Merab Dvalishvili gave his best impersonation of the Energizer Bunny, going and going for 25 minutes to win a lopsided unanimous decision over Petr Yan in the bantamweight main event of UFC Fight Night 221 Saturday in Las Vegas. Yan, the former champion, could never get his powerful striking attack in gear as he was put on the defensive all evening by Dvalishvili’s constant pressure.
Dvalishvili, from the Republic of Georgia, hunted takedowns from the start getting few clean ones but continually forcing Yan to get back to his feet or try to break free of tie-ups. When they were on the outside the Georgian remained the busier fighter mixing punches with low kicks. A vicious second round calf kick had Yan changing from an orthodox to a southpaw stance where he spent much of the fight.
Dvalishvili slowed only marginally in the fourth round boxing more but Yan’s right eye was closing fast and he couldn’t capitalize. Dvalishvili continued to pressure him through the end of the fight to nab his ninth straight victory while Yan has lost three out of four since dropping his title on a controversial disqualification against Dvalishvili’s stablemate, Aljamain Sterling, two years ago.
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Black Belt Magazine
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