Official Results: Krantz def. Patterson via KO at 2:27 into Round 1. pic.twitter.com/h7dDRj1jhH— AXS TV Fights (@AXSTVFights) March 30, 2019
The Legacy Fighting Alliance's top-rated welterweight contender made sure he remained in title contention and he did it in spectacular fashion.
Derrick Krantz scored one of the most violent knockouts of the first half of 2019 when he leveled Justin Patterson in the opening round in the main event of LFA 63. His knockout sent the crowd inside Bell County Expo Center in Belton, Texas, into a frenzy, capping off another solid night of action on AXS TV.
After spending two minutes picking his shots, Krantz (22-10) tagged Patterson with a sizzling right to the head. Patterson (11-5) backed into the cage after he was hit, but "D-Rock" unloaded a massive right uppercut to the chin, followed by a left hook. The combo folded "The Tactician" over both of his legs and he fell back, completely out cold. The brutal knockout came at the 2:23 mark of the first and Krantz shouted out to UFC president Dana White, trying to fight for the Las Vegas-based promotion.
Undefeated Brazilian Gabriel Silva kept his "O" intact by vanquishing Houston's Jake Heffernan in the opening round. "Gabito" landed a clean straight right to the head to back Heffernan (7-1) up and then connected with a carbon copy of the same punch. When "The Grinder" backed into the cage, though, Silva (7-0) unloaded another right to the head. Heffernan crumbled over and was pelted by a right uppercut, which caused him to sag onto the canvas and force referee Aaron Menard to intervene. The thrilling knockout occurred just 83 seconds into the featherweight co-feature.
Flyweight prospect Hailey Cowan looked terrific in the LFA featured bout as she tore up Sarah Click before submitting her in the second. Cowan (3-1) landed plenty of kicks to the body and legs early behind scattered punches up top. But after the Texan took Click (2-3) down and opened up her forehead with a nasty elbow, Cowan finished her off with a textbook rear-naked choke. "Switch Kick" bowed out 1:29 into the frame.
Featherweight contender Rafael Barbosa came up from Brazil, took it to Cameron Graves for three rounds and he won a unanimous decision for his effort. "Coxinha" used terrific striking to keep Graves (7-3) at bay, and his stellar left jab busted up the Texan's face. Graves was bleeding from his nose and his right eye was a swollen mess, an indicator of who won the contest. All three judges gave it to Barbosa (11-1) via tallies of 29-28.
Bantamweight prospect Armando Villarreal had to trudge through a minefield of takedowns and submission attempts in order to get his win, but it was thrilling when he did. "La Lumbre" survived several attempts from Devin Miller, who tossed out chokes, armbars and the rare banana split in order to prevail. Villarreal (5-1) rocked "The Machine" with a left hook to the head early in the third and then dropped him with a left uppercut, followed by a volley of punches. Villarreal unloaded three more lefts to the head onto a turtled Miller (4-2) before referee Aaron Menard pulled him off, ending the bout just 16 seconds into the stanza.
Knockout artist Kailan Hill improved to 4-0, but he didn't dazzle the crowd like he's done so frequently in his blossoming MMA career. Hill had to dig deep against Jhonoven Pati (4-3) and struggled for three rounds in the lightweight battle, but he still got his hand raised. Hill landed several decent strikes and scored multiple takedowns late to earn himself a unanimous decision victory. Hill won via tallies of 30-27 (twice) and 29-27.