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UFC 166 live play-by-play: Gilbert Melendez vs Diego Sanchez

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Next up for UFC 166 here at the Toyota Center is a lightweight tilt between two former title challengers in Diego Sanchez and former two-time Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez. Melendez is looking to position himself for another shot at UFC gold while Sanchez is looking to show everyone that he deserves a spot in the UFC’s lightweight top 10.

This fight could be the fight of the night.

Sanchez rushes to the center of the cage to start the first round. Sanchez scores the takedown and has the back of Melendez. Melendez stays calm and shakes free. Both men are back to their feet. Melendez works the jab and Sanchez lands a leg kick. Sanchez misses with a high kick. Melendez catches Sanchez coming in with a right. Melendez stuffs a takedown. Right hand by Melendez glances Sanchez. Melendez catches a kick but Sanchez works his way free. Sanchez comes up short again with the takedown and has a cut above his left eye. Nice body kick by Sanchez. Both bring the crowd to their feet as they trade toe-to-toe. Melendez wobbles Sanchez but the round is over. This one goes to Melendez 10-9.

Sanchez calls for Melendez to bring it. Melendez is being very patient. A fast exchange and Sanchez lands a big shot. The ref stops the fight and calls for the doctor to check the cut. It could be bad enough to stop the fight. The doctor says Sanchez is good and this fight will continue. Sanchez misses with a flying knee. Melendez moves forward and is doing a good job of going to the body. Nice counter right landed by Melendez. Front body kick by Sanchez. Sanchez gets the takedown but cannot keep Melendez down. Sanchez grabs a single leg but takes a knee to the head. The round ends and this fight is a war. Melendez gets round two, 10-9.

Round three begins with the crowd on their feet. Melendez is very calm. Neither man looks tired. They trade in the center with Sanchez getting the upper hand. More back and forth at a fast pace. Another huge exchange and the crowd is chanting for Diego. The pace of the exchanges are so fast it is hard to do them justice. The last exchange stunned Melendez a little. The ref brings the doctor in again to look at the cut. Again the doctor says Sanchez is able to fight. Sanchez is fighting on pure emotion. Sanchez drops Melendez with an uppercut and tries to secure choke. This crowd has erupted. Melendez is free and both men are back to their feet. The 10 second snap sounds and Sanchez and Melendez go into a huge exchange. This fight is over. Fight of the night, easy. This is the fight of the year. Sanchez may have won that round 10-9, but the fight will go to Melendez.

The official decision goes to Melendez. Everyone in this place is going berserk. Words cannot properly describe this fight. This fight could easily be one of the greatest fights of all-time.

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