This is the UFC Boise live blog for Junior dos Santos vs. Blagoy Ivanov, a heavyweight bout at Saturday’s UFC event at the CenturyLink Arena in Boise, Idaho.
Dos Santos, who lost a title rematch to then-champion Stipe Miocic via first-round TKO in his last fight, meets Ivanov, the former WSOF and PFL heavyweight champion who is riding a five-fight win streak, in the main event.
Check out the UFC Boise live blog below.
Round 1: Herb Dean the third man in the cage for the main event. Dos Santos fakes a kick, neither man wanting to commit to a strike yet. Straight right just misses for dos Santos, but he scores with a front kick to the body. Body punch lands for dos Santos. Ivanov circling just a foot or so away from the fence. Ivanov blocks a high kick. Dean warns dos Santos about outstretched fingers. Ivanov with a nice counter hook, he’s been having some success with it. A small cut has opened above dos Santos’s left eye. Leg kick by dos Santos. Body kick by dos Santos, but Ivanov backs him up with a straight left. Dos Santos targeting Ivanov’s body with his jab. Left hand by dos Santos gets around Ivanov’s defenses.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, dos Santos.
Round 2: Ivanov pumping his jab, keeping dos Santos at bay. Dos Santos with a high kick, then a high spinning kick, Ivanov evades both. Jab lands clean for dos Santos. 1-2 combo by dos Santos, then a punch to the body. Ivanov with a straight left. Front kick to the body lands for dos Santos. He hits a glancing overhand right. Now it’s dos Santos making effective use of the jab. Ivanov gets wild and misses with a pair of winging hooks. Dos Santos staying steady and working his jab. Ivanov struggling to close the distance now. He gets clipped by a three-punch combination.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, dos Santos. Overall 20-18, dos Santos.
Round 3: Ivanov showing some urgency, he walks forward with a pair of left hands, but dos Santos defends and pushes him back. Right hand over the top for dos Santos. Dos Santos going high then punching Ivanov’s body. Straight left has Ivanov blinking, looked like a clean punch to the eye by dos Santos. Snapping jab by dos Santos. Counter left by dos Santos and Ivanov looks frustrated. However, he lands a big left hand of his own shortly after that dos Santos absorbs. Overhand right lands clean for Ivanov and dos Santos is slightly off-balance, but he recovers. Dean gives dos Santos a second warning about extended fingers. Ivanov just trying to wade through dos Santos’s jab. He ands one of his own. Spinning kick by dos Santos whiffs. Dos Santos with the counter jab as Ivanov comes in swinging.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, dos Santos. Overall 30-27, dos Santos.
Round 4: Pawing jab by dos Santos, but Ivanov is matching him punch for punch. They’re throwing single shots, striking almost simultaneously on every exchange. There’s another pause as dos Santos needs to get some loose tape cut from his glove. Dos Santos just stepping back to avoid Ivanov’s lead hooks. Jab to the head, jab to the body for dos Santos. He continues to evade the power of Ivanov, who isn’t setting up his punches. Counter left by dos Santos has Ivanov stumbling as he misses his own strike. Ivanov just lunging in to try and land a power shot, he looks tired. Dos Santos ducks in to land a short punch to the body. Ivanov clips him with a straight jab. Right hand counter by dos Santos stops another Ivanov advance. Ivanov hits a jab, but can’t connect with the follow-up hook. 1-2 for dos Santos with 30 seconds remaining.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, dos Santos. Overall 40-36, dos Santos.
Round 5: Ivanov marching forward, dos Santos throwing out his jab. He ducks an Ivanov power punch. Dos Santos just going to the body with punches and side kicks over and over again. Ivanov complains that his eye was poked and Dean brings in the doctor to check it out. They resume action and Dos Santos wobbles Ivanov with a right hand. Ivanov responds by charging in, but he can’t land anything substantial. Ivanov hits a jab as Dos Santos lands a body kick. Lots of simultaneous blows landing here. Dos Santos still showing good lateral movement while Ivanov lumbers forward. Jab up top by dos Santos, then one to the body. Ivanov in the clinch, then he gets a right hand to land as they separate. More body punches for dos Santos. They exchange right hands. Jumping kick by dos Santos is answered with a 1-2 punch from Ivanov. Ivanov makes one last effort to land a big right hand, but he just doesn’t have enough left in the tank.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9, dos Santos. Overall 50-45, dos Santos.
Official result: Junior dos Santos def. Blagoy Ivanov via unanimous decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-45)