UFC 136 Live Blog: Anthony Pettis vs. Jeremy Stephens Updates

Anthony Pettis vs. Jeremy Stephens at UFC 136.HOUSTON -- This is the UFC 136 live blog for Anthony Pettis vs. Jeremy Stephens, a lightweight bout on on tonight's UFC 136 on Spike TV preliminary card from the Toyota Center.

Pettis (13-2) is a former WEC lightweight champion in search of his first UFC win. Stephens (20-6) has won both his UFC fights this year against Marcus Davis and Danny Downes.

The live blog is below.

Round 1: Left-right combo fired off by Stephens early. Pettis measuring the distance, and as he comes forward, Stephens ducks down and takes him to the ground. Pettis threatens with an armbar and Stephens pulls away. As he does, Pettis gets to his feet. Pettis knocks Stephens back with a straight right on the restart. A Pettis left kick lands to the body. Stephens closes the distance and pushes Pettis against the cage. Stephens clasps his hands and pulls Pettis down. Pettis uses the fence to get up, and puts Stephens' back against the fence before they work free. Both land in an exchange. A super close round that I'll give to Stephens by a hair, by virtue of his takedowns, 10-9. Could go either way though.

Round 2: Pettis drives in for an early takedown, and moves right to side control, with Stephens against the fence. Overhand right by Pettis lands. Stephens works hard to get back to his feet. Pettis takes him right back down. The same sequence happens a third time. Pettis can't keep him down for long but he has been able to pull him down. Another takedown from Pettis, who is on Stephens' back. He looks for the choke but settles for punches. He's got the body triangle now. Stephen turns into him and lands two punches from the top as the round ends. Pettis, 10-9.

Round 3
: Stephens with a quick takedown to start the round. Pettis threatens an armbar and Stephens gets out of dodge, letting Pettis up. Pettis ducks under a big left hook and tries the takedown. Stephens ends up on top. Pettis reverses and they move against the cage. Pettis pulls him down again. This probably isn't the fight people were expecting from two strikers, but it's still intriguing. Pettis scores with a combo and takes him down again. Stephens is breathing hard now. Pettis' conditioning might end up winning him this fight. A "Showtime" chant goes up as we're inside of a minute left. Close fight, but I score the round for Pettis 10-9.

Winner: Anthony Pettis via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)

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