Joe Lauzon will leave Phoenix with another win on his UFC record, but the veteran lightweight believes his opponent Marcin Held should have walked out of the Octagon with his hand raised instead.
The controversial split decision was rendered after a back-and-forth battle between Lauzon and Held in the co-main event on Sunday night.
It appeared that Lauzon might end the fight in the first round after stopping an early takedown attempt from Held against the cage before unloading a series of brutal elbows tot the side of his opponent’s head.
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The rapid fire elbows buckled Held’s knees as he fell to the mat and Lauzon quickly followed him to the ground, but couldn’t quite capitalize on the position before the Polish fighter was able to recover.
From there, Held was able to take over with a superior grappling game highlighted by several takedowns that planted Lauzon on the mat.
While Lauzon did manage a very deep armbar attempt in the second round, he wasn’t able to secure the submission and Held regained the top position where he maintained control.
Despite his best efforts to counter the wrestling from Held throughout the final 10 minutes, Lauzon spent most of his time on his back playing defense.
When the fight was over it appeared that Held had done enough in rounds two and three to get the win, but the judges disagreed as Lauzon earned the split decision victory. Two judges scored the fight 29-28 for Lauzon with the third judge giving Held the win with a 30-27 scorecard.
Afterwards, Lauzon shook his head in disapproval and said that Held deserved the win.
“100-percent. Not my night,” Lauzon said honestly after he was given the victory.
Regardless of his feelings, Lauzon will still leave with the 14th win of his UFC career.