The World Series of Fighting takes place at the Revel Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, March 23rd. The main event features a clash of two dangerous strikers, former UFC heavyweight champion, Andrei Arlovski and former UFC welterweight, Anthony Johnson.
JZ Calvancante (16-6) vs. Justin Gaethje (7-0)
Keeping up with the trend of aggresive opening rounds, Calvancante and Gaethje went after an early stoppage. Both fighters swung with no respect for their opponent’s peer. Gaethje got the better of the exchanges and pushed towards Cavalcante. Gaethje landed a plethora of punches, knees and elbows, one of which opened a gash above Cavalcante’s left eye. They remained in the clinch as blood poured from Cavalcante’s brow. Referee Keith Peterson stopped the action to get a doctor look at the fresh cut on Cavalcante. The ringside doctor deemed the cut to bad to continue and the referee had no choice but to call an early stoppage for the fight.
Official Decision: Justin Gaethje defeats JZ Cavalcante via Doctor Stoppage at 2:27 of the first round.
Josh Burkman (24-9) vs. Aaron Simpson (12-4)
Burkman attempted to keep distance between himself and the wrestling standout, Simpson. Simpson on the other hand looked to close the gap. Burkman was able to control though and tagged Simpson with powerful hooks and stinging leg kicks. Burkman looked more relaxed standing up and did well to avoid takedown attempts.
After a short exchange, Burkman landed a hard hook that visibly stunned Simpson. Burkman stepped on the gas and sprinted towards Simpson throwing wide hooks, each rocking Simpson’s head side to side. Once against the cage, Burkman landed a hard, loaded, right hand to the temple of Simpson followed up by a huge knee that put Simpson away.
Official Decision: Josh Burkman defeats Aaron Simpson via Knockout at 3:04 of round 1.
Paulo Filho (23-4) vs. David Branch (11-3)
Filho came out strong only to have his fleeting momentum shut down by a Branch takedown. Branch used his strength to hold Fihlo down and drop shots to slow Filho down. Branch kept this game going while Filho threw from the bottom, in an futile attempt to divert Branch from laying on top of him.
Branch, happy with how round one was going, stayed on top of Filho and remained busy, while loading up on his shots more as the round went on. Round 1 was dominated by Branch.
Round 2 began in Branch’s favor as a stiff jab and knees to the body stunned Filho who looked tired from round 1. Branch looked to finish but could’t close. Branch went back to his wrestling and slammed Filho to the mat. They were able to work back into a standing clinch that was separated due to inactivity. Branch went right back to his forte, spearing Filho to the mat and securing a mounted crucifix on Filho. Branch didn’t waste the position as he brought elbows and punches down continuously on Filho.
Branch abandoned that position but moved about Filhp as he pleased, an exhausted Filho beneath him. Branch, sensing Filho’s exhaustion, started a regiment of knees to the body of Filho. Branch ended this round on top once more and with a clear cut score of ’10’ for the round.
Filho opened the round with a sloppy kick that hit only open space as he stumbled to the mat. Branch jumped on top of him and picked up the pace of his ground and pound in an effort to end the fight. He apparently changed his mind, however, and felt comfortable picking up where he left off in the previous two rounds.
Filho showed no defense as he stayed put on his back, catching Branch’s punches. They were eventually stood up as Filho had one more chance to win the fight. Branch proved to be too much on the feet as well though and used a diverse range of strikes to keep Filho docile. Branch ended a long combination of strikes up against the cage with a final takedown that sealed a dominant victory over the Pride legend.
Official Decision: David Branch defeats Paulo Filho via Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
Tyson Nam (12-4) vs. Marlon Moraes (9-4)
Bantamweights came to fight as both Nam and Moraes started off strong, each of them landing nice leg kicks on one another. THey continued to trade, weaving in and out, narrowly dodging big punches and even bigger counter punches. They continued to circle one another, not really committing to anything.
As for the end of the fight, a spectacular right high-kick from Moraes bounced off the head of Nam, who dropped to two knees. Moraes knew the end ewas near and pounced on to Nam, landing several hard punches that left Nam unconscious and face-down on the mat, slowing down the hype-train that Nam rode in to his World Series of Fighting debut.
Official Decision: Marlon Moraes defeats Tyson Nam via Knockout at 2:55 of round 1.
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