It sounds like those in attendance at the Pasadena Convention Center witnessed a wild night of fights courtesy of the Worldwide Gladiator Championship based on live reports and video from this past Friday night.
In this sophomore event for the fledgling WGC promotion, the oft-changed fight card featured a final version Friday that included several notable fighters from the Houston area. Dream and WEC veteran Todd Moore, two-time United States National San Shou Kickboxing Champion Alex Cisne, and highly-touted prospects Artenas Young and Derek Lewis were just a few of the local names represented on an eventful evening full of action, surprises, and a new WGC Welterweight Champion.
For the main event of the evening, MMA fans witnessed a jarring upset courtesy of Jared Taylor from Nacogdoches, Texas. Sporting a 3-7 record and losing his past three bouts coming into the night, the journeyman Taylor was considered a prohibitive underdog heading into this bout with Artenas “Machine Gun” Young of Hoger MMA. As winner of his past four professional bouts and fresh off a training camp including stints at Jackson MMA in New Mexico, Big Bear, California, and Las Vegas for “Ultimate Fighter” tryouts, it was thought that Houston may perhaps see the best version of the ever-improving Young as a pit-stop to bigger and better things in this feature bout of the evening. Instead, we can paraphrase great writer John Steinbeck in saying that “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry…” this time by virtue of a spinning backfist KO at :38 of the first round. Time will tell what remains to be seen from Machine Gun Young yet I am certain the hard-working fighter will be back and looking to rebound in no-time.
Another top bout crowned a new WGC welterweight titleholder in Alex Cisne, Head MMA Instructor at Westside MMA. Using his kickboxing and San Shou pedigree, Cisne was able to summarily dismantle RJ Knepp of 646 MMA by 1:45 of round one with a blistering display of leg kicks and pinpoint striking. Not sure what is next for the new welterweight champion. Based on this display, as well as impressive grappling showings at recent BJJ tournaments around town, Alex Cisne is certainly amongst the top of the heap in what this writer considered to be one of the most loaded weight classes in the city.
Also in action, Dream and WEC veteran Todd Moore rebounded from a tough loss to Brian Melancon at Legacy FC and an equally-tough first round in this bout with wily veteran Lee King to win via strikes at :36 of the second round. Just on pure speculation, this performance by Moore would set up one heck of a WGC championship match with Cisne should Moore decide to continue in this weight division.
Other impressive performances were turned in by heavyweight Derek “Black Beast” Lewis of Silverback MMA, who showed an expanded arsenal in winning via armbar over Rakim Cleveland, and the debuting Gerzan Chaw of Bushi Ban, who showed a well-rounded arsenal of his own in winning his professional debut over a seasoned opponent with a stellar pro record. In following teammate Alex Black into the pro ranks with a win of his own, it sounds like the sky is the limit for this crop of fighters out of Bushi Ban. As far as Derek Lewis, time will tell what is next for “The Black Beast” but he has been adamant in calling out prominent area heavyweight Sam Hoger. Will this win add to the fire in those talks, or will Lewis aim to continue his rise elsewhere? One thing is certain in that there is an exciting near future ahead for this fighter as well.
Quick Results – World Gladiator Championship, November 12, 2010
- Main Event – Jared Taylor over Artenas Young via KO, Round 1.
- 170 Title – Alex Cisne over RJ Knepp via TKO, Round 1.
- 165 – Todd Moore over Lee King via TKO, Round 2.
- HWT – Derek Lewis over Rakim Cleveland via armbar submission, Round 2.
- 190 – Noel Ligon over Jacky Elie via TKO, Round 3.
- 170 – Lee Higgins over Kenny Burke via RNC submission, Round 1.
- HWT – Dale Mitchell over Chance Hamilton via TKO, Round 3.
- 135 – Gerzan Chaw over Nate Garza via Unanimous Decision.
- 170 – Shawn Machado over Rudy Resendez via Split Decision.
- 155 – Marc Ramirez over Kierre Gooch via RNC submission, Round 2.
Special thanks to the crew over at TheCagedoor.net for providing excellent LIVE coverage of this WGC event. Tune in there for post-fight interviews, pictures, etc. from this WGC card. I also want to recognize Mike “The Truth” Jackson for his video blog, which provided excellent video footage of the night’s fights. These guys continue to support the growth of Houston MMA as I aim to do so please support them as well!
Author’s Note – I recently created a Facebook Group for everyone involved in the Houston Fight Community. (MMA, BJJ, Submission Grappling) My intent in creating this group is to enable us to have a community shared-space where we can discuss TX combat sports and share news in real-time. (e.g. the “Group Chat” function where you can talk to all members who are online) All in all, it’s pretty neat, free, and absolutely devoid of outside interests. If you’re involved in any way, I suggest you join the discussion and feel free to invite your training partners. – Mike Calimbas