Curtis Blaydes was able to earn a unanimous decision victory over Jairzinho Rozenstruik tonight at UFC 266 with his takedowns and control on top being the key to victory.
Left hook for Blaydes, but Rozenstruik comes marching forward with solid punches of his own as his opponent covers up.
Blaydes pumps out the jab and then fakes a takedown attempt and Rozenstruik is always looking to counter that attempt.
Blaydes drives into a takedown attempt and brings him to the mat, just where he wants the fight. Blaydes in side control against the cage and lands a couple of knees to the body. Hammerfists to the midsection now.
Rozenstruik attempts to get up, but Blaydes weights heavily on him as he gets to one knee and chips away with more punches.
Right hooks from Blaydes. Rozenstruik stands and attempts to land a punch as he breaks free, but it misses.
He’s back to striking range though. Blaydes lands a jab and an inside leg kick. Calf kick now for him. Back to the jab. He doubles up on that.
Calf kick for Blaydes and Rozenstruik lets his hands go without landing anything too meaningful as his opponent backs off.
left hand for Blaydes. Leaping hook attempt from Rozenstruik doesn’t pay off and he’s wading forward looking to throw again as the round ends.
Blaydes feeling out with the jab, but Rozenstruik comes over the top with a solid hook. Nice jab from Blaydes now.
Leg kick from Blaydes. Rozenstruik looking hesitant but then does let a combination go that doesn’t find the mark as the crowd gets restless.
Leg kick for Blaydes. Counter punch from Rozenstruik as he’s coming forward. Blaydes reaches for a takedown attempt, but Rozenstruik gets his legs away.
Straight left lands for Blaydes. Rozenstruik constantly waiting to counter anything Blaydes throws. Body punch for Blaydes.
Rozenstruik with a big jumping knee just as Blaydes is ducking down and it lands hard, but he manages to get to the clinch momentarily. They break apart and Rozenstruik is looking to capitalize, but Blaydes reacts by landing a crucial takedown in the center of the Octagon.
Blaydes in half-guard and lands a solid elbow. Only 30 seconds left to work and Blaydes is opting for positional control rather than action here as the clock rounds down. Blaydes heads back to his corner with big swelling under his right eye where that earlier knee connected.
Inside leg kick for Blaydes. Blaydes feeling out with punches without landing. jab for Rozenstruik. Stepping jab from Blaydes.
Rozenstruik just misses with a hook and then Blaydes lands a counter punch. Low inside kick from Blaydes. Now he drives into a takedown attempt and lands it.
Three minutes left to work with Blaydes in his opponent’s guard. Rozenstruik able to kick him away, but he’s not making an effort to stand and Blaydes drops back down and is now in half-guard.
Blaydes still opting for a safety first gameplan here as he stifles Rozenstruik and lands only light strikes. 20 seconds to go and he lands an elbow . Still no urgency to do much with his ground-and-pound, but the round is undoubtedly his, and that’s all he’s concerned about as he we head to the scorecards.
So, a relatively uneventful fight then, but nonetheless, Blaydes did enough to ensure he earned a clean-sweep unanimous decision victory (30-27 x3).