Dong Hyun Kim spent much of his fight with Tarec Saffiedine on Saturday night chasing his opponent down and looking to set up a fight-changing shot.
Saffiedine’s reply was to try landing strikes at volume from range and stop Kim’s advances with clinches.
And while that style clash didn’t exactly thrill the crowd at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, it turned out to be an effective one for the Korean fighter nicknamed “Stun Gun.”
Kim, competing for the 17th time in the UFC, earned a split-decision victory over the former Strikeforce welterweight champ at UFC 207, with a pair of 29-28s for Kim to one 30-27 card for Saffiedine.
In the opening round, Saffiedine stayed away from Kim’s knockout power and landed punches and body kicks. Kim stuck with it, though, and in the second round found better success as he landed both from range and in close.
The final round opened with a bang, as the fighters traded flurries of punches. But the bout settled back into a grueling pace and Kim got noticeably stronger while Saffiedine started to fade.
With the win, Kim (27-10-1, 1 NC) has now won three in a row and seven of his past eight. Saffiedine (16-6) has lost two straight and three of his past four.