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.
With the UFC announcing its return to what it expects to be sold-out stadiums in Jacksonville and Houston, you can imagine that fighters across the world are picturing what it will be like to compete in front of packed houses again. Maybe that’s why there’s been such an abundance of highlights lately as fighters work harder than ever to impress.
Or it could just be MMA being its usual wild self. Case in point, even if there was a large crowd present for our first clip, there’s a good chance they would have missed this finish.
(By the way, make sure to follow @Barrelelapierna and check out their weekly best-of lists for an even more thorough look at the week’s best finishes.)
Kathleen Nelson vs. Laura Dotter
Insert obligatory “lights out” KO pun.
Alright, now that that’s out of the way, let’s talk about Kathleen Nelson’s incredible win over Laura Dotter that happened at literally the exact same time that there was a brief power outage at a Combat Night Pro 20 show in Orlando, Fla. on March 13.
The incident made the rounds on social media this week and it’s a great highlight for Nelson, an amateur featherweight… or at least it would be a great highlight if the result hadn’t been overturned. According to several online databases, including Tapology, the official result of the bout is a no contest, presumably because of the split second that nobody could see either fighter.
I suppose it’s possible that someone tossed Nelson a steel chair while the lights were out or maybe The Undertaker showed up and bonked Dotter on the top of her head? You can’t rule these things out, so no contest was probably the way to go here.
Check out another angle of the bizarre finish.
E quando acaba a luz durante um nocaute aplicado em uma luta feminina de MMA?— Dama de Ferro MMA (@damadeferromma) March 24, 2021
O Combat Night Pro 20 aconteceu no Caribe Royale e o fato curioso ocorreu quando Kathleen Nelson enfrentava Laura Dotter. pic.twitter.com/4yenLMkCbD
Adam Meskini vs. Eduard Kexel
Were it not for Nelson’s generator-frying punch, Adam Meskini’s upkick from German MMA Championship Fight Night 6 surely would have taken the cake for this edition’s most stunning knockout.
Numero 1⃣— Barrele la pierna (@Barrelelapierna) March 22, 2021
Adam Meskini, GMC Fight Night 6 pic.twitter.com/V0AP3bAeHz
We all know how powerful a good upkick can be, but how often do you see one land right on the button like that and just leave a fighter out cold?
Ivan Perez vs. Emanuel Rivero
Daniela Hernandez vs. Karen Manzo
In Monterry, Mexico, last Friday, Naciones MMA held its inaugural show. Founded by some folks who used to work for Combate Americas, I’m told that the goal is for Naciones to serve as a Latin America feeder league for the UFC. If the finishes from the first show are any indication, we could see a few fighters getting the call sooner rather than later.
Ivan Perez did his best Dan Henderson impression, landing a straight bomb on Emanuel Rivero and following up with a silly flying strike that thankfully whiffed.
JESUS. Ivan Perez destroys Emanuel Rivero with a left hook then goes full Hendo #NacionesMonterrey pic.twitter.com/bHXUXpaGYE— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) March 20, 2021
Replays of that Ivan Perez KO. Luckily the flying hammerfist kinda missed. #NacionesMonterrey pic.twitter.com/7pdyC59nwS— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) March 20, 2021
I choose to believe that Perez angled his fist away at the last second.
Daniela Hernandez scored a sweet scarf choke against Karen Manzo and scarf chokes are pretty much a lock to be mentioned in Missed Fists.
Painful scarf hold armlock by Daniela Hernandez - Naciones MMA pic.twitter.com/6blLZvqQeo— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) March 20, 2021
Hernandez was making her pro debut, so she’s a long ways away from reaching the level of her countrywoman Montserrat Conejo, but she can at least say that she’s finished a fight with the same submission as the recent UFC debutante.
Ivan Hryschuk vs. Drayton Angus
Speaking of feeder leagues, Vancouver, British Columbia’s Battlefield Fight League returned to action for the first time since the COVID-19 outbreak and you can catch last Friday’s event on UFC Fight Pass.
The Canadian promotion booked such talents as Michael Chiesa, Jeremy Kennedy, and Tristan Connelly before they were signed to the UFC, and who knows, maybe Ivan Hryschuk follows in their footsteps someday. He certainly made a good first impression in his pro debut, outclassing a wild Drayton Angus and leaving him dazed against the fence.
What. A. Flurry.#BFL66 pic.twitter.com/O6hJXEAPx9— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) March 20, 2021
With respect to Angus, I can kind of see why he’s now 7-11 in his career with none of his losses coming by way of decision.
Austin Arnett vs. Daniel Vega
Denis Tiuliulin vs. Juscelino Ferreira
Mohammad Osseili vs. Ivan Slynko
Over at UAE Warriors 18 in Abu Dhabi, we have a name that’s looking to fight his way back to the North American big leagues someday.
Austin Arnett made a fine accounting of himself against Daniel Vega last Saturday, lighting him up on the feet to score his first win since November 2018.
Arnett didn’t have much luck in the UFC and, like a lot of fighters over the past year, has dealt with fights being cancelled due to the pandemic as well as injuries. At 29, there’s still plenty of time for him to pop back up stateside, if that’s his goal.
As impressive as Arnett’s performance was, it was topped by Denis Tiuliulin unloading a super combo on Juscelino Ferreira.
Damnn. Denis Tiuliulin brutally finishes Juscelino Ferreira #UAEWarriors18 pic.twitter.com/jd0FeWrkpc— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) March 20, 2021
Mohammad Osseili didn’t need to be quite as busy against Ivan Slynko, he just had to wait for an opening that Slynko gave him less than a minute into round one.
Mohammad "The Future" Osseili improves to 3-0 with a 37 second KO over Ivan Slynko. Three piece right on the chin. #UAEWarriors18 pic.twitter.com/hMvri98p7P— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) March 20, 2021
Head mooooooment! Head mooooooooooment!
Gregory Rodrigues vs. Al Matavao
Big right puts an end to this one! #LFA102 pic.twitter.com/gDLWrbdQQw— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) March 20, 2021
Seriously though guys, I’m clearly not qualified to be a coach, but at some point you’ve gotta just get those hands up, right?
That’s Gregory Rodrigues crowning Al Matavao at LFA 102, which is available on UFC Fight Pass.
Brian Bouland vs. Liam Gittins
Nicolas Leblond vs. Darren O’Gorman
Jean N’Doye vs. Corrin Eaton
Ian Garry vs. Rostem Akman
Also on Fight Pass, we had the second and third of three consecutive Cage Warriors events last weekend, and some of the long-running English promotion’s top prospects lived up to the hype.
Here’s Belgium’s Brian Bouland biding his time and picking up this week’s best comeback against Liam Gittins, or as I’m calling these things from now on, the Call An Ambulance, But Not For Me award.
WOW! All it takes is one shot from Brian Bouland— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) March 20, 2021
Was that the round of #THETRILOGY?
Watch #CW122 live on @UFCFightPass pic.twitter.com/d0wlcZ8PFu
Nicolas Leblond was more successful than Gittins in walking his opponent down as he smoked Darren O’Gorman with a big left.
Nicolas Leblond picks up his first win at Cage Warriors with a KO to open up tonights card— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) March 20, 2021
Watch the #CW122 prelims now on @UFCFightPass pic.twitter.com/6iNrr1YI6G
I don’t know if Leblond was disguising the left hand all that much before landing the KO blow, but that hand needs to be disguised for a while since it’s now an accessory to a crime.
Jean N’Doye showed everyone how to time a knee perfectly with this brilliant counter against a level-changing Corrin Eaton.
Jean N'Doye throws cage rust out of the window with a clean KO— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) March 20, 2021
Watch #CW122 live on @UFCFightPass pic.twitter.com/gqKN474Udv
After a disappointing decision loss to Ciaran Clarke in October at Bellator 248, this was a nice bounce-back win for N’Doye. He’s now finished his past four Cage Warriors opponents.
And we can’t forget the awesome head kick and celebration of unbeaten Irishman Ian Garry, who improved to 6-0 with his win over recent UFC fighter Rostem Akman.
Precision and placement ❌— Cage Warriors (@CageWarriors) March 19, 2021
The Future is looking bright with a 2nd round KO over a UFC vet
Watch #CW121 live on @UFCFightPass pic.twitter.com/FXSbyfzKOY
Sheyk-Akhmat Tokaev vs. Pavel Grachev
Vyacheslav Lovin vs. Kabi Zavurbegov
Speaking of perfectly-timed knees, Sheyk-Akhmat Tokaev had an absolute beauty at FMR Fighting Championship: Selection 6 (initials inside of an event name that can also be abbreviated into initials? Come on, man) in Moscow.
Such a savage knee KO by Sheyk-Akhmat Tokaev - FFC: Selection 6 pic.twitter.com/8rcTbEKmDK— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) March 20, 2021
Sure, Pavel Grachev’s knees were on the mat as he shot in, but I’m glad that this stands as a KO because we’re talking a split-second decision here and Tokaev shouldn’t be penalized because his opponent suddenly shot into a vulnerable position. Great technique.
Our Submission of the Week has to go to Vyacheslav Lovin for what might be the most hard-earned guillotine choke of all time.
Linda sumision de Vyacheslav Lovin! Pone a dormir a Kabi Zavurbegov con una guillotina #FFCSelection6 pic.twitter.com/Msb1IO8kRt— Barrele la pierna (@Barrelelapierna) March 20, 2021
You can’t blame Kabi Zavurbegov for not tapping out here, there’s no way anyone should have been able to hold onto a guillotine attempt for that long without their arms becoming drained. And yet it paid off somehow.
It has to be mentioned that FMC: Selection 6 was apparently a 53-fight card (!!!) and you can catch every one of those bouts on the promotion’s YouTube channel.
Darko Stosic vs. Michal Wlodarek
Like Arnett, Darko Stosic struggled in his short stint with the UFC, but as it turns out, you can always go home again. Check out Stosic making an absolute mess out of Michal Wlodarek at KSW 59 in Lodz, Poland, last Saturday.
WHAT A KNOCKOUT!!! #KSW59— KSW (@KSW_MMA) March 20, 2021
Forget your fancy guard passes and ground-and-pound setups, sometimes you’ve got to just load up that hammer and drop it on a dude’s head.
Yong Joo Lim vs. Jong Gi Ahn
Let’s make one last stop in Seoul, South Korea, to show our respect to Yong Joo Lim and pay our respects to his opponent Jong Gi Ahn.
Lim made Ahn miss with everything while peppering him with punches, culminating in a devastating right hand that led to a legit stretcher job.
Absolutely bonkers KO by Lim Yong Ju on DOUBLE G FC 6 pic.twitter.com/UxR8SocWAV— Leon (@leonzenegger) March 19, 2021
absolute scenes pic.twitter.com/pyydhxIvJd— Leon (@leonzenegger) March 19, 2021
Now let’s all step away from our monitors and take a moment for quiet reflection.
What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?
This poll is closed
Kathleen "Lights Out" Nelson
Adam Meskini’s one-upkick KO
Mohammad Osseili shows the importance of head movement
Brian Bouland’s comeback
Vyacheslav Lovin’s relentless guillotine
Yong Joo Lim’s stretcher job
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.