A controversial split-draw decision by the judges in the main event of UFC 282 between Magomed Ankalaev and Jan Blachowicz tonight means that the vacant light-heavyweight belt remains unclaimed.
The main event fight for the vacant light-heavyweight title is underway in Las Vegas!
Inside low kick for Blachowicz. Nice right hand and a leg kick for him. Now he lands a body punch. Ankalaev gets a body punch of his own.
Low kick for Ankalaev again. Push kick for Ankalaev. As Blachowicz responds with punches Ankalaev lands a counter.
Grazing right hook counter from Ankalaev as Blacowicz presses forward. Body punch from Blachowicz. Quick left hand from Ankalaev.
Now a jab from Ankalaev. Inside leg kick from Blachowicz. Overhand right from Blachowicz. Right hook on the counter from Ankalaev as Blachowicz is looking to unload.
leg kick and a push kick for Ankalaev. Now a high kick attempt that’s blocked. Again a nice counter from Ankalaev, landing a one-two.
Body kick for Blachowicz. Ankalaev fires off a few punches and a front kick to the body.
Left hook lands in a flurry from Blachowicz. Front kick to the body from Ankalaev. Blachowicz kicks to the leg.
Inside leg kick for Blachowicz. Ankalaev fires off a head kick attempt as they were both engaging, but it misses the target. Another kick from Ankalaev.
leg kick for Blachowicz. Now a right hand lands for him. Body work from Ankalaev. Left hook for Blachowicz. Head kick attempt from Ankalaev.
Right hand and left hook from Blachowicz without landing cleanly. Inside leg kick from the former champ. Inside leg kick for Ankalaev now.
Now an outside leg kick from Blachowicz. Now to the inside of the leg. Uppercut connects for Blachowicz.
Jab for Blachowicz. Front kick to the body for Ankalaev. Nice left hand counter hook from Ankalaev. Straight left from him.
Inside Leg kick from Blachowicz and Ankalaev stumbled back uncomfortably after that. Ankalaev stomps on a kick to the body.
Another inside leg kick from Blachowicz buckles his leg momentarily again and he immediately goes for a single leg takedown attempt to recover from that. Blachowicz blasting away with punches as he does so though and so he just clinches up.
Not much happening from there and they go back to striking range. Another leg kick from Blachowicz. Punch lands for Ankalaev.
Leg kick from Blachowicz. Ankalaev in on a takedown attempt, but settles for the clinch against the cage as the round ends.
Left hand for Blachowicz. He lands that leg kick again and Ankalaev was visibly troubled again by it. Now Blachowicz lands to the other leg as the stance is switched.
Front kick to the body for Ankalaev. Another leg kick from Blachowicz. Ankalaev lands a good punch over the top.
Leg kick for Blachowicz. Solid jab from Ankalaev. He starts working that jab effectively. Head kick attempt from Blachowicz is blocked.
Ankalaev pressing forward throwing heavy leather but doesn’t land this time around. Body punch from Blachowicz and Ankalaev returns fire.
Leg kick for Blachowicz and then another sends Ankalaev hopping on one leg for a moment. Both of his legs are damaged now.
Ankalaev into the clinch against the cage. It looks like they are going to separate, but then Ankalaev drives back in throwing a punch.
They do separate now and Ankalaev lands a body kick. Uppercut from Blachowicz. Ankalaev with some blood coming from his right eye.
Ankalaev back into the clinch and lands a knee to the body, but it strays to the groin and forces a brief stoppage.
Leg kick from Blachowicz. Ankalaev back into the clinch up against the cage. He lands a punch to the body and knee to the thigh.
Ankalaev with a single leg attempt and works the trip to land it, but there’s barely any time to work on the mat before the horn sounds.
Ankalaev with a left hand as he starts the fourth round on the offensive. Blachowicz with an uppercut as Ankalaev lunges into a punch and then the clinch against the cage. Knees to the leg from Ankalaev.
Occasional punch and knee to the body from Ankalaev before Blachowicz breaks free.
Ankalaev drives fully into a takedown now and lands it nicely. Body-head work from Ankalaev now from inside his opponent’s guard.
Ankalaev passing into half-guard, but Blachowicz starts to give up his back and he spins around for that. Blachowicz partially has his back to the cage though. Light strikes from Ankalev and Blachowicz throws back an elbow.
Ankalaev gets Blachowicz’s back off the cage and settles on top in half-guard.
Blachowicz now parallel to the cage as Ankalaev tries to find opportunities to land strikes. Not too much happening, but does land an elbow. Now Ankalaev postures up and lands a big punch, then stands over his opponent in the final seconds of the round.
Ankalev tries immediately for a takedown and Blachowicz overreacted to that as he attempts to stuff it and after stumbling across the Octagon he does go down.
Ankalaev working in Blachowicz’s guard, but not landing anything significant yet. Ankalaev almost into half guard as Blachowicz is trying without success for a kimura.
Punch lands for Ankalaev. More punches starting to land now as Blachowicz is awkwardly lying on his side parallel to the cage. Hard punch lands and Blachowicz tries to work an elbow.
Ankalaev with some better strikes starting to land as Blachowicz struggles to defend himself effectively from this awkward position.
Ankalaev into half guard properly now and landing a few elbows and punches. 30 seconds remaining and Ankalaev is upping his ground-and-pound intensity. Final 10 seconds and he lands a couple of heavy elbows. Ankalaev goes off to celebrate afterwards, while Blachowicz looks less than confident of victory as he stays down on the mat.
Wow, the judges have awarded a split draw verdict (48-47, 46-48, 47-47) so there won’t be a new light-heavyweight champion crowned tonight!
Even Blachowicz seemed to think that Ankalaev won that fight, and indeed during the post-fight interviews though he initially seemed unsure, he eventually says that Ankalaev should have the belt. That’s not the official result though, so we’re unfortunately left with a very unsatisfactory ending.