“Houston, are you ready for a biblical bathtub of bloodshed and destruction?” Announcer Reverend Bart chimed in his trademark introduction for the crowd as Mixed Martial Arts returned to its Downtown Houston roots at the Verizon Wireless Theater . Saturday, October 16th was a nostalgic night that seemed to blend old and new. For Reverend Bart, the trademark studded leather jacket being replaced by a suit was befitting for this new era of MMA as he ushered in IXFA’s Houston debut in spectacular style.
With nine professional bouts on the night and not a boring one turned in among them, promoters Chris Reed and Scott Dawson were smiles to conclude an exciting evening of action, highlighted by some extremely exciting matchups showcasing both veterans and emerging Houston MMA fighters.
Impressive individual performances were turned in by Rashon Lewis, who looked rather beastly in TKO’ing Bryan Garcia. Equally impressive was Jeremy Morris, who made short work of Rick Bigger via triangle choke within two minutes of round one, and Larry Crowe, who controlled the action on the feet and on the mat for three straight rounds to win a unanimous decision over Jared Taylor, all despite breaking his right hand in the middle portion of the fight.
As far as the most impressive performance of the night, I would have to give that honor to Antonio “King Kong” Flores, who capitalized the evening with a resounding TKO victory over a seasoned Texas veteran in Austin’s Brandon McDowell, a fighter with over sixty fights to his credit. Flores made quick work of the submission fighter, take him down and out with a flurry of vicious punches en route to victory and the IXFA welterweight title.
I had a chance to speak to the new IXFA welterweight champion immediately after the fight and asked him if the title bout with McDowell went according to plan. King Kong had this to say:
“Well, as far as the game plan there wasn’t one. Really, I train myself the way i like to fight, which is to throw punches in bunches with power and to finish fights as quickly as i can. It is never reckless but a controlled rage. I am always watching my opponent’s movements and calculating mine, then I’ll explode and I train myself that way so I can keep that pace always and if it went to the ground i have no problem fighting there. I was surprised he came at me standing straight up but didn’t think about that too much. I saw the opening, threw a left hook that didn’t land too clean but he felt it. I was actually waiting for him to put his head down because i wanted to drill the left uppercut so I kept circling him to set it up and he did as I thought so I threw it quick, short, and hard. It broke his nose. I felt it then so I just continued to throw.”
And there you have it folks. All in all, a very enjoyable evening a successful debut for the IXFA. For play-by-play and a full recap of last Saturday night’s IXFA event, head on over to TheCageDoor.net. As always, feel free to ping me on Twitter or Facebook with any comments, questions, or criticisms. I value it all.