Join us here on Friday, March 25th at 11:00 p.m. ET for M-1 Challenge: Damkovsky vs. Figueroa, taking place live on Showtime from the Constant Center in Norfolk, Virginia. While the card may not be a top to bottom stacked card full of recognizable names, the card will feature BloodyElbow.com's #7 ranked undefeated lightweight prospect from the 2011 World MMA Scouting Report in Alexander Sarnaviskiy as he battles NCAA Division I wrestler and late replacement Beau Baker. The Ultimate Fighter season 8 runner-up Vinny Magalhaes is also featured on the card, fighting undefeated prospect Jake Doerr in light heavyweight action.
In the two top fights on the card, Artiom Damkovsky will defend his lightweight strap, taking on American Jose Figueroa in a five-round main event battle. Magomed Sultanakhmedov and Tyson Jeffries are also set to square off in a middleweight title affair, vying for the vacant belt left by Rafal Moks.
Jose Figueroa def. Artiom Damkovsky via TKO, 2:28 of Round 2.
Magomed Sultanakhmedov def. Tyson Jeffries via TKO, 3:07 of Round 2.
Vinny Magalhaes def. Jake Doerr via TKO, 1:47 of Round 1.
Jason Norwood def. Mojo Horne via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Alexander Sarnavskiy def. Beau Baker via submission (rear naked choke) (2:32 of Round 2)
Results and play-by-play after the fold...
Round 1: Damkovsky comes out quick, firing off punches and kicks. Head kick attempt puts Figueroa off balance, but he keeps his feet. Damkovsky looks like the much quicker fighter, but Damkovksy nearly pays as he evades a Figueroa takedown attempt. Figueroa nearly knees his head in. Back to distance striking, Figueroa shoots and gets the takedown briefly. Damkovsky gets to his knees, but is now defending the choke from the front headlock position. Damkovsky escapes, and Figueroa fires off a nice body kick. Back to distance, Damkovsky lands an overhand right, body kick combo. He then catches a Figueroa kick, and attempts a flying knee. Misses. Damkovsky lands a leg kick that echos throughout my own home. Heavy, heavy kicks from Damkovsky. The Iron Fist does not care about broken feet. Figueroa's reach is apparent, but his speed isn't up too par. Figueroa takes down Damkovsky, and Damkovsky is now bleeding from the mouth or nose. Damkovsky gets to full guard, but Figueroa is raining down blows and tagging Damkovsky. Damkovsky is a mess. Damkovsky survives, but Figueroa did a lot of damage at the end. BloodyElbow.com scores the round 10-9 Figueroa.
Round 2: Figueroa and Damkovsky go to war instantly. Both landing blows, but Figueroa puts Damkovsky down quickly as he catches a kick. Back to the position round 1 ended in. Figueroa gains full mount. This could get ugly. Damkovsky gives up his back, and Figueroa's length is going to come into play heavily here. He transitions back to mount, then moves to open half guard, possibly looking for an arm triangle. He moves back to mount, now battering Damkovsky. Blood is pouring out of Damkovsky. And the referee stops it. Jose Figueroa def. Artiom Damkovsky via TKO, 2:28 of Round 2.
Round 1: Feeling out period early. Jeffries attacks with kicks and punches, but he gets countered by a straight left, body kick combination. Another left lands, and after a few more seconds -- Sultanakhmedov lands another body kick. They go to the ground shortly, but back to the feet where Sultanakhmedov continues to batter Jeffries' body with kicks. The kickboxing champion is working over the Team Quest product early here with lefty combos. Jeffries has no answer to defending the shots. Jeffries finally lands a left, but doesn't follow. More kicks from Sultanakhmedov. Jeffries' entire body is bruised up. BloodyElbow.com scores it 10-9 Sultanakhmedov.
Round 2: Wow... Jeffries punches then shoots, and it looks like a sure takedown. But Sultanakhmedov shows amazing balance, nearly turning it into a judo throw. He stymies Jeffries, and settles back into a striking game. Short feeling out period, but Jeffries shoots again. Sultanakhmedov does a decent job defending, but goes down. Jeffries immediately looks for the arm triangle, but Sultanakhmedov is defending well, holding down Jeffries. Jeffries in full mount, but can't posture up. Sultanakhmedov bucks him off as he lets up the pressure. Incredible. Back to the feet. And Sultanakhmedov turns it on, blasting Jeffries with a head kick and knees to the face. Jeffries is on his last leg, wobbled heavily. WOW! Head kick, and Jeffries is still alive somehow. Knees in the clinch, Jeffries is being crushed. Jeffries finally drops. Fight is over. Magomed Sultanakhmedov def. Tyson Jeffries via TKO, 3:07 of Round 2.
Round 1: Wow.. instantly, Vinny blasts Doerr with an overhand. Doerr evades the incoming strikes, gains guard, but Vinny moves to side control instantly. Doerr secures half guard, but then gives up full mount. Doerr turns to his back, and Vinny has the body triangle locked. Vinny batters Doerr from the back, finishes the fight quickly. Impressive. Vinny Magalhaes def. Jake Doerr via TKO, 1:47 of Round 1.
Middleweight: Jason Norwood (10-2) vs. Mojo Horne (8-2):
Round 1: Horne kicks immediately, and Norwood makes him pay by picking him up and slamming him to the ground. Norwood in side control now near the turnbuckle. Norwood tries to advance, but Horne defends and finally gets back to his feet. Unfortunately, Horne gets buried back into the canvas, threatening with an inverted triangle briefly. Norwood pops out and is back in side control, elbowing to the body. Norwood now dropping strikes, attempts to lock the arm down at one point, but can't do anything with it. Horne gets back up, eats a knee, delivers a knee, then gets brutally slammed to the canvas. Horne looks hurt from the slam. Brutal stuff. BloodyElbow.com scores the round 10-9 Norwood.
Round 2: Horne comes out firing immediately, landing some power. Horne is doing some damage, lands a huge knee in the corner as Norwood presses. Norwood shoots, and Horne sprawls nicely... except he gets turned over. Norwood on top now in Horne's half guard. Horne powers out fo the hold, gets back to his feet. Horne attempts a flying knee, nearly getting kick off balance. Norwood shakes off the knees, and slams Horne to the floor again. Side control against the ropes. Norwood can't do a whole lot, so the referee stands them up. Horne goes off, trying to land a game-changing overhand, but Norwood once again dumps Horne. Norwood sits in his full guard now. Norwood gets kicked out of guard, and Horne lands some upkicks. Norwood wades through the feet, falls into Horne. No damage. BloodyElbow.com scores it for Norwood, 10-9.
Round 3: At this point, I think Horne might be trying out for TNA wrestling. He's just bum rushing Norwood, and Norwood is burying his shoulder into his belly and driving forward. Horne is on his back immediately with Norwood moving to side control and peppering Horne with just enough offense to keep position. Surprisingly, Norwood works to full mount with 1:30 left in the fight. Horne is able to gain half guard however. Horne is now laughing at the ordeal while being smothered on the bottom. Somewhat funny. Norwood gains mount again and unleashes strikes. Not one lands. Not a great performance, but effective. BloodyElbow.com scores the round 10-9 Norwood.
Jason Norwood def. Mojo Horne via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Round 1: Baker quickly taps the hand of Sarnavskiy and shoots. Sarnavskiy lands a hard kick to the body as Baker shot, now struggling in the clinch against the ropes. Baker having problems gaining the takedown early here, and Sarnavskiy escapes. Immediately lands a huge blow to the head, and a knee. Baker is being overwhelmed with punches and knees. Baker runs away, but eats a knee. Baker is trying to stay away, but Sarnavskiy is throwing everything possible at him. Spinning backfist, knees, and finally... Baker shoots and slows the fight down. Clinch battle ensues and a huge uppercut. Baker is on wobbly legs. Back to center, Baker can't shoot, his legs are gone, and he's just eating blows. Two minutes left, Baker doesn't seem to have the gas. Baker just dropped himself to the canvas after slipping off a clinch in the corner. Sarnavskiy has slowed as well, but he's still landing more strikes. Baker hugging Sarnavskiy along the ropes, desperately searching for the takedown. Sarnavskiy lands another brutal uppercut, but Baker pushes forward. The round ends with Sarnavskiy battering Baker with lefts. Wow. BloodyElbow.com scores the round 10-9 Sarnavskiy.
Round 2: Baker pressures early, pushing Sarnavskiy to the turnbuckle and working from the clinch. Baker tries to take down Sarnavskiy, but the Russian evades and spins out. Baker presses Sarnavskiy back into the ropes, and now "The Tiger" punishes Baker with knees in the clinch. Baker backs out, eating more knees while he escapes. Another uppercut, and Baker's head reaches the sky. Back to center, and Baker comes forward... eating more knees. Sarnavskiy continues to be difficult to take down. In a change of style, Sarnavskiy takes the back of Baker in the scramble, and chokes out Baker. Alexander Sarnavskiy def. Beau Baker via submission (rear naked choke) (2:32 of Round 2)