This Weekend in Fights! (May 25th, 2012) finally featured the conclusion of the STRIKEFORCE World Heavyweight Grand Prix, Bellator 69 took place with a premiere Women’s MMA bout, as well as tournament advances. UFC veteran were in action in various promotions, and Bob Sapp threw another fight.
Bellator 69 kicked off the weekend at L’Auberge du Lac Casino Resort in Lake Charles, Louisiana airing on MTV 2 and Spike.com. Bellator concluded their Season 6 Middleweight tournament with Maiquel Falcao defeating Andreas Spang in a three round affair. Spang too control of the first round with a flurry of punches stunning Falcao. Falcao was able to recover by clinching with Spang. While pinning Spang up against the cage Falcao delivered an illegal knee which temporarily called a halt to the action and suffered a one-point deduction. For the final two rounds, Falcao was able to utilize his extensive ground skills to control Spang and avoid multiple guillotine attempts. Falcao earned himself $100,000 and the right to fight Alexander Shlemenko for the Bellator Middleweight World Title.
In the semifinal of the Season 6 Welterweight tournament Karl Amoussou squared off against David Rickels. Amoussou controlled Rickels in the first round with superior striking and Judo. The second round saw a lot of back and forth action, but in the third Rickels controlled the majority of the round with vicious ground-and-pound from the top position. Inevitably the bout went to the judges score cards, with Amoussou picking up the split decision victory. Amoussou will now take on Bryan Baker later this year to claim the $100,000 and to determine who will face Ben Askren.
In the premiere Women’s bout of the evening #1 ranked fighter Megumi Fujii squared off against the #2 ranked fighter Jessica Aguilar. Aguilar would take home the unanimous decision victory in a highly debatable call from the judges. All three rounds were very close, but Aguilar counter struck the Japanese phenom, with boxing to out point and avoid submission attempts.
Richard Hale punched his ticket into the Season 7 Light Heavyweight tournament with a 38 submission due to punches ever Josh Burns. Hale will face Beau Tribolet in the opening round on June 22nd at Bellator 71.
Mark Holata also punched his ticket into a Bellator tournament as qualified he qualified for the Bellator Season 7 Heavyweight Tournament when he submitted Abe Wagner midway through the first round with an achilles lock. In the other Heavyweight bout of the evening, one that was featured on the poster was Kevin Asplund versus Ron Sparks never took place. (Full Bellator 69 event results below.)
Also on Friday night Cage Fighting Championship held their 21st event in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. The main event featured Bellator & MFC veteran Jesse Juarez versus Robert Whitaker in Welterweight action. After three rounds Juarez got the nod from the judges to take home the victory. Bob Sapp was featured on the card, his second fight in a week, and his second throwaway paycheck collecting under a minute TKO loss. Not only did he lose the bout in the first minute like he did last week, but lost the bout in 12 seconds. UFC, DREAM, STRIKEFORCE, Sengoku, and M-1 veteran Jeff Monson was also on the card. Monson fought for the second time in a month, picking up a unanimous decision victory over Jim Yorke. (Full CFC 21 event results below.)
UFC veteran Tim Hague headlined Prestige FC IV at the Casman Centre in Fort McMurray, Alberta. Hague display a huge amount of toughness against Mike Hackert in a three round war, but it was Hackert who would walk away with the “W”. Hackert used a variety of strikes to bloody up Hague, out striking him throughout all three rounds for the unanimous decision. Also on the card was Ringside MMA veteran David Lafond, who picked up his second career win with a rear-naked choke submission over Jon Cowan with only 12-seconds remaining in the first round. (Full Prestige FC IV event results below.)
The biggest attraction of the weekend was the STRIKEFORCE World Heavyweight Grand Prix form HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. The tournament which began in February of 2011 finally concluded.
Daniel Cormier claimed the STRIKEFORCE Grand Prix title after a five round slugfest with Josh Barnett that went to the judges score cards. With Barnett breaking his hand in the first round, the bout was very one-sided in favor of Cormier. Despite Barnett’s attacks both standing and on the ground, Cormier was able to escape them, stay very active on his feet. Cormier bloodied up Barnett with some ground and pound and almost finished the bout with a high kick and a flurry of punches. After the five rounds ended Cormier was declared the victor unanimously.
STRIKEFORCE Lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez had his rubber match with Josh Thomson. Both fighters went toe-to-toe with Thompson looking like he was going home with the strap. Thompson controlled the majority of the first round, poked Melendez in the eye three times during the bout, and almost submitted Melendez with a rear-naked choke in the fourth. However, Melendez was able to fight off and stay active enough with strikes and take downs to pick up the split decision.
Mike Kyle did a lot of bitching and complaining prior to this bout about getting a shot at the vacant STRIKEFORCE Light Heavyweight title, but now he won’t have to worry as he will not be getting that shot, because Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante submitted him in 33-seconds with a guillotine choke. (Full STRIKEFORCE Heavyweight Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Cormier event results below.)
Rumble Time Promotion or RTP held their ninth event at the Ameristar Casino in St. Charles, Missouri on Saturday night. The main event featured former UFC and WEC veteran Will Campuzano. The former Bantamweight competitor has since made the drop to Flyweight. Campuzano defeated Joshua Sampo with a third round knee to the head knockout. Campuzano is slated to take on Steve Gracia at Legacy Fighting Championship 12 for the inaugural Flyweight title on June 13th. (Full RTP 9 event results below.)
Friday Night Fights -
Maiquel Falcao def. Andreas Spang via unanimous decision (29-27, 29-27, 29-27) - middleweight-tourney finale
Karl Amoussou def. David Rickels via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28) – welterweight-tourney semifinal
Jessica Aguilar def. Megumi Fujii via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Mark Holata def. Abe Wagner via submission (achilles lock) – Round 1, 2:24
Emanuel “E.J.” Brooks def. Kalvin Hackney via unanimous decision
Josh Quayhagen def. Cliff Wright via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Shanon Slack def. Booker Arthur via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Andrey Koreshkov def. Derrick Krantz (strikes) – Round 3, 0:51
Richard Hale def. Josh Burns via submission (punches) – Round 1, 0:38
Jesse Juarez def. Robert Whittaker via Unanimous Decision
Soa Palelei def. Bob Sapp via TKO (Punches) – 0:12 – Round 1
Jeff Monson def. Jim Yorke via Unanimous Decision
Corey Nelson def. Dan Pauling via KO (Punch) – 0:33 – Round 1
David Vergers def. Manuel Rodriguez via KO (Punch) – 2:13 – Round 1
Shabe Kafo def. Kian Pham via Submission (Twister) – 1:49 – Round 2
James Vainikolo def. Jon Leven via TKO (Punches) – 3:55 – Round 3
Robert Lisita def. Rory O’Connell via Unanimous Decision
Rami El-Choufani def. Albert Patu via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) – 3:22 – Round 1
Mike Hackert def. Tim Hague via Unanimous Decision
Sean Quinn def. Kyle Oliveira via KO (Overhand Right) – 0:22 – Round 1
David Letourneau def. Rod Montoya via Unanimous Decision
Travis Moritz def. Jordan Berland via TKO (Ground’n'Pound) – 3:22 – Round 1
Steve Dubeck def. Chris Lauzon via TKO (Ground’n'Pound) – 0:46 – Round 1
Nick Spohn def. Mitch Fryia via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) – 3:02 – Round 1
David Lafond def. Jon Cowan via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) – 4:48 – Round 1
Saturday Night Fights –
Daniel Cormier def. Josh Barnett via unanimous decision (49-46, 50-45, 50-45) - to claim grand prix title
Champ Gilbert Melendez def. Josh Thomson via split decision (48-47, 47-48, 48-47) - to retain lightweight title
Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante def. Mike Kyle via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 1, 0:33
Chris Spang def. Nah-Shon Burrell via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 1:55
Showtime Extreme prelims:
Isaac Vallie-Flagg def. Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Guto Inocente def. Virgil Zwicker via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Gian Villante def. Derrick Mehmen via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Quinn Mulhern def. Yuri Villefort via split decision (30-27, 28-29, 29-28)
Bobby Green def. James Terry via split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Will Campuzano def. Joshua Sampo via KO (Knee to Head) – 1:18 – Round 3
Zach Freeman def. Charon Spain via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) – 1:34 – Round 1
Eric Irvin def. Evian Rodriguez via TKO (Knees) -2:53 – Round 1
Damian Jeffro def. Yohance Flager – via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) – 4:21 – Round 1
Chris Heatherly def. Corey Barreiro via TKO (Punches) – 0:19 – Round 1