Posts Tagged ‘The Clinch Report’

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report and Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

Thirty-seconds earlier, a confident Richard LeRoy awaited the opening bell in the biggest fight of his young career. During the introductions, LeRoy stared across the cage at his opponent before briefly acknowledging his fans. The moment for LeRoy had been a long time coming, and he seemed like he was ready for the challenge.

The thirty-seconds that immediately followed don’t exist for Leroy, because he has no memory of them. “Do you remember what happened?” LeRoy joked. His opponent that night Jalin Turner punched the time clock right on the pause button when he cracked LeRoy so hard and so often, the entire first 3 minutes turned into a blur. As LeRoy covered up on the ground, the thunderous shots echoed. He knew the referee was getting close to stopping the fight, and admittedly that was all he knew. Richard LeRoy still doesn’t remember what happened, but he sensed he was very close to losing everything he had worked so hard to regain. As all these thoughts ran through his head, and the referee approached all he could think was, “Im not fucking going out like this.”

Two years earlier, after a dramatic come from behind knockout win over Brandon Hastings, LeRoy began feeling discomfort in his right shoulder. Hastily he was initially diagnosed with an AC separation. Initially the arm was immobilized and a rehabilitation program would follow to facilitate the healing. Throughout his time off LeRoy kept training the best he could, using only his left arm. After the rehabilitation program was completed, the pain persisted. Following the advice of a friend with connections in the medical field, LeRoy was able to get an MRI which revealed a torn Labrum, an injury that would require immediate surgery and yet another extensive rehabilitation. While on the shelf, LeRoy watched as the promotion he called home crowned their first ever CXF lightweight champion. ” It is just a matter of time.” LeRoy thought to himself.

In a haze and in a heap, LeRoy somehow coherently realized he was about to lose everything he fought so hard to get back. It was that thought alone that inspired him to survive. A momentary reprieve in the assault by Turner would only make the next barrage seem that much more cruel. As again Turner sent LeRoy in search of level footing. Trying to find his equilibrium, LeRoy was rewarded with a nasty knee that again dropped him to the canvas.  Wobbling and in retreat for most of the round, LeRoy cleared the cobwebs and like a cornered dog he began snapping back. “Late in the round at one point, somehow I ended up in mount, and  that is when I really started to get my head clear.” LeRoy said. Finishing the round in top position, LeRoy appeared to have weathered the storm, but that was only the first round and the hell that greeted him 5 minutes earlier was again waiting for another encounter.

As the second round began, again Turner found success with his range, as he began to pepper LeRoy from angles the shorter fighter could only imagine. However this time LeRoy didn’t seem as effected as much as was in the previous round. Relentlessly he pressed forward and soon he began to break-down the range of Turner.  Finding some success on the inside, LeRoy began chopping down his longer opponent, but Turner obliged and kept the violent merry-go-round going. As the moments ticked by, the pendulum of momentum started to swing in LeRoy’s direction. “I remember dropping him with an inside leg kick, and I popped right into mount. I could see he was starting to get tired.” LeRoy said. Continuing his attack until the bell, a confident LeRoy went back to his corner thinking he had won the second. “I though for sure I won the round,” LeRoy said.

Drenched with sweat, referee Mike Beltran was long past exhausted and his normal jovial expression had hit the road sometime in the first round, in its place a stone like expression I’m glad to say I don’t know. The air was thick in the Burbank Marriott ballroom as the third round opened. Again the aggressor, LeRoy kept his foot on the gas. The more he pressed, the more his opponent began to slow. Late in the third round with Turner starting to fade, Leroy found himself in the top position. Sensing the end LeRoy looked to inspire the finish with some nasty ground and pound, punctuated effectively with elbows in between. The referee again came close, and after a few warnings from urging Turner to defend went unanswered the assault was stopped at 4:18 in the final round. Capping one of the best comebacks ever in the CXF cage.

The win earned LeRoy a spot in the semi final round for the CXF promotions ‘Cali Kings’ tournament. Putting him just one fight away from the title. However the epic war with Turner came at a cost, and due to injuries suffered in the fight LeRoy withdrew from the tournament. “I really wanted that title. When I was injured and I first saw the CXF belt I sort of already considered it mine,” LeRoy said with confidence.

After a three-month layoff that included a trip to Europe, LeRoy is back in the hunt for the CXF title. Standing across the cage this time in a lightweight title-eliminator will be the well-travelled and equally explosive Christian “The Beast” Aguilera. A well-rounded fighter  like LeRoy, Aguilera is an equal opportunity ass kicker. He can knock you into next week with one shot, or he can choke you to sleep. His dangerous skill set and hybrid pedigree is something LeRoy is well aware of; “Christian’s a tough dude, and he looked great in his last fight.” LeRoy said. “He is very good on his feet; a good striker, and he has great jiujitsu as well. The fight is going be a challenge for sure, but I will be ready.”

With the winner of the bout earning an immediate title shot at the conclusion of the ‘Cali Kings’ tournament, LeRoy once again finds himself just a few steps away from the title he coveted for so long.

CXF 10:Fall Brawl will take place November 4th, in Studio City, CA at the world-famous Sportsmen’s Lodge. For tickets go to: www.mmatixx.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

That epic

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By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

Edited By: Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

The Sportsmen’s Lodge was once again the scene of the crime, as Lights Out Promotions and Bash Entertainment once again put together an amazing card of fights, as California Xtreme Fighting continued it’s running streak of standing room only shows. Currently the only pro mixed martial arts show in the San Fernando Valley, CXF 7 featured three title fights that sat atop one of the most entertaining under card in recent memory.

Taylor Alfaro (1-1) defeated Milton Arguello (0-1) via unanimous decision 135lbs

Setting the tone for the evening with an extremely exciting fight, Taylor Alfaro and Milton Arguello wasted very little time engaging each other almost as soon as the bell sounded. It appeared Arguellos strategy was to stay at range and land with his heavy kicks to the body of Alfaro. However Alfaro proved to be on to the plan, catching multiple kicks before countering with straight punches. The standing exchanges were quite even, but it was the ground attack of Alfaro that swayed the fight in his direction. Consistently able to bring the fight to the mat, Alfaro methodically and effectively wore away his opponent and the clock, cruising to a unanimous decision victory.

Edmen Shahbazian (2-0) defeated Dearmie Street (0-1) via TKO 3:16 Rd 1 185lbs

Picking up where the first fight left off, middleweights Edmen Shahbazian and Dearmie Street also came out throwing heavy leather, and after an early back and forth exchange the fight found its way to the mat, where Street was able to transition out of a few very dangerous arm bar attempts from Shahbazian. Once they both were standing, again they traded punches with Shahbazian clearly taking control. Late in the first round a quick combination forced Street to the mat. Smelling blood in the water Shahbazian swarmed and forced referee Mike Bell to call a halt to bout, after some IQ changing ground and pound.

Mike Jasper (12-4) defeated Jonathan Rivera (4-2) via TKO 4:57 Rd 3 170lbs CXF Welterweight Title Fight

Defending his title for the first time, CXF welterweight champion Mike Jasper came into the event looking to add legitimacy to his strap. However early on his opponent Jonathan Rivera quickly gained control with a surprisingly effective ground based attack. Once on the mat Rivera transitioned to the back of Jasper and looked to steal the title with a rear naked choke, but Jasper defended and was able to even turn the tables in the next round by taking Rivera down. However, unlike Rivera, Jasper selected to strike in the dominant position, softening up the challenger for a majority of the round. In the third round, the roundabout continued as Rivera again was able to gain top position before transitioning to the back of Jasper. Looking for the submission at one point, Rivera torqued Jasper’s leg like a banana split, but Jasper was able to escape the hold, and wound up on top. With seconds to go, Rivera again attempted a submission, this time a leg lock, but again Jasper was able to get free. Once out of the hold, the champion uncorked a barrage of strikes that rocked Rivera in the waining moments prompting the referee to stop the bout at 4:57 of the final round. Although he was able to defend his title, Jasper was injured in the final moments of the fight, apparently tearing his hamstring.

Chris Saunders (16-8) defeated Derion “DC” Chapman (4-7) via Unanimous Decision 155lbs

In the next bout Derion Chapman moved up in weight to take on perhaps his biggest challenge yet, in the form of UFC veteran Chris Saunders. For Saunders, this marked his first bout in over a year, but both proved extremely prepared as the early exchanges quickly had the crowd on their feet. In the second round Saunders looked to implement his jiujitsu pedigree, and almost had a guillotine before Chapman freed his head and got back to his feet. The third round was equally entertaining, as the two continued their tango, before Saunders again brought the fight to the mat. Once there, Saunders was able to control his opponent for most of the round. The effort was enough to convince the judges that Saunders was the winner, much to the chagrin of many of those in attendance.

Gabriel Green (4-2) defeated Matt Hagge (7-6) via Submission (rear-naked choke) 3:20 Rd 1 Catchweight 166 lbs

Former Bellator MMA veteran Gabriel Green was looking to make an impressive statement in his CXF promotional debut, and he certainly did deliver. After an early exchange between the two, Hagge quickly brought the fight to mat however Green quickly swept him, and took his back. Locking in the body lock, Green began setting up the choke with some punches to the side of his opponents head. While defending, Hagge for a moment exposed his neck, and Green quickly locked up the choke inspiring the tap at 3:20 of the very first round

Chase Gibson (5-2) defeated Sergei Minasyan (7-10) via Unanimous Decision 145lbs CXF Featherweight Title Fight

In the co-main event of the evening, Chase Gibson and Sergei Minasyan faced off in a very evenly matched three round war. In the first round, the fighters seemed content to stand and trade, with both fighters having their moments. In the second frame, Chase Gibson began to secure opinions, relying on his ground game to neutralize Minasyan on the mat. However, Minasyan was able to survive the onslaught. Halfway through a pretty even third round, Gibson again found his opponents back after Minasyan moved away from the clinch. Again Gibson was able to bring the fight horizontal, and although he was unable to find the finish, his control on the ground proved dominant, and the judges awarded him the fight and the vacant CXF featherweight title.

Terrion ‘Flash’ Ware (17-4) defeated Jared ‘The Jackhammer’ Papazian (21-13) via KO :20 Rd 3 135 lbs CXF Bantamweight Title Fight

In the third installment of one of southern California’s most memorable trilogies, Terrion Ware and Jared Papazian went face to face in the CXF cage in the main event, to settle their three-fight vendetta once and for all! With the vacant bantamweight title on the line, the fierce rivals met in the center of the cage, and immediately they picked up where they had left off. Both fighters landed nasty shots in the first round however, a late combination from Ware staggered Papazian as the round came to an end. In the second round, Papazian still hurt, showcased his tremendous heart looking to trade with Ware again. Utilizing his speed, Ware moved effectively in and out of range, surgically picking a slowing Papazian apart. Between rounds an exhausted Papazian could hardly sit on his stool, collapsing to the mat. However he refused to quit, answering the bell for the third and final round. However it was only a matter of time. Ware immediately pounced, and again rocked Papazian, felling him face first for the KO victory. The win earns Ware not only the bragging rights in the grudge match with Papazian, and the CXF title, it also almost certainly assures Ware of his long awaited chance to fight for the UFC.

Richard Leroy (4-0) defeated Marlen Magee (4-5) via Submission (rear-naked choke) 3:11 Rd 1 Catchweight 162 lbs

Returning to action after over a year off due to injuries, Richard Leroy looked better than ever, dominating his opponent in route to a first round submission victory. After dominating the standing exchanges, Leroy quickly took Marlen Magee down out of the clinch and immediately asserted himself from the top position with some nasty ground and pound. The relentless assault forced Magee to give up his back where Leroy swiftly threaded the choke and secured the tap, and the victory.

California Xtreme Fighting continues to grow, and the next event is scheduled for June 17th 2017. Make sure you follow CXF on Instagram to keep track of all the latest details. For ticket information to future events check out www.mmatixx.com.

 

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By: Jonathan M. King

Photos By: John Walsh

The Hollywood Park Casino has always been friendly to the combat sports. Since openings its doors in 1994 beneath the shadow of its big brother the world famous horse racing facility of the same name, the Hollywood Park has been in the fight business. Of the many who hosted events at the Hollywood Park, two promotions had the credentials to call the place home.

One of those promotions Spar Star MMA will be hosting their last ever event at the Hollywood Park. Since 2012, Spar Star MMA has hosted an astonishing 21 events within the doors of the casino, offering countless fighters the opportunity to showcase their skills. Many of those fighters have moved on to the big shows like Bellator MMA and the UFC.

Saying goodbye to the Hollywood Park will be certainly bring a nostalgic malaise, however Spar Star MMA memories will continue to keep you warm and fuzzy on the inside. Some great fights, some incredible knockouts, and who can forget the time Dub-C and the fellas tore the roof off the building?

Saturday will truly be a bittersweet day. The end of an era. Places like the Hollywood Park Casino have always been a refuge for the emerging fighters. They offered a haven for promotions to build the fighters, creating a consistent environment for grass roots campaigns to become professional endeavors. Places like these are certainly an endangered species.

Spar Star of course will continue. Although the goodbye is bittersweet the truth is they had somewhat out grown the venue.

Make sure you head out to the show early, the event will certainly sell out. Click here: For Tickets.  The event will also be streaming live courtesy of our friends at The Global Combat Network

The champions list(Spar Star Champions Crowned at The Hollywood Park Casino): Bellator MMA veteran Albert Morales, Farren Romero, Oneida Diaz, Paola Ramirez, Andre Nickerson, Bellator MMA veteran Marcos Bonilla, Matthew Spencer, Leo Imai, Jose Lopez, Jose Diaz, Daniel Rodriguez, Joseph Williams, Keith Carson, and Benji Gomez.

Check out our gallery of Spar Star Events Past!

All photos and images are the property of The Clinch Report, LLC all rights reserved. Any unauthorized use is strictly prohibited. Please contact us at news@theclinchreport.com for licensing information.

 

The Beginning of the End

The Beginning of the End

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

According to Hemingway people with ‘guts’ always show “grace under pressure.” Coming in to his fight against Andrew Natividad, Alfred Kashakyan personified that saying. Returning off of a loss in his last fight and fighting with the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide as the back drop, Kashakyan was shouldering a ton of weight. He was not only fighting for the CXF Bantamweight title, but he was also fighting for a nation people who still to this day, continue to fight for themselves. Despite the pressure Kashakyan performed with grace, and showcased his power along the way.

Once Kashakyan made his way into the ball room it became clear who the crowd was there to see. Once he made his way into the cage it became clear who he was see! Charging to a halt an inch from his opponent Kashakyan stomped defiantly in front of him before circling away to take his corner. The aggressive display was not a taunt as much as it was a precursor for the chaotic storm on the horizon.

As the fight began Natividad looked to stay low, and after a few strikes from Kashakyan he shot in an attempt to take the fight to the mat. However Kashakyan was able to fend off the takedown, and once out of danger, he separated and looked to get busy with his hands. Each punch he threw was meant to end the fight. Although Natividad was able to block a few, in retreat a head kick backed him up against the cage and once there Kashakyan unleashed a flurry of strikes that dropped him a couple of times. The stoppage came moments later as grounded strikes went unanswered forcing the referee to stop the bout.

After the win an emotional Alfred Kashakyan spoke to the crowd about how personal the fight was for him. He spoke of his struggle, and of the Armenian struggle and vowed to continue his reign as CXF Champion declaring “This belt is mine, and its not going anywhere”.

The win moves Kashakyan to 6-2 as a pro and also earns him his first mixed martial arts title. As with most of the CXF fighters, Alfred is on a short list of UFC hopefuls in the bantamweight division. It would not be a surprise to see both Kashakyan and fellow 135 lbs prospect Terrion Ware in the UFC in the near future, if not perhaps we will see them square off in the CXF cage. Only time will tell!

Wherever Kashakyan fights next is only a guess, however as he starts to get bigger and bigger fights you can expect a seasoned fighter, one used to the pressure. A fighter who Hemingway himself would say has ‘guts’ in spades, a fighter with ‘Grace’!

The next CXF show is scheduled for June make sure you follow Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing for more information.

All photos are the property of The Clinch Report, LLC. Any unauthorized use is prohibited. Please email news@theclinchreport.com for licensing information.

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By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

In 1848 after gold was discovered at Sutter’s Mill; California became the place for the bold to stake their claim to a bright future. Now nearly 170 years later, California Xtreme Fighting is the new Sutter’s Mill, and our young mixed martial artists are the miners seeking their fortune. The times may have changed, but the bounty is still the same. Everyone wants some of that sweet sweet gold, and on April 22nd, plenty will be on the line.

Lights Out Promotions in association with Bash Boxing are proud to be presenting ‘CXF: Gold Rush’ on April 22, 2016 at The Sportsmen’s Lodge in Studio City. The talent laden card features some of the top young mixed martial artists in the world. Each one of them looking to strike gold.

Preliminary Card:

Georgie Garcia (2-2 MMA) vs Angel Oliveras (Pro Debut)

Georgie Garcia has fought under the Lights Out/Bash umbrella before, and those who have seen him fight are always entertained. His muay thai pedigree and strong athleticism make him a nightmare inside a large cage. His opponent Angel Oliveras is making his pro debut after an amateur pedigree that saw him even with a 1-1 record. Oliveras is a well rounded fighter with some slick submission skills. Both young men are hungry so sit back and watch them eat.

Marlen MaGee (2-4 MMA) vs Craig Plaskett (Pro Debut)

Marlen MaGee returns to action under the Lights Out/Bash umbrella for the fourth time. The heavy handed MaGee is looking for his first win after coming short in his previous engagements. His opponent Craig Plaskett is making his pro debut after a rather extensive amateur career that saw him even with 4 wins against 4 losses. Plaskett also possesses power in both hands, so this could up being a ‘rock em sock em robots’ type of fight. Don’t blink.

Joshua Jones (1-0 MMA) vs Akkim Lee (Pro Debut)

Joshua Jones came into his last bout the underdog, and left after silencing the crowd with a huge win in his pocket. Jones displayed a wide array of striking and dominated with a versatile attack that wore down his opponent before choking the will to compete from him. His opponent Akkim Lee has been around for a long time. Lee has an extensive amateur background and has a ton of fight left. Expect an educated slug fest!

Jordan Isordia (2-3 MMA) vs Derion Chapman (2-4-1)

Both of these young scrappers bring a ton of talent and energy to the cage. Isordia is the type of striker that likes to stay in the pocket, he certainly is not afraid to take a punch in order to land one. Chapman is more of a floater, who likes to inflict damage quickly before exiting his opponents range. On their feet, the fight could go either way. However should the fight hit the mat, Chapman is very dangerous off his back. This bout could be a back and forth war that produces a magical finish.

Armen Bakanyan (1-3-1 MMA) vs Dmitry Gerasimov (4-4MMA)

This is an easy candidate for Fight of the Night, simply because it already has been! If this rematch is any where close to as good as the first fight, everyone is in for an action-packed treat. The first fight ended in a close split decision that favored Gerasimov. Now 3 years later, these two are set to square off again. This time Bakanyan wants revenge, and his opponent Gerasimov wants to remove all doubt. Get ready for a nasty grudge match with all the violent trimmings. A last minute replacement on the card, may end up being the best fight of the night!

Main Card:

Moses Murrietta (2-0 MMA) vs Matthew Spencer (4-1 MMA) For the CXF Middleweight Championship

In his last bout Moses Murrietta was two parts lightning and one part thunder. Showcasing his superior boxing skills, he systematically picked apart a very tough John Gendron cruising to an rather oddly scored split decision victory. Murrietta sets up his power well with ranging strikes. He will need to use that range to contain his opponent who is somewhat of a bulldog. Matthew Spencer is built like an NFL fullback, and is just as athletic. In the clinch his power transforms opponents into victims quickly and on the mat things only get worse. A brown belt under Eddie Bravo, Spencer can quickly make the fight a foggy memory if your not careful. With a belt on the line, you can expect one hell of a high octane battle.

Jay Bogan (5-5 MMA) vs Cody Bollinger (16-5 MMA) For the CXF Featherweight Championship

Cody Bollinger is a veteran who has fought in pretty much every organization from the UFC on down. His stifling wrestling pedigree has picked up some pretty nasty striking along the way. Currently mired in a 3 fight losing streak Bollinger is looking to rebound with a win that would put him right back in the mix in the featherweight landscape. What his opponent Jay Bogan may lack in experience he certainly makes up for with ridiculous submission skills. With four of his five wins coming via submission Bogan is quick to attack in the transition. Equally dangerous on top position or on his back, Bogan can end the fight in an instant. This fight could end up being a battle of transitions, with the winner being crowned the CXF Featherweight Champion.

Alfred Kashakyan (5-2 MMA) vs Andrew Natividad (3-4 MMA) For the CXF Bantamweight Championship

Andrew Natividad is a very experienced and well rounded fighter. He possesses the one quality you cannot teach a fighter. He is a grinder. However in his last 2 fights, he came up on the wrong end of a decision to Ruben Duran and Juan Archuletta. His opponent Alfred Kashakyan has devastating knockout power in both hands, and brings a huge arsenal of weapons to the cage. Kashakyan is also coming off a disappointing loss, so his appetite is larger than ever. With the winner being crowned the CXF Bantamweight Champion you can bet this is going to be a great fight. Early candidate for Fight of the Night.

Terrion Ware (11-5 MMA) vs Rob Gooch (4-2 MMA)

Once the combat gods get there eyes on a matchup, they must be satisfied. This fight has been a long time coming. Finally after clearing up some red tape, and after all the injuries are healed, these two are going to throw down. Rob Gooch may be at a experience disadvantage record wise, but his skill is unquestionable. Equally dangerous on the mat or standing, Gooch is an extremely efficient fighter, a tactician with a keen mind. If your not on the ball at all times, Gooch can grab an arm or a leg, and end the fight in an instant. His opponent Terrion Ware has seemingly been one fight away from the UFC for a while now. Possibly one of the best bantamweights outside of the UFC, Ware is looking to make a statement, one signed with leather. A highlight reel win over a fighter like Rob Gooch may be the final piece in the puzzle. This fight could easily end up being the Fight of The Night.

Karen Darabedyan (11-5 MMA) vs Joe Condon (11-9 MMA) For The CXF 160lbs Championship 

This fight could easily be a money fight on a televised card. Both of these fighters have competed at the top level in mixed martial arts, both are still in their prime and both share a ridiculous grappling pedigree. Joe Condon has fought for titles in King of the Cage (twice), and competed in the 155 lbs tournament for World Series of Fighting. His experience speaks for itself. On his feet Condon has decent hands, but his defensive skills are amazing which often leads to openings for take downs. On the mat his finishing instincts shine. His methodical transitions to the back are relentless, and singular in purpose. Simply put if you give up your back, its pretty much over. His opponent Karen Darabedyan, like Condon is talented beyond words. Darabedyan a student of Gokor Chivichyan and Gene Lebell has some of the best leg locks in the game. If he grabs a leg, your going to be limping for along time. On his feet Darabedyan utilizes his compact frame to explode into his punches like a coiled snake. If he turns your chin, the room will get dim real quick. Once he has his opponents wounded, Darabedyan does not show mercy, well he sort of does, he doesn’t waste any time, and usually the finish comes quickly! Both of these fighters are climbing their way back to the top of the pecking order, so you can expect a war! This fight will not only product the CXF champion, the winner will also be arguably the best lightweight fighter in the state!

This event is in memory of the Armenian Genocide of 1915 and a portion of the proceeds will donated to charity. Never Forget!

 

By Staff:

Frequent guest on The Brutally Honest show, Chael Sonnen recently stopped by again to talk MMA with the boys, and when the topic of his former adversary Jon Jones came up, Sonnen offered some very simple advice, “Don’t Drive!” Check out the rest of the interview to hear some other words of wisdom ‘The American Gangster’ had for the former light heavyweight champion

Apparently that advice has fallen on deaf ears. It appears Jones has yet again been caught up in a traffic violation that may or may not have seen him driving without a license (according to several sources). His management team has countered that saying Jones was simply cited for speeding, and that he was fully licensed and insured. A Wednesday court date will clear up any ambiguities in the story.

Hopefully for Jones, this is just a speed bump as his rematch with Cormier having just been announced. Jon Jones is undoubtedly one of the most talented fighters on the planet, hopefully he can continue to keep his life on track!

The Brutally Honest Show is live every Wednesday 8pm pst . You can download episodes from iTunes or subscribe on Soundcloud. The show is also featured each week on .

 

 

Ronda Pissed-3

“People who knew little are usually great talkers, while men who know much say little” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

The loss was shocking. Holly Holm deserves all the credit for an amazing win. Yet the pundits pontificate. The so called experts feel compelled inevitably to lend their outside and uninformed ideas. Many times, in this case the reasons for the loss are mentioned more than the person who actually won. The truth is much less complicated. Yes Ronda Rousey was an undefeated mixed martial arts champion, and this loss is certainly devastating for her, but to think this is the first time she has lost is just silly.

To get to this point Ronda Rousey had to overcome so much adversity. She came into the world fighting. As an underdog from the start she was born barely breathing. Doctors gave her little chance of survival, yet she came back. The loss of her father at an early age could have dwarfed her spirit, it did not it only motivated her to becoming a judo champion, and an olympic bronze medalist. Later she transitioned to the sport of MMA. Once there she literally smashed through a glass ceiling that had previously viewed woman’s combat sports purely as a sideshow. Rousey not only single handedly created the division in the UFC, she dominated it for 3 years.

The sad part about the criticism is the pure vitriol imbedded in most of the comments. The qualified opinions and caveated explanations of why she lost are obvious attempts to attach parasitically on the back of a fallen champion. The internet is full of ticks that feed off the blood that others spill. The simple truth of the matter is one champion was created (Holly Holm) and one has the unique opportunity to become one again(Ronda Rousey). The belt is only a piece of metal that catches light, the work is what defines a champion. Ronda Rousey is certainly a champion.

Champions rise. In spite of reasoning or objection, despite criticism and doubt a true champion simply exists. They aren’t born that way, although some are born with gifts that make it easier. Everyone has to walk the walk, the gifted and the underdog the like. There is no chair lift to the top of the mountain. Rousey hiked that mountain, after climbing to the peak of many others. Its sad that so many are looking to make a name for themselves by claiming she took a helicopter to the top. For some reason I feel that most of those opinions will come back in with the tide. It is not a question of if Ronda Rousey can comeback, but more of a question of how Ronda Rousey will come back? And when?

 

Never a doubt? Paredes Hugs the ref!

Never a doubt? Paredes Hugs the ref!

By: Jonathan King The Clinch Report

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report and Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

‘Fight Night 3’ took place last Friday at The Sportsmens Lodge in Studio City California, and once again the event delivered. Fighters from throughout the region showed up in their best form, most dreaming of something bigger and better, while others once again simply enjoyed being in the mix.

The first fight of the evening also featured what many consider the Knockout of the Night. Veteran Johnny “Merc” Mercurio needed only :7 to dispatch journeyman Gabe Lopez with a nasty left hand that removed all of Lopez’s equilibrium, folding him instantly into a purely defensive posture, forcing the referee to step in and save him from further damage. The ferocious KO, definitely set the table for the fights that followed.

Next up local fan favorite Derion “DC” Chapman patiently waited for his spots, and found them in the third round when he finished his opponent Izic Fernandez with a nasty knee followed by a left hand that ended fight. Fernandez had success early in the contest, but seemed to fade just as Chapman began to pour it on.This was a Huge win for Chapman who now finds himself in the midst of a 2 fight win streak.

The third fight of the evening saw Chris Rodriguez survive an early assault from Levon Sargsyan, before he was able to ground Sargysan with a stifling wrestling game that eventually produced the rare ‘far arm’ choke finish at 2:25 of the very first round. Sargsyan look amazing on his feet but could not prevent the take downs, and eventually that is what cost him the win. Excellent showing for Rodriguez who withstood an early barrage enabling him to cinch up the win.

Talented 170 lbs prospect Anthony Hernandez needed only 2:28 seconds to destroy veteran Daniel McWilliams with I.Q changing elbows that brought the crowd to their feet. Hernandez quickly established himself has the more powerful striker, and appeared to be in control of the fight from the opening bell. The sheer violence of the finish will certainly put more than a few 170 lbs fighters in the area on notice!

The fifth scrap of the evening was also one of the most entertaining. Max Ceniceros was able to out last Dima Gerasimov in a back and forth donnybrook that saw both fighters land and absorb well beyond their thresholds should have allowed. The result; for three rounds the entire auditorium stood and watched with mouths agape, as these two warriors stood toe to toe in a fight reminiscent of Bonnar v Griffin I. Both men were battered, bloodied and bludgeoned, but in the end Ceniceros was able to pull out the unanimous decision on all cards. Great fight by two very courageous fighters who both refused to quit.

Bellator veteran Marcos Bonilla returned to the Lights Out Promotions and Bash Boxing cage, and also returned to his winning ways. Bonilla was able to swarm his opponent Adel Al Tamimi in the second round of their fight, TKO’ing him with some vicious ground and pound. The win is huge for Bonilla who returns to regional action after losing his Bellator debut to talented prospect A.J. McKee. With the win Bonilla may be just a few fights away from returning to the big leagues of MMA.

Undefeated prospect Matthew ‘The MOG’ Spencer remained untainted as a professional with a hard fought first round armbar victory over a very tough Jonathan Ferrell. Ferrell early on appeared to be in full control, staggering Spencer several times with pinpoint jabs, and cranium shattering elbows that appeared to momentarily stun Spencer. However Spencer quickly regained his composure, was able to return to his ground game base. Once he had the arm and went belly down, Ferrell really only had one legitimate option and he chose wisely. The tap forced the end to a very interesting fight that only lasted a total of 1:49, however this is a fight that gets no justice from the occasional viewer who briefly scans the results on Sherdog.

Next up, Muay Thai specialist Daniel Clark started off  his fight against savvy veteran Marlon Magee in classic fashion. Clark looked to set up his kicks with precise jab that kept Magee guessing, however it was the Alberto Crane jiujitsu pedigree that ended the fight. Clark was able to wrap up a rear-naked choke at 1:52 of the first round, ending another quick but very entertaining bout. The win moves Clark to 5-1 as a pro, and should be enough to get the attention of the larger promotions. If i was him, I would keep my phone real close.

The co main event of the evening was also by far the best fight of the night. For two rounds, the heavily favorite Alfred Khashakyan found himself down significantly to the relatively unknown Anthony Paredes out of Team Quest. Parades was able to take down Khashakyan at will, and with very little resistance. The tactic worked as Khashkyan for 2 rounds had no answer for the wrestlers attack. On his back for most of the fight, Khashkyan found himself down 10-9, 10-8 on most score cards, and appeared to be close to throwing in the towel. Instead exhausted, and bloodied he answered the bell in the third round and thank god he did! What came next was one of the most improbable comebacks in recent MMA history.

Late in the third round it appeared Paredes was gassing out, and that moment of weakness was all Khashkyan needed. Paredes ate a body shot that immediately paid divides for Khashkyan as he retreated to the cage in attempt to survive. Quickly Khashakyan closed the distance and unleashed a multiple punch combination that had Paredes covering up without offering any defense. A few more punches from Khashkyan found there target, and ended the night as referee Mike Bell had to stand in saving Paredes from further damage. The win a KO for Khashkyan may be the biggest of his career, but it will also serve as a wake up call. In this sport if you have a weakness, eventually it will be exposed.

The main event of the evening saw Los Angeles’s most popular regional fighter Thor Skancke defeat friend and former training partner Jason Cordero at 3:44 of the very first round. Skancke landed some nice leg kicks early that had his opponent thinking low, setting up his hands. Late in the round the fight found its way to the mat, where Skancke was able to establish position and quickly end the fight with some inspiring ground and pound. The win moves Skancke north of .500 as a pro, bring his record to 7-6, while Cordero drops to 5-7.

As always the violence was delivered, and everyone in attendance seemed to have a blast. If you have never been to a Lights Out Promotions/Bash Boxing event than you may want to reconsider. These guys put on affordable fights that thoroughly entertain, and consistently deliver highlight reel KO’s strategic submissions, and sometimes if your lucky,  you get a fight that just redefines your conception of the sport.

 

NOTE: GALLERY WILL BE EXPANDING THROUGHOUT THE WEEK AS MORE PHOTOS COME IN!

By: Jonathan M. King The Clinch Report

Video and Edited By: Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report
Chad ‘The Savage’ George has been around the mixed martial arts block a few times. He understands the game as well as anyone. He first burst into the rankings while fighting for the now defunct WEC (Which was purchased by ZUFFA in 2008 and later absorbed in 2010). While under the Zuffa umbrella, George earned his first win over John Hosman before losing to Scott Jorgensen, and Antonio Banuelos. The latter of the two bouts was a title eliminator bout, a fight George lost by a close decision.

Leading up to his last fight in the WEC, George was the subject of a documentary called “Occupation Fighter” which received a huge following on Netflix. The movie documented his training camp leading up to the bout with Banuelos. The movie brought a lot of attention to George, and it looked as though the UFC would be calling. Shortly after his last fight in the WEC, the UFC absorbed the promotion, however they only created one new division, leaving George and a host of others without a job.

Not one to wait, ‘The Savage’ returned to the regional scene and quickly picked up 3 wins in a row. Once again on the precipice, George stepped up to face current UFC contender Joe Soto under the Tachi Palace banner. George started out doing very well until he made a mistake and got caught in a choke that cost him the fight.

A subsequent loss to UFC bantamweight Cody Gibson followed . Then the storms came. The normal struggles that plague fighters began to pile up on George, however they were happening all at once. Two losses in a row set back his aspirations of UFC gold, but the injuries that followed threatened to end his career. A back injury and other assorted ailments left George’s fight career in limbo, however through the turmoil George found another passion; coaching.

George split with the former gym and created his own brand in California Mixed Martial Arts and Fitness. In a very short period of time the CMMA team has left an undeniable mark on the Southern California fight scene. The wins continued to pile up for the team, and although the head coach was proud of his new family, something was missing.

While getting the gym prepared and his injuries tended too, George soon found himself scratching at the old itch himself. A win over Sam Rodriguez on the regional scene primed George for his return to the national spotlight. He found that opportunity inside the Bellator MMA cage.

During the fight his opponent Mark Vorgeas attempted a guillotine choke however George deftly passed to side control where he applied what has become known as a ‘Von Flue’ choke. (A shoulder choke, that is named after Jason Von Flue who used the technique often with success!) George, an accomplished grappler knew his opponent was in a precarious situation and could tell by his disrupted breathing that the end was imminent.

As Vorgeas drifted into a state of unconsciousness a rather bizarre discussion ensued. “He’s out!”, George stated as he postured up, ready to drop hammers that remained holstered. ‘No he’s not!’ the referee blindly countered. After a few weird moments the referee looked in and finally agreed waiving off the fight.

The win and perhaps the bizarre circumstances behind the victory again thrust George into the spotlight. This time not as young gun with pink hair, but as a seasoned veteran and a true ambassador for the sport. Normally fighters are taught to wait for the referee to pull them off before relenting their attack. Had George acted like most, the whole sport itself would have been colored with the barbaric brush once again.

Although his recent win for Bellator MMA grabbed them a ton of notoriety (which they most definitely exploited), for some reason they have yet to book him another fight. In George it appears they could have what the UFC lacks, a marketable 135lbs fighter that could translate to the masses outside of the cage.

Instead it appears Bellator would prefer to promote aging legends and ‘never have beens’ whose only relevance is in projected ratings on a piece of paper. However one thing is certain in the MMA world one man gathers what another man spills, and its only a matter of time before the UFC realize the earning potential a fighter like George can bring.

 

By: Jonathan M. King

Photos By: John Walsh The Clinch Report

And Bob Fisher Pugilpix.com

Jose Lopez looking for the finish!

Jose Lopez looking for the finish!

History sets the tone. It may not always give you an accurate depiction of the present, but the past tells the story. Yesterday is what makes us look forward to today. In the fight world, the past serves as a reminder as where you are, where you were, and most importantly how far you have come!

When Santiago Diaz (3-1) looks back at his still young amateur career he can see progress. After losing his first bout (a close decision), Diaz has rallied with 3 straight impressive wins, with two of those victories coming by way of  impressive knockout. The string of victories have vaulted Diaz up the state rankings, where he sits as the #5 Heavyweight.

His opponent Jose Lopez (4-0), is no stranger to Diaz. In fact it was Lopez who handed Diaz his first and only loss. Since that win, Lopez has only managed to fight once, a bout he won via disqualification. Unfortunately since no one will fight him, his inactivity has led to his current ranking as the #7 Heavyweight in the state, despite his win over Diaz.

History’s only flaw, is today. Today history has melted into the present, and currently we have two colossal men set to face off for the second time. Lopez looks to remain undefeated as an amateur, and a more confident Diaz will look to avenge his only loss while maintaining his current win streak.

This fight has the makings of being better than the epic first bout. Will Diaz’s new found success in the cage carry him over the undefeated Lopez? Will Lopez once again be able to vanquish his familiar foe? (Insert Batman Music Here)

There is only one way to find out! Come to the Hollywood Park Casino on May 30th, buy a ticket and enjoy the carnage! For tickets and information go to: www.SparStarPromotions.com