In an exciting clash between two bright undefeated prospects, Eric Alequin (7-0) meets Thad Jean (4-0) in a bout that is sure to produce fireworks. A former CFFC champion, Alequin is a BJJ black belt and trains out of Kill Cliff FC in Florida. Jean meanwhile owns an amateur win over 2022 PFL Runner-up Dilano Taylor and has finished 3 of his 4 professional wins. Neither man has experienced defeat as a professional and the winner will hope to earn a contract for the 2023 PFL Regular Season.
The fighters touch gloves and our third bout of the evening is underway. Alequin opens with a heavy lead body roundhouse kick that lands flush as Jean looks to find his range, landing a nice counter cross 45 seconds in. Alequin lands another nice body kick and this time Jean answers it with a big right hand.
Alequin has been very kick heavy early but Jean seems to be figuring out the range at this point firing a heavy kick that appears to stun Alequin a bit despite not landing flush. Jean is now controlling the center of the SmartCage and landing his right hand almost at will, switching stances and really starting to loosen up and land at will.
Jean continues to walk Alequin down and control the range and distance but Alequin fires back before losing his footing and slipping to the mat. Jean recognizes the success he is having on the feet and wisely waits for the referee to stand Alequin up.
Jean seems to be in control at this point and is showing poise and patience well beyond that of a standard 24 year old. Oh! Jean lands HEAVY and drops Alequin with only seconds remaining in the round! Jean opens up but Alequin gets just barely saved by the bell.
End of Round 1 as Thad Jean drops heavy shots on Alequin!#PFLonFubo LIVE NOW— PFL (@PFLMMA) January 28, 2023
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They open the second frame and Jean seems to want to test whether Alequin has recovered from the damage he took to end the first round. Jean is doing a good job mixing up body shots with hooks up high as Alequin lands a nice right hand of his own, reminding Jean he still demands respect.
Jean lands another BIG right hand that sends Alequin to the mat! Jean smells blood and chases Alequin to the mat looking for a finish, but disengages when he can’t find it. Alequin wisely looks to clinch and change the pace here as Jean seems to be pulling away now. The ref splits the fighters up fairly quickly and Alequin is back to fighting behind his kicks.
Alequin rushes in and misses with a right and Jean lands a beautiful check left hook and it feels like it may just be a matter of time at this point as Jean lands another big left straight. Jean catches a kick and lands a big straight right with an uppercut behind it and his striking has been effortless tonight.
The 10 second clapper hits and Jean turns up the heat, just missing on a massive uppercut that very well may have shut the lights off for Alequin. Somehow, we’re heading to a third and final round here in Orlando.
Alequin likely needs a finish at this point as we begin the final round with an Alequin side kick to the body of Jean. Alequin does appear like he is perhaps the fresher fighter but Jean is still throwing some heavy shots as the crowd tries to ignite Thad Jean with a “Silverback” chant.
Jean throws a heavy high kick that Alequin is able to block and he’s clearly a bit more labored in the SmartCage at this point but Alequin has not been able to do anything to take advantage.
Halfway through the round and Jean seems content to coast to a decision as Alequin begins to turn the volume up slightly. Jean is still firing big shots but unlike earlier in the fight it’s big single shots with nothing to set it up and nothing behind it and he can’t seem to find the mark as Alequin is clearly the fresher man at this point.
We have a groin shot with just over a minute remaining in the fight but Alequin shrugs it off and wants to keep fighting. Jean lands a monstrous body kick that may have forced Alequin to shoot and turtle up as Jean lands some short ground and pound, gets up, and ends the fight throwing low kicks at a downed Alequin.
Thad Jean slows down late but banks the first two rounds for a unanimous decision victory.
Thad Jean def. Eric Allequin via UD