Burkman put Jon Fitch to sleep in 41 seconds. | Photo: Dave
The rematch could not have played out any better for Josh
“The People’s Warrior” spoiled the ballyhooed promotional debut of
the world-ranked Jon Fitch and
choked the American Kickboxing Academy export unconscious with a
first-round guillotine in the World Series of Fighting 3 headliner
on Friday at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Fitch
(24-6-1, 0-1 WSOF) went limp 41 seconds into round one, submitted
for the first time in more than a decade.
“I had so much support going into this fight. It was overwhelming,”
said Burkman, who became the first man to submit Fitch since
Pyle turned the trick in July 2002. “I have a great team, great
coaches. My performances are just a reflection of the way I live my
Burkman (26-9, 3-0 WSOF) floored the 35-year-old Fort Wayne, Ind.,
native with a short right hook during their initial exchange and
moved immediately to the choke. Soon after, Fitch blacked out,
Burkman released him and stood with his right arm raised in
“I got a little overconfident in my choke defense,” said Fitch, who
tapped out Burkman with a rear-naked choke in their first encounter
back in 2006 under the Ultimate Fighting Championship banner. “He
locked it in too tight. It was a mistake on my part. I should have
fought the choke right away.”
Carl Choke Submits Steele
Bellator MMA veteran Steve Carl
Steele with a first-round rear-naked choke in the welterweight
co-main event. Steele (10-2, 1-1 WSOF) conceded defeat 92 seconds
into round one, his four-fight winning streak a thing of the
Carl tapped out Steele in round one.
Carl (20-3, 2-0 WSOF) swarmed the Canadian upstart with punches and
kicks, pancaked him on a failed takedown attempt and capitalized on
the subsequent opening. The 28-year-old Belle Plaine, Iowa, native
shifted to Steele’s back, trapped his left arm between his legs and
threaded the rear-naked choke for the finish.
Carl has submitted each of his past six opponents inside one
“I wanted to mix it up a little bit more,” he said. “You could tell
he wasn’t too comfortable on the feet with me. It was really too
easy, so I took it.”
Volkmann cruised past Beerbohm.
Volkmann Cruises Past Beerbohm
Takedowns, superior scrambling ability and an airtight ground game
carried UFC castaway Jacob
Volkmann to a unanimous decision against Lyle
Beerbohm in a lightweight showcase. All three judges sided with
Volkmann (16-4, WSOF): 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28.
Beerbohm (21-3, 0-1 WSOF) executed virtually nothing of note from
an offensive standpoint. Stuck in an endless gauntlet of clinches
and scrambles, the Strikeforce alum spun his wheels for much of the
In the third round, Volkmann transitioned to Beerbohm’s back,
trapped “Fancy Pants” in a body triangle and ran through a series
of rear-naked choke attempts. Though all failed, they provided an
effective exclamation point for the Minnesotan.
The defeat snapped Beerbohm’s six-fight winning streak.
Gaethje Leg Kicks Stop Cobb
Undefeated Grudge Training Center prospect
Gaethje put away Brian Cobb
with an accumulation of leg kicks in the third round of their
competitive lightweight matchup. Cobb (20-8, 1-1 WSOF), who entered
the cage with wins in five of his past six appearance, succumbed to
the kicks 2:19 into round three.
Gaethje chopped Cobb down with low kicks.
Gaethje (9-0, 2-0 WSOF) struggled for much of the bout. Cobb struck
for a takedown in the first round, moved to mount and ultimately
flattened out the 24-year-old Safford, Ariz., native before
threatening him with a rear-naked choke.
Gaethje survived and continued to target his adversary’s leg. The
investment paid off a little more than halfway through the third
round, as Cobb could no longer stand on his left leg, retreated to
the cage and indicated a desire to see the action halted.
Sanders Grinds Down Smith
Well-timed takedowns, a suffocating top game and
moderate ground-and-pound spurred Jerrod Sanderson to a unanimous
verdict over Jeff Smith in
an undercard battle at 145 pounds. All three cageside judges scored
it 30-27 for Sanders (13-2, 1-0 WSOF), a onetime NCAA All-American
wrestler at Oklahoma State University who has rattled off 11
Smith was no match for Sanders.
Sanders moved to a dominant position in all three frames and
weathered a knockdown in the second. His efforts left Smith (10-2,
0-1 WSOF) visibly frustrated.
Anchored at an American Top Team affiliate in Oklahoma City,
Sanders was at his best in the third round. There, he delivered
another takedown, grinded on Smith from side control and moved
briefly to mount.
Lauzon dominated Gunderson for 15 minutes.
Lauzon Extends Winning Streak
Lauzon made a strong first impression in his promotional debut,
as he cruised to a unanimous nod over John
Gunderson in undercard clash at 155 pounds. Lauzon (17-4, 1-0
WSOF), the younger brother of “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 5
semifinalist Joe Lauzon,
swept the scorecards by identical 30-27 marks, as he extended his
winning streak to five fights.
Gunderson (34-15-2, 0-1 WSOF) was on the defensive from the word
Lauzon repeatedly backed the 34-year-old into the cage, smothering
him with a variety of strikes, from stout straight lefts to
slashing standing elbows. Outside of a first-round takedown,
Gunderson was never a factor in the match.
Beebe Hands Murphy First Defeat
“The Ultimate Fighter” alum Carson
Beebe won for the eighth time in nine outings, as he leaned on
takedowns, an active top game and superb submission defense in
procuring a unanimous decision over previously undefeated
bantamweight prospect Joe Murphy.
All three judges arrived at the same verdict: 29-28 for Beebe
(14-2, 1-0 WSOF).
Beebe took a controversial decision.
Though he spent plenty of time on his back, Murphy (6-1, 0-1 WSOF),
Luciano protégé, made life difficult for his opponent.
He threatened Beebe with guillotine and arm-triangle chokes in the
first round and locked down a tight anaconda choke in the third.
His attempts went for naught, however, and the judges elected to
side with Beebe, the younger brother of former World Extreme
Cagefighting champion Chase
Bulgarian Mladenov Downs Miree
Unbeaten Bulgarian wrestler Krasimir
Mladenov kept his perfect professional record intact, as he
earned a unanimous decision over Blackzilians export Kendrick
Miree in a preliminary middleweight tilt. All three cageside
judges ruled in favor of Mladenov (10-0, 1-0 WSOF): 29-28, 29-28
Mladenov outpointed Miree on all three cards.
Neither man seemed willing to seize the fight by the horns, but
Mladenov’s aggression and dogged pursuit of the takedown seemed to
put him over the top. Miree (5-1, 0-1 WSOF) denied many of his
foe’s advances but mounted little in terms of meaningful offense
and came up
short on the scorecards.
Hansen slipped by a game Montalvo.
Hansen Outduels Wand Fight Team’s Montalvo
Takedowns, ground-and-pound and the occasional guard pass carried
Hawaiian prospect Brensen Hansen to a unanimous verdict over Wand
Fight Team representative Josh
Montalvo in an undercard scrap at 145 pounds.
All three cageside judges scored it for Hansen (5-1, 2-0 WSOF):
30-27, 29-28 and 29-28.
Hansen did his best work in the first and third rounds, where he
neutralized the 25-year-old San Benito, Texas, native with
takedowns and an effective top game.
He put an exclamation point on his third straight win in the final
frame, as he secured another takedown an opened a gnarly facial cut
on Montalvo (0-1, 0-1 WSOF) with an elbow from the top.