The electricity was at an all time high inside boardwalk hall last night, as everyone from die hard MMA fans, friends and family of fighters, members of the armed forces, and one UFC lightweight Champion gathered to witness BattleCage Xtreme III on an unusually warm October night. The evening started off at a reasonable pace with the first three bouts going the distance and ending with decisions. However things picked up quickly during the total destruction that was the fourth bout of the evening, between heavy handed George Sullivan (of the well represented Rhino fight team) and Roberto Conscepsion. After that, you couldn’t hear very much during the bouts beyond your own shouts and boos as it seemed most of the fighters had their own personal cheering section, all of which have surely lost their voice by now. Read on for fight recaps to get caught up on the high adrenaline action that took place in Atlantic City last night.
Bout 1. 170 lbs. Mike Madrano (Rhino Fight Team) vs. Nick Callandrino (CNY MMA)
The two clinch right away and eventually Callandrino begins to unleash a solid ground and pound attack. Callandrino nearly sinks a choke in while landing solid shots in but the round ends before damage can be done. In the second round Callandrino scores a HUGE takedown turned into a slam and stays on top but loses position and Medrano catches his back while just missing out on the rear naked choke as the round closes. Third round action was pretty much just Callandrino on top trying to wreak more havoc from inside the guard and the round ends. Unanimous decision for Nick Callandrino. All judges score 29-28.
Lester Caslow definitely wanted to keep this one standing, and with good reason. McCarthy comes out shooting for a takedown but it gets stuffed and he ends up on the bottom, attempting submissions from the guard. They eventually stand back up and Caslow tries for a flying knee strike that misses big. The first round ends with Caslow starting to throw some bombs while stuck in the top guard. The second round saw a nice kick by Caslow which connected BIG on McCarthy’s face, but that was about it. In the third round Caslow escapes a guillotine attempt and forces McCarthy to stand with him. McCarthy, being manhandled in the stand up, takes to the ground again and the round ends with Caslow on top. Unanimous decision 30-27 for Lester Caslow.
Bout 3. 170lbs. Brian Demuro (Team Balance) vs. Damian Vitale (CNY MMA)
Brian Demuro comes out looking angry while singing along to his Eminem entry music.
The fight starts and Damian Vitale scores a takedown and lands on top. Vitale out classes Demuro on the ground and the round ends with Vitale stuck in Demuro’s guard. Vitale scores a big slam early in the second round that sends Demuro to the canvas hard. Vitale begins to work on top but almost gets caught in a hell hook by Demuro, though he escapes and the two stand in the cage as the second round ends. Vitale comes out in the third and totally dominates on the ground, nearly catching Demuro’s back but ultimately losing position. The bell sounds and the crowd knows that Damian Vitale clearly won the fight.
What. A. Fight!!! Either George Sullivan is a beast, or Roberto Conscepcion just stepped in the ring after being lost on the boardwalk. Conscepscion definitely looked soft at 5 foot 4, 165lbs. While Sullivan looked lean and clearly had the crowd on his side. The bell sounds and Sullivan throws Conscepscion around the cage like it was nothing, stuffing every one of his shabby takedown attempts. Sullivan wastes no time scoring Roberto’s back and fires away with punches. Roberto eats leather and elbows for about 10 more seconds and the ref finally calls it. Roberto Consepcion didn’t really stand a chance given the massive height and reach advantage of George Sullivan, and I would suggest he drop down a weight class or two in the future. George Sullivan wins via TKO in the first round.
Bout 5. 185lbs. Andrew Rittles (Renzo/Almeida) vs. Brian Wright (Real Martial Arts/Fitness Center)
The crowd rips cheers and just a few boos as Andrew Rittles enters sporting a classic jiu jitsu gi. Rittles looks pretty diesel while his opponent definitely looks softer in the 185lb weight class.
The round starts and Rittles easily scores a takedown and works from the top. Rittles dominates from the top position and gets constant instruction from his coaches outside the cage. The fighters stand and Rittles manages to sink in a guillotine. Wright goes limp in the choke and the ref pulls Rittles off for the victory. Rittles wins via submission in round 1.
Bout 6. 185lbs. Justin Haskins (The Armory) vs. Don Wagner (Team Vicious)
Justin Haskins comes out huge scoring solid punches and a BIG slam. Haskins secures a guillotine but can’t keep it and drops bombs from the top. Haskins reigns in elbows and punches galore and things appear to be over but the bell sounds saving Don Wagner momentarily. Haskins shoots immediately in the second round but gets caught in a guillotine which he soon escapes. Haskins gets the top mount, proceeds to drop severe bombs on Wagner’s face and the ref finally calls it. TKO for Justin Haskins in the second round.
Bout 7. 185 lbs. Aaron Salisberry (Team Balance) vs. Carlos Rodriguez (Steve Kats/Rhino NY)
Aaron Salisberry looks intense at his opponent while sporting a fresh Mohawk.
Salisberry shoots immediately but Rodriguez sprawls nicely and the two clinch. Rodriguez scores big punches from the stand up and lands a nice takedown where he controls Salisberry on the ground until the round ends. Rodriguez comes right out in the second looking to throw and connects with a MASSIVE right hook sending Salisberry to the canvas hard! Rodriguez follows for the ground and pound but Salisberry is clearly out and the ref calls it. K.O for Carlos Rodriguez in the second round!
Bout 8. 140 lbs Blair Tugman (CNY MMA) vs. Jason Frawley (Renzo PA)
Frawley shoots immediately but it gets thwarted and Tugman quickly gets his back. Tugman sinks in a rear naked choke with a couple punches to soften Frawley up, and Frawley eventually taps out. Tugman wins round 1 via submission.
Following the win, Blair Tugman called out current BCX 140lb champ Steve D’Angelis. Steve entered the cage and responded saying Tugmans call out is a “bad decision” for him. We can expect to see this match at the next BCX event in Janruary.
Bout 9. 125lbs. Nick Cattone (Daddis FC) vs. Josh Spearman (Dragon Warrior)
Vacant BCX flyweight Title Bout.
I don’t know if Nick Cattone is single, but he seems absolutely dedicated to the guillotine choke. He must have had it applied in some form at least four or five times during the fight. Cattone came out strong and immediately secured a guillotine which he turned into a top mount position. The two work back to their feet and Cattone lands a nice knee to the face while clinching and throws Spearman hard to the canvas. Another brief clinch and Cattone lands in Spearman’s half guard. Cattone eventually passes guard, gains side control, and rolls spearman quickly to sneak in that guillotine once more, and this time Spearman cannot escape. Josh Spearman taps out and Nick Cattone wins at 4:50 of round 1 via submission to become the new flyweight BCX champion.
Bout 10. 155lbs Nuri Shakir (Team Elite) vs. Jim Miller (AMA Fight team/Renzo Gracie)
USKBA Title Match
Jim Miller manages to get Shakir to the ground after a short clinch and attempts a kimura but Shakir escapes to his feet. Shakir scores from the clinch with a NICE judo throw but Miller recovers and they clinch again. Seconds before the bell Shakir manages to land a nice muy thai knee to the head and the round ends. Shakir lands with a solid right hand to start the second round. The two keep it standing and Miller swings but misses with a couple combinations and they clinch back into the cage fence. After lackluster action in the clinch Shakir scores a big slam and ends up on top in Millers guard. Shakir controls on top and Miller looks for a triangle but misses and the two stand up again. Miller shoots but is thwarted and Shakir controls until the round ends only a few seconds later.
Shakir connects with big right hands early in the third but Miller presses on. After a brief clinch battle against the cage Miller finally scores a takedown and gains a dominant position on top. Miller suddenly gets kicked away into the fence and comes FLYING back across the canvas to apply quite possibly, the fastest rear naked choke I have ever seen. I swear if you looked away for half a second you would have missed this. I think Jim Miller may have just invented the flying rear naked choke. Miller is able to keep the choke on strong and Shakir taps. Jim Miller comes back to win via rear naked choke in the second round.
Note: Nuri Shakir weighed in 13 lbs over the limit and I do not think could have won the title if he had won the bout. Also this was strange: Before the fight the announcer claimed that Jim Miller was the current champ. After Miller won however the announcer claimed he was the NEW champion. In an unrelated note, Miller spoke in the third person about his victory during the post fight cage interview. It sounded funny.
Bout 11: Carlos Moreno current USKBA Champ (Rhino Fight Team) vs Kevin Jordan (Modern Army Combatives)
For the Vacant BCX Heavyweight Title, USKBA Title.
Well they certainly saved the best for last. The crowd went crazy as Carlos Moreno entered the cage with a huge entourage along with a black and white American flag. Moreno is clearly the fan favorite, though Kevin Jordan is a fairly accomplished UFC veteran. This fight started strong and almost ended with a fan riot. You’ve got read it to believe it.
Moreno starts things off with leg kicks and nice body shots. Moreno lands a strong right hook and Jordan lands a solid kick to the mid section. Carlos lands a nice left hook. No one attempts for a takedown and both fighters appear to want to keep things standing up. Despite the disadvantage of being shorter, Moreno does a good job of keeping Jordan at bay thanks to his difficult-to-counter, south paw style. The round ends with both fighters circling.
In round two Kevin Jordan comes out attempting a high kick but it has nothing on it. Moreno lands solid body shots and continues to score right hands to the head and body of Jordan. Jordan throws a strong leg kick that hits Moreno in the groin and the match is paused. Moreno recovers and rocks Jordan with a HUGE right hand and the crowd goes wild jumping over the cage area barriers to get a better view. Moreno follows for the ground and pound and the two continue fighting even after the bell sounds. The bell rings three more times and the ref finally breaks them up while the whole crowd is on their feet cheering on Carlos Moreno.
Round three starts and Moreno lands nice uniform jabs to the face. Jordan scores with a nasty inside leg kick and the two clinch up. Jordan gains momentum and lands with a devastating knee that sends Moreno to the ground. Jordan catches Moreno’s back and unleashes a reign of punches that appear to have no end in sight. Before the ref can even call the fight, a woman reported to be Moreno’s mother attempted to enter the cage to stop the match and the fans went crazy. A mini riot ensues and security manages to calm the woman down as the match is finally stopped giving Kevin Jordan the upset victory via TKO in the third round. The crowd boos as Jordan’s name is announced as the new Battle Cage Extreme Heavyweight Champion. What a night.
This BCX III recap is special contribution to 5 Oz of Pain by Eric Shapiro