This past weekend was one overflowing with mixed martial arts, even excluding Saturday’s dueling Strikeforce and UFC events. Sherdog.com correspondents reported from Tokyo, Sao Paulo, Brazil, and Atlantic City, N.J., during the busiest 48-hour MMA blitz in recent memory.
Brazilian light heavyweight Glover Teixeira stretched his four-year win streak to nine straight with a unanimous decision win over Spain’s Daniel Tabera in the main event of Bitetti Combat 8 on Saturday. The card -- which took place at Sao Paulo’s Alfredo Schurig Stadium -- also featured Paulo Filho bouncing back from the second loss of his career with a unanimous nod over Japanese veteran Yuki Sasaki, as well as “Ultimate Fighter 11” alum Jordan Smith clinching a third round rear-naked choke win in a bloody scrap with Mario Sartori.
At Ring of Combat 33 in Atlantic City, N.J., unbeaten middleweight Chris Weidman improved to 4-0 and defended his ROC 185-pound title for the first time with a three-round unanimous decision over Brazilian Valdir Arraujo. Heavyweight champ Gian Villante dropped down to capture the vacant 205-pound strap with a 63-second thumping of Joseph Reyes, while WEC and Shooto veteran Marcos Galvao took the promotion’s 145-pound belt with a decision win against Ryan Vaccaro.
Finally, on Sunday, Kiyotaka Shimizu retained the flyweight title which he took from Mitsuhisa Sunabe in February as the two drew in their rematch at the last stop on Pancrase’s 2010 Passion Tour. Pancrase president Ryo Kawamura also kept his light heavyweight belt in a majority draw against Yuji Sakuragi, while Rikuhei Fujii once again topped Yuki Kondo, this time usurping Kondo’s throne as middleweight King of Pancrase.
Palomino Tames ‘Wild’ Card, Claims XFC Title
Bellator veteran Luis “Baboon” Palomino pitched a shutout at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., on Friday, dominating Jarrod Card for five rounds to take Card’s Xtreme Fighting Championships featherweight title at XFC 13 “Unstoppable.” For 25 minutes, Palomino destroyed the lead leg of the “Wild Card” with low kicks and battered with punches, later slipping a tiring Card’s takedown attempts and punishing with ground-and-pound when the fight did hit the mat. All three judges saw every round for the “Baboon,” with 50-45 tallies across the board.
“Beast Boy” Chris Barnett punched out Mario Rinaldi in the second round of their heavyweight match. Despite finding himself in trouble early on, Barnett -- who weighed in 13 pounds over the heavyweight limit of 265 -- came back to secure the stoppage at 1:44 of the second round.
In a razor-thin split decision, hard-hitting 185-pound prospect Joe Ray was handed his first loss after 15 minutes with Jeremy Smith. While Ray landed cleaner, harder punches on the feet and caused the left side of Smith’s face to swell grotesquely, the judges favored the ground work and top control of the South African, awarding Smith the bout with scores of 30-27 (twice) and 28-29.
‘Old Skool’ Wain Shows New Look
One-time UFC veteran Neil Wain captured the Olympian MMA Championships British heavyweight title on Saturday, stopping champion Martin Thompson after two rounds at OMMAC 8 “Blood, Sweat and Tears” at the Liverpool Olympia in Liverpool, England.
A known knockout artist, Wain took a different approach in dispatching his latest opponent. The Yorkshireman used clinch work to wrest Thompson to the ground multiple times in the opening period, and continued the same pattern in the second. After enduring a myriad of punches and elbows from Wain on the mat, Thompson did not answer the bell for round three. The win was Wain’s fourth of 2010, improving his overall record to 9-3, with eight stoppages.
In the card’s other title bout, OMMAC British bantamweight champion James Doolan retained his title after gutting out a three-round majority draw against Vaughn Harvey. The bout was nearly halted in the opening frame after an illegal upkick from Harvey knocked Doolan senseless, but the champion managed to regain his wits and fight on. Harvey was docked a point for the foul, which would ultimately cost him the win. At the end of a back-and-forth affair, two judges scored the bout 28-28, with the third awarding the fight to Doolan.
Quick Hits: Lightweight submission specialist Lyle Beerbohm stayed perfect on Saturday at Rumble on the Ridge 15 “Vindication,” using a modified guillotine choke to tap Talon Hoffman at 2:48 of the first round. “Fancy Pants” is now 15-0 as a professional, with two consecutive wins outside of the Strikeforce cage. ... Robert Emerson won his second straight post-UFC bout Saturday, taking a three-round split decision over Floridian Eric Reynolds at Art of Fighting 10 “Blackout,” which took place at the Germain Arena in Estero, Fla. ... Dan Lauzon and Damien Trites engaged in a terse back-and-forth ahead of their 165-pound bout at CES MMA’s “Snow Brawl” last Thursday at the Twin River Event Center in Lincoln, R.I. However, it was Lauzon who backed up his words in the cage, forcing Trites to tap out to a guillotine choke just 1:54 into the opening round. Team Sityodtong light heavyweight Greg Rebello notched his 11th straight win in the co-main event, a unanimous decision over Tiawan Howard. ... Teppei Hori bested Tetsuya Sano in the 165-pound main event of Rings’ The Outsider 14 on Saturday at Tokyo’s Differ Ariake arena. Hori sunk in a mounted triangle choke and punched away at his opponent’s face until Sano’s corner was forced to throw in the towel at 2:41 of the second round.