Come Friday morning’s UFC Vegas 29 weigh-in, the last man to hit the scales was heavyweight Josh Parisian. Reportedly still cutting weight with less than an hour to go in the weigh-in window, Parisian did hit the mark — coming in at exactly 266lbs. Whether the weight cut would have any effect in his bout with Roque Martinez remained to be seen.
That was a question, of course, that would be answered Saturday. The big men were the third fight in on the Fight Night card, back at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.
Both men took the center of the octagon off the opening bell, and Martinez came out swinging. Martinez put Parisian against the fence, landing body shots. Parisian got away and landed a punch, but Marinez put him against the fence yet against. A hard quick elbow by Martinez followed. Two minutes into the fight, Martinez opened up Parisian with an elbow. Parisian landed a knee, and Martinez landed a hard hook. A front kick was fired off by Parisian. Parisian looked for the clinch and put Martinez against the fence. He landed a calf kick and a body kick. With one minute left, Martinez landed a hook and uppercut that hurt Parisian. Martinez then put Parisian against the fence again. Martinez landed an elbow, and the fight was halted as Parisian lost his mouthpiece. Round one ended with both fighters swinging.
Martinez came out to fight in round two, walking down Parisian. Parisian landed a front kick, and Martinez put him against the fence. Parisian reversed Martinez and put him against the fence. Parisian just held Martinez against the fence for a minute while Martinez was landing quick punches. Parisian then landed a low blow on Martinez that halted the action at 2:25. After a break, Martinez pushed Parisian against the fence as the fight restarted. Parisian threw a high kick, but it was blocked. Parisian landed a right hand and front kick. With just over a minute left, Parisian landed a nasty knee from the clinch. Parisian tried for a trip takedown, and Martinez grabbed a guillotine. Martinez dropped with the guillotine locked up, but Parisian escaped. Round two ended with both men on their feet.
Martinez came out swinging in round three, landing a few combos. Parisian landed a quick and heavy jab. Parisian landed another jab, and Martinez whiffed on a 1-2. Martinez landed a leaping hook that appeared to hurt Parisian, but he didn’t realize it. Parisian put him against the fence, and once they got off, Parisian ate an elbow. Parisian put Martinez against the fence again. With two minutes left in the fight, Parisian tried for a takedown, but Martinez defended. Parisian disengaged, and Martinez came out swinging again. Parisian hit Martinez below the belt again with just over a minute remaining. Martinez backed Parisian against the cage as the fight restarted and Parisian reversed again. Parisian disengaged and in the last 10 seconds, and both fighters threw punches to end it.
In a split decision that may not prove to be very popular, Parisian earned his long-awaited first UFC win. Martinez in turn loses his third straight and might be on his way back to the regional scene, or RIZIN.
Official Result: Josh Parisian defeated Roque Martinez via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)