Donofrio MMA and the Impact Fight League – My Bloody Valentine – Results from February 18th, 2012

PROFESSIONAL Mixed Martial Arts returned to the glorious and historic Palace of Auburn Hills as presented with CLASS by Donofrio MMA and the Impact Fight League. The event was preceded by an extremely informational and FREE seminar on concussive injuries in sports presented by the Sports Legacy Institute’s Chris Nowinski and introduced by Impact Fight League/UFC referee Marc Fennell. Everyone who attended this great seminar received an added bonus to go with their free education – FREE General Admission tickets to the event, courtesy of Joe Donofrio! Double bonus! Shortly after the seminar, fans were brought to their feet by Phil “The Voice” Davey, who was letting them know, WITHOUT A DOUBT, they were about to witness first class excitement. And excitement is just the start of a Donofrio event…and that’s not counting the brilliantly lighted entrance and ramp, the dazzling laser arrays, the BOOMING sound, the CRAZY explosions, the INTENSE pyrotechnics…and the RING GIRLS! In addition, there were many truly great trainers, teams and gyms such as James David Gray and Scorpion Fighting System, Don Richard and Warrior Way, MASH Gym, Titan MMA, Maximum Training Centre, Glen Bailey and American Muscle MMA, Joachim Rodriguez and Murcielago MMA, Team Capital Punishment, James Lee’s MASH Fight Team, Team Conquest, H8 Squad, Team Bison, and Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, just to name a few. With a list like that, you can’t go wrong! As the house lights went down, the sound system picked up, and another fabulous night of PRO action was about to begin.

The very first fight of the night was an entertaining battle featuring a fighter whom we had witnessed many times as an amateur, Titan MMA’s Tony “The Tiger” Zelinski against American Muscle MMA’s debuting Paul “Cage Soldier” Howard. The two warriors came to the center right away to test their respective skill set. There were some nice standing exchanges in the opening minutes, as well as a takedown by Zelinski, followed by some good ground control and damage, with Howard defending well and constantly looking to sweep. Round two did not stay on the feet for long. There was another nice takedown early on, and Zelinski began shopping for the opening to finish. At around the minute-and-a-half mark of the second round, Tony was able to do just that, and sealed the deal with a textbook straight armbar for the tap and the “W”. Fight number three featured the HIGHLY ANTICIPATED Professional debut of Murcielago MMA’s Dequan “The Tarantula” Townsend, as he took on Warrior Way’s UNDEFEATED Andy Hahn. Both of these guys have spent a LOT of time in the gym AND in the cage, and it was apparent in the fight. This was as close of a contest as fans could have hoped for. For three non-stop five minute rounds, Hahn and Townsend put on a crowd-pleasing WAR that has REMATCH written all over it. At the conclusion of the regulation time limit, the judges put the ink to the paper, and concluded that this bout would be awarded via RAZOR-CLOSE split decision to Dequan “The Tarantula” Townsend, making his first foray into the pro ranks a successful one. The fourth fight of the evening was a WAR between Team Capital Punishment’s Shaunton Davis and Scorpion Fighting Systems’ Tim Farr. This match was pure electricity…a GREAT match of styles. Both fighters stayed busy and aggressive throughout ALL of round one. The second round started just as frenetic and entertaining as the first, showcasing some nice, technical grappling. After some intense scrambling for position, Farr was able to cinch the victory by cinching a rear naked choke with the hooks all the way in for the tap and the victory. We couldn’t help but notice…James David Gray does the MOST IMPRESSIVE aerial acrobatics over the cage when his guys win (which they seem to do often)! The sixth bout of the night was a crisp standup display as Main Event Gym’s Marcus “The Invincible Dragon” Reynolds stepped inside the steel to face Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts’ Jorge Sarat. Both fighters came out to BANG. As they found the pocket, it was all flying fists and footwork. With action this pace, something was sure to happen. At barely past the one minute mark in the very first round, Reynolds planted some DEVASTATING leather, scoring a NICE knockout victory and getting the fans up on their feet. Fight number eight – it was time for the BIG BOYS to bring the pain, as the Academy of Soo Do Thai’s Aaron “Grown Man” Ware squared off against MASH Gym’s Ryan “Pokie” Pokryfky. Talk about a CLOSE contest…these guys went tit for tat NONSTOP throughout the entire fight, with Pokryfky working for the takedown from the clinch for a large portion of the battle, while Ware repeatedly demonstrated great takedown defense. There were also plenty of great boxing exchanges in every round. After three INSANELY close rounds, the judges awarded the SPLIT decision victory to an elated Ryan “Pokie” Pokryfky. In the ELECTRIFYING Co-Main event, two VERY well-known faces in the Michigan MMA community stepped in the cage to give fans, friends and family a fight that will be remembered for a long, long time. Jeremy Horn protege and Lightning Kicks trainer Amir Khillah hit the big stage to face the H8 Squad’s MULTIPLE King of the Cage title holder, Dom “I Hate You So Much” O’Grady. We here at FightMichigan have known both of these guys for a long time now, and when we saw this fight inked, we knew IMMEDIATELY that it would be a war for the ages. And it WAS! The extensive experience of BOTH warriors was apparent right away. Really phenomenal striking, unbelievable submission work and escapes, some VERY amusing showboating, a REALLY COOL axe kick…this fight had it ALL – THREE FULL ROUNDS WORTH! After all three of those rounds were completed, the judges were left once again to decide the fate of the fight. And after a short deliberation, all three judges awarded the unanimous decision victory to Amir Khillah. Hats off to both Dom and Amir…these are two of the most interesting characters you’ll find, both in and out of the cage. The MAIN EVENT of the evening was a clash between a local legend, MASH Gym owner Todd Allee, against former StrikeForce Heavyweight hitman Brett “Da Grim” Rogers. As both warriors took the center, they started to let the hands fly. Rogers landed an early hard shot that sent the fight to the ground. Brett then proceeded to unleash some vicious ground and pound, and Allee was blocking the shots and trying to wall walk into a better position. Brett was eager to finish while he had Todd in defense mode still, and in his attempt to end the fight, landed an inadvertant strike to the back of Allee’s head. Referee Marc Fennell stopped the contest momentarily to check on a dazed Allee, who was unable to continue. The fight was ruled a “No Contest” due to the accidental blow. Well, folks…these things DO happen from time to time, but as is the standard of Donofrio MMA, safety comes first! A massive shout goes out – as ALWAYS – to the fighters, trainers, gyms and dojos that provide us with all of this quality entertainment through all of their blood, sweat and sacrifice.

Now it’s time to hail the staff that ensures that the Impact Fight League’s production is SEAMLESS from start to finish. Let’s start with the “Fight Boss” himself, Mr. Joe Donofrio. As MANY will attest, this man spares no expense in providing a safe competition environment and entreating fighters and fans alike to a spectacular big stage event! The safety specialists (also known as referees) assigned to oversee the action was the globally certified buddy of ours, Marc Fennell, alongside another experienced cage official, Mr. Michael Miletti. Assisting these gentleman and working the cage door was Bubba MacKenzie. Judges for the event were Rose Gross, Nick Frania and FightMichigan’s own Shannon Hale. Timekeepers for the show were Mr. Dan Graschuck and FightMichigan’s T.J. Corwin. A special thanks to the wonderful and professional staff from the State of Michigan’s Unarmed Combat Commission, who ALWAYS make sure that these events are done by the books, ensuring the ongoing safety and longevity of Mixed Martial Arts in the Great Lake State! The OFFICIAL announcer of the Impact Fight League, the one and only “Voice” of Donofrio MMA, was/is none other than our close friend and microphone master, Phil “The Voice” Davey. Matchmaker for this exciting fight card was our good buddy Joey “The Don” Battaglia. Expert cutman for the event was Mr. Brandon Gallo. Masterfully handling the color commentary for the Live broadcast was the dynamic duo of Fight Guru Steve Lafrate and UNDEFEATED boxing specialist, Kara “KO” Ro. A huge shout out to the IFL’s Head of Security and Mr. Donofrio’s personal assistant, Oscar “Big Ox” Brown. Also, a big thumbs up to Big Media Buzz’s Andre Courtemanche, who did an EXCELLENT job of handling publicity and press releases on the event! Still photography was handled by Lena Lee Faulkner. A tribute goes out to Mr. Al Cooper and all of the great guys and gals from Cooper’s Gym, who help with EVERYTHING from the backroom, event coordination, security staffing…you guys are the gears that help run a well-oiled machine! Also, we noticed some more of our friends out on the Palace floor – MI Entertainment’s Izzy Quintanilla and his HUGE selection of affordable wares were on hand for the event…Rye Spiteri was in the house representing Garage Muscle and Trained in Detroit with their great merch and portable photography studio where fans could get a PROFESSIONAL photo taken on site…and last but certainly not least, Dan Waterman and Vengeance Fight Gear were in attendance, bringing to the table their own unique swagger. Yes, folks…it’s true. The Impact Fight League is ALWAYS a sure bet when it comes to delivering some of the best and SAFEST action out there. And you can bet that when they return to the Palace on May 5th, you will DEFINITELY want to be there. For all the info and details as they become available, check back right here regularly. Until next time, here are your results…

Vengeance Fight League 6 – Results from February 11th, 2012

Vengeance Fight League, in association with Ground and Pound Promotions, returned to the spacious and familiar Intersection in Grand Rapids, Michigan with another INSANELY GOOD night of mixed martial arts action. And once again, in TRUE Vengeance fashion, the event was COMPLETELY SOLD OUT. The house was PACKED, door to door, wall to wall with some of the most excited and the LOUDEST fans around. And they were hyped for a good reason…you could simply look at the list of well-known and experienced warriors on the card and without looking any further, you KNEW there was NO DOUBT that you were in for a real treat. And the list of gyms and trainers involved with the event only affirmed that fact EVEN MORE, with such powerhouses as Murcielago MMA, Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, Lightning Kicks, The Lab, American Muscle MMA, Grand Rapids Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Triumph MMA, The System, Unleashed MMA, Scarred MMA, Corruption MMA, Xtreme MMA, Coon MMA, Vengeance MMA, and Vincent’s MMA. After a wonderful rendition of our National Anthem by the lovely and multi-talented Jamie Lange, the familiar ring of OFFICIAL Vengeance announcer Phil “The Voice” Davey’s patented “Are you ready for a BEATDOWN?” let the excited fans know that the action was about to begin!

This event kicked off in the best way possible…with a crowd-pumping, brutal one-shot KNOCKOUT! An undefeated Thomas DeLeon stepped inside the cage to take on Scarred MMA’s Jorge Arcos. The two came out, touched gloves, stepped back, engaged, and BANG. Argos threw a single point-on shot to the button for the highlight reel KO victory. Whatta way to get the crowd screaming right from the start! Fight number seven was a lightning paced battle between two undefeated Featherweights – Murcielago MMA’s Tobin Klusty and Corruption MMA’s Brandon Murray. These two wasted no time at all in getting to work – it was a barn burner of a first round! They locked up in the clinch right away, and it was a clinic of pummeling and takedown defense by both fighters. Klusty ended up getting the fight down to the ground, where he controlled position and dealt some ground and pound for the remainder of the first round, while Murray fought back HARD. Round two started off quickly as well, with Tobin hitting another takedown early on. He was able to secure top position after a series of transitions, and opened up with some more punishing ground and pound for the finish and the win. Well folks…here’s the part where I have to stop and say this – there were so many great and notable fights on the card that in order to get this article published for you, the MMA community, we had to skip over a few that are really worthy of recognition. I’ll definitely suggest that if you weren’t fortunate enough to have gotten your tix before the show sold out and you weren’t able to be there in person, or even if you WERE there, you should take time to watch ALL the footage from the event for yourself! The tenth fight of this spectacular event was a grinding WAR in the ladies’ 125 pound division between two SUPERBLY trained young women, The Lab’s Sanya Cordray and Murcielago MMA’s Carly Mocny. Right from the opening of the fight, these ladies were eager to mix it up, with some excellent striking exchanges, some really great clinch work and knees, and a TON of ground work, including multiple submission attempts and escapes. Round two was every bit as amazing – a veritable clinic from A to Z. The third round did not disappoint either, with Carly doing a great job of staying out of Sanya’s sub attempts and dealing out some sweet ground and pound. After three rounds of the best ladie’s action we’ve seen since Carly’s last fight, the judges scored the razor-close SPLIT decision victory for an exhausted and elated Sanya Cordray. And while this was Sanya’s night to shine in the spotlight, we must say something about Carly and the Women’s MMA division. We at FightMichigan witnessed Carly’s debut fight at Total Warrior Combat against The Factory’s Nekhai Hong in January. As ANYONE who saw that fight will quickly tell you, it was not only the best female debut bout in recent history, but that fight also ended in a VERY close decision. When you are gaining that type of experience and can entertain the fans like that in only TWO outings, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it many, many more times – there TRULY can be no loser! And mark my words, the female division is quickly getting saturated with some phenomenal talent, and ALL THREE of these young ladies mentioned above will be a factor in the not-too-distant future! The eleventh fight of the night was a short-but-AWESOME standup battle between two experienced cage veterans as Triumph MMA’s UNDEFEATED Kevin Lee took on Coon MMA’s also UNDEFEATED Jacob Butler. And we say UNDEFEATED in all Caps, because these are no small records, 8-0 and 11-0, especially when you factor in the top-notch names that comprise each man’s respective hit list! You KNOW something spectacular is going to happen. And it most certainly did, in short order. The two combatants took to the center, and some very calculated striking began. Kevin Lee grabbed his almost trademark clinch and let go with a series of nice knees, while Butler fought back gallantly. At just under ONE MINUTE in the first and final round, Kevin landed a PERFECTLY placed shot that sent Butler down, and pounced in IMMEDIATELY for a BRUTAL highlight reel ground and pound knockout over a seasoned opponent to add to his highlight reel career! Mark our words once again, folks, this young man is going to the top! Moving back to some more excellent action in the ladie’s division, it was ANOTHER great matchup, as Vengeance MMA’s Randi Riva stepped up to face Coon MMA’s Ariel Burlington. Round one was a LOT of back and forth striking on the feet, with both ladies landing some good headshots. Despite giving up a LOT of reach, Riva was able to get inside and land a couple of HARD punches that snapped Ariel’s head back. Round two saw some more great standup from both ladies as well as some ground work, with both combatants scoring some damage throughout the regulation time limit. Round three started off with another heated exchange in the standup, and after closing the distance, Ariel landed a takedown. After securing a dominant position, Ariel unleashed some devastating ground and pound, forcing a stop to the contest at just past the halfway mark of the third and final round. Next up was a CRAZY heated matchup between two Lightweight fighters with some CRAZY experience…Murcielago MMA’s Marky “Cash” Christiansen and American Muscle MMA’s Kamron “Young Gun” Snyder. The staredown as these two got ready to do battle was NASTY. A lot of hype and bad blood seemed to precipitate this one, but as true sportsmen do, the two touched gloves at the start of the fight as a display of mutual respect. But with the formalities now out of the way, the war was ON. Clinching, knees and boxing, a takedown…all in RAPID succession. With action coming at that pace from warriors that skilled, something was bound to happen fast. The end of the contest was declared in LESS THAN A MINUTE in the first round via TKO due to a merciless onslaught of strikes on the ground, as delivered by the hands and knees of Marky “Cash” Christiansen. Next on the lineup was the battle for the Vengeance Light Heavyweight gold…a clash between The System’s Mike Smiley and Corruption MMA’s “Lethal” Eric Leiter. This fight did not stay on the feet long. There was an interesting series of transitions and submission attempts, with both warriors looking to stay clear of danger and finish with a sub of their own. At just past the two minute mark in the first round, Leiter was able to capitalize on his position and ended the fight with a NICE inverted triangle, getting the tap out victory and the 205 pound title. Now it was time for the Bantamweight gold to be on the line, as The System’s reigning champion Steve Johnson defended the belt against American Muscle MMA’s Joel “The Phenom” Vincent. All three of the opening rounds were a careful battle on the feet, with Vincent landing the more effective strikes. Rounds four and five also featured some great standing exchanges, with Steve sinking a takedown in each round and dishing out some damage from the mat. After five GRUELING rounds, the judges awarded a SPLIT decision, in favor of the NEW Vengeance 135 pound champion, Joel “The Phenom” Vincent. The sixteenth war of the card was ANOTHER exciting battle in the ladie’s division featuring Lightning Kicks and GRBJJ’s Jen “Tink” Aniano versus Scarred MMA’s Chrissie “The Demon” Daniels. Daniels had a sizeable reach advantage, which she was able to use well. Chrissie came out in full-on attack mode, leaving Jen to block the onslaught and try to fire back whenever possible. Chrissie’s attack was unrelenting, and at just past the halfway mark of round one, she unloaded a barrage of well placed shots for an impressive KO victory. Now we can see why she has earned the cage name “The Demon”! The next bout of the night was a contest between two of the top contenders in Veangeance’s Featherweight division, GRMMA’s Mike “The Shocker” Hamida and Frank Sade. This fight appeared to be a classic wrestler versus jiu jitsu match. The two clinched up right away. After a brief exchange, Frank was able to land a HARD takedown. Hamida appeared calm and comfortable on the ground, though, and immediately went to work to lock on a crushing triangle choke, which netted him yet another impressive submission victory. The Co-Main event was a fast-paced match in the Flyweight division, where the belt was on the line as Scarred MMA’s always-impressive and undefeated Mike Gantner took on American Muscle MMA’s very experienced Kirkk Moore. After a brief standup tussle, the fight ended up on the canvas. Gantner was able to control position and drop some heavy leather all throughout the first round, while Moore did his best to escape the position and battle back. Round two started the exact same way, with Gantner able to secure top position and unload, forcing the referee to call a halt to the action at under a minute in the second round, making Gantner 11-0 AND the NEW Vengeance Bantamweight champion! The MAIN EVENT of this exceptional night of action was EPIC WAR for the Vengeance Welterweight title (vacated by Murcielago MMA’s Dequan “The Tarantula” Townsend, who is making his PRO debut at the Palace this weekend…congrats!) pitting GRMMA’s Antwain “A-Train” Wilson against The System’s Drew Hellner. Well, folks, if you weren’t there for this one in person you may have missed out, because we don’t know if the video can even show what a great fight this truly was. After all FIVE brutal, EXPLOSIVE rounds were in the books, the judges were left with a decision. And in the end, all three judges concluded that Drew Hellner would emerge the victor and NEW Vengeance 170 pound champion. Hats off to Antwain for a GREAT and memorable fight, and a MASSIVE SHOUT goes out, AS ALWAYS, to the fighters. Without ALL of your sweat, blood and sacrifice, there would be no show for us to write about! Here’s to YOU.

Now it’s time to show love to all of the absolutely FIRST-CLASS event staff that made this great event possible…starting from the top. Promoter Dan Waterman has had nothing but success since his arrival on the promoting scene barely over a year ago, already setting a high production benchmark for others to try and reach, and providing fans with TRULY some of the best action around…a fact to which both fighters and fans will attest. During that action this time around, the keepers of the rules (A.K.A. referees) for the event were Michigan pro fighter and trainer Daron Cruickshank (whom we had just seen the night before on the other side off the State…busy man!) along with one of his star pupils, fellow phenom and pro fighter, Cody “Mr. Wonderful” Stamann (whom we had also seen just the night previous). Judges for the event were Ed Pigeon, Wade Poland and FightMichigan’s own T.J. Corwin. The deliverer of stats, info and crowd pumpery was none other than the microphone master, the “Voice” of Michigan MMA, Phil “The Voice” Davey. Backing him up with the bumps and the beats was the dynamic deejay Bobby “DJ BabyDaddy” Cantwell, joined by his lovely BabyMama, Heather Cantwell. The matchmaker who PUT IT DOWN with another SWEET fight card was FightMichigan’s good friend Mickey Millis. Helping coordinate things in the back room was Mickey’s lovely wife and assistant, Stacey Millis, alongside two more of our good friends, Jake Erickson and Amy Cottrell. GPP’s big cheese, Paul Simpson, was unable to make it in person, but we can’t leave him out…we miss that guy. Hi, Paul! We noticed that the man working the red corner cage door was none other than GPP’s Head of Security, Samson Marlatt. We also noticed, at this event and many others, the ever-growing presence of Loved By A Pitbull, along with their killer product lineup and REALLY COOL people, such as Dru Gardner, Amy “Red Hot” Rusnell and Tayvon “Lil’ Soldier” Gardner. Well everyone, if you haven’t heard it yet from your local MMA fan/fighter, we can honestly tell you that the Vengeance Fight League is the home of some of the best mixed martial arts action around. But PLEASE, don’t just take our word for it, see for yourself the next time they are in town! And when the date is delivered, we’ll relay it to you, our loyal reader. Take care…and until the next time, here are your results…

Total Warrior Combat – TWC 8 – New World Order – Results from January 21st, 2012

Total Warrior Combat held it’s BIGGEST and BADDEST event to date (which is an ASTRONOMICAL achievement, considering some of their previous fight cards) at the Best Western Plus Hotel in Lansing (formerly the Causeway Bay Hotel and Resort). One look at the card, and there was NO DOUBT that fans were going to be in for one of the most memorable events in recent history. And they were not disappointed! From the very first fight (which ended in a spectacular knockout), to the Ray Reynero/Dan Dunbar Co-Main event and the Adam Nixon/Kory Wertz Main event, the entire event was a barn-burner. The great teams and trainers that came out to rep their gyms and their fighters were a veritable A-list of the very best in the area…Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, Team Striking Dragons, Murcielago MMA, Soldado’s Boxing and MMA, Pound 4 Pound MMA, Master Bill’s Karate, The Pit, Lansing Jiu Jitsu, The Factory, Old School Fitness, Parker’s Martial Arts and Freedom MMA, as well as a who’s who of individual coaches and trainers. From the National Anthem to the afterparty, TWC delivered intensity and excitement from A to Z. As we were looking down the fight card, we noticed something AMAZING. Beside EVERY fighters name on the card, there was a gym or trainer listed. No one-fight Facebook warriors, only TRAINED martial artists. This is quite possibly the only time we’ve seen this at an amateur event to date…a testament to TWC’s credibility.

As mentioned in the opening paragraph, the event turned ELECTRIC right from the get-go when Sammy Watchmaker entered the cage to square off against the VERY experienced Cliffy Creech. Like true warriors, the two engaged right away. In only a few short seconds, Sam landed a shot that rattled Creech. As the fight went to the canvas, Sam knew he was in a position to end the fight, and with Cliff caught against the cage, a few more DEVASTATING and well-placed fists brought an end to the contest, leaving Sammy’s always-game opponent temporarily in Dreamland. By the way…all of this occurred in less than THIRTY SECONDS. Is there any better way to start an event?! After a spectacular undercard that featured some of the area’s best up and comers, we move on to the next bracket. The eighth fight of the evening was a Welterweight WAR between One of Matt Torres’ proteges, Bobby Nash and the ALWAYS tough, ALWAYS game George “Superman” Allen. Nash was aggressive in this fight…but you could tell that there was a mutual respect between the two fighters. Nash controlled dominant position for a majority of the first round and dealt out some ground and pound, while George flaunted his experience with some pretty nice ground defense. As the second round began, the fight hit the canvas QUICK. There was a scramble for position that left Nash on top in side control. He shot the arm under George’s neck and rolled his shoulder forward, executing a PERFECT shoulder choke. Unable to alleviate the tremendous pressure, George was forced to concede the contest via tap, granting Nash a VERY impressive win over the uber-experienced Allen at exactly the thirty second mark in the second round. The very next fight on the card was an absolutely UNBELIEVABLE matchup between The Pit’s Josh “The Blood Shark” Fish and Team Striking Dragons’ Cameron Brewer. After a brief moment of feeling out on the feet, this fight went ELECTRIC, and so did the crowd. The pace was just plain GRUELING for the whole first round. In round two, both warriors came out with renewed fervor. Fish got the better of an early exchange, and the fight ended up on the ground. There was a battle for position, and Josh weathered the storm and took Cameron’s back. Fish managed to work the hand under the neck with the hooks in deep, and then cinched a really tight rear naked choke for the finish and the win. Fight number twelve on the card was one of the MOST IMPRESSIVE ladie’s debut fight that we have ever seen! Murcielago MMA’s Carly Mocny entered the cage for the very first time to face off against The Factory’s Nekhai Hong. Now, before we go any further, let me say this – when you have Murcielago in one corner, and Jen Kelly and Elsa Gallegos in the other, you are absolutely, 100% GUARANTEED to be in for a treat! These two ladies DID NOT DISAPPOINT! They both showed heart, skill and experience WELL beyond what their record would reflect. The majority of the entire fight stayed on the feet, with some BEAUTIFUL striking exchanges, footwork and clinch work. After three SOLID, NON-STOP rounds, the judges concurred that Nekhai had gotten the better of the amazing exchanges, and awarded her her very first of what will surely be MANY more victories in her career via unanimous decision. Mark my words…BOTH of these young ladies will be ones to watch! Next up, it was a HIGHLY anticipated battle between Murcielago MMA’s Kevin “The Silent Assassin” Shacks and Pound 4 Pound MMA’s Mike Thompson. Intense is really the only way to describe this fight…aside from EXTREMELY well matched. These two chose to stand and bang it out for ALL THREE ROUNDS, keeping the fans screaming the whole time. After what was a veritable standup CLINIC for all three rounds, the judges were assigned the unenviable task of deciding who would get the glory this night. As they reached their decision, they handed over a RAZOR-CLOSE decision (and we say razor-close because it came right down to splitting hairs) in the favor of Mike Thompson. As with any split decision, but ESPECIALLY with this one, it has REMATCH written all over it! Up next, it was time for the Renegade Welterweight title to be put on the line in a rematch that had been MONTHS in the making – Murcielago MMA’s Skeeter Kittle versus Striking Dragon’s shooting star, Denato Richardson. Round one was much like their first encounter, exciting and fast-paced. Both warriors put it down in the first round, trying to one-up each other on the feet, as well as on the ground. Round two started in similar fashion, with the pace going full tilt right out of the gate. The back and forth exchange continued deep into the second round, and around the two minute mark, Skeeter got into full mount and let the fists fly, bringing a stop to the contest via (a somewhat controversial) TKO. Then, it was on to the TWC Interim Lightweight championship, featuring Lansing’s local legend, Pound 4 Pound MMA’s Zack Shaw taking one of Bob Fish’s disciples, Joe Rogers. Zack came right out and did a smart thing…he used his experience and pushed the pace so quickly, he did not afford Rogers the luxury of being able to fight HIS fight. The strategy paid off, and in rapid fashion, when Zack got the back and whipped out a textbook rear naked choke for the win and the title. Then, it was time for the BIG boys to wage war for the Heavyweight gold, when Lansing Jiu Jitsu’s Joe Clementz took on Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts’ “Big” John Lofquist. Now, we all know that when two heavyweights of this caliber are throwing hands, WHEN one of those shots find it’s mark, the results are DEVASTATING. And that is precisely what happened. Both fighters came out with the intention of emerging the victor, and let the leather go early. Joe’s fist found the mark first, dazing Lofquist, and after a quick follow-up, Joe was able to end the night early with a spectacular KO. Clementz was proud to FINALLY be wearing the TWC gold, so much so that it was rumored that he slept in his hotel room with it! Congrats, big guy. The next fight was one for the “WOW” category, as The Pit’s seasoned veteran, Luke “The Assassin” Hnevsa, took the center cage against Murcielago’s undefeated Mario “Wario” James. This is a fight that you could really only fully appreciate it’s magnitude by having been there in person. What a barn-burner! Luke wanted the gold BAD, and you could see it etched on his face. Mario, on the other hand, was not willing to just let him take it, so the frenetic battle ensued. Luke came out to FINISH. The relentless assault began immediately, and early on Mario found himself in some serious danger. At one point, Mario actually rode the momentum of Luke’s VICIOUS flurry of uppercuts back up the cage from the ground! SOMEHOW, Mario endeavored to weather the storm and dish out some gnarly strikes of his own. The onslaught continued at a break-neck pace until nearly the end of the second round, when all of the body shots and kicks were really starting to take their toll, making it impossible to breathe, forcing him to concede the match, leaving a tired, yet satisfied Mario James holding the title strap. Next on the card was the 135 pound title fight, featuring the highly anticipated cage return of GRMMA’s Dan “The American Badass” Dunbar, as he squared off against Soldado’s Boxing and MMA’s Bantamweight badboy, Ray Reynero. While many were expecting to see a lot of boxing in this fight, it ultimately became more of a grappling match. For the ENTIRE first two rounds, both warriors pushed the pace without cease. Round three maintained the same intensity. It was a virtual Grappling 101, with a non-stop chain of submission attempts, sweeps, escapes reversals…you name it, they did it. Nearing the two minute mark in the third round, a well timed reversal found Dan in a compromising position. Ray maintained position, a started delivering blows to the head. Dan fought valiantly to escape the position, but to no avail. The cumulative effect of Ray’s fist were too much, and the referee was forced to stop the fight, crowning Ray Reynero as the NEW TWC Bantamweight champion. The final fight of this CRAZY card was a battle for the TWC Junior Lightweight title pitting Team Striking Dragon’s Adam “The Atomic Zombie” Nixon and Pound 4 Pound MMA’s rising star Kory Wertz. As the battle began, these two wasted no time getting right in the pocket and banging it out. Adam fought like a soldier, but this night would see Wertz emerge the victor, when he landed a series of well placed and timed hands that brought about an early FLASH KO…at just barely past the thirty second mark of the fight! Kory seemed VERY happy about his new hardware, as did his team and his fans, evidenced by their ear-shattering roar of approval! As with EVERY event, FightMichigan honors and recognizes EACH and EVERY fighter and trainer that came out to represent and make this show that will carry an afterglow for a VERY long time!

Now it’s time to shout out the TWC dream team that made this event run silky smooth from top to bottom, starting with the promoters. In only eight shows, Adam Molnar and Petey have made LANDMARK improvements with each event, very quickly scaling the promotional food chain and fixing the TWC name on the lips of fans across the State. The staff they have elected over the course of their tenure in the sport has changed minimally, also providing the consistency that the fans have come to expect. One staff member that has been there since the very beginning is TWC’s head ref and referee for the ENTIRE event, FightMichigan’s T.J. Corwin. The panel of judges were comprised of the experienced trio of Ed Pigeon, Dru Gardner and Mickey Millis, with Scorpion Fighting Systems’ LEGENDARY BJJ master James David Gray and Miss Shannon Hale from FightMichigan (who was also armed with the trusty stopwatch for the event) stepping in to judge a couple of fights. Handling Vaseline duty at the cage door and occasionally stepping in as a ring GUY was Marky “Cash” Christiansen. The man on the mic for the event was the crowd-pumping up-and-coming MC extraordinarre, Michael “Skipnosis” Gorham. Backing him up on the DJ stand with the street-shaking beats was the one and only Bobby “DJ BabyDaddy” Cantwell. The Director of Sales and Marketing for TWC is the one-man street team, Bear K. Fitz. Heading up TWC’s team of hotties (ring girls) was the always eye pleasing Michaela Prevost. Handling still photography AND video for the event was Fierce Photography’s Noah Paris. The pics look AWESOME…check out the gallery HERE. Assisting Mr. Corwin with the cage door and keeping the competition area clean were the extremely helpful trio of Jake Prosser, Max Little and Dillon Deal. Last, but MOST DEFINITELY not least, were the guys who MASTERFULLY handled ALL of the coordination in the locker room (a challenging and unenviable task, for those familiar with the promotion game), Mr. Tony Sterk and his assistant, Josh Stuer. We also noticed there were a LOT of people sporting Loved By A Pit gear…if you haven’t got one of these SWEET shirts that support an awesome cause, GET ONE. We did! Well, folks, it’s safe to say that Total Warrior Combat is not only here to stay, but with future plans that include MANY yet-to-be publically announced events and other HUGE, HUGE things on the horizon (that we can’t WAIT for the green light to reveal), TWC has already, and will continue to be, one of the front-runners in the sport. As Petey and Adam release all of this great info to us for public dispersal, we’ll IMMEDIATELY release it to YOU, our loyal readers. Until the next great event, here are your results…

Ground and Pound Promotions & Rock Boss Entertainment present – Redemption – Results from December 3rd, 2011

Ground and Pound Promotions, in association with Rock Boss Entertainment, returned to Rivertown Sports Complex with an event that fans will be talking about for a LONG, LONG time. While we at FightMichigan was unable to be in the house this time around, we have heard nothing but RAVING reviews on the show, with many hailing the event as “The best GPP event to date”…which covers a LOT of ground, considering some of the unforgettable shows GPP has provided the MMA world in the past. They had to rush order more seats and even all available standing room was PACKED because of SUCH an overwhelming turnout for the event. Promoters Paul Simpson and Rocky Parks did a PHENOMENAL job of setting up and coordinating this event, as well as the rest of the first-class GPP crew. Speaking of first-class crew…before we get started, I would like to take a moment to thank the man who made this article happen, as well as others you will see here on FightMichigan, our good buddy Dru Gardner. As the fans settled in their seats, the lights went low, and the singing of our National Anthem signified the beginning of this unbelievable fight card. As the action got underway, fans were gearing up to root on all of their faves from such prestigious gyms and dojos such as Triumph MMA, Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, Middleville MMA, American Muscle MMA, MadMen MMA, Unleashed MMA, Xtreme MMA and more!

Right from the START, the crowd was amped. And they had good reason to be! The crowd-pumping began IMMEDIATELY, with an exciting stand-up WAR between GRMMA’s Matt Cowger and Madmen MMA’s Jeff Talbot. This ended up being a good, ‘ol fashioned kickboxing match for the most part, with BOTH fighters with a lot of clean, down-the-pipe striking. Round one was a clinic, which picked right back up in round two. After many more nice exchanges throughout the second round, Talbot landed a shot that put his opponent to sleep with only FIVE SECONDS left in the round, securing the victory and a SWEET knockout, as well as kicking off the event with a BANG! In the fourth fight if the night, Ryan Zinski stepped into the cage to face Casey Edgar. While both fighters were working hard for the finish, Edgar’s pedigree in wrestling proved to be overwhelming for most of the duration of the fight. Using said wrestling to secure a dominant position, Casey ended the fight at just past the two minute mark via TKO. Fight number eight was a battle between a couple of rock solid fighters, Dylan Soper and Eric Lozano. The two combatants wasted no time getting to work. Lozano’s assault was relentless and devastating. In less than halfway through the first round, Lozano unleashed a BRUTAL barrage of strikes that forced his opponent to tap out, leaving Eric in the winner’s circle with another impressive victory under his belt. In the very next fight, it was a fast-paced BRAWL as Jake Ackerburg took on Middleville MMA/GRMMA’s Mateo Soto. These two came out with all guns blazing and swingin’ for the fences. The pace continued fast and furious for ALL of the first round. Early in round two, as Ackerburg was attempting the takedown, Mateo was able to shoot his hand under his opponent’s arm and lock in a TIGHT D’arce choke that forced the tap. Moving on to some TITLE FIGHT action, it was a war for the Rock Boss 185 pound gold as defending champion, GRMMA’s Timothy “Too Tall” Harvey, faced off against the challenger, American Muscle MMA’s Joe Knoor. Tim was able to defend his title successfully in rather rapid fashion, taking the fight to the ground and finishing the fight with a textbook Americana at EXACTLY the one minute mark in the very first round, therefor retaining his title. Next up was an excellent matchup in the Lightweight division, with the GPP 155 pound strap on the line. Rich Stafford put the gold up against Xtreme MMA’s seasoned veteran, Arturo DeLeon in a battle that sounded sweet on paper. And it did not disappoint, with the leather flying fast the whole time. Rich got the better of the exchange on the feet, then later into the first round, got the takedown against the cage. Rich wasted no time securing top mount, and just past two and a half minutes into the very first round, Rich was able to punch, elbow and pound out the TKO victory, placing the strap around his waist once again. Next up, it was a five round knock down, drag out MMA CLINIC as GRMMA’s Antwain “A-Train” Wilson took on SMAC’s Derek Martin. This fight had it ALL – excellent standup, killer clinch work, takedowns, sub attempts, you name it. After five absolutely awe-inspiring rounds, the judges awarded the unanimous decision victory to the NEW Rock Boss Welterweight champion, Antwain “A-Train” Wilson. Now it was time for the GPP Middleweight title to be contested, and Unleashed MMA’s Raylen Davis and Madmen MMA’s Alex Russell answered the call. Raylen Davis DOMINATED the fight, with a SPECTACULAR suplex right from the start (Ray enjoys doing that to people), then followed it up with some VICIOUS ground and pound to seal the deal. Ray emerged victorious, with the GPP 185 pound belt in tow. Next, it was time for the Rock Boss Featherweight title fight, featuring Middleville MMA’s Mundo Lerma versus Nick “The King” Beaman. These two went at it NONSTOP for four full rounds. Despite Lerma’s spirited efforts, Beaman got the better of the standup, with the jab keeping his opponent at a distance. Beaman was also able to stuff some takedown attempts, and kept right on with the standup. At the conclusion of the fourth round, Lerma was unable to continue due to the punishment dealt by Beaman. Nick Beaman walked away from the fight as the NEW Rock Boss 145 pound champ. Next on the card were the BIG guy doing battle for the GPP Heavyweight championship. As soon as the ref started the fight, Kevin Koyl and GRMMA’s Felix Juarez got it ON. TWENTY THREE SECONDS LATER, it was all over. Juarez’s hand proved LETHAL, knocking Koyl out cold. You can check out the video here. Juarez takes the PHENOMENAL knockout victory as well as the GPP Heavyweight belt. Getting into the Light Heavyweight division, Unleashed MMA’s Travis Ganong stepped up to face American Muscle MMA’s Victor Jones for the GPP 205 pound title. Travis was able to control the takedowns and position throughout most of round one. In round two, Victor was able to keep the fight upright. At just under a minute and a half in the second round, Jones landed a GNARLY uppercut that knocked his opponent out and made him the newest GPP Light Heavyweight champ! Closing out this fabulous event was the Super Heavyweight battle that everyone was waiting for – The Lab and GRMMA’s Esteven Juarez versus American Muscle MMA’s Ramon Pacheco. Both of these guys are known for their heavy hands, and just about EVERYONE was expecting a knockout, it was merely a question of whose hands it would be at. Both warriors came out respectful and cautious. After a brief feeling out, the clinic began. These two renown strikers exchanged many shots, including BOTH fighters landing HEAD KICKS. That’s right folks…not a typo. Super Heavyweights. Head kicks. At just shy of the two minute mark in the second round, it happened. One of Juarez’s shots found it’s mark, and the fight was over. Knock out. Esteven Juarez was crowned as the GPP Super Heavyweight champ. With this epic card in the books, it was time for the winners to celebrate and the losers to pick up and regroup. A HUGE shout out to ALL of the superb fighters and trainers that helped make this event quite possibly the best GPP event ever. It couldn’t have happened without YOU!

I mentioned above GPP’s first-class crew…now it’s time to be a little more specific. These are the folks that make things happen, both behind the scenes and on the floor. The cage officials (referees) for the event were Michigan ammy Lightweight phenom and Vengeance Fight League 155 pound champion Budd Wright and Triumph MMA’s Sean “The Rebel” Dizay. Judges (in rotation) for the event were George Hedgepeth, Dru Gardner, Dan “The American Badass” Dunbar and Dave “Big Shuck” Shuckerow. Lighting up the night and the mic and deliverin’ the goods right was Michael “Skipnosis” Gorham, and backing him up on the 1’s and 2’s was DJ Babydaddy. A special shout goes out to Lonny Young…anyone who has seen him work at an event knows that he runs himself RAGGED at these shows to make sure EVERYTHING’S well coordinated, and we all appreciate it! The ice cold refreshments on tap (A.K.A. BEER) was provided by the Ellison Foundation. Ground and Pound Promotions and Rock Boss Entertainment made a statement with this event – they are here to STAY. And in order to keep up on all the latest new events from them and ALL the others around the State, all ya gotta do is check back right here at FightMichigan on a regular basis! Here are your results…

National Fighting Championship – NFC 10 – Power – Results from November 26th, 2011

The Double Tree Hilton in Holland, Michigan was alive with excitement as the National Fighting Championship returned to the limelight for their spectacular tenth installment. Fans packed the house to witness their favorite local fighters from such renowned camps as Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, Patino’s Martial Arts, Xtreme MMA, Masko Jiu Jitsu and many more. Promoter Robert Housley knocked this one outta the park with a night full of fast-paced action, sweet submissions and EVERYBODY’S favorite – lots of KNOCKOUTS! The night’s festivities were kicked off by a lovely rendition if our National Anthem by 11 year old Jasmyne Bree, followed immediately by the first adrenaline-inducing fight.

This event started of the best way possible – with a crowd-hyping, brutal knockout. Starting right out with the big boys in the Heavyweight division, Chris Woonacott squared up against Evan Strahl. With both fighters charging in hard, Strahl landed a vicious shot that stopped the fight at ONLY FOUR SECONDS, which may very well be the fastest (or one of, at least) knockout in Michigan MMA history! Trying to keep the event’s energy flowing fast, Dakota Priest went all out against Cody Colson for a haymaker-filled round before Dakota threw a blow that found it’s mark, earning him the KO victory. The first battle of the night to go to the score cards was Devonta Harris versus Desmond Colvin. These two went at it for a SOLID three rounds, with Colvin dominating position throughout much of the fight and delivering some punishing ground and pound. As a result, the judges handed Colvin the unanimous decision win. In one of the most impressive fights of the night, boxing specialist Leonardo Vega and Muay Thai expert Matt Comer. Comer landed a sweet head kick late in the first round that sent Vega to the mat…briefly. He came right back up ready for battle, and the fight went on back and forth until early in the third round, when Comer tied up Vega in the clinch and brought up the knee for a STUNNING knockout and another check in the win column. In yet ANOTHER amazing striking display, Clyde Howard took on the heavy-handed Jarrid Hill. Very early in the very first (and final) round, Hill landed an overhand left directly to his opponent’s temple for an absolute highlight reel quality knockout. In another great match of styles, Robert Masko took on the muscle-bound Kenneth “Batman” Green. The pace was amazing, with Masko ending up in full mount in the first round. Green tried his best to buck his opponent off, but the second time he tried to escape, Robert used the momentum to transition into an armbar for the tap and the victory. In the Bantamweight division, David Havice and Mike Beach squared off to see who would walk away with the NFC 135 pound gold. The fight ended in the very first round, with Mike Beach landing some heavy leather for yet ANOTHER knockout on the night and the strap around his waist. The seventeenth fight on the card was an interesting battle in the ladies’ division featuring Rachael Smith taking on Sara Vankammen. It was a VERY technical display from both of these ladies, with a TON of great striking, sweeps and transitions. The tide shifted back and forth until the second round when Rachael took advantage of an opening and grabbed the armbar for the tap out win. Next up was a Middleweight title fight, with boxing phenom Nick Vega taking on GRMMA’s Tim “Too Tall” Harvey. The fight started with a striking exchange that included several leg kicks. Late in the first (and last) round, Tim secured the clinch and landed a devastating knee that added another knockout to the event’s rising toll, and put Tim at the top of NFC’s stacked 185 pound class. The Light Heavyweight championship fight was a fast paced, brutal battle between Chris Lozano and Jamahal Hill. Lozano came out early with some solid shots, but Hill answered them all and got the takedown in round one and unleashed a vicious ground and pound assault. Lozano made it through the first round, only to be taken down again at the start of round two. Hill opened up again with another barrage of elbows and hammerfists, forcing the ref to call the fight and declare Jamal the 205 pound champion. The fight for the NFC Flyweight title was a VERY fast paced battle between Jeff McManus Jr. and Eddie “The Machete” Tamez. These two exchanged on the feet early, with McManus getting the better of the exchange. McManus also pulled off two HUGE slams, then transitioned into full mount and let the hands fly for the TKO finish and the title gold. NFC’s Welterweight title was up for grabs when the experienced Dakota Lichner took on the always entertaining Randy Patino. Patino’s ground game was on point. He caught Dakota early on in the first round in a triangle choke, then continued to work it in like a Boa, until finally his opponent was forced to concede, making Randy the current 170 pound champ. The last fight of the night was a war in the Lightweight division for the belt and bragging rights in the 155 domain. Arturo DeLeon faced off against Kamron Snyder in what turned out to be a technical but brief exchange. DeLeon opened up a cut on Snyder with some standup early on, but after a takedown and some quick jockeying for position, Kam locked on a tight armbar that proved to be inescapable, earning a submission win and a golden strap. Much respect goes out to ALL of the warriors who came out and made this event what it was…a raging success! Hats off to all the champions, challengers and knockout artists who were a part of NFC and MMA history.

And now it’s staffer time…the guys and gals who make it all go down both in the open and behind the scenes. If it weren’t for WEEKS of hard work and planning, shows like this one simply couldn’t happen. With that in mind, let’s give some shout outs! Hand to hand combat safety experts – also referred to as referees – for this event were the duo of “Vicious” Vance Swerdan and Doug “That One Guy” Gallegos. The judges panel was comprised of “Big” John Lofquist Jr., Dru Gardner and Amy “Red Hot” Rusnell. The announcer for the evening was Mr. 1204, with DJ Two-3 backing him up with the beats. Our buddy Izzy Quintanilla was in the house with MI Entertainment, providing fans and fighters with ALL of the best merch for sweet prices. And we DEFINITELY can’t forget about one of our most favoritest ring girls ever, Hera Marsh, and the always stunning Michaela Prevost. Now with ten solid events under their belt, NFC will be continuing to deliver much, much more great MMA action in the future. And every time they roll back into town , you can find it here first so you can make plans to catch the next one! Until then, here are your results…

Total Warrior Combat – Anger Management – Results from November 12th, 2011

Total Warrior Combat returned home to where it ALL began this past Saturday night, the Causeway Bay Hotel in Lansing. The name of the event was “Anger Management”, and it was most appropriate, because there were some HEATED rivalries on this fight card! There was a top-shelf roster of amateur talent from the Lansing area, Indiana, Florida and Georgia, representing such great teams as Xtreme MMA, Murcielago MMA, American Top Team, Patino’s Martial Arts, The Torture Squad, Madmen MMA, The Man Cave, New Body MMA, The Lab, Pound 4 Pound, Camp Tisdale, Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, Hollywood MMA, Target Martial Arts, Spartan Xtreme MMA, Soldado’s Boxing, Great Lakes Ground and Pound and Team Bully. Representing himself and American Top Team, UFC legend Thiago Silva was in the house, cornering his fighters, demonstrating techniques in the back, hanging out with fans and signing LOTS of autographs…a true gentleman indeed. Also, for the first time ever, fans arriving at the show found a fighter bio packet with each seat containing some vital details on some of the event’s combatants, as painstakingly assembled by Mr. Dru Gardner.

Once the action began, there was no time to blink between intermissions, as this was the most amazing card TWC has had to date, and that is an impressive feat, considering some of the previous events’ fight cards! Right from the start, Target Martial Arts’ Derek Walker took on Patino’s Martial Arts’ Aaron “Ironman” Cook in a well-matched battle that made it to the onset of round three before Cook was able to unleash a series of strikes on the ground that brought an end to the fight via ref stoppage. In the second matchup, Spartan Extreme’s Jeremy Swainston faced Great Lakes Ground and Pound’s Jamie Forton in a bout that was closely matched throughout the first round. In the early second round, the fight hit the ground right away, with the fighters in leglock position. Forton was QUICK to take advantage of the position by sinking in a PAINFUL achilles lock for the tap out and the win. In the ladies’ division, Xtreme MMA’s Caitlyn Young stepped up to face Mary Jane Matlock in Mary’s second fight, after debuting only a week earlier. Caitlyn fought a smart and careful fight, picking Mary apart piece by piece with jabs and leg kicks for the first round and a half. At just past the halfway point of round two, Caitlyn caught Mary with several hard shots, ending the fight in dominant fashion via TKO. Immediately following was a showdown between Madmen MMA’s Frank “The Tank” Thomas (who took the fight on the spot as a late replacement) and Indiana’s Andrew Karsten. This battle had so many amazing transitions, sweeps, hip escapes, submission attempts, you name it – through all three rounds and to the judges score cards. It was so close that the judges came up with a SPLIT decision in the favor of Karsten. An impressive and memorable fight indeed! Next came ANOTHER impressive display that went all the way, when Lansing’s Dana Ray faced American Top Team’s Andy Lopez in a Bantamweight war for the ages. The pace was frenetic and constant for the duration of the bout, with Dana Ray coming out on top via unanimous decision. NOW, if there was one fight on the card that defined the event name “Anger Management, it was this one: Pound 4 Pound’s Kory Wertz versus Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts’ Terry “The Greatest Show on Earth” VanAvery. There were some less-than-kind words exchanged between these two in the weeks leading up to the fight…and hostilities were high coming in. The first round was spent mostly in the clinch, up against the cage, exchanging knees and pummeling for position. Just over the one minute mark in the second round, with the fight on the ground, Korey unleashed a devastating ground and pound assault that brought an end to the fight and the rivalry. After all was said and done, mutual respect was shown by both combatants. The crowd electrified as Murcielago MMA’s hometown hero Skeeter Kittle faced Indiana’s always-exciting Nate “The Shinobi” Wac. It was non-stop excitement the whole first round, and at about thirty seconds into round two, Skeeter got into a dominant position and cinched a rear naked choke that put his opponent to sleep for the screaming hometown fans! The rest of the night was all title fight excitement, starting with the Flyweight division. American Top Team’s Andres Aleman faced The Lab’s MULTIPLE title holder Eddie “The Machete” Tamez to see who would emerge as the TWC 125 pound champ. It was a short lived but impressive display by both fighters that concluded near the halfway point of the very first round, with Aleman locking on a PERFECT armbar for the impressive victory and the title belt. The Heavyweight title fight was a highly anticipated rubber match, with each opponent holding a single victory over the other. Both Camp Tisdale’s Joe Clementz and Hollywood MMA and American Top Team’s Thomas “The Tornado” Duncan came to show the crowd in attendance that the big boys can go non-stop too! And they did just that, for one and a half rounds, before Joe Clementz scored a win via verbal sub, putting him at 2-1 on their ongoing saga. The next match was the title fight for the Super Heavyweight strap featuring two LARGE and skilled warriors, The Man Cave’s Ryan “The Rhino” Johnson and Matt “The Tower of Pain” Blaine. It’s a rare gem to see men this size that are able to push the pace the way these two did…on the feet, on the ground, wherever the fight went. Despite a valiant effort by Ryan that included some solid shots that found their mark and some impressive escapes on the ground, Blaine’s ground and pound assault proved to be overwhelming. Matt walks away retaining the Super Heavyweight championship…congrats! Next on the night was a Light Heavyweight belt fight featuring New Body MMA’s David O’Neil and The Lab’s wily cage veteran Matt “The Nightmare” Stringham. David surprised many people by dominating much of the fight, controlling position, and dishing out some excellent ground and pound. After nearly finishing the fight at the end of round one, O’Neil regained the same position as he had at the conclusion of the first round and unleashed another barrage of strikes on the ground to end the fight and claim the 205 pound belt. The last fight of the night was a Welterweight championship battle pitting Murcielago MMA’s Dequan “The Tarantula” Townsend against The Torture Squad and Man Cave’s undefeated Ryan Konrath. After a brief feeling out, the first strike of the fight was a flying knee by Dequan just as Konrath was shooting for the takedown. For a lesser fighter, that shot would have spelled the end. But Ryan pushed on, but was caught later in the first round in a fight-ending triangle, as Dequan used his length to his advantage perfectly. Dequan remains on top of TWC’s stacked 170 pound division. Hats off to ALL of the champions that retained their titles as well as all of NEW ones, and every other warrior on the card that came out to be a part of this landmark event!

And on to the great folks that make it all possible…the staff. Gotta start from the top…the promoters Adam and Pete, who have provided Lansing fans with some of the best MMA action out there, and have made HUGE improvements on each and every event, turning TWC into a force to be reckoned with. The cage enforcement professional in charge of all of the action in the cage was FightMichigan’s very own T.J. Corwin, assisted at the cage door by Justin “Bubba” MacKenzie, with David Rohn handling Vaseline duty. The judges for the event were the VERY experienced trio of Dru Gardner, Ed Pigeon, and Mickey Millis. The timekeeper for the event was FightMichigan’s lovelier other half, Shannon Hale. The M.C. for the evening was our good buddy and LEGEND on the microphone, Phil “The Voice” Davey. Still photography for the event was skillfully handled by Fierce Photography’s Noah Paris. Video for the event will be available soon via TWC’s YouTube channel. As we mentioned before, Total Warrior Combat is growing exponentially with each and every new event, and after only seven shows, has established itself amongst the best promotions out there. Their next HUGE event will be on January 21st, and we’ve had a sneak preview of who’s ALREADY booked for the card, and all we can say is BE THERE! For even more details on that show and all the other spectacular events in Michigan, check our “Upcoming Events” page regularly! Until the next time, here are your results…

Ground and Pound Promotions – GPP 35 – Redemption – Quick Results from October 29th, 2011

Ground and Pound Promotions was back in the house and back in action at the spacious Rivertown Sports Complex in Grandville this past Saturday night. A solid roster of local talent came out to test each other’s wills – and chins! The fans packed the house to cheer on their favorite local fighters…and enjoy the ice-cold beer supplied by the Ellison Foundation, whose proceeds go to getting financially challenged fighters proper training and equipment. A noble cause indeed! It was an amazing card, featuring some debuting talent out of Shiawassee Mixed Martial Arts, Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, Southside Dojo, American Muscle MMA, and more! There were some legendary battles throughout the night including SEVERAL title belts up for grabs. The night’s excitement level kicked up quick right from the start, when in the second bout of the night, John Welch and Casey Clarida put on a brutal, bloody battle for the fans in attendance, at the same time earning “Fight of the Night” honors as well. And there were many other awesome battles on this card, including Johnny Walker stepping up to face Cody “The Ghost” Osborne for the GPP 135 pound gold, Omar Gomez taking on Billy Bailey for the GPP 145 pound division strap, Andres ”Tako” Torres taking to the cage to do battle with Arturo DeLeon with the Rock Boss 155 pound on the line, cage veteran Roger Carpenter defending the 125 pound GPP belt against Shannon Tiffany and American Muscle’s Kody Wall going at it with Derrick Martin for bragging rights and the belt in the 170 bracket. That is one INTENSE night of action, folks! Elevation Training Masks were awarded to Mr. Johnny Walker for “Striker of the Night” and Jason “Devo” Devore for “Submission of the Night”. Congrats, fellas! The referees in charge of safety for the event were a couple of local Michigan pro fighters – Bowe Vincent Jr. and Travis Travesty along with Triumph MMA’s badboy, Budd Wright. Judges setting cageside monitoring all of the action were the HIGHLY experienced trio of Ed Pigeon, Dru Gardner and George Hedgepeth. On timekeeper patrol was Miss Erin Lenhart. Congrats to ALL the fighters, fans, trainers and staff who help keep GPP’s dedicated fan base comin’ back for more! And a special thanks to promoter and matchmaker for this event, Paul Simpson, for sending us the info so we could relay it to you! When it comes to consistently entertaining – and MORE importantly – SAFE MMA action, GPP delivers every time! Don’t forget to mark your calendars for their next up coming event on December 3rd, right back at the Rivertown Sports Complex. And keep checking back right here often for all the latest on card info and extra event details…we’ll post ’em as they become available. For now, here are your results…

Vengeance Fight League 5 – Results from September 24th, 2011

The Intersection in Grand Rapids was packed to capacity once again Saturday night with fans who came out in full force to witness one of the best promotions Michigan has to offer! Vengeance Fight League has sold out every show thus far, and for a good reason. Five shows in, and many people already feel that the VFL is the best promotion out there. Having attended almost every event, we can see why! There were SO many great camps represented here: Triumph MMA, Grand Rapids Mixed Martial Arts, The System, Team Relentless, Fight Club Proving Grounds, Bonebreakers MMA, Coon MMA, Team MOD, American Muscle MMA, Team Murcielago and the H8 Squad were ALL in the house! Most of Vengeance’s events are a veritable highlight reel. For instance, the third fight of the night featured the debut of the wrestling specialist Matt Steintrager facing the lightning-fast Tevin Hines. This fight went to the judges, but not before Matt executed a series of textbook slams. A little further into the night, David Shuckerow squared off against Rambo Roosevelt, culminating in a brutal (and crazy looking) knockout at the hands of Roosevelt. The ninth fight of the night featured Bruce “The Crazy White Boy” Cole against Kevin “The Silent Assassin” Shacks. Shacks pulled off a stunning flash knockout at only 15 seconds into the fight. Vince “The Prince” Murdock won the Featherweight Championship in dominant fashion over a game opponent in Delayno Kealohapauole. A little further in, in another Featherweight battle, Mike “The Shocker” Hamida pulled off a nice win with a triangle that was picture-perfect. Shortly after, their was a three round war between Michael “Papa” Paul and Terry “The Greatest Show on Earth” VanAvery that ended with the judges scoring a unanimous decision. In the Lightweight title fight, Budd Wright squared off against the seasoned warrior Mike Childs. In what I would consider his most dominant performance to date, Budd locked down the title with some EXCEPTIONAL ground and pound halfway through the first round. Finally, in the Main Event of the evening, Billy “The Psycho” Ward locked up with the phenom himself, Dequan “The Tarantula” Townsend. Billy showed true warrior spirit, but simply could not solve the riddle of Dequan’s amazing reach and skill. The staff for the show was also an all-star roster, starting with the referees: Sean “The Rebel” Dizay, Daron Cruickshank and Travis Travesty. The judges for the night were the trifecta of Ed Pigeon, Dru Gardner and Todd Skinner. Handling the crowd pumping and info dropping was the always uber-entertaining Phil “The Voice” Davey. Armed with the camera and capturing all the action was the video guru Shiloh Blu…check out his YouTube channel for all the latest and greatest fight footage. And it would be WRONG to forget the matchmaker Mickey Millis, who is ALWAYS on top of things and the sometimes overlooked but completely indispensable Jake Erickson. Kudos to you guys for ALL of your hard, selfless work! For those who haven’t been to a Vengeance show in person, words can’t adequately describe it. So we suggest you set aside the date for their next SPECTACULAR event, which we’ll relay all the info for the SECOND it is announced. ‘Til next time, here are your results…

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