by Rami Genauer, MMAWeekly.com (Photo courtesy of Rebekah Genauer)
WASINGTON, D.C. – As it turned out, mixed martial arts in D.C. was definitely ready for its close-up. With local media buzzing about the first-ever sanctioned MMA show in the District and over 2,100 people in attendance, fans were treated to a thrilling night of action, with only two fights going to decision and eight bouts finishing in the first round.
The fledgling promotion, Mixed Martial Arts Championship (MMAC), provided an evening of entertainment that more than made up for its paucity of well-known fighters with a fast-paced show with impressive production values. Despite their inexperience, the promotion pulled off a near flawless event that proved a big hit with those in attendance, most of whom had never seen an MMA show in person.
Perhaps the show’s only weakness (aside from titling a show “The Revolution” in the nation’s capital) was the anti-climax of its main events. In the first of two featured bouts, Nino Schembri took on fellow Pride veteran Amir Rahnavardi. Fighting for the first time in over a year, Rahnavardi was taken down within seconds of the opening bell. Schembri quickly transitioned from side control to a slick armbar/top-side triangle choke that forced Rahnavardi to tap out a mere 57 seconds into the fight.
In the night’s final match, Brazilian Top Team’s Fabiano Capoani bested UFC vet Homer Moore when Moore verbally submitted due to a re-aggravation of an existing knee injury. Fans were quick to boo during the initial feeling-out process, in which neither fighter threw a punch for the first three minutes. The remaining minute of the fight saw Capoani attempt a takedown that put Moore in top position. Capoani worked methodically from the guard, attempting an armbar and triangle choke in quick succession. Moore pulled out of both maneuvers, but after standing up briefly, he fell to the mat and was unable to continue.
The night also saw impressive performances by Brazilian Rafael Bastos and former Green Bay Packers running back Herbert Goodman in each of their fights. Bastos came out swinging in his fight against Minnesotan Chaylen Rader, connecting with two good right hooks and a jumping knee. Following a spinning back fist attempt that drew “oohs” from the crowd, Bastos was able to take the fight to the ground, transition to mount and pound out a TKO in just one minute and 38 seconds.
Goodman’s night was even shorter. Looking uncannily like a younger Marvin Eastman (another former running back), Goodman endured a thunderous body slam by wrestler Shane Dezee, only to secure a tight guillotine choke that ended the fight only 36 seconds after it had begun.
For those in the DC area that missed it, the event was taped in HD for broadcast later this summer on the TV-One network. Most appropriate for an event in wonky D.C., The Revolution will be televised.
Full Event Results:
-Fabiano Capoani def. Homer Moore by TKO at 3:59 of Round 1
-Nino Schembri def. Amir Rahnavardi by armbar at 0:57 of Round 1
-Herbert Goodman def. Shane Dezee by guillotine at 0:36 of Round 1
-Rafael Bastos def. Chaylen Rader by TKO at 1:38 of Round 1
-Chris Manuel def. Killa B. Niimi by TKO at 0:31 of Round 3
-Edson Conterraneo def. Rocky Batastini by Unanimous Decision
-Matt Lee def. Ashe Bowman by guillotine at 2:48 of Round 1
-Rodrigo Botti def. Sam Liera by TKO at 4:29 of Round 3
-Antwain Britt def. Patrick Barrentine by KO (punch) at 1:12 of Round 1
-Marcelo Brito def. Omar de la Cruz by Split Decision
-Brian Caraway def. Saul Mitchel by armbar at 3:04 of Round 1
-Kyle Baker def. Ron Foster by TKO at 3:41 of Round 1