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UFC 216 live blog: Beneil Dariush vs. Evan Dunham

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Beneil Dariush and Evan Dunham will kick off the UFC 216 main card Saturday night.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

This is the UFC 216 live blog for Beneil Dariush vs. Evan Dunham, a lightweight bout at Saturday night's UFC event at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.

The main card opener sees Dariush looking to bounce back from a March knockout loss to Edson Barboza, while Dunham hunts for his fifth straight win.

Check out the UFC 216 live blog below.

Round 1: Dan Miragliotta in the cage to oversee this one. Dariush takes the center of the Octagon and he’s simply stalking a circling Dunham. A few brief striking exchanges don’t lead to much for either man. Dariush catches Dunham with a looping left and he seems to be finding his range. An elbow forces Dunham to dive down to the mat for a takedown, he’s hurt. Dariush takes the back and lands a few hard shots before Dunham tries to roll out of it. Dariush right there with him. Dunham staying low to avoid taking a knee but Dariush is pounding him with big punches. Two minutes left in the round and Dariush is on top, working from half guard. Dunham goes for a leg lock, but Dariush easily slips out of it. Back into half guard and Dariush connects with more elbows. Dariush ends up on Dunham’s back where he lands punches. They end the round back on the feet.

MMA Fighting scores the round 10-8, Dariush.

Round 2: Dariush stalking again, but Dunham gets a body lock and he puts Dariush on the mat against the cage. Dunham unable to throw strikes with Dariush looking for an omoplata. They’re back on the feet, with Dunham holding on and pressing Dariush against the cage. The action moves back to the center of the Octagon and Dariush starts chopping away at Dunham’s leg. Dariush over the top with a straight right. Dunham grabs a leg, but can’t get a takedown. He avoids some power punches from Dariush. Output slowing down a little for both men, they trade straight punches. Dariush still finding success with the leg kicks.

MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, Dariush. Overall 20-17, Dariush.

Round 3: Dunham picking up the pace in the final frame, he’s connecting with combinations to Dariush’s chin now. He’s making Dariush miss. Dunham shoots in for a takedown, it’s defended by Dariush and the action is back against the fence. They separate, Dunham still circling with Dariush coming after him, and he keeps catching Dariush with punches coming in. Leg kicks from Dariush still connecting. Dunham goes in to grapple again, but Dariush gets his back off the cage quickly. Now it’s Dunham getting caught with counter punches. Swinging shots being thrown with a minute to go. Dunham finishing strong, backing Dariush up for the first time in the fight. Dunham with some sloppy strikes to close out the fight.

MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, Dunham. Overall 29-27, Dariush.

Official result: Beniel Dariush vs. Evan Dunham ends in a majority draw (28-28, 28-28, 29-28 Dariush)