James Te Huna handed Joey Beltran a bit of a beating over three rounds in ‘The Mexicutioner’s’ light-heavyweight debut at ‘UFC On Fuel TV 4’ tonight.
Beltran looked lighter on his feet in the opening round than we’ve seen from him in the past thanks to his dramatic weight cut to make it down to light-heavyweight.
Nevertheless, he seemed to be struggling to find his range in the early stages of the fight. The opposite was true for Te Huna who looked very relaxed and confident out there and was repeatedly finding a home for his punches, with right hands and uppercuts in particular doing the business.
Several times during the round Te Huna was able to corner Beltran against the cage and unleash a barrage of strikes, with only the occasional counter coming from ‘The Mexicutioner’.
Towards the end of the round Te Huna’s pressure really began to pay off as a right hand a left hook lands hard and sends Beltran reeling back onto the canvas. Te Huna tries to finish him on the mat, but Beltran gets back upright. Te Huna doesn’t let him off the hook though and continues to throw strikes until the bell sounds and Beltran still looks wobbled as he heads back to his corner.
The second round wasn’t as frantic as the first, but Te Huna was still in command and bossing the stand-up and landed a takedown too, though nothing much came of it.
To his credit Beltran was hanging in there though and towards the end of the round he started to come more into it again and looked a hard shot that gave Te Huna pause for though just as the bell sounded.
Into the final round and as the two got back down to business it started to become apparent that Te Huna was tiring as his punches began to noticeably slow down and weren’t possessing the same snap as they did earlier in the fight.
That lead to Te Huna changing his tactics and he started to score with takedowns, landing them with relative ease against his equally tired opponent. He wasn’t doing a good job of keeping him on the mat however, so Beltran was able to pop back up each time.
Ini-between times Beltran was starting to land some strikes of his own and then manages to score a takedown of his own, but Te Huna manages to get upright again before he can take advantage of the position.
The round ends with the two slugging it out toe-to-toe and while both men are dead-tired some solid shots land, but none that will stop this one from going to a decision.
In the end it’s turns out to be a clear-cut unanimous decision victory for Te Huna on all three judges scorecards (30-26, 30-27 x2).