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WEC 51 Live Blog: Jamie Varner vs. Donald Cerrone Updates

This is the WEC 51 live blog for Jamie Varner vs. Donald Cerrone, a lightweight bout on tonight's Versus card from the 1st Bank Center in Broomfield, Colo.

In their first fight at WEC 38, Varner defeated Cerrone by technical split decision to retain the lightweight belt.

The live blog is below.

Round 1: No touch of gloves between the two after the referee's instructions. Cerrone sprints out at the opening bell and Cerrone ties him up. Varner lands left hooks. Cerrone cracks him with a knee and Varner loses his mouthpiece as he backpedals away. A quick timeout for ref Herb Dean to give him his mouthpiece. Cerrone is coming out with fire. He's usually a slow-starter. The two clinch and struggle for position. Cerrone nearly puts him on the ground, but Varner lands an uppercut and escapes. Blazing start. Midway through, Cerrone takes Varner down, but Varner gets to his feet in a blink. They settle into a more normal pace as we near the one-minute mark. Cerrone lands a leg kick, Varner wings a right that misses. Cerrone buckled Varner with a left hook, and Varner shot in to give himself recovery time. Varner fired back with a combo seconds later to end a barn-burner of an opening round. Cerrone, 10-9.

Round 2: Cerrone backing up Varner again with kick-punch combos early. Cerrone ducked under a Varner hook and took him down. Cerrone moved into side control, then the north-south position. Varner forced his way up. They broke up and Cerrone fired off a high kick that was partially blocked. Varner is bleeding by the left eye and is continually rubbing his eye. Cerrone moves in with another combo, landing a left. Cerrone buckled Varner with a leg kick with just under a minute left. Varner keeps checking his eye and appears a bit distracted now. Varner shot in for a takedown and Cerrone easily freed himself. Cerrone raised his hands in the air, then landed all three strikes in a scoring combo. The horn sounded and Varner put his hands on his knees, dejected. Cerrone takes the round, 10-9.

Round 3: The two touch gloves to begin the round. Varner tries an early takedown to no avail. Cerrone with another kick that lands. He really appears to be enjoying this. Varner looks to be tiring, but he lands a straight right. Cerrone walks through it. Seconds later, another right on the chin, and Cerrone again shucks it off. The pace has slowed a bit but still bad intentions. Cerrone shoots in and takes Varner down a third time. Varner's face is badly bloodied as Cerrone lands elbows from the top. Varner hustles his way free though. Great effort by both. One minute left. They exchange leg kicks as the clock runs low. Varner tries one last bomb but it misses and they share an awkward glove tap that nearly goes sour as the round ends. Cerrone, 10-9.

Winner: Donald Cerrone via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

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