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.
Even with only two UFC events in January, the month went by in a flash and we’ll soon return to our regularly scheduled programming (11 straight weekends of UFC events coming up and PFL/Bellator back at the end of the month!). In times like these, it’s important to find time to take a breath, gather your thoughts, and reflect on the things you value most in life.
It’s also important to have a laugh before getting back to our usual array of knockouts and tap-outs, so we begin this week with a chuckle-inducing scene from Alash Pride 94 in Shymkent, Kazakhstan.
(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.)
Makhmudkhan Beibit vs. Rayimbek Tazhibaev
Ladies and gentlemen, we did it: Groin shot recovery technology has reached another level.
Less than 30 seconds into their fight, Rayimbek Tazhibaev caught Makhmudkhan Beibit in the yabos as Beibit worked to circle away from him. Beibit immediately felt the effects of the low shot and referee Azamat Daribekov was right on the spot to address the injury.
He first attended to Beibit with the now-industry standard hammering of the bottom of the feet (not sure what this does), then allowed the ringside medical staff to take a look, but Beibit remained on the ground. It wasn’t until his astute cornerman stepped in and stepped on Beibit’s butt a few times (again, not sure what this does) that we started to see signs of life.
The cornerman capped off his treatment by grabbing his fighter’s ankles and shaking him loose, which actually seemed to do the trick. Beibit sprang up, stretched out for a few more seconds, and the fight was back on. And Beibit went on to submit Tazhibaev in the second round.
Bless these modern medical miracles.
If you want to watch these shenanigans yourself, the entire event is available for free replay on YouTube.
Kevin Christian vs. Miguel Porto
Juan Pablo Vieira vs. Marcos Bruno
Talisson Teixeira vs. Arthur Fonseca
Reginaldo Junior vs. Gustavo Henrique
Rafael Pereira vs. Fernando Laurenço
Marco Tulio vs. Cemey dos Santos
Now on to the action proper, starting with the first of two events that went down this past Saturday that featured a flurry of finishes.
LFA 175 (replay available on UFC Fight Pass) took place in Sao Paolo and continued the fine tradition of the promotion’s Brazilian events being absolutely bonkers. Case in point, check out Kevin Christian and Miguel Porto throwing all the way down.
And the madness picks up IMMEDIATELY in R2 with Kevin Christian finishing Miguel Porto in 39 seconds. That flying knee to the body. These LFA Brazil cards are too good. #LFA175 pic.twitter.com/i3Gb6ZZ5nJ
— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) January 28, 2024
We started with some comical groin shot shenanigans, but Christian vs. Porto may have been the real crazy town banana pants moment of the weekend. They’re slipping and sliding all over the place and somehow Christian finds the wherewithal to land a sweet knee to the rib cage that takes Porto out.
Two fights prior, 20-year-old lightweight prospect Juan Pablo Vieira showed off some gorgeous head movement before cracking Marcos Bruno with a left hook.
Bruno was Vieira’s toughest opponent yet and Vieira passed the test with flying colors. He improved to 7-0 with Bruno being just his second opponent to make it past the first round.
Also on the prospect watch list, the towering Talisson Teixeira could be a factor in the heavyweight division soon.
Just recently turned 24, the towering 6-foot-8 slugger is now 5-0 (all first-round finishes) after battering an overmatched Arthur Fonseca. Teixeira made his pro debut a little over three years ago, so let’s see him get some more seasoning before he makes a jump to a bigger promotion.
Vieira gave us a left hand KO, so how about a matching right to go with it from Reginaldo Junior?
That’s back-to-back first-round knockouts now for “The Beast.”
On to storytime with caposa:
After 7 years, Rafael Pereira exacts revenge on Fernando Laurenço in the smoothest way possible. Laurenço came into this fight with an 11 fight win streak and “Mini Man” snapped it in 51 seconds. #LFA175 pic.twitter.com/ujGbOTS0MD
— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) January 28, 2024
After 7 years, Rafael Pereira exacts revenge on Fernando Laurenco in the smoothest way possible. Laurenco came into this fight with an 11 fight win streak and “Mini Man” snapped it in 51 seconds.
I was unfamiliar with the history between these two fighters, but apparently Laurenco handed a 19-year-old Pereira his first loss with a split call back in November 2016. It looks like Pereira has been holding on to that L tightly because he didn’t just beat Laurenco in their rematch, he styled on the man before tapping him with a deep choke.
One shouldn’t live their life seeking revenge… but if one must, at least make it look really cool.
As far as I know, there was no major beef between Marco Tulio and Cemey dos Santos, but you could have fooled me given how Tulio drives home this truly sinister ground strike.
Dos Santos was in bad shape after eating a couple of stiff punches on the feet and Tulio capitalized with an all-or-nothing diving right hand that was way more all than nothing. Just left dos Santos completely limp for a second there.
Mitch Raposo vs. Justin Valentin
Everet Desilets vs. Lorenzo Fitzgerald
Colin Silva vs. Igor Zaltsman
Our second event in which the pain was thoroughly brought was Cage Titans 63 from Plymouth, Mass.
Mitch Raposo, 25, has been one of the surest bets to emerge as a contender coming out of the New England area in recent years, he just hasn’t put it all together yet. He lost to Liudvik Sholinian in The Ultimate Fighter 29 tournament in a season that saw Raposo competing a division up at bantamweight. And then he lost to Jake Hadley in his Contender Series tryout, which Hadley missed weight for.
Those setbacks have only slowed Raposo’s ascent, not stopped him, as he’s won four straight fights since the loss to Hadley and claimed two vacant flyweight titles. On Saturday, he used some beautiful body work to put Justin Valentin down in the fourth and add Cage Titans gold to his growing collection.
Everet Desilets finish of Lorenzo Fitzgerald wasn’t quite as picturesque, but it was no less memorable.
Desilets and Lorenzo Fitzgerald are two welterweights at the beginning of their careers (this was Fitzgerald’s pro debut), so you can excuse them for being more heart and gusto than skill and technique. Especially when the results are this spectacular.
Sometimes the best strategy is to just truck on through and throw punches until one man falls.
Heck, sometimes it just takes one good shot.
In Round 2 of his first amateur fight, lightweight Colin Silva landed a ram of a right hand on Igor Zaltsman’s chin and that was all she wrote.
You can catch a replay of Cage Titans 63 with a subscription to Spectation Sports.
Mathieu Chaumont vs. David Karp
Our other contender for best ground-and-pound finish of the week comes from Mathieu Chaumont at a Jungle Strike Championship event in Nimes, France.
David Karp looked like a fish out of water (ha!) as he ineffectively up-kicked at a hovering Chaumont. Realizing he was in no immediate danger, Chaumont just started raining down hammer fists until Karp was laid out.
You can watch a free replay of the event on the JSC YouTube channel.
Matej Penaz vs. Matthew Bonner
At Oktagon MMA 52 in Newcastle, England, Matej Penaz went to the body to drop Matthew Bonner and then he went to the body again. And again. And again.
And again. And again. I’m sensing a pattern.
Michael Cyr vs. Yazan Hajeh
Michael Cyr is quickly developing a reputation as one of the more creative submission threats on the regional scene and he pulled off a whopper of a tap-out at a Fierce Fighting Championships show in Idaho Falls, Idaho.
His opponent Yazan Hajeh was having a tough time as it was defending against a rear-naked choke, so he had little hope of escape when Cyr switched it up to a twister variation (at least that’s what Tapology lists the finish as, in real time I couldn’t tell you what Cyr was doing to poor Hajeh).
Suffice to say, Cyr’s future opponents will be prepared for attacks from all angles going forward.
Artem Vakhitov vs. Siyavush Salokhov
One more notable bit of news here as Artem Vakhitov—who fight fans will recognize as the man to defeat Alex Pereira in the light heavyweight champion’s last kickboxing bout before joining the UFC—scored his first MMA win at a World Ertaymash Federation in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
Former GLORY LHW champ (and Alex Pereira rival) Artem Vakhitov quietly picked up his first MMA win on the WEF 130 prelims today in Kyrgyzstan.
After dislocating his elbow 55 seconds into a disappointing MMA debut last June, the Russian made light work of 0-1 Siyavush Salokhov. pic.twitter.com/NMCWtDGPrn
— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) January 27, 2024
Time will tell if the 32-year-old can follow in Pereira’s footsteps and snatch UFC gold, but at least he’s now officially succeeded at mixing the martial arts after an injury setback in his debut last June.
World Ertaymash Federation 130 is available for free replay on YouTube.
ICYMI: Make sure to check out Takaya Suzuki’s four-second (yup, FOUR seconds) flying knee knockout at a Shooto event in Tokyo.
What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?
Makhmudkhan Beibit’s groin shot recovery
Kevin Christian and Miguel Porto wild brawl
Juan Pablo Vieira power left
Mitch Raposo body work
Other (leave comment below)
12 votes total
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.