UFC 244 results: Derrick Lewis gets split nod over Blagoy Ivanov

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Heavyweights are known for knockouts, but Derrick Lewis and Blagoy Ivanov needed all three rounds to determine a winner at UFC 244.

After the official announcement, Lewis (22-7 MMA, 13-5 UFC) walked away victorious, getting the nod over Ivanov (18-3 MMA, 2-2 UFC) by split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28).

The back-and-forth nature of the first two rounds had the Madison Square Garden crowd on their feet. Lewis appeared to be in trouble early, a takedown landed Ivanov in side control. In the midst of a keylock attempt from Ivanov, Lewis scrambled to his feet and the two behemoths exchanged punches.

A similar sequence highlighted round two. With a high output through ten minutes, both fighters slowed in last round. As the clock wound down, the two heavyweights traded heavy punches and knees.

Throughout the entirety of the fight, Ivanov displayed a spectacular ability to eat Lewis’ hardest shots. Knees, straight punches, elbows: You name it, Ivanov absorbed the damage without issue.

Conversely, “The Black Beast” displayed improved cardio and was noticeably slimmed down for this fight. A adjusted diet seemingly did Lewis well. In the end, Lewis handed Ivanov his second UFC loss.

After the victory, Lewis gave a shout out to President Donald J. Trump who was sitting cageside in New York for the fight. Lewis did inform the President, however, that in order to win 2020, he needed to turn things around.

With the victory, Lewis snapped a two-fight losing streak. After winning three straight fights against Alexander Volkov, Francis Ngannou, and Marcin Tybura, Lewis earned a title shot at UFC 230 in November 2018.

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In his first UFC title fight, Lewis was submitted by then-champion Daniel Cormier by second-round rear-naked choke. In March, Lewis returned and lost by TKO to former heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos.

A former World Series of Fighting heavyweight champ, Ivanov has won eight of last ten outings despite the loss.

The heavyweight bout was part of the UFC 244 main card at Madison Square Garden in New York. It aired on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN2 and early prelims on UFC Fight Pass/ESPN+.

Up-to-the-minute UFC 244 results include:

Derrick Lewis def. Blagoy Ivanov via split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28)
Corey Anderson def. Johnny Walker via (TKO) punches – Round 1, 2: 07
Shane Burgos def. Makwan Amirkhani via TKO (punches) – Round 3, 4: 42
Edmen Shahbazyan def. Brad Tavares via knockout (punches – Round 1, 2: 27
Jair Rozenstruik def. Andrei Arlovski via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 0: 29
Katlyn Chookagian def. Jennifer Maia via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Lyman Good def. Chance Rencountre via TKO (punches) – Round 3, 2: 03
Hakeem Dawodu def. Julio Arce via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

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