Following his knock out win over James Vick, Dan Hooker let it be known he was looking for a top tier opponent in the lightweight division. “I feel like Al Iaquinta’s the one that makes sense. That name definitely stands out to me.” Through some confusion Hooker appeared to be under the impression Iaquinta wasn’t actually interested in the fight. Hooker said via Twitter “UFC told me you turned down the fight. Quit acting like you want to fight me, you don’t.” He went on “If I’m lying the fight would be booked already. Put up or shut up.” Well, ask and you shall receive. News broke late Sunday night that both fighters had verbally agreed to the bout scheduled for October 5th in Melbourne Australia. Continue Reading
At the end of Round 5 an intense Iaquinta was right in the face of Kevin Lee and only had one thing to say. “Same Al, Same Al.” Iaquinta was referring to Lee’s comments earlier in the week. “I’m not the same man from four years ago, I look into his eyes I see the same man.” That’s just fine by Iaquinta who went the distance with Lee scoring a unanimous decision Saturday night. Iaquinta stood tall while a broken down Kevin Lee was left close to speechless in the octagon. “Devastating, embarrassed, I couldn’t feel lower than I do right now” Lee said. It was a rematch that didn’t disappoint on FOX’s final UFC. “That was sick” Iaquinta said. “That was a lot of fun.”
Iaquinta controlled much of the first round, landing solid shots throughout the round including an impressive spinning back fist early on. Although Lee landed shots of his own, it was Iaquinta who impressed in the early going. In round 2 Kevin Lee showcased his strength taking Iaquinta down and taking his back. Iaquinta would take shots from Lee from that position, but eventually would work his way back up. Once back on their feet Iaquinta was able to land some other tough shots on Lee with his jab, potentially securing that round for the New Yorker.
Iaquinta continued to push the pace in the 3rd round. Lee seemed to constantly have his back against thecage. The strong grappler Lee would eventually be able to take Iaquinta down once again. Raging Al fought off his back shutting down any rear naked choke attempts from Kevin Lee. In round 4 Iaquinta began to really turn it on. “I know Kevin Lee will never beat me in the 4th and 5th round” Iaquinta said following the fight. He continued to dominate the standup battle. Iaquinta impressed with crisp shots and constant head movement throughout the final round. He stalked Lee throughout the cage landing shots what seemed like at will. Iaquinta blasted Lee with punches at the end of the 5th cementing what was not only a dominant round, but an all around dominant fight for Iaquinta.
Iaquinta was asked back stage his thoughts on Kevin Lee dancing and singing prior to entering the cage. “Look at me” Iaquinta said. “This is how it’s done, I do this thing right.” Perhaps that served as motivation for the Serra Longo based fighter as he put on what could be one of the best performances of his career. “You can prepare, you can train, but there’s something you can’t put in somebody. It’s this.” Iaquinta said as he pounded his chest and pointed to his heart. “You can give me millions of dollars but you’re not getting me out of there. You’re going to have to kill me.”
Iaquinta would continue speaking with reporters back stage. “He’s too slow, he’s plotting. He’s strong, but he’s never going to beat me.” When asked if he thought Kevin Lee did in fact look “slower” in there “Of course Kevin Lee looked slower. Khabib, Masvidal, there’s a reason all these guys looked slower, or weren’t at their best. They feel something in there with me. They know I’m not going anywhere.” Yes indeed. With a dominant five round win Iaquinta will undoubtably continue to climb the Lightweight ranks. Who he’ll fight next will remain to be seen yet one thing is for sure. Al Iaquinta is the fighter UFC lightweights need to watch out for.
There aren’t many employees that would have one of their best nights at the office, and follow it up by ripping into their Employer. Than again not everyone is Al Iaquinta. Iaquinta hasn’t been shy about his frustration with UFC management and their polices. While his love for fighting is still fully intact it’s Iaquinta’s patience around the politics of The UFC that continues to grow thin.
“Raging” Al was yet again snubbed for a finish bonus Saturday night after knocking out UFC legend Diego Sanchez. After expressing his frustration on Twitter that night, Iaquinta went into further detail on the MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani this week. Continue Reading
Although last night the focus was in Brooklyn for UFC 208, there was breaking news announced during the card for one of New York’s fan favorites. Serra Longo’s Al Iaquinta will make his return to the octagon at UFC Fight Night Swanson vs. Lobov. The fight will take place April 22nd Live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville Tennessee. Iaquinta will take on veteran and Ultimate Fighter Season 1 alumni Diego “The Nightmare” Sanchez.
“I don’t lose in the late rounds. The third round belongs to me.” That’s a statement that came from light weight Al Iaquinta a few years ago, and one that stood true yesterday. It’s not only describes the Serra Longo fighters conditioning, but his determination and will power. He showed that yesterday against Jorge Masvidal.
Iaquinta and Masvidal squared off in the Co Main event at UFC Fight Night 63 where it was Iaquinta winning a tight, hard fought split decision over Masvidal. Iaquinta got after Masvidal early who kept his defense tight avoiding any major damage. Masvidal was able to keep his distance with his long reach, keeping both fighters working on their feet. Late in the round after a tough exchange between the two Iaquinta attempted a heel hook to avoid what could have been more damage. In the next exchange Masvidal was able to drop Al and cut him under his right eye. Continue Reading
Once again Iaquinta Nation it’s Fight Day. Please excuse this post for being a little early as I’m driving to Virginia for the fight and won’t have my laptop with me. Saturday afternoon Live on Fox Sports 1 from The Patritiot Center in Fairfax, Al Iaquinta will take on the veteran Jorge Masvidal. Raging Al enters the fight on a three fight win streak where he knocked out each of his respected opponents. Masvidal has won three fights in a row of his own setting up an intriguing match up between the #14 Masvidal and #15 Iaquinta ranked fighters in the division. Continue Reading