Welcome to the latest edition of Missed Fists where we shine a light on fights from across the globe that may have been overlooked in these hectic times where it seems like there’s an MMA show every other day.
Things definitely picked up last week, didn’t they? Not only did the UFC come back in full force, but so did some of the most well-known regional and international and Alaskan promotions. This like that one episode on every season of Survivor where they starve for weeks and then get to eat real food again and everyone starts vomiting and pooping.
So everyone get ready to vomit and poop your hearts out as we indulge in sweet, sweet highlights!
Pauline Macias vs. Madaline Meacham
Anthony Adams vs. Josh Cavan
Austin Jones vs. Caleb Born
AL: It was nearly impossible to pick a place to start off this week, but Legacy Fighting Alliance’s first show of 2019, which took place last Friday in Broomfield, Col., is as a good a spot as any. Ronda Rousey judo pal Pauline Macias competed in her second pro fight, a strawweight bout against Madaline Meacham.
Macias’s debut headlined Missed Fists last June after she picked up a quick armbar submission a la Rousey and her second win was even more headline-worthy.
That’s Meacham getting her jaw jacked and Macias rushing in to punch her some more anyway. Can we break down the etiquette on this one?
JM: Tough call here. As you know, I’m a huge supporter of cheating in MMA, but this does get awfully close to being a bad look. I can see how Macias might think that Meacham is looking for a timeout — not a thing in MMA, despite copious evidence against — and wants to keep that from happening but considering Meacham basically looks at Macias and says “stop” before she turns to the ref, this feels iffy.
AL: And here I thought you’d have a more bloodthirsty take on this. You continue to surprise me.
JM: I’m not a monster. Meacham’s Instagram after the fight clears things up a bit, saying that the ref encouraged Macias to keep going.
View this post on Instagram
Alright guys, sorry for the delay on the post-fight-post! Just to get it out of the way: Yes, I broke my jaw! And yes, I am feeling...great! I am so thrilled to have put up a great fight. In the second round my jaw went numb and I could feel my permanent retainer dislodged. I knew I had to stop because I couldn’t tell if I had lost teeth or was going to swallow teeth/retainer. Unfortunatley when I verbally tapped the ref misunderstood and thought I wanted a time out and encouraged my opponent to keep going. Luckily it wasn’t long and I was able to see the doctor to confirm my jaw was indeed, broken. A massive thank you to everyone who was with me in spirit & cheering me on through TV! I am so grateful for the opportunity to fight and for my opponent @paulinepitamacias for giving it her all! #lfafighting #lfa #mmafighter #mmawomen
It’s not great, but I think chalking it up to a failure to communicate is probably okay. Let this be a lesson kids, if you’re going to verbally tap, wave your hands visibly or tell your opponent, “I tap” or else you my get cracked in your broken jaw.
AL: That ref has got to get in there. Nice to see that Meacham is in good spirits. I’m also glad her pain receptors are working so she knew to bow out, unlike Caleb Born.
Now that is what I call HEADS UP defense!
JM: There are few ideas in this sport worse than employing the “no offense, no defense, no trash talk even” strategy. Now, leaning your head forward and trying to take shots of the front of the skull is actually, fairly effective but that is just ridiculous.
AL: In a shocking result, Born lost to opponent Austin Jones by unanimous decision.
AL: With those quirky clips behind us, let’s talk about welterweight Anthony Adams and his stunning KO of Josh Cavan.
Adams was unable to secure a contract on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series last year, dropping a split decision to Chibwikem Onyenegecha. This was his LFA debut and considering that the Texas-based promotion is a proven pipeline to the UFC, Adams could already be on his way to moving on from Missed Fists.
JM: Man, Cavan has a chin on him. I almost thought he might stage a comeback with that hook he threw while backed up against the fence, but it was not to be. Instead, Adams literally bowled him over with a punch. I’d like to see one more good showing from Adams before he gets the callup but he’s definitely well on his way.
Tony Gravely vs. Kris Moutinho
Nate Andrews vs. Bryce Logan
Eric Spicely vs. Leo Pla
AL: Moving on to Classic Entertainment & Sports 54 in Lincoln, R.I., which aired on UFC Fight Pass on Saturday, we have a card where the three top fights did not disappoint.
In the main event, Tony Gravely defended his bantamweight title against rising prospect Kris Moutinho and while I admire Moutinho’s persistence, I’m not sure if the following is an example of “How Best to Defend Against a Leglock” or “The Worst Way to Apply a Leglock”:
JM: Definitely more the latter than the former. Moutinho has lost the knee and is holding on too long here, but in fairness, Gravely isn’t really defending. He’s not trying to extract his leg, he’s trying to extract Moutinho’s soul through his skull and it appears to work. Such is the danger of leg locks.
You know what else is dangerous? Shooting in when you are rocked. Addled brains lead to strangled necks as Bryce Logan found out.
Beautiful sequence from Nate Andrews and the lightweight champ becomes 15-1 with 15 finishes on his career, and makes it 9 straight for the longest win streak in @CESMMA history! #CES54 #UFCFIGHTPASS pic.twitter.com/pSwW24XCks— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) January 19, 2019
Now Nate Andews is a guy who should be getting the call anyday.
AL: Indeed, at 15-1, the CES lightweight champ one to watch. Andrews will be 35 in April, so let’s hope the UFC picks him up sooner rather than later.
JM: The guy won’t be a champion but he definitely deserves to hear Buffer call his name at least once.
AL: We want to give a special shoutout to former UFC fighter and “Marreta” vanquisher Eric Spicely, who returned to the regional scene with a win over late-notice replacement Leo Pla. Spicely’s originally scheduled opponent Stephen Regman withdrew from the matchup and this wasn’t the most impressive finish, but Spicely took care of business against an overmatched opponent and in his home state of Rhode Island no less.
JM: Eric Spicely fights? I thought he was a pro wrestler?
AL: Well let me tell you something, brother (RIP Mean Gene), I spoke to Spicely about his tryout with the WWE and folks can read about all that on this here website.
Jesse Hull vs. Bryan Dyer
Enoka Sautia vs. Charlie Gallant
AL: And now one more stop in North America, though we may as well be talking about another planet when we’re dealing with the fine folks of Alaska Fighting Championship. Alaska FC 144 took place in Anchorage with all weirdness we’ve come to know and love from the fighters and the commentary team of Giovanni DeVera and Kevin Avellar.
To open the show, we have middleweight Jesse Hull going full berserker after taking a body kick from Bryan Dyer.
Do not touch this man’s belly!
JM: Now that one is worse than Macias’s possible infraction. Hull continues Donkey Kong’ing Dyer well after the referee valiantly intercedes. I get that you can be caught up in the moment but honestly, he could’ve stopped himself well before the ref even got there. Just on the borderline of be punishable with a DQ, honestly.
AL: The second fight from this card we have to talk about is Enoka Sautia vs. Charlie Gallant, if only because we don’t get a lot of super heavyweight action stateside. Both guys actually move kind of okay, though Avellar might be pushing it when he calls this “ballet with punches”.
JM: There’s a reason we don’t have a lot of super heavyweight fights and this is a solid example. These guys are not superheavies because they are pushing the bounds of human genetics and athleticism, like a Brock Lesnar is, if you get what I’m saying.
Also, I won’t claim to be an avid ballet watcher but maybe I would be if I saw the same ones as Avellar. I don’t recall the rats in the Nutcracker getting lit up like this or else I might have been more supportive of my family’s Christmas tradition:
AL: Afterwards, Avellar asks Sautia what he did to get into shape for his fight, but Sautia was a short-notice replacement so he says, “To be honest, I only had two days, so I just had to eat and get fat with my family and I’m gonna go eat with my family after this.”
Then Avellar asks if he wants to see the replay and Sautia says, “No.”
Alaska FC 144 is available for replay on UFC Fight Pass.
Oscar Yaqut vs. Andreas Satyawan
Ni Kang Kang vs. Sunoto
Kwon Won Il vs. Anthony Engelen
Jonathan Haggerty vs. Joseph Lasiri
AL: But wait, there’s more! We can’t leave off without checking in on Saturday’s ONE Championship: Eternal Glory show in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The full show is available for free on YouTube and the promotion’s app, and I highly recommend viewers check out the opening featherweight bout between Sanda gold medalist Oscar Yaqut and Andreas Satyawan. Yaquit comes out firing like a maniac and denies Satyawan’s attempts to grapple, then ends up getting full mount himself in round two and forcing Satyawan to tap to strikes.
Two fights later, Niu Kang Kang did a bad, bad thing to Sunoto.
JM: Is it just me or did this look a lot like Cowboy’s kick on Hernandez? Someone needs to look into whether Sunoto was talking mad trash beforehand or not. Also someone should look into whether he’s still alive or whether his body now resides in a cage in Jakarta.
Speaking of dead bodies, RIP Anthony Englen, we hardly knew ye.
The straight right from Kwon Won II is nice and almost looks like a boop on the nose, but that follow-up shot is pure thunder.
AL: Englen was responsible for one last year’s best head kick KOs when he took out Meas Mau in November, but to everything there is a season, as the song goes, and it was Englen’s turn turn turn to get stung this time.
Out last clip comes from a Muay Thai bout between Jonathan Haggerty and Joseph Lasiri. Pre-fight, Lasiri was breaking out some witchcraft as he was introduced...
… but it was Haggerty whose striking turned out to be magic.
JM: That looked more like dancing than magic to me, and Haggerty looked more like one of those martial arts expos where a guy with a mustache and a gi breaks thirty cinder blocks with his elbow. Except the cinder blocks were Lasiri’s head.
Improbably, this did not result in an immediate KO. Lasiri actually got up and fought on. Even more impossibly, Lasiri even rallied back and was arguably winning the fight afterwards. He ended up losing a UD and it’s hard to think that elbow didn’t play a factor with the decision, but full credit to that man for surviving a move too deadly for even the UFC to allow.
AL: This is now Exhibit A anytime someone wants to argue that 12-6 elbow can ruin a man’s life.
What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?
This poll is closed
Pauline Macias’s jaw assault
Tony Gravely punches his way out of a leglock
Jesse Hull goes nuts on Bryan Dyer
Niu Kang Kang terminates "The Terminator"
Jonathan Haggerty’s standing 12-6 elbow
Other (comment below)
If you know of a recent fight or event that you think may have been overlooked or a promotion that could use some attention, please let us know on Twitter @JedKMeshew and @AlexanderKLee using the hashtag #MissedFists.