Buentello and Bastos Victorious in their Legacy debuts! from Sherdog.com

from Jordan Breen at Sherdog.com Images by Rachel Austin

At 39 years old, Paul Buentello did considerable work on his body to get down to the light heavyweight division. However, it was the work he did on James McSweeney’s body that made his 205-pound debut a successful one Friday night in the main event of Legacy FC 22 from the Memorial Civic Center in Lubbock, Texas.

The initial surprise of the bout wasn’t that McSweeney took early control but rather that the British kickboxer showed off what he’s learned in Las Vegas with Robert Drysdale, taking Buentello’s back and working diligently to find a choke for most of round one. The “Ultimate Fighter” Season 10 alum even went over Buentello’s back into an armbar attempt, but the former UFC and Strikeforce heavyweight title challenger escaped and punished him to the body on the canvas.

The body work of “The Headhunter” paid immediate dividends. Though McSweeney landed kicking offense in the second round, the gut checking took its toll as “The Hammer” started huffing and puffing, finally shooting a lame double-leg takedown that Buentello easily defended. Buentello defended the takedown so forcefully, he basically shoved McSweeney across the cage onto his seat, then opened up with more ground-and-pound to the body from Ali-Inoki position. A crushing right hand to the body forced McSweeney to turn sideways in pain, giving referee Kerry Hatley his cue to halt the contest at 2:44 of the second.

Buentello was originally set to face Marcus Sursa in his 205-pound debut, but McSweeney entered the bout five weeks ago when Sursa was not approved as an opponent by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. Buentello’s first light-heavyweight win in his 16-year MMA career brings his mark to 33-15, while McSweeney falls to 11-11.

In undercard action, Midland, Texas-based Brazilian Bruno Bastos used his grappling chops to earn a unanimous decision over Gabriel Garcia in 205-pound action; Jessie Moreno unanimously outpointed debuting Dustin Roe at 155 pounds; Daniel Perez earned a unanimous verdict against Thomas Wayne Moreno in a welterweight contest; Lubbock flyweightJoe Saucedo got his first pro win via 3-0 decision against hard-luck vet Larry Garcia and featherweight Javier Minjarez slid by Santana Martinez via split decision.