October 20, 2018
Washington, D.C. from St. Elizabeth’s East Entertainment and Sports Arena
Live on Facebook Watch (7:15 PM ET) and NBC Sports Network (9 PM ET)
Undercard (Facebook Watch)
Abubakar Nurmagomedov DRAWS Bojan Velickovic (Welterweight) (Nurmagomedov will advance due to tie breaker) *
*Velickovic will move on despite the results of the fight as Nurmagomedov has pulled out due to injury. They are saying that Velickovic is advancing due to the “lucky loser” rule.
Louis Taylor def. Rex Harris via Unanimous Decision (Middleweight)
Magomed Magomedkerimov def. Pavlo Kusch via Unanimous Decision (Welterweight)
John Howard def. Eddie Gordon via Unanimous Decision (Middleweight)
Rick Story vs. Handesson Ferreira (Welterweight)
Round 1: Ferreira scores early with a takedown. Story is on his back which isn’t something you see often. Story is mostly just holding on from the bottom aside from the occasional sweep attempt. Ferreira isn’t doing much in terms of damage, but he is firmly maintaining control. The ref steps in and we see a stand up. Back on the feet and Story is trying to work but Ferreira is just one step ahead of him. Story lands a good knee as they briefly clinch. Story is holding his hands very low against a much longer fighter. (10-9 Ferreira) Story never seemed to get anything going. Ferreira isn’t causing much damage, but he is certainly leading the dance.
Round 2: Ferreira opens up with a big right high kick. Story can’t seem to find his range here. Ferreira scores with a takedown and is has the back with a single hook in. Ferreira is landing some punches and its over…not sure what happened there. I think Rick Story suffered an injury or something. He’s saying he felt something moving around in his arm…weird stoppage there.
Result: Handesson Ferreira def. Rick Story via Submission (Verbal) Round 2, 1:15
Ferreira will advance to face the winner of Ray Cooper and Jake Shields later tonight.
Henry’s Analysis: Rick Story couldn’t find his groove and gave up on his chance at one million dollars. Ferreira is definitely a candidate to win this tournament.
Bruno Santos vs. Sadibou Sy (Middleweight)
Round 1: Long feeling out process to start the round. Santos is looking for a takedown against the fence but Sy is fighting it well. They are stuck in the clinch with Santos constantly looking for a trip and Sy constantly defending. Good stuff here. Sy finally manages to create some separation as the round ends. Hard round to score…do you value to the few strikes that Sy landed or the near constant takedown attempt from Santos? 10-9 Santos
Round 2: Sy connects with a solid kick to the body early in the round. Santos drops for a takedown by Sy is able to at least initially defend it. Sy is defending well but Santos is just relentless. Santos completes the takedown with two and a half minutes left in the round. He transitions to side control. Santos is landing some short punches but they’re of little impact. He’s looking to move to north/south position but Sy is making it difficult. Santos is looking for a north/south choke but Sy is moving with him and defending for now. Santos uses the opportunity to move into mount. Santos has thirty seconds to make something happen. He moves for a neck crank in the final seconds of the round but Sy will survive. 10-9 Santos
Result: Sadibou Sy def. Bruno Santos via Tia Breaker Decision (Originally a majority draw. The judges then used the first round as the tie breaker and all three scored that round for Sy therefore giving him the win. He will face the winner of Abuspiyan Magomedov and Gasan Umalatov later tonight.
Analysis: I really just don’t agree with this. I understand the rule but its just a bad rule. Sadibou Sy was clearly defeated in the second round yet one judge gave it to him. The first round was such a close round…It does not feel like the better fighter is advancing.
Ray Cooper III vs. Jake Shields (Welterweight)
Round 1: Cooper attacks early. Shields drops for a takedown but Copper powers out of it and ends up on top. Shields is looking for a kimura, but Cooper manages to pop out. We see a quick separation and Cooper lands a big right hand on Shields. Shields drops for a takedown but Cooper sprawls. Shields manages to recover guard, but Cooper is landing hard shots from the top. Shields is doing all he can to avoid damage, but Cooper is relentless. Cooper lands a big right hand and Shields is down and he is in trouble! Its over! Ray Cooper defeats Jake Shields for a second time!
Result: Ray Cooper III def. Jake Shields via TKO (Punches) Round 1, 3:10
Ray Cooper will advance to face Handesson Ferreira later tonight.
Analysis: Jake Shields looked like an old man fighting a young kid. It was a similar fight to the first. Shields couldn’t find a takedown and Cooper quickly found the finish.
Abuspiyan Magomedov vs. Gasan Umalatov (Middleweight)
Round 1: Good back and forth action early on. Umalatov shoots for a takedown but Magomedov shakes it. Umalatov rushes in again and gets cracked this time. Umalatov is getting tossed around anytime he moves forward. Magomedov completes a double leg takedown with just under two minutes left in the round. Umalatov is holding guard from the bottom and he also has an under hook. Magomedov lands a few shots but mostly he’s just controlling the position. Umalatov is trying to get up but just can’t quite manage it. We see the ref step in and stand the fighters up just as the round ends. 10-9 Magomedov
Round 2: Umalatov is pressuring early on and looking for a takedown. It defiantly feels like a lot of guys have taken is easy tonight. I guess that’s always going to be a potential side effect of a tournament style event. Magomedov manages to shake a takedown and moves his way back to the center of the cage. Umalatov lands a low kick. Umalatov is looking for a takedown but Magomedov is making him work hard for it. Magomedov scores with a quick takedown but Umalatov pops right back up with a minute and a half left in the round. Very slow round. Umalatov does not seem concerned with finding a way to win this fight at all. 10-9 Umalatov I guess. Terrible fight.
Result: Abuspiyan Magomedov def. Gasan Umalatov via Tie Breaker Decision
Abus Magomedov will advance to face Sadibou Sy later tonight.
Analysis: Not a good fight. Magomedov seemed content to coast to victory and Umalatov seemed content to coast to defeat. Not much more that I can say about this fight.
Magomed Magomedkerimov vs. Bojan Velickovic (Welterweight Semi Final)
Round 1: I missed the round and I apologize.
Round 2: Magomedkerimov scores with a takedown early in the round and they are grappling back and forth. Magomedkerimov is maintaining control with a front head lock Velickovic manages to escape and they’re back in the center. Magomedkerimov connects with a hard-right hand! Velickovic is hurt and he is down! This fight is over! Nice finish by Magomedkerimov.
Magomed Magomedkerimov advance to the finals of the Welterweight Tournament.
Result: Magomed Magomedkerimov def. Bojan Velickovic via TKO (Strikes) Round 2, 3:13
Analysis: Nice finish to what was a pretty slow fight beforehand. Two losses in one night is tough for Velickovic.
John Howard vs. Louis Taylor (Middleweight Semi Final)
Round 1: Louis Taylor is taking advantage of his reach advantage early on. Howard moves in for a takedown, but Taylor lands some hard shots as he avoids it. Low kick lands for Taylor. Taylor drops for a takedown, but Howard avoids it with a pair of under hooks. Taylor lands a short jab as Howard moves in for a takedown. Taylor easily shakes it and they move back to the center. Taylor lands another solid low kick that briefly knocks Howard off balance. Taylor lands a jumping knee and Howard is hurt. Taylor completes a takedown and is landing some hard shots from the knee of belly position. He moves for a guillotine and he has it, but Howard manages to shake him off. Taylor completes another takedown with ten seconds left in the round. 10-9 Taylor
Round 2: They’re wrestling early. Howard is looking for a takedown, but Taylor just won’t give it up. He briefly had the neck of Howard, but we see a separation from the ref. Howard isn’t having much success landing his shots or with his takedowns. Taylor scores with a trip takedown. He’s working from the top and landing short shots. They aren’t doing much damage, but he is certainly winning the round. Howard appears to be hurt, and we see a break in the action. It appears as though Louis Taylor landed an illegal knee. The doctors are in the cage taking a look at him. Long sorting out process going on here…I think they are about to DQ Louis Taylor. Real shame if that’s what happens. He was in clear control of the fight. Taylor has left the cage and was starting to throw a bit of a tantrum, but it looks like he’s calmed down a bit. He’s understandably upset though. They haven’t announced anything yet, but it looks like he’s going to be disqualified. LONGGGG discussion going on here…. Okay I am wrong. It looks like they are going to rule the strike as unintentional and take the fight to the score cards. Wow…. well that was a process. Okay well it’s still being discussed…. Apparently an official just told Bas Rutten it will be a draw, but they are questioning if he understands the rules with it being a playoff fight. It seems like we’ve gone through every possible outcome up to the point. They’re trying to interview Yves Edwards, but his mic is cutting out…I just…this has been quite a show. My head actually hurts from this…Ray Sefo better send me an Advil.
Result: Louis Taylor def. John Howard via some sort of decision…I think it was a draw and then Taylor won the tie breaker. Wow.
Louis Taylor will advance to the finals of the Middleweight Tournament
Ray Cooper III vs. Handesson Ferreira (Welterweight Semi Final)
Cooper is attacking early with big strikes. He scores with a takedown but Ferreira pops right back up. He scrambles a bit but Cooper stays with him and completes another takedown. Cooper is controlling from the top and landing some good shots from there. Ferreira is working from his back, but he hasn’t found much of anything yet. Cooper is continuing to land good shots from the top position. Cooper is landing some big shots and its over. Pure dominance tonight by Ray Cooper III. Two fights and Two knockouts.
Result: Ray Cooper III def. Handesson Ferreira via TKO (Punches) Round 1, 2:28
Ray Cooper III will advance to finals of the Welterweight Tournament
Analysis: Ray Cooper seems to be the best fighter in this tournament. A fight with Abu Nurmagomedov would have been fantastic but perhaps another time.
Sadibou Sy vs. Abu Magomedov (Middleweight Semi Final)
Round 1: Sy is landing some hard kicks to the body but Magomedov is firing back with straight rights. They clash heads really hard against the fence but both of them keep fighting. Sy is landing lots of kicks here and Magomedov is just letting it happen so far. Sy connects with a grazing head kick. Magomedov seems content to stand and strike which is a bit surprising. 10-9 Sy
Round 2: Magomedov connects with a groin strike early and we see a break in the action. Magomedov is chasing Sy down but he isn’t landing much of anything. Sy connects with another grazing high kick but doesn’t follow it up with anything. Magomedov shoots in for a takedown finally but so far Sy is defending it well. Magomedov picks him up and slams him to the mat and then does a little bit of work to keep him there. Magomedov moves into mount with two and a half minutes left in the round. He’s looking to posture up but Sy is keeping him down with a good grip. Magomedov separates and he is landing some shots from the top. He’s looking for an arm triangle now and this fight could be over. Sy manages to escape though. Good defense there but he is still in a terrible position. Magomedov is landing some hard shots from the top with thirty seconds left in the round. 10-9 Magomedov
Round 3: Magomedov scores early with a takedown and he is looking for a rear naked choke. Sy is defending but I don’t know for how much longer. Sy somehow managed to escape the choke…he’s certainly resilient. Magomedov has the back with two hooks in but Sy is making him work. He moves his legs into the body lock position making things just a bit worst for Sy. Magomedov moves into mount therefore giving up the RNC attempt. Sy manages to recover half guard but he seems content to just ride out the round at this point. Sy scrambles and creates a bit of space. He’s free and takes the back of Magomedov. He has one and a half minutes left to work. Sy is trying to land shots by Magomedov is doing a good job of controlling the wrist. Magomedov lifts Sy up and slams him to the mat with thirty seconds left in the round. 10-9 Magomedov
Result: Abu Magomedov def. Sadibou Sy via Unanimous Decision
Magomed will advance to the finals of the middleweight tournament.
Analysis: It was what it was. All of these fights were a bit uninspiring and you have to wonder how much the “playoff” aspect played into things.
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