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UFC 247 live blog: Derrick Lewis vs. Ilir Latifi

UFC 247 Jones v Reyes: Weigh-Ins Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

This is the UFC 247 live blog for Derrick Lewis vs. Ilir Latifi, a heavyweight bout on Saturday’s fight card at Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.

Lewis is three months removed from a split decision over Blagoy Ivanov, which snapped a two-fight skid that included a failed shot at the heavyweight belt then held by Daniel Cormier. Latifi makes his octagon debut at heavyweight after a 2-3 run at light heavyweight.

Check out the UFC 247 live blog below.

Round 1: Round 1: Dan Miragliotta the third man in the cage for this battle of big boys. Lewis slowly pushes forward on Latifi, who moves laterally and feints. Lewis cocking that right, and he lets it go. Instantly, they clinch up, and Lewis pushes the action to the fence. Action stalls, and Miragliotta warns them. Latifi peels off with a pair of punches and then complains of an eyepoke. Miragliotta tells him to keep fighting. Lewis leaps in with a flying knee and Latifi eats it all. But he manages to absorb that energy and smother Lewis against the cage. Soon, he drops for a single leg, elevates, and can’t get it done. Latifi struggles to set up for a takedown, and Lewis looks content to hang out. Another stall, and Miragliotta separates them. Latifi continues to circle off, and Lewis kicks high. It’s blocked, and there’s another high kick, and they trade in close before clinching up. Latifi again turns Lewis and pushes him to the fence. Latifi grabs the single-leg again and can’t get Lewis to the mat. Latifi misses with a left on the exit, and Lewis leaps again with a knee. Latifi grabs him again and clinches up as the round comes to an end.

MMA Fighting scores the first round 10-9 for Lewis.

Round 2: Lewis leads again with a switch left high kick, and it’s blocked. Another right hand for “The Black Beast,” and Latifi comes back with a leg kick. Lewis continues to potshot, and Latifi slams his leg again. Another flying knee attempt from Lewis, and Latifi catches him and pushes to the fence. Single-leg follows, and Lewis shucks it off. Latifi works the body in close. The audience boos. Lewis turns Latifi against the fence and tries an elbow and knee, the latter of which allows Latifi the momentum to get a trip takedown. In half-guard, Latifi works ground and pound with his right arm. Body-head, body-head. Lewis not going anywhere so far. Miragliotta issues a warning. Latifi works the body more. Miragliotta doesn’t see enough and stands them up. Lewis goes on the attack and swings with his right. Latifi blocks a head kick and tosses Lewis back to the mat, this time landing in guard with short time. A few punches from Latifi before time expires.

MMA Fighting scores the frame 10-9 for Latifi, and it’s tied up 19-19.

Round 3: Lewis measures up that right hand again, and Latifi fires back and circles off. Another heavy right hand, and Latifi absorbs some of it while ducking. Lewis again going for the home run with the leaping knee, and Latifi has the body. Body lock for Latifi, who transitions to double-leg and gets the job done. In half-guard, he goes to work with punches up top. They’re not particularly devastating shots, but he’s in dominant position. The audience hates it and boos loudly. Lewis scoots back for a moment, then settles onto his back. Latifi gets busier with his hands, and Latifi tries to tie up his foe and wait it out. Miragliotta warns for action at the halfway point of the frame. Latifi gets to the back as Lewis finally powers to his feet and backs up. Another flying knee from Lewis and a big clubbing right. Less than two minutes, and Lewis’ insistence on clinching up has cost him position again with Latifi, who drives him back to the fence. Knee to the body from Lewis, who’s driven back and smothered yet again. Another takedown from the body lock, and this time, Lewis pops back up. He goes on the hunt and lands a head kick. Punch follow-up has Latifi scrambling, but the Swede continues to drive for a takedown. He can’t get it, and Lewis chases him back with punches. Big left hand from Lewis, and Latifi is just trying to survive. They clinch up, and Lewis gets off one last right hand before time runs out.

MMA Fighting scores the frame 10-9 for Lewis, and he takes the 29-28 decision.

Official result: Derrick Lewis def. Ilir Latifi via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)