel TV and a live stream on the promotion’s YouTube page starting at 5:30 p.m ET.

Faber submits Jorgensen in fourth round

In the main event of the evening, former WEC competitors faced off with Urijah Faber fighting Scott Jorgensen in a five-round battle.

Both men came out quickly, working for position against the cage. Jorgensen landed the first takedown of the fight, but after Faber returned to his feet, landed a trip takedown of his own. They returned to their feet, with Faber landing a knee to the mid-section that allowed him to take the fight back to the mat. Faber took the back of Jorgensen for a short time, but ended up having to change positions and switch to a guillotine. Jorgensen defended it, but Faber continued to stay on his opponent until the round ended.

Faber continued to be one step ahead of Jorgensen on the feet, landing the majority of the strikes. After standing half of the round, Faber shot in and landed another takedown, but was countered by Jorgensen who slipped out. As the round went on, Jorgensen worked more, but would it be enough to earn him the round?

The corner of Jorgensen asked for more pressure, and Jorgensen did so by working his jab early in the third round. But Faber answered back with punches of his own, making it an evenly contested round on the feet. Jorgensen worked to take the back of Faber while standing, having his best round of the fight. But in the final seconds, Faber landed a takedown and took the back of Jorgensen as the horn sounded.

As the fourth round began, both men knew they needed to stay busy in the later stages. The pace slowed considerably, but both did their fair share of damage on the feet until Faber landed yet another takedown. Once again, Faber worked to take the back of Jorgensen, but this time, locked up a rear-naked choke and forced Jorgensen to tap.

Gastelum edges out Hall, winning TUF 17

Only one man would leave the Octagon with a six-figure UFC, with two members of Team Sonnen squaring off as Kelvin Gastelum took on Uriah Hall.

Hall backed up with his hands down against the cage, letting Gastelum come forward and attack. From there, Gastelum took Hall down and pressured the betting favorite with a variety of strikes. Hall appeared to be very confident in the cage, but was down on the scorecards after round one.

Gastelum landed another takedown a minute into the second round, smothering Hall. But Hall managed to reverse the position and started opening up with strikes of his own on the feet. Hall reversed roles and landed a trip takedown on Gastelum, hoping to score points to shift the momentum. Hall finished off the round with a big suplex.

Both men exchanges takedowns in the third round, first with Gastelum, then Hall answered back with one of his own which led to ground strikes. Gastelum escaped the shots, returning to his feet to trade with Hall. After mixing it up, Gastelum landed a double-leg takedown to score points, and worked from the top with punches. Hall worked from the bottom, then transitioned out as the third round ended.

Gastelum earned the split decision nod on the scorecards, winning the 17th season of The Ultimate Fighter.

Zingano earns title shot with finish of Tate

Miesha Tate and Cat Zingano faced off in the second women’s fight in UFC history with a title shot against Ronda Rousey and Ultimate Fighter 18 coaching gig on the line.

Tate charged quickly looking to take the upperhand. Zingano had a guillotine locked up tightly, but Tate escaped and worked her striking. Tate took Zingano to the mat, but was reversed by Zingano. The two women returned to their feet, trading strikes back and forth, before Tate took the fight to the mat once again. Tate worked on top until the round ended.

As the second round started, it was Zingano who came out quickly with a flying knee attempt. But just like the opening round, Tate found a way to take her opponent to the ground and work from the top. Tate landed several shots, attempted an armbar, and even mounted Zingano a couple times in the time spent on top. Tate worked hard for a heel hook, but ultimately reversed by Zingano, who ended up in side control. The round ended with both trying to score points on their feet with punches.

Zingano applied pressure on Tate to start the final round, putting her opponent down looking to do damage. Zingano landed many strikes to the face of Tate, including knees once Tate tried to stand. After several knees that stunned Tate, Zingano landed an elbow that ended the fight.

Browne stops Gonzaga

Heavyweights got their time to shine next on FX, with Travis Browne returning from a loss to take on Brazilian Gabriel Gonzaga.

Browne threw a head kick as soon as the fight began, but missed, allowing Gonzaga to clinch with Browne against the cage. But even with his back on the cage, Browne landed several elbows to the head of Gonzaga that forced the referee to step in and stop the fight.

McDaniel forces Smith to submit

Two castmates of this season’s Ultimate Fighter squared off first, with Robert “Bubba” McDaniel vs. Gilbert “Jamal” Smith, both of Team Jones.

McDaniel looked to clinch with Smith to start the fight, pressing him against the cage. The two traded positions on the ground, with Smith on top the majority of the time. But McDaniel used a sweep to reverse the position, and moved to side control in the final seconds, attacking until the round ended.

After a combination from McDaniel to open round two, Smith pressed forward in hopes of landing another takedown. Smith looked for a guillotine choke from the bottom, but the more-experienced McDaniel worked out of danger to get to top position. The round ended with both men exchanging on their feet.

Smith continued to show fatigue late in the fight, which allowed McDaniel to control his opponent on the mat. Smith reversed the position, but found himself trapped in a triangle lock by McDaniel. McDaniel transitioned to an armbar, which forced Smith to tap.

Preliminary Card Summary

In another Team Sonnen vs. Team Jones match-up, Kevin Casey and Josh Samman competed for a chance to stay with the UFC. Casey controlled the first round, putting Samman in many bad positions, but the muay thai of Samman came through in the second and earned a TKO due to strikes.

Team Sonnen’s Luke Barnatt and Collin Hart of Team Jones went to battle in a close three-round contest. In the end, it was Barnatt who would have his hand raised with a unanimous decision win.

Dylan Andrews and Jimmy Quinlan came into the Finale with intentions of impressing in their UFC debuts. On this day, it was Andrews who showed off his skills, dropping Quinlan in the first round, and finished off his fellow castmate with punches on the ground.

Former Ultimate Fighter members Clint Hester, of season 17, and Bristol Marunde, of the previous season, made their Octagon debuts on Saturday. Hester would earn the win by landing a standing elbow to knockout Marunde in the third round.

Cole Miller came into Saturday with two-straight losses, but got back to his winning ways by submitting Bart Palaszewski in the opening round with a rear-naked choke.

Maximo Blanco and Sam Sicilia went toe-to-toe for three rounds in a back-and-forth affair, but in the end, it was Blanco who would get the nod on the judges’ scorecards unanimously, 29-28.

In the opening fight of the afternoon, Daniel Pineda made quick work of Justin Lawrence by taking the former Ultimate Fighter competitor to the ground early and locking up a kimura to force Lawrence to tap.

Urijah Faber def. Scott Jorgensen by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 4, 3:16
Kelvin Gastelum def. Uriah Hall by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28) – TUF 17 Final
Cat Zingano def. Miesha Tate by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 2:55
Travis Browne def. Gabriel Gonzaga by knockout (elbows). Round 1, 1:11
Robert “Bubba” McDaniel def. Gilbert “Jamal” Smith by submission (triangle choke). Round 3,
Josh Samman def. Kevin Casey by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 2:17
Luke Barnatt def. Collin Hart by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Dylan Andrews def. Jimmy Quinlan by TKO (punches). Round 1, 3:22
Clint Hester def. Bristol Marunde by TKO (elbow). Round 3, 3:53
Cole Miller def. Bart Palaszewski by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 1, 4:23
Maximo Blanco def. Sam Sicilia by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Daniel Pineda def. Justin Lawrence by submission (kimura). Round 1, 1:35

Photo: Urijah Faber (James Law/Heavy MMA)

About The Author

Corey Adams
Staff Writer

Corey Adams didn't grow up watching mixed martial arts, considering the UFC was just getting started the year he was born, but in his teenage years, witnessed the action and has fallen in love with the sport. Corey was the first to join The MMA Corner staff -- other than founder Josh Davis -- and has been writing for the site ever since. Corey attends Austin Peay State University, where he majors in Communications with a focus on journalism. When he's not covering MMA, Corey is still writing on many sports with both local and campus newspapers. His favorite sports teams are the Atlanta Braves and Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at the link below.