WATCH: Billy Quarantillo wins an absolute war against Gabriel Benitez at UFC Vegas 31

Credit: Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports

If Billy Quarantillo versus Gabriel Benitez doesn’t win the fight of the night at UFC Vegas 31, then a mixed martial arts classic must have happened afterwards.

Billy Quarantillo and Gabriel Benitez went to war at UFC Vegas 31

For three rounds, the two unranked lightweights tore into each other to open the main card, with neither giving any quarter. In the first round, Quarantillo, 32, landed a big right hand and floored “Moggly.” The way it was going, it seemed like the fight would be done in one. However, Benitez, 33, endured and fought on. Throwing up submission attempts, and when the fight got back to the feet later, he looked for revenge.

In the second, the war continued and was highly competitive as both landed big shots on the other. The big difference throughout each round was Quarantillo’s ground control whenever the fight hit the mat. Often getting to his opponent’s back, landing strikes and attempting submissions.

By the final round, Benitez’s left eye was swelling badly and the octagon doctor threatened to end the fight if he continued to take damage on the spot. With that in the back of his mind, the Mexican came out aggressive and landed a left hand that floored Quarantillo. But just like his foe, he battled back and eventually regained the upper hand.

With under two minutes left in the last round, “Billy Q” once again got to Benitez’s back and pounded away with strikes. Bloodying up his opponent. The damage inflicted became too much for the referee to continue to watch, and he stopped the fight with 1:20 left in the fight.

It was an outstanding battle that will be on some “fight of the year” lists in December. The victory is a bounce-back win for Quarantillo after losing in the Octagon for the first time in December. He moves his UFC record to 4-1.

Promotional veteran Benitez has now lost two straight, and three of his last four. He is 6-5 in the UFC.

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