Niklas Backstrom Defeats Tom Niinimaki via Rear Naked Choke (0:45) Round 1
In a quick lived, back and forth ground battle, the fight between Niinimaki and Backstrom saw one fighter’s takedowns against the submission grappling of the other. Niinimaki secured a takedown about halfway through the first round but was unable to do much with it. Backstrom through up submission after submission from his back, creating scrambles and reversals. A close Guillotine attempt by Backstrom soon turned into the rare bulldog choke. Unable to break the grip of Backstrom, Niinimaki was forced to tap with less than a minute in the round.
Sean Strickland Defeats Luke Barnatt via Split Decision
A clash of two undefeated middleweight prospects resulted in one of the least entertaining fights on the card. For the entiretly of the fight, both these men seemed to be stuck in the ‘feeling out’ process. Strickland fought almost entirely with a jab while Barnatt couldn’t find and openeing to pull the trigger. By the 3rd round, Barnatt was stalking Strickland, throwing hard punches, hoping to land a big one. Strickland was content to dodge, parry, and slip Barnatt’s punches and sit behind his own jab. Strickland was announced the winner despite the fact that he seemed to forget that he knows more than one punch.
The CB Dollaway resurgence keeps on rolling! At one point in his career, CB Dollaway seemed destined to remain a middle-of-the-pack middleweight, but he has certainly changed all that with his past few performances. Gone is the CB Dollaway that used to use his wrestling ability to lay on his opponents for 3 rounds. Replacing that fighter is the CB Dollaway who throws his hands up in the air and waves his opponent on in an effort to hit him. This fight was an exciting back and forth affair seeing Carmont’s tight Muay Thai game vs. Dollaway’s tough, brawling style. Though the stand up might have belonged to Carmont early in the fight, Dollaway landed a left hook in the first round that dropped Carmont and put ‘The Doberman’ in attack mode. The second round saw Francis Carmont roaring and CB Dollaway flexing and yelling to the crowd to get louder. Both these men had their moments in the stand up exchanges, but it was Dollaway’s pace and well-placed takedowns that saw him get the judges nod.
A short lived, and dominate fight. Gegard Mousasi certainly displayed his skills in the main event in Berlin. Stuffing every Munoz takedown with ease, Mousasi, as per usual, looked bored in this fight. He nonchalantly nearly locked on a front choke, forcing Munoz to give up the top position. Mousasi then systematically out positioned Munoz on the ground and eventually locked in the rear-naked choke for the victory. An astoundingly dominate performance for Mousasi.
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