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 times where it seems like there’s an MMA show every other day.
As regular readers know, one of the most important kudos we give out every week is the coveted (well, coveted by one half of the matchup) Humpty Dumpty Award that goes to the fighter who caused the most impressive and often darkly hilarious knockout reaction. That’s certainly the theme of this week as several winners left their losing opponents sprawled out in a way that defied anatomical convention.
Before we get to those, though, we have to lead off with a fall that is anything but funny.
(Big thanks as always to @Barrelelapierna for their weekly lists of the best KOs and submissions, and to @Grabaka_Hitman for uploading many of the clips you see here. Give them a follow and chip in on Patreon if you can.)
Piotr Szeliga vs. Marcin Wrzosek
Quick warning: Broken arm incoming.
You may proceed.
From a Fame MMA show in Krakow, Poland, this past Friday, that’s KSW veteran and The Ultimate Fighter 22 cast member Marcin Wrzosek suffering a nasty injury as he attempted to break his fall in a kickboxing match (with MMA gloves). You would think a man who is well-versed in the mixing of the martial arts would know better than to post like that during a fall, but these things happen in combat sports.
Instant recognition from Wrzosek and the referee fortunately, so this bout was waved off soon after.
Fortunately, Wrzosek appears to be in good spirits and looking forward to running it back with Szeliga.
Now, on to the week’s real Humpty Dumpty winners.
Cameron Smotherman vs. Peter Caballero
Abdul Kamara vs. Shane Torres
UFC Fight Pass brings us our first proper set of knockouts, with Fury FC’s Cameron Smotherman leading the way.
This was so nice, we had to get it from multiple looks.
Peter Caballero bit hard on that right hook before circling right into Smotherman’s power left. There’s being knocked stiff, and then there’s what Smotherman did to Caballero.
Smotherman has been absolutely cooking in Fury FC’s bantamweight division, going 4-1 in 2022 and now breaking out this stunner to open his 2023 campaign. With size and power, the homegrown talent is due to leave the Texas-based promotion before the year is through.
The only man to beat Smotherman last year? Shane Torres, who also happened to be fighting on this card. Unfortunately for Torres, his luck has since turned as he’s been knocked out in back-to-back fights, including in this setback against Abdul Kamara.
With just seconds remaining in the first round, Torres threw a kick that he was just a touch slow to retract, and Kamara didn’t miss the window given to him. It actually looks like Kamara started to unload just as Torres let his kick go, so Kamara may have just ended up on the right side of a coin flip this time.
Kleberson Tavares vs. Andre Vieira
Guilherme Doin vs. Samuel Silva
Jose Enrique Silva vs. Alan Silva
Marcel Adur vs. Rodrigo de Moura
Also on UFC Fight Pass, we had finishes galore at Shooto Brasil 115 in Rio de Janeiro.
Kleberson Tavares was straight windmilling in this sequence, and while it looked a little silly, he’s a heavyweight, and that means he only has to land one big shot.
Not going to lie, there’s a lot of gray in Tavares’ beard, and that’s exactly how I’d expect a grizzled dude like him to fight.
Speaking of windmilling, Samuel Silva had the goofy arms going in his loss to Guilherme Doin as he was rocked by a glancing kick to the dome and never recovered.
That “bring it on” gesture was a classic moment before disaster. Doin smelled blood and uncorked a right that had Silva kissing canvas.
Up next, we have towering welterweight Jose Enrique Souza picking up an awesome knee knockout of Alan Silva.
Wow. 6'4 welterweight José Henrique Souza knocks Alan Silva out cold with a savage knee to the face with seconds left in the fight.— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) February 4, 2023
If he looks familiar, the 20-year-old fought Yusaku Kinoshita (making his UFC debut tomorrow) on DWCS last August. #ShootoBrasil115 pic.twitter.com/agr3ozSDtJ
Souza is listed at 6-foot-4 and, again, competes at 170 pounds. He’s no Wally Herndon (look it up, folks), but that is a serious measurement, and I’m guessing that high knee of his is something his future opponents will be wary of.
Knee awareness is an important part of defense, regardless of what weight class you’re in, though I’m not sure that would have mattered in this next clip.
Once Marcel Adur got going, it was nothing but trouble for Rodrigo de Moura. If the front kick and the clean combination that followed didn’t do it, then Adur made sure he had a flying knee up his sleeve to finish the job.
Temirkhan Temirkhanov vs. Viktor Azatyan
Love this progression of strikes from Temirkhan Temirkhanov.
Numero 5— Barrele la pierna (@Barrelelapierna) February 6, 2023
Temirkhan Temirkhanov, RCC: Intro 24 pic.twitter.com/vVwEKmBbGZ
From an RCC event in Yekaterinburg, Russia, watch how Temirkhanov sets up his highlight-reel head kick. A right lands on the button, making Viktor Azatyan’s knees wobble. Temirkhanov waits a beat then lands a left hook. Azatyan, dazed at this point, instinctively goes for a counter-punch at Temirkhanov’s next advance, only to be beaten to the quick by a fast head kick.
Make that five straight wins for “Tank.”
Yousri Belgaroui vs. Bogdan Kotlovyanov
It wasn’t all face-plants and mummifications this past weekend. At Levels Fight League 7 in Amsterdam, Yousri Belgaroui broke out the crossbow and sniped Bogdan Kotlovyanov with a bolt right to the ribcage.
This is a lowkey Humpty Dumpty front-runner because Kotlovyanov is calling for the ref to step in before he’s even touched the ground, which makes this one stand out among the bunch.
Viskhan Kurkaev vs. Finn Larsson
At German MMA Championship 32 in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, Viskhan Kurkaev went Full Phenom with this incredible rush of strikes.
Numero 16— Barrele la pierna (@Barrelelapierna) February 6, 2023
Viskhan Kurkaev, GMC 32 pic.twitter.com/5P9T4826Tc
No ref would have been able to step in there quick enough to save Finn Larsson, and that’s how one ends up in a heap on the mat.
Jean Silva vs. Valdemir Cardoso
Jean Silva also caught his opponent between a rock and a hard place as he didn’t give Valdemir Cardoso a second to breathe in the main event of a Spartacus MMA event in Sao Paulo.
Numero 11— Barrele la pierna (@Barrelelapierna) February 6, 2023
Jean Silva, Spartacus MMA pic.twitter.com/bJG7VXZJ80
Cardoso was left mangled against the fence. Even when his senses returned, it looked like he was OK staying there, like, “Lemme just chill here for a minute, please.”
Damian Fernandez vs. Carlos Marquez
You may noticed a theme with the finishes this week, that most of them are the result of a fighter getting rocked first as opposed to just getting one-shot KOd. That continues here, with Damian Fernandez immediately noticing opponent Carlos Marquez was hurt before knocking him out and giving him some nasty whiplash.
Almanbet Abdyvasy Uulu vs. Arturbek Mamyrov
Closing out the Humpty Dumpty Awards — and please remember there are no losers here (uh, other than the poor guys on the receiving end of these hammer blows) — is Almanbet Abdyvasy Uulu at Octagon League 40 in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
Credit to his opponent Arturbek Mamyrov, who appeared to have a plan, that plan being to roll with the punches and counter. At some point, you have to actually fire back, though, which Mamyrov did not. With free reign to go off, Abdyvasy Uulu reduced Mamyrov to a training dummy with a right hand straight across the chin.
After watching all that, what say you?
What was the most memorable Humpty Dumpty KO fall this week?
This poll is closed
Cameron Smotherman’s power left
Guilherme Doin’s right hand face-plant
Yousri Belgaroui goes to the body
Viskhan Kurkaev channels "The Phenom"
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 — @AlexanderKLee — using the hashtag #MissedFists.