Fabio Maldonado entered Ginásio José Corrêa in Barueri, Brazil a slight favorite against Joey Beltran, and as predicted, the bout was closely contested. Maldonado struggled to establish his jab, and Beltran dominated much of the bout in the clinch. The two went back-and-forth until the final bell.
Two judges would see the bout for the Brazilian, one for the American.
Beltran shot in to force Maldonado against the cage early on to attack with punches to the body and ended with a hard elbow to the face.
Maldonado found success as the bout wore on with his straight punching. He failed to keep Beltran from clinching with him and even taunted and dared Beltran to fight him there.
The judges scored the bout 29-28, 28-29, and 29-28, in favor of Maldonado. The crowd mixed cheers and whistles as the score was announced.
At UFC Fight Night 29, Fabio Maldonado defeated Joey Beltran by Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).