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Ultimate Beatdown 19 Full Results : Strawweight war ends in a draw

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The inaugural Ultimate Beatdown Strawweight title was on the line last weekend in the main event of Ultimate Beatdown 19 at Plaza Sentosa, Johor Bahru. The contenders, Malaysian Fouzein Fozi, and Pakistani Faizan Khan had a back and forth 5 rounds battle that unfortunately ended up in a draw which led the Ultimate Beatdown Strawweight title to remain vacant.

Judges scorecard of the Strawweight Title bout

Judges scorecard of the Strawweight Title bout

Faizan went out guns a blazing, landing multiple striking combos and seemed to have Fouzein badly hurt against the cage in the middle of round one. Referee Isaac Yap had the chance to call the fight and end the night early but made an excellent decision to let it continue. Fouzein survived the barrage including a soccer kick that seemed unintentional when Fouzein hit the ground.

Faizan landing the inside leg kick

Faizan landing the inside leg kick

Faizan gained a knock down in round 2 but the tide changed when Fouzein landed an unintentional illegal knee on his grounded opponent that broke his nose. Faizan chose to continue the fight which led to a point being deducted off Fouzein for the illegal knee. Fouzein took full advantage of his opponent’s injury and clearly dominated the championship rounds and was close to submit his opponent with a rear naked choke but Faizan survived.

Fouzein landing a straight right

Fouzein landing a straight right

After the official decision was announced as a draw, there were verbal trade-offs in the cage between both camps with the Malaysian team visibly upset. However, both fighters displayed respect and sportsmanship as they held the Pakistani flag together in the middle of the cage. The promotion is actively in talks with both fighters to have a rematch for the vacant title at a later date.

Arnel ground and pounds his opponent

Arnel ground and pounds his opponent

Also on the card, 2007 No Gi World champion, Takeo Tani gained a win off his professional MMA debut with a victory over Filipino Arnel Lomibao. Takeo was determined to get the fight to the ground early on but Arnel was no slouch in that department and repeatedly entered Takeo’s guard, landing significant strikes on the ground and escaped multiple submission attempts.

Takeo armbar attempt

Takeo armbar attempt

However, Arnel’s confidence got the better of him and he succumbed to a triangle choke in the second round. Ultimate Beatdown have expressed that they are keen for Takeo to return and are in talks for him to be featured in the main event of Ultimate Beatdown 20 at the end of May 2016.

Full Results below

BOXING
DARIUS AZADEH defeats MOHD ZAFAR via unanimous decision
MOHD NORHADI defeats TOKIZANE KEITA via unanimous decision
SAMIR MRABET defeats MUHD EKHSAN via unanimous decision
MUHD MUSLIHIN defeats PHIL JOSEPH via unanimous decision
WAYNE WONG defeats MUNZIR via split decision
K1 KICKBOXING
NABIL FIKRI defeats WILLYWAY JOSEPH ‘THE PRODIGY’ via unanimous decision
CHEONG YUEN THYE defeats RAYMOND MOST WANTED OPPO’ via unanimous decision
SUNNY CHUA defeats MAX KOLBE LAI via unanimous decision
JASON defeats SASWANDI AHMAD via unanimous decision
RANDAL PO HUA SUNG defeats MARK LAURENCE via walkover
SAMUEL ‘RHINO’ BALU defeats KAYVIN SIA ‘HYPPO’ via unanimous decision
RAYMOND BEH defeats VINCENT GOH via 2nd round TKO retirement
AMATEUR MMA
ALVINA defeats NUR AISYAH via 1st round armbar
LIM ZHENG TENG defeats HAN via 1st round TKO referee stoppage
GLEN LEE defeats AARON LO via walkover
BENJUNIOR ‘ACE’ defeats TEH SOON GUAN via 2nd round TKO retirement
MATHEW MC GRIGOR defeats IGNATIUS COLEMAN ALEXENDER via 1st round tapout due to strikes
JAREK defeats BRIAN KALLANG SIMER via 1st round standing guillotine
MUHD AMZAR defeats HENRY ENG SEN HUAT via split decison
ALVIN PEH defeats ZARITH IKHWAN via 1st round TKO referee stoppage
ALLAN GOH defeats ZAKI NORAZILAN via 2nd round TKO referee stoppage
BRYAN LIM ‘HEBIKIA’ defeats MUHD FITRI ‘BENG’ via 1st round armbar
JOHNNY LIM defeats SHADMAN SAKIF via unanimous decision
TAYLOR CHI WEI LEN defeats HISYAM KAMARULZAMAN via 3rd round TKO
JOSHUA defeats SALMAN ‘THE BEAST’ HAMID via 1st round rear naked choke
XAVIER MARTINON defeats JAMES GARETH MORDAUNT via 1st round rear naked choke, result overturned to a no contest due to illegal groin strike
ERIC DUNCAN defeats AZREEL IZZAT via unanimous decision
RON defeats MARCUS TEO via walkover
SHARIZAL defeats RIDUWAN IWAN via 1st round rear naked choke
PRO MMA
TAKEO TANI defeats ARNEL LOMIBAO via 2nd round triangle choke
FOUZEIN FOZI vs FAIZAN KHAN ended in a draw

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Exclusive: Mike Ekundayo, “He could come with anything, I don’t care”

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In a little less than a week, Rise of Champions crowns its inaugural bantamweight champion. The crowning of the first 135 lb. champion marks the young promotions first champion. It makes sense why the promotion owned and operated by UK MMA star, Brad Pickett, and Team Titan head coach, Mickey Papas plan to crown the promotions first champion in the bantamweight division. Pickett competed in the division throughout his tenure with the WEC, and ultimately the entity which absorbed the light weight promotion, the UFC. Even more-so, two young and rising prospects of the division. One undefeated in his professional and amateur career, the other riding a seven consecutive victories, five by submission. The two meet February 17th, Mike Ekundayo puts his career unbeaten streak up against Jonas Magard’s at ROC 5, for the aforementioned, inaugural bantamweight championship.

Speaking to the undefeated Ekundayo before his fight, he believes this opportunity to be inevitable. Born in Hackney, (a borough of London) early in life, Ekundayo was no stranger to cramming his belongings into large cardboard boxes. At the age of 7, he moved from Hackney to Herne Hill, a district located in South London. Two years later he found himself in similar situation, moving from his vaguely new home in Herne Hill to Brixton. A road trip in the car to his new home, took approximately 5 minutes.

It is admittedly, not an easy life. In a harrowing article describing the horrors of gang life in London by the metro.uk, former gang member turned community activist, made the claim, “When you are from Brixton, from Peckham, west London, anywhere in London, you are seeing hardship where a lot of communities can’t reach their full potential”.

In his own words, Ekundayo describes his home as, “not the best start to have in your life. It’s not the best upbringing”. But that couldn’t matter any less for him. Not only does the London resident consistently work to grow his potential, he gets to see it every day. His coaches Brad Pickett and Mickey Papas hold the knowledge as well as first-hand experience, increasing his limits with every session. “We’re all close”, speaking of his coaches and team. “My head coach is Mickey Papas, he’s very knowable in the game. He’s been around for a very long time. He teaches me a lot, I can learn a lot of stuff from Mickey Papas. Sometimes I just think, how does he know all of this? Where did he get this information from?”

He continued, “While I was coming up through amateur, Brad (Pickett) was still an active fighter, but nowadays he’s taken a coaching approach. So he’s coaching us prospects getting us to where he got to and further… He’s been through it all, gotten to the top, and stayed at the top”.

Further discussing his coach, “For UK MMA, you could definitely call Brad a legend. He’s done a lot in his career, and someone who I rate highly as an MMA fighter is Demetrious Johnson, and of course Brad has got a win over (him). I feel like just being surrounded by someone like Brad, you’re working towards the right things. When he passes information onto you, you respect it that bit more because of far he got in his career. He’s definitely given me the right guidance, I trust his guidance”.

When it comes to the upcoming title fight, confidence poured out from where praise and respect had once been. “I just think it’s my time, to be honest. I really do believe it’s my time for all of this. The work I put in, certain things become inevitable”, he said. “I actually called this after I won my third fight, I called for belts and big shows. I spoke it to existence”. He continued, “It’s my time to finally to get a strap of some sort. All the straps is what we’re going for, all of them. We’re going for every one”.

“Rise of Champions is my show… That’s how I feel when I’m performing on ROC, it’s just my show, it’s my time to shine. Everyone knows who there here to see, there not really there to see the other guys. It’s my time, it’s my show and I’m going to put on a show on February 17th and I’m going to win that belt”.

The infectious nature of his positive attitude was palpable. Although we only spoke through small rectangular devices, I could feel his energy in the room. His attitude shined brightest when talking about what it would mean to be the first ever ROC Bantamweight champion. Ekundayo claimed, “It just means a lot to have my first belt in anything to be honest… Within myself, I call myself a champion, every day. But now, other people would have to call me a champion because I’ve got a belt… And one thing I really want to do is, which sounds a bit weird, I just want to take the belt home to my area, to Brixton.”

“I just want to take it to my area, and just show the people of that area what hard work can achieve… I want to just take it to my people and show them that not for nothing, we are from Brixton, it’s not the best start to have in your life. It’s not the best upbringing but you can rise above it and you can achieve your goals and that’s what the belt will mean”.

When the conversation shifted to the topic of his opponent, Ekundayo had less encouraging words rolling off his tongue. Jonas Magard, the second half of the ROC 5 main event, holds a record of 7-4. Currently he owns a seven fight win streak after starting his career 1-3. Ekundayo thought, “He did fight quite decent guys in his three loses… but in the seven fight win streak, none of his opponents have been of caliber”.

He elaborated further, “What’s in my thoughts is more me, then it is of him. So, he could come with anything, I don’t care. I’m just focused on how I’m going to be picture perfect. How I’m going to paint a masterpiece, how I’m going to make it a beautifully perfect performance. That’s what my primary focus is on, so what he does to me is irrelevant, I’m just going to focus on how I’m going to be perfect on the night of February 17th”.

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Announcement

UFC 222 Re-Worked with Cris Cyborg vs. Yana Kunitskaya, and Frankie Edgar vs. Brian Ortega

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UFC 222 has been saved, and it didn’t take a superhero to lift the burning boulder which was Max Holloway’s injury and withdrawal. All it took was a female named Cyborg and a man with a demeanor so smooth, he could be mistaken for an alter-ego. Cris Cyborg now serves as the UFC 222 main event when she defends her featherweight belt against Yana Kunitskaya. Frankie Edgar bumped down to the co-main event to face Brian Ortega in what is likely a title eliminator. The news of the UFC 222 revival originally stemmed from a report by MMAFighting.com and confirmed later in the evening by the UFC.

Over the course of the week, reports surrounded the Las Vegas card and whether it would survive. Multiple options were reportedly being mulled over; cancelling the card outright, changing the pay-per-view (PPV) to a ‘Fight Night’ with an Edgar vs. Ortega main event, Dillashaw vs. Garbrandt 2 main event, among others. Ultimately, the promotion landed on Cyborg vs. Kunitskaya as the new main event, while also booking Brian Ortega.

This adjustment of the card places their women’s Featherweight champion in the second PPV main event in three months. Cris Cyborg recently put her undisputed Featherweight title on the line against Holly Holm at the year ending card, UFC 219. She successfully defended her belt by unanimous decision, in what was an amazing technical display from the Brazilian. In her octagon career, Cyborg is undefeated in her four appearances with three KO/TKO stoppages.

The second half of the new main event, Yana Kunitskaya, makes her UFC debut against the scariest women on the roster. If the 145 lb. champion was not enough of a challenge, Kunitskaya also makes her first appearance in the division since defeating Cindy Dandois in December of 2010. Of Russia descent, her most recent performances came inside the Invicta FC cage. At the female-only promotion, she posted a record of 1-1, with 1 No Contest. Her loss and no contest, both came at the hands of former UFC Featherweight title challenger, Tonya Evinger.

Turning to the co-main event, both fighters have been relatively inactive but, for good reason. Brian Ortega amazingly forced perennial men’s Featherweight contender, Cub Swanson, to tap in the second round of their ‘Fight Night: Fresno’ contest. Ortega fought twice in 2017, but more-so stayed inactive following his stoppage victory over Swanson. The Californian contender announced his desire to wait in line for the next title shot following the recent victory.

For Frankie Edgar, his last fight took place at UFC 211 when he absolutely demolished young and rising star, Yair Rodriguez. A card which took place last May. While Ortega holds an undefeated record, Edgar is undefeated in his previous 9 fights, excluding people named Jose Aldo.

UFC 222 takes place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on March 3rd.

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Announcement

UFC Middleweight Champion, Robert Whittaker Announces Birth of Third Child

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Times seem dull and dreary for the UFC’s Middleweight Champion, Robert Whittaker. The New Zealand born fighter withdrew from the promotions event debut in the eastern region of his residence, Australia. UFC 221, which takes place this Saturday, booked Whittaker to defend his title for the first time against former division champion, Luke Rockhold. His withdrawal was due to mistreatment of a serious staph infection inside of the Australians stomach.

It couldn’t get much worse, having to disappoint fans, and missing the first UFC event in eastern Australia. As it turns out, it could not get worse for Whittaker. Life only got better, as he had the pleasure of announcing the birth of his third child.

His new child is the champions third and first girl. Information regarding his child is limited as this moment is a tender and special time for the Whittaker family.

UFC 221 takes place in Perth, Australia at Perth Arena on February 11th. The cards main event features Whittakers short notice replacement, Yoel Romero taking on Luke Rockhold. Much to the satiety of fans, an interim belt is not in the equation in this instance.

Thank God. Excuse me, thank Dana White.

UFC 221 also features the ‘Super Samoan’ Mark Hunt vs. Curtis Blaydes, Tai Tuivasa faces Cyril Asker, Alexander Volkanovski vs. Jeremy Kennedy and more.

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