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.
There is plenty of craziness to get to this week, even more so than usual somehow, but we’re reaching back a little further than usual to start things off, shining a light on a gem from April 26.
Nnaemeka Nwoye vs. Apoaya Faruk
AL: Bless @VonPreux for tracking this one down and bless the rains down in Africa for producing what is clearly the frontrunner for Fight of the Year.
From Day 1 of Warrior Sports Championship’s three-day Africa Warrior King event (takes breath), here are rookie welterweights Nnaemeka Nwoye and Apoaya Faruk GOING. AT. IT.
I just… I need a minute here.
JM: I’m not even sure why we have other clips to discuss. I could spend a lifetime talking about this one. I guess we should start with the mount defense, because whooooo buddy is it non-existent. Much like the striking defense. Or the striking skill. All of it is worthy of a paper to be submitted for peer review.
But instead, let’s talk about the greatest idea fighting may have ever had. It’s my own idea that I came up with while watching this and it’s simple: Slip ‘n Slide MMA.
Can you imagine how much fun it would be? Two fighters oiled up and put on a wet, soapy canvas in the middle of a cage. Think of the possibilities. If everyone is greased up, there would be no way to control someone on the ground but the slick surface would make striking impossible. I can’t imagine anything more entertaining to watch than two elite athletes struggling to get their bodies to respond under impossible conditions.
And imagine when someone got rocked! Would we even be able to tell? Would an opponent be able to capitalize or would they knock themselves out trying to sprint across a surface that’s slicker than a baby seal! How has this not happened before?!
AL: You’re gone for one week and this is what we get. Not even easing back into it.
Now I need another minute. While I gather myself, our readers can check out the FITE TV offer to view all three Africa Warrior King events for the price of one.
Kaik Brito vs. Juan Jose Ibanez
Bruno Roverso vs. Elismar Lima
Flavio Santos vs. Gabriel Ziller
And we’re back, thankfully with some straightforward action that (fingers crossed) won’t inspire any insane rants.
Kaik Brito is a 22-year-old Brazilian lightweight who improved to 12-1 at Katana Fight 9 in Parana, Brazil, this past Saturday after doing this to Juan Jose Ibanez:
Cold Killer KO by Kaik Brito ✌️— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 5, 2019
(Katana Fight) pic.twitter.com/lIT4A0ac8X
JM: Just think how much cooler that would have been if his body went skidding across the cage floor like an anime cartoon!
But fine. Since you are fun-policing the hell out of me right now, at least it’s with Katana fights, where apparently everyone went completely insane over the weekend.
Brito’s KO wasn’t even the best KO of the event. Those honors belong to Bruno Roverso who landed a beaut of a head kick on Elismar Lima.
kick to the face— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 5, 2019
3R KO by Bruno Roverso (Katana Fight) pic.twitter.com/xwc2HkeFnH
Talk about perfect timing.
AL: I’m calling a minor foul on this. How dare Roverso break out that gorgeous head kick in the middle of what was clearly supposed to be a traditional exchange of fisticuffs. I say, how dare you, sir! On the other hand, one of these guys walked out with the W and the other may not have walked out at all, so you can’t really criticize Roverso too much, can you?
Roverso has also now finished his last four opponents, so you can’t criticize that either. He next competes at Future FC 5 in less than three weeks.
Our last clip features some slick grappling from Flavio Santos as he scores a choke submission while using his legs to trap Gabriel Ziller’s arm as opposed to hooking them around his body.
Flávio Madruga violence (Katana Fight) pic.twitter.com/pLhdHml342— Jolassanda (@Jolassanda) May 5, 2019
Again, can’t question it. It works.
JM: Well it definitely works against a man who just took 897 unanswered shots to the head. That was one of the most prolonged beatings I’ve ever seen where the guy in survival shot mode was actually still surviving. It felt like he was scrambling around forever before he got crucifix-RNC’d. Shout out to the savage foot-sweep toss from Santos. That was a straight-up big brother move.
Full bouts from Katana Fight 9 can be watched for free on the promotion’s Facebook page.
Thanh Le vs. Yusup Saadulaev
Yodpanomrung Jitmuangnon vs. Tyler Hardcastle
AL: It almost feels like we shouldn’t include ONE in our roundup of overlooked promotions, considering they have an estimated viewership of 800 million households per event (give or take a few hundred million), but I don’t think anyone will begrudge us including some highlights from last Friday’s show in Indonesia.
Especially when they’re as sweet as Thanh Le’s clobbering of Yusup Saadulaev:
JM: I agree. I too felt conflicted about whether or not to discuss this one but then I felt even more conflicted about how I would feel if Thanh Le got mad at me for not including it and decided to knee me in the head like he did Yusup. So while the latest ONE event may have been seen by 679 million people globally (rough estimate per ONE officials) my own selfish interests in keeping my head attached to my shoulders mean we can still treat it like a hidden gem.
Also, more like “Sadu-layed the f*ck out,” amiright?
AL: I hated that last sentence so much. But not as much as Yodpanomrung Jitmuangnon seemed to hate Tyler Hardcastle’s ribcage in this Muay Thai encounter:
Muay Thai legend Yodpanomrung Jitmuangnon connects with a devastating knee to secure a knockout victory over Tyler Hardcastle at 2:11 of Round 3! #WeAreONE #ForHonor #Jakarta #MartialArts pic.twitter.com/Y4Mam6jUWk— ONE Championship (@ONEChampionship) May 3, 2019
JM: The things I said about Thanh Le go double for Jitmuangnon. Give me a quick, clean decapitation over disembowelment any day of the week.
Oh, and also, more like “Hard-cast down from on high by the righteous knee of Jitmuangnon,” amiright? (This one could use some workshopping).
AL: Why work on something that can’t be fixed?
Juan Gonzalez vs. Antonio Silva
Eduardo Dinis vs. Kaio Tavares
Mario Sousa vs. Cemey dos Santos
Igeu Kabesa vs. Karlo Caput
For example, let’s zip down to Sao Paulo to check out Juan Gonzalez’s innovative guard pass.
Seems to work fine to me. Gonzalez would actually go on to beat Antonio “Not Bigfoot” Silva by unanimous decision, which isn’t surprising since this was probably worth a 10-7 round on its own.
JM: You can literally see in his head the moment he realizes he’s an idiot and he tries to defy gravity and float back to his feet.
That’s still a damn sight better than poor Kaio Tavares, who is all fired up after landing a great shot, only to have his dreams crushed by Eduardo Dinis’s much cleaner shot.
More like KOed Tavares, amiright?
AL: *sigh* youareright
I really admire Dinis’s incredible defense, blocking Tavares’s punch with his face before countering with the KO blow. More fighters should do this.
And more fighters should also do what Mario Sousa did here, slamming Cemey dos Santos and literally hammering his mouthpiece out of his head.
JM: That was such a curious slam. He barely slams him but dos Santos reacts like he got drilled to the ground, because those hammer fists were immediate and not even defended.
If you’d like to see an example of great defense, check out Igeu Kabesa D-ing up his EFC featherweight title on Saturday with a monstrous shot on Karlo Caput.
Do I even need to say it?
JM: Are you sure?
AL: Does it matter what I say?
JM: You could say “Karlo is caput” after that KO!
AL: Out. Standing.
Even that can’t dampen my mood because of our final entry of the week, the absurd 150 vs. 150 Historical Medieval Battle (HMB > MMA) that took place last week in Smederevo, Serbia.
Yes, 150 people vs. 150 people. Last week, I wrote about how uninteresting I find team MMA, but I see now that I just needed more people. Over a hundred more, apparently, preferably armed with swords, shields, and a full set of armor.
JM: You are so lucky I wasn’t here last week. We would have had a violent fight over your disdain for team MMA. The only thing better than team MMA would be team MMA on a Slip ‘n Slide.
But full fledged knight fights are a close second, especially when we are talking massive melees of people. I guarantee if you watch two minutes of this, you’ll watch at least 30 before tearing yourself away.
And don’t even get me started on the after party.
AL: A tip of the cap to the commentary team, who do an incredible job of calling the action and maintaining their excitement during the chaotic and often confusing action.
One of them says, “That’s the single best thing I’ve ever watched in my life.” I have to assume that this man hasn’t experienced the miracle of seeing his child born.
Or maybe he has.
What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?
This poll is closed
Nnaemeka Nwoye and Apoaya Faruk doing something that vaguely resembles MMA
Kaik Brito loads up the right
Thanh Le drills Yusup Saadulaev with a knee
Juan Gonzalez’s flipping guard pass
Eduardo Dinis blocks punch with face, wins by KO
150 vs. 150 medieval battle
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.