norcal rules them all
the second strikeforce MMA tourney was a tour de force for locals. norcal boys won almost every fight. in fact, the only local who didn’t win a main event fight was bobby southworth and that’s because it was called no contest.
check this out. bobby (who is looking much better, but still was not my pick for this fight) was squaring up against james irvin (who is like my number choice for UFC supermodel) and after like a hit or two southworth charged irvin and they clenched. southworth got irvin up against the fence right at the doorway to the octagon and the door gave way and flew open. irvin landed on his back quite unexpectedly (he thought he was up against the fence) and southworth landed on top of him. i think bobby’s leg must have pinned james’s leg to the door way and really fucked up his knee. james was in serious pain and couldn’t continue the fight. for a while bobby struted around the ring posing and shit like he won the fight (that cocky fuck). but the fight was wisely called no contest and southworth conceded it was the right thing to do.
the next fight cecil peoples, one of our least favorite refs, did the coolest thing and threw himself at the gate before he would start the round to make sure it was closed. thanks cecil!
josh thompson had a good fight winning with a submission in the 3rd round. the boy needed to redeem himself after losing to a wrestler last time. that dude just suffocated josh’s strikes and laid on top of him. but that’s ok because josh won, and another hometown fave, gilbert melendez, beat the wrestler kid in by decision. gil was prepared for the wrestler and countered most of his takedown moves, and he hit the kid hard every time they were standing up. the wrestler kid had a strong chin, he must’ve taken at least 20 good hits to his jaw and he kept standing. afterwards i saw him holding a huge ice pack to his left jaw and felt redeemed even more.
most the other locals won by submission, the one notable exception being this bulldog of a dude from from east palo alto (we were chanting e p a at the top of our lungs for this guy) called eugene jackson. he pounded the shit out of his opponent and the crowd was wild for it. and cung le scored the only honest knockout of the whole night. go cung. rudy ott wasn’t in cung’s corner, which i gotta say was weird.
the main event was the most boring fight of the night. alistair overeem got in some good strikes against vitor belfort, who did a little hitting but spent most the fight on his back in the guard. even without a takedown belfort would just fall to his guard and make overeem come to him. it wasn’t much of a strategy because vitor didn’t do shit once they were both on the ground. he just clenched. he didn’t try for a single submission. the crowd booed him the whole time and rightly so. they were there to see a fight. and most of them understood that could mean ground fighting. but what vitor was giving wasn’t a fight at all. we shoulda left early.
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