The featherweight and light heavyweight finals of the 2023 PFL season are now confirmed after the first night of PFL Playoff action in San Antonio, Texas.
Headlining the event at the Boeing Center at Tech Port was a featherweight semi-final between top seed Bubba Jenkins and the surprise package of the featherweight season, Jesus Pinedo, and the Peruvian continued his run of form with a second-round finish of Jenkins to blast his way into the 2023 featherweight final.
Once again, it was Pinedo’s heavy hands that proved the difference maker, as he stunned, then finished, Jenkins with strikes to continue his remarkable emergence in the PFL in 2023.
Pinedo’s season started off with a split-decision loss, and in the featherweight final he’ll face the man who defeated him that day, with Gabriel Braga punching his ticket to the finale with a split-decision victory over fifth-ranked Chris Wade.
Wade was the lucky beneficiary after former champion Movlid Khaybulaev was ruled out of the playoffs due to injury, but the American found himself on the wrong end of a split-decision verdict, as Braga progressed to a rematch with Pinedo with the 145-pound championship, and a million dollars, up for grabs.
The light heavyweight championship will be contested between Josh Silveira and Impa Kasanganay after both men scored impressive first-round finishes in their respective semi-finals.
Silveira stopped Ty Flores with knees with 14 seconds remaining in the first round of the co-main event, while former UFC middleweight Kasanganay showcased his punch power with a first-round knockout of Norwegian grappler Marthin Hamlet after two minutes, 24 seconds.
The next PFL Playoffs event will take place on Friday, August 18 at The Theater at Madison Square Garden as the heavyweights and women’s featherweights take center stage in New York City.
The final round of Playoffs then follow at the same venue on Wednesday, August 23, as the welterweight and lightweight finalists are decided.
PFL 7: Official results
- Jesus Pinedo def. Bubba Jenkins via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 4:40 – featherweight semi-final
- Josh Silveira def. Ty Flores via TKO (knees) – Round 1, 4:46 – light heavyweight semi-final
- Gabriel Braga def. Chris Wade via split decision (30-27, 29-28, 27-30) – featherweight semi-final
- Impa Kasanganay def. Marthin Hamlet via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 2:24 – light heavyweight semi-final
- Elvin Espinoza def. Keoni Diggs via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Thad Jean def. Ali Omar via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 1:54
- Lisa Mauldin def. Desiree Yanez via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 3:08
- Anthony Ivy def. Carson Hardman via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 2:34
- Chelsea Hackett def. Ky Bennett via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 4:42
- Billy Elekana def. Chuck Campbell via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)