Mareb Dvalishvili continued to look impressive tonight at UFC 252 as he got the better of John Dodson for all three rounds to emerge with a unanimous decision victory.
Dvalishvili moving on the outside to start and then attempts what’s likely to be the first of many backfist attempts tonight, and it misses.
Dvalishvili feeling out with the jab. Dodson steps in but doesn’t connect cleanly. Missed front kick upstairs from Dvalishvili.
Dvalishvili taking the center of the Octagon now. Inside leg kick from Dodson. Body punch from him now.
Overhand into a takedown attempt from Dvalishvili. He takes Dodson down, but blink and you’ll miss it as he’s straight back up.
Dvalishvili kneeing the back of Dodson’s legs now as he has the body lock. Dodson facing the fence and trying to peel his opponent’s hands off of him. For now he just has to keep eating these knees to the thigh and backside.
Now low kicks to the back of Dodson’s calf and then back to the knees. Now Dvalishvili is trying to drag Dodson to the mat, but to his credit he stays upright and then breaks free.
Front kick to the body from Dvalishvili and then a leg kick. Flurry of punches from Dodson without leanding cleanly. Left hand gets through for him. Body kick for Dodson as the round ends.
Inside leg kick from Dvalishvili. Now a body punch for Dodson. Takedown attempt from Dvalishvili, but Dodson stays upright.
Dvalishvili in on another takedown as Dodson is throwing a kick. Dvalishvili hoists him into the air and tries to slam him to the mat, but as soon as he’s free of his grip Dodson springs back to his feet.
Jab for Dodson. Punch and then a spinning backfist from Dvalishvili, then another punch behind it.
Glancing right hand from Dvalishvili to set up the takedown attempt against the cage. He doesn’t get it for now but continues to work. Short left hooks to the head from Dvalishvili. Dodson trying to throw a knee and Dvalishvili uses that to take him down, but Dodson is immediately back up.
Dodson with a hard inside leg kick. Dvalishvili goes for a takedown then abandons it and lands a glancing left hand instead.
Flurry from Dodson, but doesn’t find the target. Left hand connects for Dvalishvili. Dodson steps into a flurry of punches and does connect cleanly this time, but then Dvalishvili retaliates by landing a takedown just before the round ends.
Both fighters touch gloves and then yell at each other! Left hand for Dodson. Dvalishvili with a right. Now a leg kick from Dvalishvili.
Right hook from Dvalishvili at close range as Dodson also throws. Stepping right hand from Dvalishvili. Now Dodson lunging in with a right hand that comes off the guard.
Another right scores for Dvalishvili, but doesn’t get the takedown attempt he was looking for off of it.
Again Dvalishvili goes into a double leg attempt and he lands it, but Dodson is so hard to keep down and is back to his feet immediately.
Dvalishvili throwing a punch, but Dodson lands a leg kick. Now a leg kick for Dvalishvili. He tries for a takedown, but it’s denied.
Right hand for Dvalishvili, but Dodson counters with a harder right. Dvalishvili connects with a punch. He lands again.
Push kick to the body from Dodson. Right hand for Dvalishvili and then a kick to the body. Now a big right hand for Dvalishvili lands solidly.
Another right for Dvalishvili. He misses with a spinning backfist. Now a takedown attempt and lands it. The agile Dodson stands yet again.
Dvalishvili continues to press him to the cage though in the final minute of the round. Hammerfist to the thigh and then a knee. More hammerfists and Dodson pushes away. Dodson trying to engage in the final seconds, but it’s Dvalishvili who unleashes a few punches.
A convincing performance from Dvalishvili here then, utilizing his striking as much as his wrestling on this occasion to emerge with a unanimous decision victory (30-27 x3).