Belal Muhammad’s well timed takedowns and periods of control on top were a big factor tonight at UFC Fight Night 206 as he secured a unanimous decision victory over Vicente Luque in the main event of the show.
Luque feels out with the jab as he takes the center of the Octagon. Now a body kick from him. Low kick. Muhammad thinks about a takedown but then tries to land upstairs instead without success.
Missed kick from Luque and Muhammad lans a punch. Calf kick from Luque. Luque lands a punch at closer range.
Body kick for Luque. Grazing left hand from Muhammd. Body kick from Muhammad. Right hand for Luque. Right over the top from Muhammad and a kick behind it.
Jab for Muhammad. He lands another nice body kick. Overhand right. Calf kick for Luque. Now a left hand. He gets an inside leg kick this time. Muhammad with another good body kick.
Luque continuing to pressure Muhammad, but then Muhammad drives forward into a takedown and lands it.
Muhammad in his opponent’s full guard. He passes to half-guard with 90 seconds remaining in the round. Luque gets his full guard back.
A few punches for Muhammad on top now. Luque starts to attempt to scramble out and stands against the cage. Muhammd trying to work to his back, but Luque is able to turn into him and press him to the cage.
They break apart to go to striking range in the final 10 seconds of the round. Muhammad throws a head kick attempt.
Luque pumps out the jab. He lands a left hand. Again the jab gets through. left hand for Muhammad. Inside kick to the thigh from Luque. Now a low kick that Muhammad didn’t look comfortable with.
Nice one-two for Muhammad. Right hook counter from him as Luque pressures. Kick for Luque. Short left for Luque and a couple of light punches in return.
Outside calf kick for Luque. Another lands and Muhammad lands a kick to the body. Another calf kick for Luque. Solid body kick for Luque.
swing and a miss from Muhammad. Short flurry from Muhammad. Body punch for him. Another outside calf kick for Luque. Muhammad drives in and lands a good takedown.
Muhammad in full guard with 90 seconds remaining in the second round. Body-head combo from Muhammad. Luque starts to scramble, gets to the cage and tries to stand, but Muhammd gets a hook in and tries to secure his back. Luque does well to scramble up again though.
Body kick for Muhammad. He misses with a front kick upstairs.
Luque still pressing forward to start the third round. Back to the low leg kick he goes. Now a nice short left hook seems to back up Muhammad a bit.
Muhammad tries to clinch up, but doesn’t keep it for long. High kick from Luque. He lands a left hook. Another punch lands and an elbow comes in response.
Muhammad drives in for a takedown, but doesn’t land it. Instead he remains clinched up against the cage and may try for it again. He tries to manhandle Luque to the mat, but it doesn’t pay off and they go back to striking range.
Luque back to pressuring. He lands a left hand. Now that left hook again. Jab for Muhammad. Right hand gets through.
Great timing on another takedown for Muhammad at a crucial moment as he was certainly coming off second best in the striking exchanges there.
Muhammed in full guard. Luque shrimps out and gets back to his feet nicely. Missed punches from Muhammad.
Spinning back elbow from Muhammad partially lands. Muhammad lands a counter as Luque throws. Left hand scores for Luque.
Body punch from Luque and tries to come upstairs. Luque continues to stalk but Muhammad lands a body kick. Luque looking for more strikes as the round comes to a close.
High kick attempt from Luque. He goes back to that outside calf kick. He makes Muhammad miss a punch.
Another low kick for Luque. Jab for Muhammad. Stepping punch from Luque. Right hand for Muhammad. Muhammad lands another nice takedown.
From full guard he works light body-head combos. Luque trying to get out from underneath him, but Muhammad stays heavy and passes to side control. There’s a scramble and Muhammad almost stays in control, but then falls off and Luque gets back up.
Outside leg kick for Luque. One-two for Muhammad. Now a body kick for him and a jab too. Luque still pressuring but isn’t letting his strikes go as much as he did earlier.
leg kick and a punch for Luque. Spinning backfist attempt from Muhammad doesn’t pay off. Short right gets through from Luque, but Muhammad retaliates with a punch of his own. They exchange punches to end the round.
Right hand for Muhammad. Left hook from Luque. Takedown attempt from Muhammad, but this time Luque stuffs it. Elbow lands for Muhammad on the way out.
Kick for Muhammad. Left hand from Luque. Now the low kick. He tries to punch in close without landing anything meangingful. Muhammad tries for a takedown again without a payoff.
Left hand for Luque and Muhammad moves away with urgency. Low kick on the other side from Luque. Muhammad tries for a takedown and Luque not only stuffs it but immediately tries for a guillotine. Muhammad able to get out of that and stand back up.
Muhammad barrels across the Octagon looking for another takedown and just before they hit the cage on the other side he gets it.
Luque stands back up, but Muhammad is still latched onto his back. Muhammad trying for a rear-naked choke now. he doesn’t have it under the chin though. Luque struggles back to his feet, but Muhammad presses him into the cage and then looks for another possible takedown.
Luque pushes him away. Nice one-two for Muhammad. Missed punches from him now. Final 10 seconds and Luque lacking urgency with his striking.
Luque landed the more hurtful blows during the fight, but not as often as he would have liked, while Muhammad stayed somewhat competitive on the feet, but really made his impression felt with takedowns in each round and periods of control on top to secure a unanimous decision victory (49-46 x2, 49-47).