Strikeforce Live Blog: Pat Healy vs. Maximo Blanco Updates

CINCINNATI -- This is the Strikeforce live blog for Pat Healy vs. Maximo Blanco, a lightweight bout on tonight's Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov event at the U.S. Bank Arena.

Healy (25-16) is coming off wins this year against Lyle Beerbohm and Eric Wisely. Blanco (8-2-1) is making his Strikeforce debut after compiling a 6-1 record with Sengoku.

The live blog is below.


Round 1: They collide in a clinch to start things off, then Blanco stings Healy with a kick to the body. Nifty little takedown by Blanco puts Healy on his back, and Blanco is on top in half-guard. Healy pushes him off and manages to get to his feet, though he does pay for it a bit by eating a punch or two. Back on the feet, Healy paws with the jab, but can't find the smaller, quicker Blanco. Blanco unleashes a kick and then several punches in close, following with another front kick to the face. Healy shoots, but ends up on his back when he can't finish the desperate takedown attempt. Healy tries for an oma plata, then reaches for a foot lock when Blanco sticks his feet in his face. Apparently forgetting the rules entirely, Blanco begins kicking Healy in the face as they're both down. That's a no-no, and the ref moves in to halt the action. Healy gets examined by the doctor while Blanco has a point deducted. They restart in the center and Blanco goes right back on the offensive. He peppers Healy with punches and slams him with another body kick. Healy dives for a leg and stays after it, putting Blanco down even after Blanco grabbed the fence to prevent it initially. Healy ends the round holding Blanco down and working short rights to the side of his head. MMA Fighting scores the round 9-9 after the point deduction.

Round 2:
Healy's face looks battered to start the second, and right away Blanco's quickness again proves to be a problem for him. Spinning backfist by Blanco lands, and all Healy can do is keep walking forward into more punishment. Healy keeps throwing, but Blanco is gone before his punches get there and his counters are landing at will. No sooner do I type that than Healy manages to drop Blanco and take his back. He's working for the rear naked choke, but Blanco has trapped one of his arms well. Blanco turns into him and gets to his feet, then Healy goes down off what may have been a slip. Blanco is too tired to do much with the opportunity. Healy gets back up and manages to slam Blanco again, and again takes his back. This time Healy has the rear naked choke locked up, even though he's off to the side slightly. Blanco can't mount much of a defense, and eventually he's forced to tap. Good win for Healy after a rocky start.

Pat Healy def. Maximo Blanco via submission (rear naked choke) at 4:24 of round two

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