This is the UFC Fight Night 29 live blog for Fabio Maldonado vs. Joey Beltran, a light heavyweight bout at Wednesday's UFC event at the Ginasio Jose Correa in Barueri, Brazil.
Maldonado, who has won two of his past five fights, will face Beltran, who is 1-3 (with one no-contest) is his past five fights, on the main card.
Check out the UFC Fight Night 29 live blog below.
Round 1: Mario Yamasaki is the referee. They touch them up. It's Beltran moving forward early, and he's eating a couple of punches for his effort. But he gets Maldonado against the fence, and is trying to dump him there. He is throwing low punches, and lands one a little too low, right to the groin. Yamasaki warns Beltran that he'll take a point if it happens again. They are back at it, and Maldonado lands a crisp jab, and then eats a couple of lunches off a Beltran combo. Now they are tangled on fence, and Maldonado is throwing heavy punched and knees. Beltran spins him around and squares off himself, landing a couple of good shots. No he gets Maldonado in a front headlock, but the Brazilian pops out. Beltran posts him along the fence and lands an elbow, and now a couple of knees. Beltran fighting a little more strategically than we've seen. Maldonado is landing body shots, and then so is Beltran. Some brutal dirty boxing there. Maldonado lands a big left hand in close, and Beltran ate it. Still on fence inside of half a minute. Now Beltran takes Maldonado down, and Maldonado tries for a guillotine. Not happening. The round ends, and Maldonado eggs Beltran on. MMA Fighting scores R1 10-9 for Beltran.
Round 2: Jab by Beltran. Maldonado says "come on" with his hands. They are both throwing jabs, but Maldonado's are landing. Beltran moves in and wings some punches, but nothing lands. Maldonado working the body as Beltran gets into the clinch in the center. He keeps tenderizing Beltran's side with his hooks. Beltran firing back to the body, too. Maldonado breaks free for a minute, but then puts his back on the fence and asks Beltran back. Beltran doesn't hesitate -- he goes right back, and into the clinch. Big bombs from Beltran, knees, punches and elbows. Maldonado's mouthpiece came out, and Yamasaki calls time. Now they are back at it. Beltran continues to press. Again, Maldonado urges him on. Beltran starting to slow down a little, looks up at the clock. Maldonado circling. Beltran ties him up again near the center of the cage, and tries to land some knees from the Thai plum. Beltran throwing slow punches to Maldonado's chest, and they have a crazy if a little fatigued exchange to close out the second, MMA Fighting scores R2 for Maldonado (19-19 overall)
Round 3: We'll see if Maldonado can keep momentum. Beltran throwing long jabs, nothing much landing. Meanwhile, Maldonado fires back and is finding a home for his own jabs. Beltran still moving, and comes over top with a right hand that lands flush. His best shot in a while. He tries to get Maldonado on the ground, pushing him against the fence fishing for a leg, but it's not serious. Maldonado fends him off easily. Beltran is insistent, and he drops to his knees with Maldonado on fence to lift him, but still can't get it done. Yamasaki finally separates the fighters, and the crowd roars. Back to the center. Maldonado with a stiff jab with that left, and again. Beltran can't do much about it, as he moves forward. His big right is coming off slower, but Beltran still landing it on occasion. Maldonado bleeding from the mouth. As Beltran presses, Maldonado lands some serious body shots. Now he lands a strike too low, and Yamasaki calls time. Beltran walks it off. Now they are back at it, Beltran backing Maldonado into the fence, and this time Beltan able to get him down. Maldonado with the wrist, but he's in a vulnerable position. Beltran throwing punches on that fence, and he will be the more active fighter at the end. They hug it out . MMA Fighting scores R3 for Beltran (29-28 for Beltran overall).
UFC Fight Night 29 results: Fabio Maldonado def. Joey Beltran via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)