by Ricardo Mendoza – MMAWeekly.com (Photos by Ken Pishna)
ANAHEIM, Calif. – In
front of 13,988 fans, Fedor Emelianenko stated his case to be considered the
best pound for pound fighter in the world, stopping former UFC heavyweight
champion Tim Sylvia in stunning fashion on Saturday night to become the WAMMA
heavyweight champion at the Honda Center.
The crowd was electric as
the fight began. Sylvia came out throwing, but was soon met with hands of
stone, as Fedor absolutely hammered him. Sylvia was obviously stunned as Fedor
charged in with lighting quick combinations that dropped the former UFC
champion. He continued the onslaught of strikes on the ground before sinking in
the hooks and locked in the choke that forced Sylvia to tap just thirty-six
seconds into the opening round.
“I was very pleased with my
performance. Everything I wanted to do I was able to do,” said Fedor after the
“I was amazed at how good he
is. The guy’s a stud. I don’t think he’s human. He’s incredible. I don’t think
anybody’s going to beat him for a while,” said Sylvia of Fedor at the post
fight press conference.
Former UFC heavyweight
champion Andrei Arlovski put on a brilliant display of striking as he stopped
former IFL heavyweight standout Ben Rothwell. Arlovski looked light on his feet as he used good foot
movement to set up his punches and tag Rothwell with kicks and combinations.
The fight went to the ground with Arlovski falling back for a heel hook, but
Rothwell escaped and got back to his feet. As the round came to a close,
Arlovski landed a vicious combination that had Rothwell stunned.
Arlovski came out firing in
the second round, once again tagging Rothwell with powerful shots before taking
the fight to the ground. Again Arlovski went for a heel hook, but this time
Rothwell escaped and got on top, dropping several shots before slowing down.
They were stood back up and Arlovski again started to tee off on Rothwell,
trapping him in the corner and battering him until the round ended.
The final round was much of
the same as Arlovski finally put Rothwell away with a right hand and then an
uppercut to score the knockout at 1:13 of the final round.
In a rematch of fight that
happened several years ago, Josh Barnett gave Pedro Rizzo a taste of his own
medicine. The first round was slow as Barnett kept Rizzo away with front kicks.
Barnett was the aggressor throughout the round, as Rizzo played his usual game
of counter striking, using low kicks and on occasion throwing a jab, but not
following with a combination.
The second round started
much quicker as Rizzo came out more aggressive, trading shots with Barnett.
Then just like that it was over. As the fighters traded, Barnett landed a huge
left hook that flattened Rizzo, landing two more shots before referee Herb Dean
pulled him off at 1:44 of the second round.
The little guys went at it
as UFC veteran Mark Hominick took on IFL veteran Savant Young in a
featherweight bout. They fought at a methodical pace in the first round, as
they felt each other out with Hominick using punch combinations and Young
utilizing low kicks. Although neither fighter landed anything significant, it was
Hominick who was the aggressor throughout the first round.
After some feeling out on
the feet, the fight finally hit the ground with Young on top. As Young went for
ground and pound, Hominick would attempt several triangle chokes before finally
being able to lock on an armbar that forced Young to tap at 4:25 of the second
Former UFC light heavyweight
contender Renato “Babulu” Sobral outworked Ultimate Fighter alumnus Mike
Whitehead in a three-round light heavyweight bout. Sobral was the quicker and
crisper fighter on the feet, landing punches and kicks. Towards the end of the
round Babalu was able to get a takedown, but Whitehead popped back up as the
round came to a close.
The second was much of the
same with Babalu getting the better on the feet, but Whitehead was able to get
the fight to the ground. Babalu defended well though, not taking much damage
before the fighters were stood back up. As the round came to close, Babalu
began to score on the feet with some knees to the body.
In the final round, on two
occasions, Whitehead went for a takedown while Babalu locked on a guillotine
choke and both times the fighters fell out of the ring. Again Babalu was
quicker on the feet, beating Whitehead to the punch and winning a unanimous
decision with scores of 30-27 on all three judges’ scorecards.
In a grueling three-round
battle, former top middleweight Matt Lindland earned a unanimous decision over
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Fabio Negao. Lindland dropped Negao right off
the bat, following it up with a guillotine choke that looked locked on, but
Negao was able to work his way out after some scrambling. Lindland then
proceeded to pound on Negao, using punches, elbows and forearms to batter him.
They got back to their feet and neither fighter did much damage as the round
Negao looked better in the
second, tagging Lindland on several occasions with wild combinations, but
Lindland returned fire with his own combinations. Again Lindland was able to
get the fight to the ground and continued his ground and pound assault for the
rest of the round.
The last round was slow as
both fighters were tired at this point with Lindland landing several good shots
on the feet, but with nothing behind them. Negao stayed tough and threw some
punches of his own, but Lindland was too much as he finished the fight strong.
At the end, Lindland had earned a unanimous decision with scores of 30-26,
30-27 and 30-27.
Pride veteran Antonio
Rogerio Nogueira was dominant, stopping UFC veteran Edwin Dewees with strikes
late in the opening round. Through the entire fight it was Nogueira who was
sharp on his feet, putting together crisp combinations. Dewees stayed composed,
returning fire, but not finding the same success as Nogueira, who continued to
batter the smaller Dewees. Finally Nogueira closed in, hurting class=GramE>Dewees with a combination then following up with knees
before dropping Dewees with a hook and finishing him off with strikes at 4:06
of the first round.
Mike Pyle made quick work of
local fighter J.J. Ambrose after getting the fight to ground early and taking
Ambrose’s back. From there Pyle peppered Ambrose with shots before locking in a
rear naked choke at 2:51 of the opening round.
In a middleweight bout,
former UFC light heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort made his debut in the
division against Midwest fighter Terry Martin. The opening round was a slow one
as both fighters felt each other out with Martin being the aggressor with jabs
and combinations, while Belfort looked uncomfortable for much the round.
The second round started out
better with both fighters swinging for the fences. Belfort looked much more
comfortable than in the first as he pressed forward, landing clean shots, as
did Martin, who took the fight down after catching a Belfort kick. Martin was
unable to land any shots before Belfort was able to escape back to his feet.
From there, Belfort landed a flying knee that stunned Martin, who tried to take
the fight to the ground, but to no avail. The end was next as Belfort knocked
Martin out cold with a left straight at 3:12 of the second round. style="mso-spacerun: yes">
Paul Buentello took on last
minute replacement Garry Goodridge to open up the night. Throughout the fight,
Buentello landed hard shots that would force Goodridge to cover up, but
Buentello would be unable to finish the fight. The fight played out the same
for all three rounds and in the end Buentello walked away with a unanimous
decision, all three judges scoring the fight 30-27.
The bout between Justin
Levens and Ray Lizama never took place. The fight was supposed to have happened
earlier in the evening, but due to the late arrival of the paramedics it had to
be pushed back until, finally, there was no time left to make it happen.
Affliction vice president Tom Atencio told MMAWeekly.com that both fighters
would receive their show money and were also being “taken care of” on top of
that by Affliction.
-Fedor Emelianenko def. Tim
Sylvia by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 0:36, R1
-Andrei Arlovski def. Ben
Rothwell by KO at 1:13, R3
-Josh Barnett def. Pedro
Rizzo by KO at 1:44, R2
-Mark Hominick def. Savant
Young by Submission (Armbar) at 4:25, R2
-Renato “Babalu” Sobral def.
Mike Whitehead by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27), R3
-Matt Lindland def. Fabio
Negao by Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-27, 30-27)
-Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
def. Edwin Dewees by TKO at 4:06, R1
-Mike Pyle def. J.J. Ambrose
by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 2:51, R3
-Vitor Belfort def. Terry
Martin by KO at 3:12, R2
-Paul Buentello def. Gary
Goodridge by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)