Cavalcante Stuns Lawal; Souza Wins Middleweight Championship

Saturday, August 21, 2010

By Kelsey Mowatt   Rafael “”Feijao” Cavalcante became the first man to hand one of the sport’s fastest rising stars a loss tonight, as the Brazilian fighter stopped Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal at Houston’s Toyota Center, to take home the Strikeforce  light-heavyweight crown. In the bout’s opening two rounds Lawal largely seemed content to engage Cavalcante on his feet, and although the challenger was able to land some effective counter strikes, the renowned wrestler Lawal scored additional points with a couple of takedowns. (pictured above: Feijao landing a knee to Lawal)
In the third frame “Feijao” landed a hard knee to the jaw, and a follow up punch, which stunned the champion as he looked to close the distance. Although Lawal momentarily recovered and began working for the takedown, a barrage of elbows from Cavalcante to the side of Lawal’s head, soon prompted referee John McCarthy’s intervention.
Lawal Working Over Feijao From The Top Position
In the card’s other title fight; Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza was awarded a Unanimous Decision victory over Tim Kennedy, to win the promotion’s vacant middleweight bout. Although the world class grappler was unable to take Kennedy to the mat (and in fact, it would be Kennedy who secured a couple of takedowns), Souza was more than comfortable striking with Kennedy, in what turned out to be largely a stand-up affair. While Kennedy was able to land more strikes throughout the bout, Souza inflicted more damage, as the decorated soldier’s face was left bloodied and bruised by the end of the competitive affair. While an elated Souza understandably embraced the judge’s decision afterwards, a disgruntled Kennedy vowed he would be back better than ever. 
Jacare Landing a Right Hand on Kennedy
Jorge Gurgel honoured pre-fight statements that he would stand and trade with noted striker KJ Noons, and through the opening minutes of round one, the BJJ black belt faired rather well. As the round came to an end, however, Noons landed a pounding left hook just as the closing bell finished, dropping Gurgel to the mat.
As the second frame started it was obvious Gurgel was still not completely recovered and Noons sent the UFC vet crashing to the floor with a vicious one-two combo. As the referee hesitated to intervene Noons landed a knee to the head of the grounded Gurgel, which despite being illegal, had no impact on the bout being stopped in Noons favour.
Noons Punishing Gurgel With a Left Hook
In a heavyweight bout, Chad Griggs overcame the takedowns and ground-and-pound game of former WWE star Bobby Lashley, to pull off the upset win in round two. Lashley was able to take Griggs down in the bout’s opening round to score points with strikes from above, but on one occasion Griggs blasted the wrestler with an uppercut as he shot in, opening a large gash under Lashley’s left eye. As round two neared its end Lashley was noticeably fatigued, and while attempting another takedown, Griggs punished the heavyweight’s head with a steady stream of hammer fists. After the closing bell the referee determined Lashley could not continue.
Griggs Pounding on Lashley With Hammer Fists
 Here are the results for "Strikeforce Houston”:

STRIKEFORCE World Light Heavyweight Championship        
Rafael “Feijao” def. “King Mo” Lawal – KO (elbows) – Round 3 (1:14)

STRIKEFORCE World Middleweight Championship     
Jacare Souza def. Tim Kennedy – Unanimous Decision – 49-46, 48-47 twice.

KJ Noons def. Jorge Gurgel – KO (strikes)– Round 2 (:19)
Chad Griggs def. Bobby Lashley - TKO - End of Round 2

Daniel Cormier def. Jason Riley – Submission  (strikes) – Round 1 (1:02)
Andre Galvao – def. Jorge "Macaco" Patino – TKO (strikes) – Round 3 (2:45)
Vinicius "Draculino" Magalhaes – def. Rocky Long – Unanimous Decision – 29-28, 30-27, 30-27.

Adam Schindler def. Kier Gooch – Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Reynaldo "The Truth" Trujillo def. Jose Santibanez – TKO (Strikes)
Chad "Robo" Robichaux def. Humberto DeLeon – Split Decision - 29-28 (Robichaux), 29-28 (DeLeon), 29-28 (Robichaux)

Artenas Young def. Chad Cook, - Unanimous decision - 30-27, 29-28, 30-27

READ MORE - Cavalcante Stuns Lawal; Souza Wins Middleweight Championship

Exclusive Video: Bobby Lashley Playing EA Sport's MMA

READ MORE - Exclusive Video: Bobby Lashley Playing EA Sport's MMA

Strikeforce Weigh-In Results

By FCF Staff   Houston’s Toyota Center held the official weigh-ins yesterday in anticipation for tonight’s “Strikeforce: Houston” event, which will see light-heavyweight champion Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal face Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante in the main attraction. Tonight’s card, which will be broadcast on Showtime, will also feature a bout between Tim Kennedy and Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza for the vacant Strikeforce middleweight title. (picture above- Lawal (l) and Cavalcante square off)

Here are yesterday’s official weigh-in results:

STRIKEFORCE Light Heavyweight Championship

“King Mo” Lawal - 203 3/4 Pounds
Rafael Feijao - 203 1/2 Pounds

STRIKEFORCE Middleweight Championship

Tim Kennedy - 185 Pounds
Jacare Souza - 184 3/4 Pounds

K.J. Noons - 156 1/4 Pounds
Jorge Gurgel - 154 3/4 Pounds

Bobby Lashley - 246 Pounds
Chad Griggs - 228 1/2 Pounds

Kennedy (l) and Souza

Noons (l) and Gurgel


Daniel Cormier - 249 Pounds
Jason Riley - 256 1/2 Pounds

 Andre Galvao - 170 3/4 Pounds
Jorge "Macaco" Patino - 170 8/10 Pounds

Vinicius "Draculino" Magalhaes - 144 1/2 Pounds
Rocky Long - 146 1/4 Pounds

Adam Schindler - 155 1/2 Pounds
Kier Gooch - 155 1/4 Pounds

Jose Santibanez - 154 1/4 Pounds
Reynaldo "The Truth" Trujillo - 155 1/4 Pounds

Chad "Robo" Robichaux - 131 Pounds
Humberto DeLeon - 127 Pounds

Chad Cook - 205 Pounds
Artenas Young - 204 Pounds

Lashley (l) and Griggs

READ MORE - Strikeforce Weigh-In Results

Tachi Palace Fights Signs Jussier da Silva

Friday, August 20, 2010

By FCF Staff   Tachi Palace Fights has added another world class competitor to its roster, as the California based promotion has announced that it has signed highly regarded flyweight Jussier da Silva, to a 4 fight “exclusive agreement”. The 7-0 Brazilian, who is widely considered to be one of the world’s top 125lb. fighters, will make his TPF debut on December 2nd. No opponent has yet been announced.

“We are extremely excited to have inked a deal with ‘Formiga’. This is something that I’ve really been working at since early this year,” Tachi Palace Fights Entertainment Coordinator Jeremy Luchau was quoted saying in a press release from the organization. “We have worked really hard at developing some of the top talent at 125 pounds nationally and now we are able to expand international with this signing.”

“I feel really well, it’s a dream come true to me. I hope to make my name known in the US,” da Silva was quoted saying through the translation of his manager Matheus Aquin. “It’s a great opportunity to me. We had already tried to reach an agreement before, but unfortunately I couldn’t get the visa, I hope this time everything goes well”

The flyweight last competed in June when da Silva worked his way to a Unanimous Decision win over Alexandre Pantoja at a Shooto Brazil event. Prior to that, at a Shooto Revolutionary Exchanges card last July, da Silva earned a UD victory over Shinichi Kojima.

“I’m a jiu jitsu guy, I trained jiu jitsu all my life, and recently I was CBJJE world champion at Black Belt, but I’m always trying to improve, and I’ve been training a lot of boxing, Muay Thai and wrestling. You can expect a much improved fighter in my US debut,” da Silva said.
READ MORE - Tachi Palace Fights Signs Jussier da Silva

Konrad, Grabowski, and Frausto Advance in Tourney Action

By FCF Staff   Cole Konrad, Damian Grabowski and Zoila Frausto are all moving onwards in their respective Bellator Fighting Championships tournament paths, as all three fighters earned Unanimous Decision victories last night at the historic Chicago Theatre, in Chicago, Illinois.

The former NCAA wrestling champion Konrad extended his undefeated record to 5-0, with a decision win over heavyweight Rogent Lloret, while the Polish prospect Grabowski outscored Scott Barrett for the UD victory.

In action from Bellator’s women’s tourney, Frausto was able to avoid the ground game of Jessica Pene, and also worked her way to a Unanimous Decision win.

Notable welterweight veterans Dan Hornbuckle and Brad Blackburn also fought their way to a decision; in the third frame Hornbuckle was able to outscore the UFC veteran with strikes, and was awarded a 29-28 score from all three judges.

“Dan Hornbuckle wanted the toughest fight we could provide him as soon as possible after his loss to Ben,” Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney was quoted saying in a press release from the promotion. “Brad stepped up and these two gave us a back and forth war that was undeniably the fight of the night.”

Here are the results from last night’s Bellator 25 broadcast:

Cole Konrad def. Rogent Lloret via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Damian Grabowski def. Scott Barrett via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Dan Hornbuckle def. Brad Blackburn via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Zoila Frausto def. Jessica Pene via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

READ MORE - Konrad, Grabowski, and Frausto Advance in Tourney Action

Laursen and Fadai Victorious at Martial Combat 8

Thursday, August 19, 2010

By FCF Staff    The Sentosa Resorts World in Singapore hosted a Martial Combat event for the second night in row, as the promotion’s eighth card saw Ole Laursen record his fourth win a row, by working to a Majority Decision victory over Nick LeConte. According to a post-fight, press release from the promotion, LeConte was deducted a point in the first round, due to illegally striking Laursen with a knee to the head while he was on the ground. In what was reportedly a close bout, the deduction played a key role in the fight’s outcome.

“Tonight’s fight was so close that it could have gone either way,” Laursen was quoted saying. “The point deduction made a big difference because Leconte did a great job, and on any other day, he would have won it. He was much better than I was today; he did knee me but that’s just the rules.”

Laursen (L) Trying to Defend LeConte's Takedown

 In another of the card’s attractions, Sabdah Fadai extended his record to 6-1 with a win over Doo Jae Jung, after the South Korean fighter incurred a wrist injury in the third round and could not continue.

“He is just such a great and determined fighter,” Fadia said. “I threw everything I had at him and I still couldn’t get a lock on him. The difference tonight was desire, focus and dedication, traits that Filipino fighters are well-known for.”

Here are the complete results for Martial Combat 8:

Brayden Summers def. Bian Xiao Long by Submission (Guillotine Choke) R2 3:46

Nathan Fredericks def. Kumar Subramaniam by KO (Slam) R1 0:16

Vaughn Anderson def. Hyung Woo Kim by TKO (Strikes) R2 3:33

Ole Laursen def. Nick LeConte by Decision (Majority) 3 5:00

Sabah Fadai def. Doo Jae Jung by TKO (Wrist Injury) R3 0:58

Jung (L) and Fadai Battle

READ MORE - Laursen and Fadai Victorious at Martial Combat 8

Cruz Defends Title with Split Decision Win

By FCF Staff     Last night Dominick Cruz took the first step in entrenching his legacy as the World Extreme Cagefighting Bantamweight Champion, as the 16-1 worked his way to a Split Decision win over an extremely game Joseph Benavidez, to defend his title for the first time. Fighting at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, Cruz utilized his unorthodox striking and takedowns, to edge past Benavidez in what was a thrilling and entertaining tilt. With the loss, Benadvidez sees his record fall to 12-2.

In the card’s co-main event, which would determine the promotion’s top lightweight contender, Shane Roller’s renowned wrestling game surprisingly was not a deciding factor in his battle with Anthony Pettis. Not only did Pettis stuff Roller’s takedowns, throughout much of the memorable fight, the Milwaukee fighter was able to put the former NCAA wrestling champ on his back. Although Roller was able to survive on his feet against the talented and dynamic striker, the well rounded Pettis brought the fight to an end with just 9 seconds remaining, by catching Roller with a game ending triangle-choke.

Here are the complete results for WEC 50:

Dominick Cruz def. Joseph Benavidez via Split Decision (47-48, 48-47, 49-46)

Anthony Pettis def. Shane Roller via Submission (triangle choke) R3, 4:51

Chad Mendes def. Cub Swanson via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Scott Jorgensen def. Brad Pickett via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)

Bart Palaszewski def. Zach Micklewright via TKO (punches) R2, 0:31

Maciej Jewtuszko def. Anthony Njokuani via TKO (punches) R1, 1:35

Javier Vazquez def. Mackens Semerzier via Submission (rear-naked choke) R2, 1:35

Ricardo Lamas def. Dave Jansen via Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)

Fredson Paixao def. Bryan Caraway via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)

Danny Castillo def. Dustin Poirier via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
READ MORE - Cruz Defends Title with Split Decision Win

Video: Gurgel Talks FCF; Bout with KJ Noons

READ MORE - Video: Gurgel Talks FCF; Bout with KJ Noons

Joe Ray KO's Chad Reiner at Martial Combat 7

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

By FCF Staff  Photos Courtesy Martial Combat   Joe Ray extended his undefeated record to 4-0 last night in Sentosa, Singapore, by knocking out UFC veteran Chad Reiner in the third round with right hand. The KO win was Ray’s second under the Martial Combat banner; in June, the welterweight knocked out Zorobabel Moreira in just 14 seconds. Reiner, who was coming off a submission win over Curtis Johnson in April, see his record fall to 25-12. (Picture above: Ray (R) throwing a right hand at Reiner)

“I know I have that one punch knock-out power in me and it was just a matter of time before it came," Ray was quoted saying in a press release from the promotion. "Like they say, ‘if you’ve got it, use it’. Reiner’s a tough fighter, he isn’t afraid to engage and he gave as good as he got tonight."

Nguyen (L) and Sityodtong exchanging
 Here are the results for Martial Combat 7:

Chavalit Sityodtong def. Ben Nguyen by TKO (Punches) R2  2:20
Angelito Manguray def. Shane Wiggand by Submission (Punches) R1  2:25   
Vuyisile Colossa def. Alex Niu by KO (Punches) R2 2:57    
Nick Mellor def. Victor Wang by TKO (Punches) R2  4:38
Joe Ray def. Chad Reiner by KO (Punch) R3 2.11  

Manguray working from the top vs. Wiggand
Martial Combat 8 takes place tomorrow at the Resorts World Sentosa in Singapore, and will feature a Superfight Championship bout between Doo Jae Jung and Sabah Fadai, as well as, Ole Laursen vs. Nicolas Leconte.

READ MORE - Joe Ray KO's Chad Reiner at Martial Combat 7

Lawal “Feeling Real Good” Heading into Saturday’s Bout

By FCF Staff   Houston’s Metro Fight Club hosted an open work-out yesterday in anticipation of Strikeforce’s upcoming event Saturday night, which will take place in that city’s Toyota Center. In attendance were light-heavyweight champion “King Mo” Lawal, KJ Noons, Artenas Young and Chad Robichaux, who are all scheduled to compete on the card.

Lawal (7-0) will face the highly regarded Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante (9-2) in his first title defence, after cruising to a Unanimous Decision victory over Gegard Mousasi in April, to lay claim to the Strikeforce championship. When asked how he was feeling just a few days removed from the tilt, the champion stated:

“I’m feeling real good,” Lawal was quoted saying in a press release from the promotion. “I need to cut about eight pounds but that should be no problem. The weight is good and now it’s just about waiting for Saturday night. All the work has been done.”

And when asked if he grows tired of speaking to the press, Lawal reportedly answered:

“As long as they ask good questions,” he said. “It gets kind of old when you hear, ‘Do you think you’ll win?’ or ‘How are you feeling?’ Those are like one-word answers. I don’t like the obvious questions. I mean, if I didn’t think I could win the fight I wouldn’t have taken it.”
Noons (Above) Will Face Gurgel Saturday
 In another of the card’s main attractions, former Elite XC champion KJ Noons (9-2), will face veteran lightweight Jorge Gurgel (13-6). Noons feels ready for the fight:

“Did a little jump rope, a little stretch, a little pad work today,” Noons said. “It’s part of the job. I’m feeling great right now. My weight is on point and I just got my last workout in.”

“I’ll execute my game plan against Jorge. I’ll know a lot of people in the crowd so it should make it that much more fun.”

Young Preparing for his Fight with Cook
Some of the other bouts scheduled for the card include Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza vs. Tim Kennedy for the vacant Strikeforce middleweight title, Bobby Lashley vs. Chad Griggs, Chad Robichaux vs. Humberto DeLeon (5-3) and Artenas Young vs. Chad Cook.

“Strikeforce Houston” will be broadcast on Showtime.

READ MORE - Lawal “Feeling Real Good” Heading into Saturday’s Bout

Nick Thompson Eager to Make Return at Sengoku 14

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

By Kelsey Mowatt  By the time Nick “The Goat” Thompson steps into the ring Sunday night, at Sengoku Raiden Championship’s latest offering in Tokyo, Japan, nearly one year will have transpired since the accomplished veteran last competed. From battling injuries, having trouble finding fights, to seeing finalized bouts fall through (Thompson was scheduled to fight Eduardo Pamplona at the ill fated Shine Fight’s “Worlds Collide” event in May) it’s been a challenging year for Thompson.

“Very,” Thompson told FCF when asked how anxious he is to compete after being on the sidelines for nearly a year. “This is the longest layoff of my career. During it, I finally had my knee fixed. I am excited to compete at 100% for the first time in a long while.”

Thompson (38-12-1) will meet Taisuke Okuno (9-4-2) in the opening round of Sengoku’s welterweight grand-prix, offering the fighter and practicing lawyer a compelling opportunity, to reassert his presence in the upper tier of the division. Thompson, who won 12 straight fights in a streak lasting from June, 2006, to June, 2008, is coming off back-to-back losses to Tim Kennedy and Dan Hornbuckle.

“In June," said Thompson regarding when he was offered a spot in the 170lb. tourney. “And I was excited for the opportunity. I told them to line them up and I will knock them down.”

Okuno has gone 2-2-1 in his last five fights; most recently the Shooto veteran stopped Hidehiko Hasegawa in the first round, at Deep Impact 46 in February.

“Nothing,” Thompson conceded, when asked what he knows about his next opponent. “I have been very busy with my legal practice and studying tapes was one of the first things to go.”

And as far as Thompson’s assessment of the other tourney competitors? A field that to date also includes Yasubey Enomoto and Kenta Takagi?

“Couldn't tell you who else is in the tournament,” Thompson said. “But I know I am in it, so the favorite is me.”

Sengoku 14 will be hosted by Tokyo’s Ryogoku Kokugikan and will be broadcast live on HDNet, beginning at 2:00AM ET on Sunday, August 22nd.

Some of the other bouts confirmed for the event include a rematch between Sengoku middleweight champ Jorge Santiago and Kazuo Misaki, Hatsu Hioki vs. Jeff Lawson, and the second round of the promotion’s bantamweight grand-prix.

READ MORE - Nick Thompson Eager to Make Return at Sengoku 14

More Bouts Confirmed for Bellator 25

By FCF Staff   Bellator Fighting Championships has confirmed several more match-ups for the promotion’s upcoming event, Thursday night, at the historic Chicago Theatre. Among the additions for the card is UFC veteran Shonie Carter (49-24-7), who will face Torrance Taylor (8-7-1) in a welterweight attraction.

Carter will be looking to end a three fighting losing streak; the charismatic veteran is coming off a stoppage loss to Rick Hawn at a Triumph card in July. Taylor is 2-3 in his last five bouts; most recently he lost by Split Decision to Glen Brown at a UMMAXX card in March.

Other bouts that have been confirmed for Bellator 25 include: Kevin Knabjian (10-4) vs. Brian Gassaway (28-19), John Kolosci (14-6) vs. Kenny Robertson (9-0), and Keoki Cypriano vs. Eric Kriegermeier.

Bellator 25 will feature action in the opening round of the promotion’s heavyweight tournament as Damian “The Polish Pitbull” Grabowski (12-0) will take on Scott Barrett (10-1), and Rogent Lloret (9-1-1) will fight Cole Konrad (4-0).

In other confirmed fights, Zoila “Warrior Princess” Frausto (7-1) will face Jessica Pene (7-0) in an opening round bout from the women’s 115lb. tourney, while veterans Dan Hornbuckle (21-3) and Brad Blackburn (17-11-1) will square off in a non-tourney welterweight tilt.

Bellator 25 will be broadcast live on Fox Sports Net.
READ MORE - More Bouts Confirmed for Bellator 25

Main Card Confirmed for UFC 121

Monday, August 16, 2010

By FCF Staff  The Ultimate Fighting Championship has announced the main card for the promotion’s upcoming October 23rd event in Anaheim, California, and as expected, UFC 121 will feature a heavyweight title bout between champion Brock Lesnar and Cain Velasquez in the main event.

Lesnar (5-1) will compete for the first time since UFC 116 in July, when the accomplished wrestler was nearly stopped by Shane Carwin in round one, only to come back and submit the challenger in round two. Lesnar has now won 4 straight bouts since being tapped out by Frank Mir in his UFC debut, defeating Heath Herring, Randy Couture, and the aforementioned Mir and Carwin.

Velasquez extended his undefeated record to 8-0 in February, by stopping Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in the first round at UFC 110. The American Kickboxing Academy fighter and noted wrestler has won 6 straight bouts since signing with the UFC in 2008.

Other main card fights that have been confirmed for UFC 121 include: Jake Shields (25-4-1) vs. Martin Kampmann (17-3), Paulo Thiago (13-1) vs. Diego Sanchez (21-4), Matt Hamill (9-2) vs. Tito Ortiz (15-7-1), and Gabriel Gonzaga (11-5) vs. Brendan Schaub (6-1).

UFC 121 will be hosted by Anaheim’s Honda Center.

READ MORE - Main Card Confirmed for UFC 121