Promoted to the front page by Matthew Roth
As far as regional cards go, XFC 15 gave us a decent little night of fights. Our main event was Eric Reynolds and BJJ fighter Jonatas Novaes. The first round saw Novaes putting on a grappling demo, grabbing limbs and mounts with ease. Novaes closed the bout with a deep armbar, but the bell saved Reynolds The first half of the second provided us the same, with Novaes grapple-gassing. Standing up, Reynolds landed some strikes and scored a knockdown and some ground and pound. The third round was essentially the same, with Reynolds busting a gassed Novaes up on the feet for a unanimous decision.
Fan-favorite Felice Herrig was no match for Carla Esparza's dominant top control and takedowns. Although Herrig fought valiently, attempting submissions and trying to shake Esparza, Herrig spent all three rounds with Carla scrambling on top. The bout ended with Esparza taking a unanimous decision and getting two dozen roses from one of Donald Trump's numerous ex-wives.
Moving on, we had karateka John Kolosci taking on the man with the best nickname of the night, Ryan Thomas "The Tank Engine." As you usually see in these bouts, the striker manages to get owned nearly every time. In this particular case, a pretty epic case of owange was seen in a takedown that lead to a reverse triangle choke submission in the first for "The Tank Engine."
Our comedic bout of the night was provided by super heavyweights Imani Lee and Brandon Sayles. Sayles, currently enlisted in the Army and sporting an impressive background in their combatives tournaments, defeated a self-proclaimed revitalized Lee (most famous for losing to Minowaman) in every aspect en route to a first round TKO. Sayles looks like he has a lot of potential once he can dedicate himself to the sport full-time and get down to 265.
Corey Hill made his comeback over TUF 13 veteran Charlie Rader. A takedown and a few body shots lead to Hill locking in a brabo choke in the first. Hill still looks very drained and emaciated for the weight, which is very concerning. The win over a fellow TUF veteran is still a good thing to see for Hill, coming off a loss to "Razor" Rob McCullough.
One of the more inspiring moments of the night was Nick Newell's heel hook victory over Denis Hernandez. Newell was born with a deformity in his left arm, leaving him without the lower part and hand on his left. Newell got rocked, then grabbed a single leg. After a brief grappling battle, Hernandez found himself tapping to a heel hook in the first.
Overall, XFC delivered some nice finishes and a good display of regional level talent. Really, what else do you have to do on a Friday night?