For one fighter seemingly on his way out, and one arguably on her way up, both found ways to win decisively at the Arena Theater in Houston, Texas, at Legacy 21 on AXS TV on Friday evening.
WEC and UFC veteran Leonard Garcia, making his Legacy debut, had his first fight since being cut from the UFC. In the opening round, his opponent Rey Trujillo scored an early takedown after a mutual striking exchange off balanced the pair. Trujillo also scored on a few strikes from on top before backing out and allowing Garcia to stand. Trujillo was able to land on the big show veteran, but was never able to capitalize despite clearly having Garcia hurt a number of different times.
By the second round, Garcia changed game plans and took Trujillo to the ground, ultimately scoring a takedown and back take early. Despite the effort, Trujillo was able to escape and the two went back to trading on the feet. Eventually the pair traded a set of takedowns with Garcia getting his closer to the end of the round. The Greg Jackson/Team Alpha Male product was briefly reversed before eventually landing a reverse of his own that shut down the exchange.
In the third and final frame, Garcia opened almost immediately with a series of punches that drove Trujillo backwards only for him land a head kick that sent Trujillo crashing to the mat as Garcia's shin collided with Trujillo's forehead. Garcia followed up with a series of wild is devastating punches before the referee had no choice but to stop it. The end happened at just 24 seconds into the round.
Bellator veteran and former top professional boxer Holly Holm was able to get past Allanna Jones via second-round TKO in what was also her Legacy FC debut. Holm opened the first frame slowly settling into her striking repertoire, first with single shots with her hands and eventually moving to multi-strike, kickboxing combinations.
After a brief halt to their bout in the first round due to an inadvertent eye poke, Holm moved to wide outside strikes as she utilized her push kick and overhand left to land what she could despite a clearly if temporarily shut right eye.
In the second round, Holm began to use single shot jabs to the body, short right hooks and constant movement. Holm was able to close the show, however, after using the jab to set Jones up by getting her to move to her right. As she faded over, Holm drilled her with a head kick that landed unobstructed. The thundering kick dropped Jones immediately and her hands flailed back when she crashed to the mat. The knockout came officially at 2:22 of the second round.
In other main card action, former NCAA Division I national wrestling champion Darion Caldwell used his superior athleticism, wrestling, scrambling and grappling to take a unanimous decision victory over Gerzan Chaw.
For the vacant Legacy middleweight title, Bubba Bush took the belt that UFC middleweight Andrew Craig left behind. He was able to score a a trip takedown in the first round, which allowed him to spend the first part of the round on top in his opponent Larry Crowe's half guard. Referee Kerry Hatley eventually stood the fighters up, but Bush put Crowe on his back again with an identical takedown. Crowe was able to stand again after a failed Von Flue choke attempt from Bush, but couldn't mount any real offense.
By the second round, Bush moved almost immediately into mount from the beginning of the round. Towards the middle of the frame, he began to unload with strikes from top position. Eventually referee Hatley was forced to call the contest at 2:41 of the second frame as Crowe could do nothing but flail and absorb punishment.
In the main event and for the Legacy bantamweight title, Matt Hober stopped Angel Huerta in the first round to become that organization's newest champion. Hobar ate several hard knees to the body in the first round as they circled one another before securing a double in the first round to plant Huerta on the canvas. Huerta was able to briefly stand before Hobar off balanced him by turning him with double under hooks standing. Hobar moved to mount, then rear mount and quickly sunk the rear-naked choke for the win.