Bektic is 2-2 in his past four outings with a TKO loss to Josh Emmett marking his most recent octagon appearance. He hopes to slow the ascent of Ige, who’s won his past four in the octagon.
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Round 1: Bektic moving laterally, and Ige connects with a right hand on their first exchange. Bektic closes in and drives for the takedown. Ige uses a whizzer and rolls over Bektic, forcing him to right himself and reset. Ige in again with a body shot, and they clinch up. Short shots from Ige, and a slip on a knee puts Bektic on the mat. As he gets up, Ige stings him with a series of hard punches, and Bektic again is chased off. Ige the aggressor and stings Bektic with a right hand. Bektic is hurt and tries to clinch up. Ige stings with an elbow and punches in close, and Bektic backs off. Ige powers in again and digs the body before pressing Bektic to the fence. Shoulder strikes in close, and Bektic scoots away and goes for the takedown. Ige nails him with a right hand and brings that attempt to an end, and they reset. Ige met with a left hand, and Bektic tries to convert for a takedown. Right from Bektic met with one-two from Ige. Another combo from Ige, who pushes his way into the clinch and stomps the foot. Elbow inside from Bektic, and they reset. Bektic again tries to set up the takedown and gets caught with a punch as he spins with an elbow. Time runs out, and Ige is in driver’s seat.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 for Ige.
Round 2: They exchange early in the center of the cage, and Bektic puts together a few nice punches. Ige counters with a right hand, and Bektic ducks under the next punch for a takedown. Ige tries to roll into a reversal, but Bektic has side control and stays heavy. Bektic with knees to the body, and Ige tries short elbows from the bottom. Advance from Bektic into north-south, and Ige recovers to guard. Bektic briefly stops Ige from getting back to his feet, but Ige powers up. Bektic recommits and puts Ige down. Ige hooks right leg like he’s setting up for a submission, but gives it up. Bektic in half-guard controlling position and trying to pass. Head and arm setup from Bektic, and Ige waits it out. Bektic gets to full mount, and Ige is in more trouble. Bektic still squeezing, using his bodyweight to put pressure on Ige. But eventually, he gives it up, and tries to fight off Ige’s attempts to kick him off. Ige uses a kimura to try a sweep, but Bektic wrenches his arm free. Ige elbows the head as the round comes to an end.
MMA Fighting scores the round 10-9 for Bektic, and it’s even at 19-19.
Round 3: Ige presses in and fires off a few punches. Bektic with a wild kick and backfist, and he takes an overhand right. Ige puts a kick on target. They trade in close, and both land punches. Bektic transitions to a takedown attempt off a collar tie and tries a single-leg. Ige retorts with lateral elbows, and the action stalls. Referee Kerry Hatley separates them, and Ige goes right after Bektic. Right hand scores, and Bektic shoots unsuccessfully from the open. Another right from Ige, who’s on the hunt with one-half of the round left. Ige scores in close with a combination, and Bektic comes back with a left hook in the next exchange. Both men lowering their arms. Bektic trying that left hook again, and Ige switches it up to end with a body kick. Bektic changes levels and misses the takedown initially. But Ige’s try to step over allows Bektic to hold on and take half-guard, briefly. Ige stands up in transition, and Bektic is at his back. Ige rolls, and Bektic wraps the head as Ige is turtled. Ige rolls again and sets up for a leg lock, and Bektic has a form of top position as the frame ends.
MMA Fighting scores the frame 10-9 for Ige, who gets the 29-28 call.
Official result: Dan Ige def. Mirsad Bektic via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)