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.
Before we do anything, we have to congratulate two-time Missed Fists standout Michel Pereira on his dazzling UFC debut this past weekend in Rochester. We first met young Michel when he won our hearts with a straight-up stupid performance against Hae Jun Yang and then somehow topped that by flying around like he was in a stage production of Robin Hood in a win over Dae Sung Kim.
We stopped short of naming Pereira the Missed Fists Fighter of the Year (Charles Bennett would not and never will be denied), but I imagine he’s not too heartbroken about it given how things turned out.
Willian Baraka vs. Douglas Wendel
Willian Baraka KO's Douglas Wendel!! Hot Damn! #WOCS54 #WOCS #MMA #Fights #Fighting #KO #Knockout https://t.co/VyrXwJAT6B— wildmatt (@wildmatt) May 19, 2019
AL: While it’s always fun to usher in the new, we also want to honor newly announced UFC Hall of Fame inductee Rashad Evans in our own charming way. More accurately, a 1-2 combination from Willian Baraka to Douglas Wendel paid homage to Evans’s unfortunate loss to Lyoto Machida back at UFC 98.
I can only describe the above as “Stanky Leg 2019.”
JM: We may have peaked early this week because that fight was awesome.
The two just stand in the pocket trading shots before Wendel put forth what has to be the frontrunner for “He Fell Funny” of 2019. Probably not the way you want to start off your pro MMA career but hey, there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Plus, when someone finally gives me an MMA promotion to run, I will seek out fighters who get knocked out in comical ways. After all, if you’re gonna lose, do it in a fan-friendly fashion.
AL: In all seriousness, huge congratulations to Evans who had an outstanding career and is more than deserving of enshrinement in the Hall of Fame.
The Baraka-Wendel fight and the rest of Watch Out Combat Show 54, which took place in Rio de Janeiro on Saturday, is available on the promotion’s Facebook page.
Samy Sana vs. Yodsanklai
Jo Nattawut vs. Sasha Moisa
Miao Li Tao vs. Dejdamrong
Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev vs. Amir Khan
AL: As noted by Lucas Bourdon, Friday was a day of upsets in the kickboxing world and that included a pair of highly anticipated matchups at ONE Championship: Enter the Dragon in Kallang, Singapore (event available for international viewers on YouTube and to U.S. viewers via Bleacher Report, as well as on the ONE app).
First, in what was probably the best fight of the weekend, Samy Sana avenged five-and-a-half-year-old loss to Yodsanklai, out-slugging the Thai superstar and handing him his first loss since November 2011.
JM: First of all, as a man who specializes in Takes, I’ve got to respect the hell out of Schiavello for arguing that Yodsanklai was not hurt despite him being unable to stand up after getting dropped.
Secondly, the second round of this fight was bananas. The third was also great but the second was really where things got wild. Props to Sana for the win. Great showing against an excellent opponent.
AL: Sana is moving on to the semifinals of the $1,000,000 155-pound tournament where he will fight Dzhabar Askerov.
On the other side of the bracket, there was another upset as Petchmorakot outpointed Giorgio Petrosyan, though the result has since been changed to a no contest after officials ruled that Petchmorakot engaged in illegal clinching throughout the match.
Petchmorakot and Petrosyan will meet in an immediate rematch for the right to face Jo Nattawut, who emphatically closed the door on his matchup with Sasha Moisa:
Smokin’ Jo Nattawut turns up the and finishes Sasha Moisa with a third-round TKO, moving on to the ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Grand Prix semifinals! #WeAreONE #EnterTheDragon #Singapore #MartialArts pic.twitter.com/MnbjuFsgyz— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) May 17, 2019
JM: That knockdown was awesome. It looked like Moisa decided to start sprinting only he ran directly down into the canvas. Man, tournaments are just the best.
AL: As far as the MMA portion of the card went, there was no shortage of action there either.
WHAT. A. KNOCKOUT— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) May 17, 2019
Miao Li Tao turns the lights out on former ONE World Champion Dejdamrong with a HUGE left hook! #WeAreONE #EnterTheDragon #Singapore #MartialArts pic.twitter.com/1eHpsHlUSt
Miao Li Tao turned former ONE 115-pound champion Dejdamrong into former living human Dejdamrong with a left hand right on the proverbial button.
JM: You know what I don’t think I’ve ever noticed but I’m definitely feeling? The bell being frantically hammered when someone dies at ONE. Sure, we know the fight is over because there’s a dead body in the ring and the referee has intervened, but I like the panache of the bell. It’s certainly better than hearing “It’s allllllllllllll over!” 13 times a night.
AL: And Saygid Guseyn Arslanaliev crushed Amir Khan with a few gorgeous uppercuts to move into the finals of the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix where he waits for either Lowen Tynanes or Timofey Nastyukhin:
"Dagi" Arslanaliev PUNCHES his ticket to the ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix finals by knocking out Amir Khan in Round 1! #WeAreONE #EnterTheDragon #Singapore #MartialArts pic.twitter.com/To2Ec2KeOz— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) May 17, 2019
JM: Oh MMAmir Khan. You are not nearly as good as your boxing counterpart, yet I can’t help but think of him every time you lose, which seems to be often lately. Perhaps he’ll fight Eddie Alvarez next in a battle of men who have lost to Nastyukhin.
Alex Pereira vs. Jason Wilnis
AL: Continuing the trend of kickboxing upsets, Marat Grigorian won a decision over Sitthichai to take the Glory lightweight title, but the real highlight of Glory 65 (available for replay on UFC Fight Pass) was Alex Pereira defending his middleweight belt with a skull-rattling knee on Jason Wilnis:
ALEX PEREIRA IS A MONSTER!!! He DESTROYS Jason Wilnis to defend his middleweight title! #GLORY65 pic.twitter.com/6PidF0kDO3— GLORY Kickboxing (@GLORY_WS) May 17, 2019
JM: You know how everyone is all jazzed about our boy Michel Pereira’s flying knee-to-right hand combo KO over the weekend? Well, this one is much better. That landed flush and didn’t need a right hand behind it.
I guess Pereira means flying skull-crusher in Portuguese.
Keiji vs. Hitoshi Sugimoto
AL: Sticking around in the world of kickboxing, we offer a round of applause to cruiserweights (approx. 200 pounds) Hitoshi Sugimoto and Keiji for throwing it all down at K-1 Krush Fight.101 in Tokyo on Saturday:
Keiji faceplanted Hitoshi in 2R (K-1 Krush) pic.twitter.com/JTPQ0fFiKg— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 18, 2019
Sugimoto went in to brawl and die. Mission accomplished.
JM: If it weren’t for Wendel’s glorious sacrifice to start this column, Hitoshi would be up for the “He Fell Funny” of the week. The delayed faceplant is a personal favorite of mine because it looks like his mind is ahead of his body on the whole “Nope, I’m done here thing.” He drops to his knees like he’s finished and then his brain finally catches up and shuts the lights off. Plop.
Aorigele vs. Jae Hyuk Heo
Dong Guk Shin vs. Tamotsu Hayashi
AL: Ah, Road FC, I love you so. Where else can we watch our main men Aorigele and Jae Hyuk Heo doing their thing?
Two 340+ lb Heavyweights Fight At ROAD FC 53
Two 340+ lb Heavyweights Fought At ROAD FC 53 It Was Amazing.Posted by DAZN on Saturday, May 18, 2019
That Facebook clip has the entire fight between Aorigele and Heo from last Friday, but it doesn’t include Heo’s singing so really what’s the point? This is what the people want:
my singing idol - Jae Hyuk Heo is about to fight this monster Aorigele now pic.twitter.com/i30xh2mMLb— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 18, 2019
JM: It’s true, who doesn’t love karaoke. And I’ve certainly heard worse renditions of Queen. Hell, I’ve sung worse renditions of Queen. Unfortunately for him, Aorigele was in fact able to Stop Him Now.
Aorigele destroyed Jae Hyuk Heo ib 1R (RoadFC) pic.twitter.com/SNJfUkM2YI— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 18, 2019
Also, shout out to Road FC for pretending that heavyweight doesn’t stop at 265. At least their graphics department knew this was an openweight contest.
AL: The lightweight fight just before the co-main event had a wild finish, with Dong Guk Shin eventually getting a bead on Tamotsu Hayashi for the TKO win. But there’s a lot happening here, break this one down for me:
crazy finish— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 18, 2019
Dong Guk Shin TKOd Hayashi in 1R (RoadFC) pic.twitter.com/uxfc3lpdIU
JM: How can I break down the Tasmanian Devil fighting a whirling dervish? You know what this reminds me of though? How dope my MMA Slip ‘n Slide league would be.
Also, what is on Shin’s back? Is that tape? I have so many questions.
AL: Let’s wrap up this week by checking in on the wild world of lethwei, courtesy of @inxxane.
Natkhat Aung vs. Gyit Too is a draw. All Natkhat in this fight but couldn't finish him. pic.twitter.com/HDEvqVOgVS— inxxane (@inxxane) May 19, 2019
The old headbutt to the back of the head attempt. pic.twitter.com/9Al1IbmJZ5— inxxane (@inxxane) May 19, 2019
I honestly can’t provide much info on these clips other than to tell you that they came from a show in Hpa-an, Myanmar, but I can say that the headbutt to the back of the head needs to be legalized everywhere immediately. No can defend!
JM: I’m glad to see you are finally coming around to my line of things on the headbutts. We need those back in MMA, stat.
Also, those clips don’t need context, they’re just awesome. That throw was sick and if you’re ever in a vicious street fight (and really, what is lethwei if not a vicious street fight in a ring?) and don’t headbutt the back of someone’s skull, you’re doing it wrong.
AL: Remember kids, there’s only one rule in lethwei: First one to die, loses!
What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?
This poll is closed
Stanky Leg 2019
Samy Sana and Yodsanklai go to war
Miao Li Tao deadens Dejdamrong
Alex Pereira’s knockout knee
Other (leave 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.