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Throwback Thursday: Bellator and Pride, Oh my my…

Vinny Craig

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This Week in MMA History

Throwback Thursday is a weekly article written about the events and news that have happened in the world of MMA during this week. The twist, we’ll be going back in time to show you the events that already happened and are forever stitched into our minds. This week we take a look at May 18 to May 24.

UFC 84: Ill Will

Just a month after one of the most anticipated rematches in UFC history, UFC 84 was the event of the night. It was headlined by a Lightweight title match between champion BJ Penn and Sean Sherk. It was a solid card from top to bottom that had 6 preliminary fights and 5 main card bouts. The night started with the debut of a familiar name as former Interim-Heavyweight champion Shane Carwin got his ninth straight first round finish. We saw the debut of another popular fighter as ‘The Stun Gun’ Dong Hyun Kim got a knockout win over Jason Tan. Two of the remaining four fights ended in submission when Yoshiyuki Yoshida beat John Koppenhaver (aka War Machine) by Anaconda Choke and Rousimar Palhares (aka leg collector) beat Ivan Salaverry by armbar.

The main card saw a submission due to punches to start off as Thiago Silva beat Antonio Mendes. In another Light Heavyweight fight, Goran Reljic got a TKO win over Wilson Gouveia. Lyoto Machida continued his career long collection of legends he’s faced as the UFC put him against former Light Heavyweight champion Tito Ortiz. The fight would be all Machida as the new breed of MMA fighter showed in this old school vs. new school matchup. In the co-main event, former Pride Middleweight champion Wanderlei Silva got his first win since returning to the UFC. It took Silva only 36 seconds to get the knockout win. The main event was a good one as three rounds of good fighting ended with a TKO from a flying knee and the punches that followed as BJ Penn defended his Lightweight strap.

UFC 98: Evans vs. Machida

Right in the middle of the game of hot potato we called the Light Heavyweight belt, UFC 98 would determine the next man to keep or take the title. Champion Rashad Evans looked to defend his title against undefeated rising star Lyoto Machida. Seven different former or future title challengers fought on this card. The 11 fight card started when George Roop got the nod in a split decision over Dave Kaplan. The next five fights ended in the first round with three being by submission. Former TUF runner-up Phillipe Nover lost by TKO against Kyle Bradley. The Submission of the Night came from Brock Larson when he got an Arm-Triangle choke over Mike Pyle over half way through the first round.

The main card started with a pair of Lightweight title contenders as future Lightweight champion Frankie Edgar beat former Lightweight champion Sean Sherk by decision. The next fight was the first of three straight wins from Chael Sonnen. Those three wins would earn him a title shot with former champion Anderson Silva. He would beat Dan Miller by decision in this fight with a dominant performance. The co-main event was just the third fight since returning from The Ultimate Fighter: The Comeback for former champion Matt Serra. Another former champion Matt Hughes would get the hard fought win in a decision. In the main event, the Light Heavyweight belt changed hands for the fourth time in two years. It was a sight to behold as Machida gave Evans the first loss of his career when knocked him out cold in the second round.

UFC on FX: Belfort vs. Rockhold

In the last event exclusively on FX, we saw the debut of two former Strikeforce Middleweight champions. One was the headliner as the last Strikeforce Middleweight champion Luke Rockhold got his chance in the UFC against one of the best in Vitor Belfort. The other was Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza as he fought Chris Camozzi in the co-main event. The 13 fight card was spread across three platforms with the main card on FX. The night started on Facebook with Lightweight Lucas Martins getting the third round knockout win over Jeremy Larsen. Also on the prelims a pair of Lightweights got a pair of submission wins. Journeyman Gleison Tibau got a Guillotine win and Francisco Trinaldo with an Arm-Triangle. Starting off the main card was a Middleweight bout where Rafael Natal got the decision win over Joa Zeferino. In the next fight, now Lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos picked up his fourth straight win in a decision win. The co-main event didn’t last long as Camozzi was submitted with an Arm-Triangle in the first round. In the main event, a re-invigorated Belfort got his second head kick knockout victory. Vitor set it up perfectly and won with a spinning heel hook in the first round.

UFC 173

In the annual Memorial Day weekend event, the UFC Bantamweight champion was put on the line. The champion Renan Barao came in the fight with a 33 fight unbeaten streak and the challenger TJ Dillishaw had won 5 of his last 6. To start off the televised prelims, Al Iaquinta was dominating the first two rounds against Mitch Clarke. Clarke would get an unexpected D’Arce choke in the third round to tap out Iaquinta. TUF 17 winner Chris Holdsworth made his return where he got the decision win over Chico Camus. Tony Ferguson got the knockout over Katsunori Kikuno in the first round.

James Krause started off the main card with a spectacular first round. The fight would end when his opponent Jamie Varner couldn’t continue due to an ankle injury. Bantamweight contender Takeya Mizugaki had a great performance over Francisco Rivera in a unanimous decision win. Just two months after losing a title fight for the vacant Welterweight championship, Robbie Lawler agreed to fight Jake Ellenberger. It would prove a good move as Lawler got back to the winning column with a third round TKO win.

In the co-main event, Daniel Cormier fought for the second time at Light Heavyweight. His first was just 3 months prior against promotional newcomer Patrick Cummins. He was placed against former Pride two-division champion Dan Henderson. Both are former Olympic wrestlers, but DC would get the better of Henderson. He would dominate Henderson from start to finish, throwing him around quite often. The fight ended with a third round Rear-Naked choke from Cormier. The main event was expected to be a give-me fight for Renan Barao to get to former champion Dominick Cruz. The fight did not go that way as Dillishaw set the tone early with a first round knockdown with an overhand right. The next four rounds would be Dillishaw out striking the man no one ever thought would lose this fight. Dillishaw finally broke Barao in the fifth and final round when he got him on the ground and threw punches in bunches where the fight was called and Dillishaw was crowned the new champion.

WEC 10: Bragging Rights

In the tenth event by the World Extreme Cagefighting organization, we saw 10 of 12 fights end in a finish. The card had two title fights as the Welterweight and Lightweight belts would be decided.  5 of the 11 ended in submission (2 of which came from submission due to punches) with the remaining 5 coming via KO/TKO. Future UFC fighter Lavar Johnson got a first round TKO win. One of two decisions of the night came when Ryan Schultz beat Gil Castillo by majority decision. The Lightweight title fight ended with only 6 seconds to spare in the 3rd round when Gilbert Melendez beat Olaf Alfonso by TKO.  For the Welterweight title, champion Shonie Carter lost to Karo Parisyan.

WEC 12: Judgement Day

In yet another two title fight event, we saw 10 of 12 fights end in a finish. The Middleweight title would be decided as well as a title defense try for Heavyweight champion James Irvin. The night started with a unanimous decision win by Jay Hieron. The next five all came from submission; the first two by Triangle and the next three by Rear-Naked Choke.  Lavar Johnson once again got a first round finish with a TKO. The Middleweight title was won by Joe Riggs as he submitted Rob Kimmons with punches. In the Heavyweight title fight, champion James Irvin defended his belt with a knockout over Doug Marshall.

Strikeforce Challengers: Lindland vs. Casey

The 8th Challengers event put on by Strikeforce was headlined by a Middleweight fight between Matt Lindland and Kevin Casey. The prelim card had only one finish as Patrick Whittington submitted Jason Lambert with a Triangle Choke in the first round. Starting off the main card was future Strikeforce champion Pat Healy as he got the decision win against Bryan Tavers. Future Middleweight champion Tarec Saffiedine got a KO win over Nate Moore. In the co-main event, future Middleweight title challenger Tyron Woodley narrowly beat Nathan Coy by split-decision. In the main event, it took Lindland almost an entire three rounds to get the TKO win over Casey. He had only 19 seconds to spare in the fight when it was ended.

Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier

In the final of the Heavyweight Grand Prix, underdog Daniel Cormier made it this far and was matched with former UFC champion Josh Barnett. The co-main event was a Lightweight championship fight between champion Gilbert Melendez and number-one contender Josh Thomson. The prelims produced five straight decisions, with the last three by split decision. Gian Vilante, Bobby Green and Isaac Vallie-Flagg all picked up wins. The main card starter finally gave us a finish as Chris Spang got a TKO win. Future Light Heavyweight champion Rafael Cavalcante beat Mike Kyle by Guillotine. Feijao was popped for PED’s in the post-fight test and the fight was ruled a No-Contest. In the Lightweight title fight, Melendez barely came away with his belt as he beat Thomson by controversial split-decision. In the main event, Cormier shocked everyone with a unanimous decision victory to win the Heavyweight Grand Prix.

Pride: Bushido 3

In the third event under the Bushido mark, Pride saw some great fights. A 12 fight card produced half finishes and half decisions. The first fight of the night was a KO by Bertrand Ammoussou. The next two fights ended by Rear-Naked Choke with Katsuhisa Fuiji and Alexander Emilianenko being the victors. Mirko ‘Cro Cop’ Flipovic and Ricardo Almeida each picked up decision wins. The next fight took only 6 seconds to decide a winner as Takanori Gomi beat Ralph Gracie by TKO. In the main event, Ryan Gracie beat Ikuhisa Minowa by split decision.

Pride: Bushido 7

In the mainland of Tokyo, Bushido 7 saw seven stoppage wins. The first two by way of KO as Charles Bennett and Jens Pulver each earned their win. In the next fight, another American got a finish as Yves Edwards submitted Dokonjonosuke Mishima by Armbar.  Aaron Riley got a headkick KO of Omigawa before two consecutive decision wins. Ikuhisa Minowa lost by second round TKO and in the main event Takanori Gomi continued his excellence with another first round knockout.

Bellator 19

In Texas, where everything is bigger and better, Bellator put on Bellator 19. Starting off the prelim card was a Guillotine win for Doug Frey. In the Featherweight division, Chas Skelly beat Daniel Pineda by kneebar in the second round. In a bout to determine a spot on the Season 3 Heavyweight tournament, Scott Barnett beat Ty Lee by TKO. The main card had two Welterweight semi-final fights on it. The first was a kimura win for Dan Hornbuckle and a decision win for Ben Askren. Future UFC title challenger Joe Soto won the main event against Diego Saraiva by doctor stoppage.

Bellator 45

To end Season 4 for Bellator, two tournament finals took place. The Featherweight and Light Heavyweight finals would be determined as well as a Middleweight bout to boot. On the prelims, Rene Nazare got a Rear-Naked Choke and future UFC fighter Shawn Jordan got another TKO win. To start the main card, Sam Alvey got a decision win over Karl Ammoussou. In the Featherweight final, future champion Patricio Freire won the final over Daniel Straus by decision. In the main event, Christian M’ Pumbu won by third round TKO to win the tournament.

Bellator 69

In Lake Charles, Louisiana, Bellator 69 happened. The main card started with Heavyweight Mark Holata getting Abe Wagner to verbally tap with a straight ankle lock in the first round. In a Women’s 125 pound fight, Megumi Fuiji beat future WSOF champion Jessica Aguilar by decision. In a Welterweight semifinal fight, David Rickels punched his ticket in for the finals with a split decision win over Karl Ammoussou. In the main event, Maiquel Falcao beat Andreas Spang to win the Season’s Middleweight tournament.

Future: UFC 187: Johnson vs.  Cormier, ONE Championship 27: Warriors Quest

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*WATCH* DaveNoseMMA – Is Conor McGregor Pushing his Luck?

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MMA Latest’s Dave Noseworthy looks at why MMA superstar Conor McGregor just might be pushing his luck following his actions at Bellator 187.

Watch Dave talk about the Irishman below:

Do you agree, or disagree with Dave’s opinion? Let us know below!

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Exclusive: Jalin Turner vs Noah Tillis set for Bellator LA in January

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Bellator LA: Douglas Lima vs Rory MacDonald, has just had another entertaining fight added as two talented prospects Jalin Turner and Noah Tillis are set to meet in a lightweight bout. Sources close to the fight confirmed the news to MMA Latest earlier this morning.

Jalin “The Tarantula” Turner makes his return to the Bellator cage for the first time since January 2017, where he defeated Gabriel Green by knockout, in an exciting fight that only lasted 36 seconds. Since the fight, Turner has gone 2-1 where he defeated Paradise Vaovasa by KO, at Tachi PF 31, before dropping his next fight to Richard LeRoy by TKO, at CFX 8. Turner bounced back from the loss by beating Vytautas Sadauskas by submission, at KOTC: Never Quit, back in September.

Noah Tillis is currently coming off of a 9-second submission victory against Jeff Carson, at Gladiator Challenge: American Pride, back in July. The “Submission Magician” has amassed a professional record of 3-2 with three victories coming by submission, DQ, and a TKO due to injury. His two losses coming by way of TKO and decision.

It is unclear where the fight will be featured, but it is assumed it will take place on the undercard. The potential brawl represents a stiff challenge for either man, as well as an opportunity to make some noise in an always deep lightweight division.

The only other fight currently announced on the card is the main event between current Bellator welterweight champion Douglas Lima and former UFC title challenger, Rory MacDonald. Bellator LA: Lima vs MacDonald is set to take place on Saturday, January 20th, in Los Angeles, Calfornia, at the Forum.

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Anthony “PrettyBoy” Taylor wants to knockout Trey Branch then fight Brian Moore in Bellator on St. Patricks Day

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Going from postlim fights in Bellator to a co-main event and then a main card fight after with such little professional experience isn’t something you’d hear of very often in the slightest. In this case Anthony “PrettyBoy” Taylor is the exception, who in only his third professional fight went to Ireland as part of the co-main event for a fight with James Gallagher. Taylor became well known to many in the build-up to that fight for being so outspoken and quite an entertainer, something he carries with him to the cage.

Anthony Taylor now has himself a fight lined up in a regional show near his home in California at California Fighting Championships. This will be his first time fighting back in America since May 2016. His last two bouts were in Europe as part of Bellator’s expansion into Europe. Following two losses he now hopes to get back in the win column in front of a home crowd. Taking this fight as a tune off fight Anthony is confident he won’t be touched by his opponent Trey Branch.

“Well, I’m taking this fight because Bellator said I’ll be fighting next year for overseas and it will be a good tune off fight for me. I think of trey like any other fighter. Just a guy who’s not going to touch me nor beat me.”

His opponent Trey Branch is jumping up from flyweight for this fight, Anthony believes he’s going to dominate his opponent and knock him out with ease. Now having 3 career losses coming via submission, he is not worried about his ground game, guaranteeing it was improved from training with some of the top fighters in Bellator.

“I believe I’m going to overpower him and KO him. He’s coming up from 125lb to fight me which I stated to the world on Bellator that I’m the strongest 45er in the world!! And as far as my ground game, it’d be covered and it’s great. Thanks to AJ McKee, Baby Slice, Joey Davis and Aaron Pico. My ground game is great and up there to the level, as there’s”

Looking ahead to next year when he competes in Bellator again, Taylor has his eyes set on a big fight in a return to Irish soil.

“Well Bellator loves me and I proved them that I belong there. I haven’t been told when I was fighting but I hope it’s back in Ireland, and maybe on St. Patricks day and hopefully I’ll fight Brian Moore because me and him been wanting to fight the longest.”

As a training partner for AJ McKee, Taylor was very pleased with how the fight went down, claiming it was a simple enough fight for his teammate that apparently didn’t train much for the fight. Suffering a loss on the initial trip to the emerald isle, “PrettyBoy” wants to come back and take home a win next time around.

“Oh man it was an easy fight for AJ, he only trained 2 weeks for that Brian Moore fight” he laughs “but absolutely it would be a great show if I was also on the show me and James alone still holds the record of views internationally and I’m looking to come back and taking what’s mines which is that W”

The win against Brian Moore could now potentially line up a fight between McKee and James Gallagher, fight fans have long sought after. Having fought against James and training with McKee on the regular Taylor isn’t convinced that Gallagher is ready for the AJ just yet. He also had some words about SBG fighters who were calling out Baby Slice.

“James is not ready for AJ. And people calling out slice since he’s new in the game. Why are sbg guys not calling out Joey Davis?? They are all talk and think that they’re better than everyone.”

With a win on Saturday, Anthony Taylor thinks it will kick him off to a series of consecutive wins that could ultimately land him in a fight with Emmanuel Sanchez.

“Yes it will start off (Saturday) and I believe it will set me up tremendously. I’m only getting better and I plan on winning fights in Bellator and then taking out Emanuel Sanchez. I do not like him, I hate him”

“I don’t like his style and he’s always hating on my teammates so I want his head” he added

Away from the fight scene, Anthony is pleased with the life that he’s got set up for himself with his newfound love since joining Bellator as he now aims to break into the movie industry too.

“Man it’s been great I now have a wonderful woman in my life so I’m happy. I’m acting too, trying to get into the movies industry and God has blessed me which so much love”

You can follow Anthony Taylor on all his social media accounts to keep an eye out for all his upcoming fight information and results.

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