Who will talk away the #andNEW LFA #lightweight champion?@ShellsDotCom@USENDmoney@Krushmatized@PsoRite@GLCDirect2000@AthleticCBD@IncaKolaUSA@HartmanArena@UFCFightPass pic.twitter.com/klYd0wKXzH — LFA (@LFAfighting) January 16, 2021
The Legacy Fighting Alliance lightweight championship is vacant no more.
The main event of LFA 97 saw Nick Browne and Arthur Estrazulas compete in the biggest fight of their professional mixed martial arts careers. Even on the judges' scorecards after two rounds, Estrazulas (12-5) would rock Browne (11-1) with a huge counter left hook to start Round 3. However, the wrestling of Browne would let him recover as he managed to control his Brazilian opponent. The two fighters continued to go back-and-forth in the championship rounds, with each man landing damaging blows and trading positions. After five grueling rounds, Browne was awarded the LFA lightweight championship, with the judges scoring the bout 49-46, 49-46, and 48-46 in his favor.
Lightweights Jacob Rosales and Jose Martinez faced off in the lightweight co-feature (although Martinez failed to make weight). Rosales (13-6) impressed with his ground game as he transitioned into several submissions during Round 1 but failed to put "Lil Juggernaut" away. The second round saw Rosales mount his opponent and deliver dozens of damaging blows after landing a blatantly illegal knee that wasn't called by referee Marcio Laselva. Martinez (11-5) would remarkably win Round 3 on two of the judges' scorecards, but Rosales took a lopsided unanimous decision with scores of 29-27, 29-27, and 30-25.
Kamuela Kirk punished Guilherme Santos for missing weight for their featherweight bout. Kirk (10-4) dominated on the feet landing kicks and knees on the Brazilian. In the end, body shots would finish off Santos (8-4) at 4:25 of the first round.
In women's strawweight action, Kelly D'Angelo faced off against Lovethpatra Young. Young bloodied up D'Angelo on the feet and constantly hurt her opponent to the body. Eventually, a flurry from Young would knockdown her opponent, and the ref would step in. The stoppage came at 1:36 of the second frame.
Featherweights Michael Stack and Jordan Mapa were looking to bounce back from setbacks in their prior bouts. However, it was Stack (5-1) that impressed as he was able to control Mapa (3-3) on the ground and picked up a TKO win. The stoppage came at 4:00 of Round 2.
Undefeated welterweight prospect Josh Quinlan faced Joe Boerschig in the toughest fight of his career. Despite some impressive pressure from Boerschig (6-4), Quinlan (4-0) landed the more damaging blows in Round 1. The second round was more of the same, and Quinlan was fully in control by Round 3. "The Renegade" eventually mounted Boerschig to force a stoppage from undefended punches at 3:28 of the final round.
The LFA 97 main card kicked off with a bang. Thomas Petersen (3-0) needed just 19 seconds to finish fellow heavyweight Richard Luis (2-3). A big left hand from Petersen floored Luis and the fight was stopped immediately after.
In preliminary action, Claire Guthrie (2-1) won a dominant unanimous decision over Nadine Mandiau (1-2) with 30-27 scorecards across the board, and Shane Shapiro (1-0) submitted Cam Ansel (0-2) with a kimura just 1:44 into Round 1.