John Maguire's lightweight debut was less than successful. A penchant for listless performances continued as he was soundly outstruck by Mitch Clarke. It was Clarke's first UFC victory and a loss that may see Maguire get his walking papers.
The first round was a largely tepid back and forth striking affair, with the two fighters spending some time clinching on the feat, and kickboxing at range. In the second Maguire was able to bring the fight to the ground, but unable to mount any significant offense. Clarke kept the pace of the fight busy with a variety of foot stomps, elbows, and leg kicks which seemed to throw off Maguire's timing. The third round saw the two exchange on the feet, with Clarke making the most of his opportunities. Maguire was able to secure a takedown into back control halfway through the round, but couldn't generate any offense from it. Clarke slipped out with 30 seconds left in the round and landed some heavy ground and pound to close the round and seal the fight.
Clarke was emotional in victory, breaking down in tears as he left the Octagon. In what was likely a loser-leaves-town fight getting a win here was incredibly important. Clarke moves to 1-2 in the UFC with the victory, and Maguire falls to 2-3.