UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Garbrandt ended with great fights top to bottom with action and drama throughout the event. The climax of over two and a half hours of fight time ended in exciting fashion as Cody Garbrandt stayed perfect in his young career with a first round KO of Thomas Almeida. With many considerations, post-fight bonuses were hard this week as all the fights were exciting and full of action.
Fight of the Night: Chris De La Rocha vs. Adam Milstead
It’s not often the first fight of a card sets the tone for the rest of the night to come. Fight fans usually wait for at least a couple of fights for the action to really get going. Heavyweight unknowns Chris De La Rocha and Adam Milstead threw all that out the window and threw big punches for a round and a half.
De La Rocha made his debut at UFC Fight Night 72. The fight didn’t last long as his opponent Daniel Omielanczuk got the TKO win in just 48 seconds. The BJJ black-belt had finished all four of his opponents up to that point before the loss to Omielanczuk. His goal was to get the fight to the ground as soon as possible to use his grappling prowess.
Milstead is a highly touted prospect who made his debut against De La Rocha. He stepped into the fight with seven straight finish stoppages, including a TKO in the first round of his last fight. The opposite of De La Rocha is Milstead as he likes to plow forward with heavy hands and leave the fight standing.
The fight was off to the races right away both guys coming out throwing huge punches early. Milstead was landing more than his opponent, prompting De La Rocha to go for takedowns to get the fight on the ground. Every time the fight would break from the clinch, they would go back to throwing leather. The round ended with a total of 56 Significant Strikes landed with Milstead getting the better of it with 32. The second round was much of the same despite the tiring of both guys. The pressure was kept on by Milstead with De La Rocha trying his best to get inside and make the fight dirty. The end came as Milstead landed blows that were not being defended or challenged and Chris Togoni had seen enough.
Performance of the Night: Cody Garbrandt def. Thomas Almeida
After seven consecutive decisions, the young guns in the main event were under immense pressure to perform and get a highlight reel finish. In spite of all the the things set against them, Cody Garbrandt and Thomas Almeida became the first Bantamweight non-title fight to main event a card. A combined 29-0 with 23 knockouts between the two, the fight was set to be nothing but spectacular. Almeida was coming off of a knockout performance over Anthony Birchak in November and Garbrandt a TKO in February over Augusto Mendes.
From the start, the Team Alpha Male standout looked poised for this fight to end early. He was landing hard shots in the pocket with little resistance from Almeida. About midway through the fight, Almeida uncharacteristically went for a takedown to try and get something going on the ground. He started slow two fights ago against Brad Pickett too, getting hit with shots from all angles in the first round. This fight would look similar, but with the hands of Garbrandt being so powerful, the fight would likely be stopped. Much of the same ensued as Garbrandt landed big shots at will, knocking Almeida around for the first two minutes. ‘No love’ found his opening and took it in the second minute with hard shots that sent Almeida to the ground. Big John McCarthy stopped the fight at 2:53 of the first round after Garbrandt landed 18 head strikes in just three minutes of fight time.
Performance of the Night: Eric Koch def. Shane Campbell
All platforms for the event were covered as the early prelims, preliminary card, and the main card. Former would-be title challenger Eric Koch returned from a two-year absence to face Shane Campbell. After starting his career as a Featherweight and earning a title shot at Jose Aldo, something he would not be able to cash in. He moved up to the Lightweight division after a loss to Dustin Poirier. He is now 2-1 in the division and will look make a stand towards the title. Campbell had an illustrious kickboxing career that saw over 50 career wins. He joined the UFC ranks at UFC 186 with a TKO loss to John Makdessi. That started a series of three out of four losses in which he was finished in two of those.
The fight started with some solid striking on the feet with Koch getting the better of the kickboxer. The fight went to the ground with some great takedowns from Koch in the first round, but Campbell was able to stay out of harms way. The second round started with a solid counter elbow from Campbell that shook the Milwaukee-based fighter. Koch immediately took the fight to the ground with the hopes of finishing the fight and out of harms way of those strikes. The rest of the round stayed on the ground with Koch transitioning into better and better positions with each passing move. The final step was the submission finish as he put on the Rear-Naked choke in the second round.
Tom Gallicchio on UFC Release “It’s Been a Dream of Mine to Fight in KSW”
MMA Latest spoke to TUF 22 and 25 season competitor Tom Gallicchio about being cut from the UFC, and potential promotions that he could sign for in the future.
Gallicchio (19-10) signed for the UFC after reaching the semi-finals of The Ultimate Fighter: Season 25. Losing to James Krause in his debut, “Da Tank” was informed earlier this month that the UFC had parted ways with him.
Q: Before we jump into the whole free agency stuff, talk me through how the UFC broke the news that they were going to release you?
I thought I was going to have another fight, this time at lightweight. I got a letter dated July 7th, saying they were going to keep me, I received it in September. I was getting emails to update my USADA, I never got a cut letter and I got tested by USADA on October 24th. I was hoping to fight sometime in January or February, then they broke the news to me that they need to make a room for new talent.
Q: You made your UFC debut against James Krause in July, then 4 months down the line, they cut you. How surprised were you at this somewhat out of the blue decision?
I’m thankful for my opportunity in the UFC and the fact that they gave me another shot, but it was definitely surprising how it happened. They released a newsletter in September welcoming Jesse (Taylor) Dhiego (Lima) and myself into the UFC, all signs pointed towards another fight. Hearing that I was cut was just heartbreaking.
Q: Have any talks started with a new promotion. I saw you name a few on Twitter, the likes of Bellator, BAMMA, KSW and ACB. Who do you see yourself signing for?
I would love to compete in any of those! A couple of them hit me up, one of which I am very happy to talk with. Since they came out, It’s been a dream of mine to fight in KSW. They’re taking care of their fighters, I would love to fight for them. I want to travel, I want to see the world, I want to fight. I’ve got a lot of fans overseas and I want to give them a show.
It’s been a dream of mine to fight in KSW.
— Tom Gallicchio (@TomGallicchio) November 15, 2017
Q: Your long time friend Jesse Taylor was victorious in the TUF 25 Finale, but he has since accepted a 1-year ban for failing a USADA test. What is your take on this given how close you two are?
I know Jesse is not a juicer, I’ve known him ever since I came down to (Team) Quest. It’s probably come from some supplement that he’s taking, it sucks for him. I think he went into a little bit of panic mode, he could have done a better job of handling it.
— Tom Gallicchio (@TomGallicchio) November 16, 2017
I don’t take supplements, if there was a way, I’d still keep myself in the USADA pool just because I believe in a clean sport. I think it’s important we keep the sport clean and if we’re cleaning up the supplement companies then good, because no one else is.
Where would you look to see Tom fight next? Let us know below!
2017 IMMAF World Championships: Finals fixtures
After 4 days of non stop action from Monday to Thursday we have our final 14 bouts to determine the 2017 IMMAF World Champions. Most of these fighters have fought four times for their slot in the final and tomorrow will be their chance to finish off what has been a fantastic week of fights.
Kicking off the action tomorrow will be Michele Oliveira vs. Danni Neilan. Both women have looked extremely impressive in their bouts so far, Oliveira has spent less time in the cage than her opponent after finishing two of her fights. Neilan is the Irish teams last chance of a gold in this competition and comes into this after a war of a last fight. She is constantly pressuring and has solid striking with incredible ground and pound from any position on top.
Joel Aronlainen came down to featherweight after testing the water at lightweight in the European Championships. His lanky build and impressive overall skill set has seen him pick up 3 finishes in the competition so far. His opponent Delyan Georgiev is undefeated and will be a tough challenge for him. Georgiev has dominated the featherweight division at amateur, his gold medal at the European Championships could now lead to him becoming a world champion if he continues to perform like we’re used to seeing him do.
At 155lbs, Vitali Andruhovich will take on top American prospect Quintin Thomas for the gold. Andruhovich has been on the right side of two very close split decisions in this tournament so far. His controversial win over Irishman Ciaran Clarke had many people scratching their heads at the decision. He now has the chance to prove himself with a win against Quintin Thomas. Thomas is the UMMAF National Champion and a very experienced amateur fighter. Racking up 13 wins he has been a dominant fighter in most of his fights, his sole losses coming from sustaining an injury and a split decision loss.
For the Middleweight medal we have a battle of the Nordic fighters. Iceland’s Bjorn Lukas Haraldsson has looked phenomenal in his fights so far, finishing each and everyone inside a round. The Mjolnir fighter has been to many the highlight of the tournament, but has a tough task a head of him in Laallam who’s had half the number of fights in this tournament and looked impressive in both.
Bahrain’s last hope for a medal lies in the hand of Light Heavyweight finisher Murtaza Talha Ali. Ali has finished all four of his bouts so far, 3 via TKO/KO and his last being by way of submission. Standing in his way of gold will be Pavel Pahomenko from Belarus who’s proven to be lethal with submissions once an opportunity arises scoring two submission wins inside the first round.
Here is the full fixture list for the finals tomorrow:
- Michele Oliveira vs. Danni Neilan 125 lbs
- Anna Astvik vs. Hannah Dawson 115 lbs
- Chamia Chabbi vs. Manon Fiorot 135 lbs
- C. McCrudden vs. Fabiana Giampà 145 lbs
- Gase Sanita vs. Kaycee Blake 155 lbs
- Yernaz Mussabek vs. Serdar Atlas 125 lbs
- Gamzat Magomedov vs. O. Moldagaliyev 135 lbs
- Joel Arolainen vs. Delyan Georgiev 145 lbs
- V. Andruhovich vs. Quitin Thomas 155 lbs
- Sola Axel vs. Benjamin Bennett 170 lbs
- B. Haraldsson vs. Khaled Laallam 185 lbs
- Pavel Pahomenko vs. Murtaza Talha Ali 205 lbs
- Irman Smajic vs. Lev Vins 265 lbs
- Atanas Krastanov vs. Marcin Kalata 300 lbs
Why It’s Time to Cherish Michael Bisping and Stop the Hate
Ever since the Ultimate Fighter 3, Michael ‘The Count’ Bisping has been one of the most hated fighters on the UFC roster. Since he was painted as the big bad Brit against the American hero Dan Henderson, Bisping has been the villain. He has played up to the reputation of being one of the biggest heels in the UFC, with his arrogance, trash talk and often disrespectful attitude.
But nothing has summed up Michael Bisping more than the events of this past week. After losing his Middleweight Championship to Georges St. Pierre at UFC 217, no one would blame Bisping for wanting a few months on the couch whilst sinking a few beers before retiring at UFC London in March.
After hearing that Anderson Silva had tested positive for a banned substance, it was announced that Bisping would fill in for Silva to face Kelvin Gastelum in the main event of UFC Shanghai. A fight that nobody else would have wanted. A fight that he has less than three weeks to prepare for.
The fight does nothing for Bisping. Gastelum is a rising, rejuvenated contender and Bisping knows he can not take him lightly. But he’s also seven places below him in the rankings. Although, this doesn’t matter anymore as Bisping has announced this will be his second to last fight ever before hanging up his gloves.
Nothing sums Bisping up better than his comment on Gastelum’s Instagram post “See you in China. Loser buys the beers”.
He sounds relaxed. Perhaps he’s enjoying his last two fights and is at peace with his impending retirement.
In an era all about money, fighters like Bisping are rare and hard to come by. Fighters that only care about one thing, fighting.
Sure, his title reign wasn’t the best. But the UFC offered him the Henderson fight, to bring back some feeling of nostalgia that has been missing in the modern times of the UFC. And who in their right mind wouldn’t want to face one of the greatest ever in GSP.
It’s easy to forget amongst all the trash talk that Bisping has always played by the rules, and been anti PEDs during a time when a majority of the roster was using some form of performance enhancers. Fighting PED users has given Bisping most of his losses and has even led to him losing sight in one of his eyes.
Most of Bisping’s outrageous acts, have been him using a ‘pro wrestling’ act in order to hype up his fights and put bums in seats. That isn’t an excuse for some of his obnoxious behaviour. But when he’s not in the zone, it’s clear to see what a respectful and humble man he is. Like his moment after UFC 217, where he approached Cody Garbrandt to tell him how proud he was of him, or his post fight respect for Anderson Silva, where they both bowed on their knees to one another.
The truth is, Bisping is an incredible ambassador of the sport and one of the pioneers across the pond.
Bisping should be remembered and appreciated as the workhorse warrior who brought absolutely everything he had to the cage every time he fought. He always comes to fight, whether it’s three weeks notice or more. He’s simply tough as hell.
Believe you me Michael Bisping is a true old school legend of this sport and should be cherished whilst we still have him, cause we will miss him when he’s gone.
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