Pearson (16-7, 1 NC) briefly flirted with featherweight, but returned to the 155-pound division in late 2012, where he has since gone 3-1 with one no contest in the Octagon.
Those victories include wins over George Sotiropoulus, Ryan Couture, and Gray Maynard. But even the loss was a victory in the eyes of many fans. The loss was an extremely controversial split-decision that many believed was handed to Diego Sanchez when the two fought on the New Mexican’s home turf in Albuquerque. The no contest decision occurred when Pearson’s fight with Melvin Guillard was stopped after an illegal knee from Guillard.
The runner-up on the fifteenth season of The Ultimate Fighter, Iaquinta (9-3-1) is 4-2 in the Octagon. He is coming into this fight off of a victory over Rodrigo Damm in September.