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UFC 216 results: Beneil Dariush and Evan Dunham duel to an exciting draw

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Beneil Dariush threw everything but the kitchen sink at Evan Dunham in the first round of their UFC 216 lightweight bout on Saturday night. Dunham roared back to take the last two rounds at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena.

The end result? A majority draw after a highly entertaining scrap. One judge saw the bout 29-28 and the other two saw it 28-28 for a majority draw.

“He’s tough, for sure I was surprised,” Dariush said. “I felt like I was OK after the first, it’s just he came back and came strong.”

Dariush was a whirlwind in the fight’s first five minutes, as the Kings MMA competitor swarmed his opponent with a brutally efficient array of punches, kicks, and elbows. It was to the ultra-tough Dunham’s credit he simply made it to the end of the round.

In the second, though, Dunham picked up the pace. He outgrappled Dariush and got the best of the scrambles in the second, as Dariush clearly lost a step after the first. Both fighters tired in the third, but Dunham had enough gas left in the tank for a final flurry over the round’s closing seconds, eliciting a roar from the crowd.

Dunham, who calls Las Vegas home, brought the Nevada state flag with him to the cage. He referenced last weekend’s shooting in the city which claimed the lives of nearly 60 people.

“Las Vegas baby we don’t give up, we don’t back down, and we come back no matter what the odds are,” Dunham said. “Vegas don’t quit baby.”

Dunham (18-6-1) remains unbeaten in his past five fights at 4-0-1. Dariush (14-3-1) in winless in his past two at 0-1-1.