Stevie Ray got the biggest win of his MMA career at PFL 5, when he faced off against former UFC Lightweight world champion Anthony Pettis with a place in the PFL play-offs on the line. Not only did he manage to defeat Pettis but he also managed to submit the BJJ black belt, and with one of the most innovative submissions ever seen in MMA. Ray is a BJJ brown belt himself, but is a veteran MMA fighter with a wealth of experience competing at the highest levels of the sport and several submission wins under his belt.
The first round was largely a striking match between the two with a little wrestling against the cage and although both managed to land good shots throughout, Pettis appeared to have the upper hand. Pettis started the second round stronger still and was able to land a solid high kick and some good right hands to counter Ray’s forward pressure. The momentum shifted drastically when Ray executed a perfectly-timed takedown and managed to take his opponent’s back, quickly adjusting to a body triangle to control him.
Although the submission has been technically recorded as a body triangle, that simply doesn’t tell the full story of what happened in the cage and why Pettis tapped. Pettis rotated out and managed to turn in to full guard, but Ray maintained the body triangle and laced his one leg underneath Pettis’ thigh. From there, Ray reached over Pettis’ head in a similar fashion to a guillotine before connecting his hands underneath Pettis’ armpit. With control over both his upper and lower body, Ray was able to bridge in to his opponent and force Pettis to tap by putting immense pressure on his ribs, spine, and neck.
The footage of Stevie Ray submitting Anthony Pettis with an incredibly rare and innovative submission at PFL 5 was uploaded to the official Twitter account of the promotion:
STEVIE RAY GETS THE TAP!!!!
RAY IS GOING TO THE #PFLPLAYOFFS!!#2022PFL5 LIVE on ESPN & ESPN+
🌎 https://t.co/jPNvomkWj8 pic.twitter.com/AIwfNlWFtS
— PFL (@PFLMMA) June 25, 2022
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