Join us on Friday, May 27th at 10:00 PM ET for Titan Fighting Championships 18, taking place live on HDNet from Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kansas. The card is far from a blockbuster event, but Midwest regional cards seem to sit on one side of the spectrum or the other, either disappointing greatly or providing hours of fun. Let's hope for the latter.
The card will be headlined by former UFC lightweight champion and WEC veteran Jens Pulver as he hopes to extend his winning streak to three against Missouri-based fighter Brian Davidson. Pulver is 3-1 since his release from the WEC following his loss to Javier Vazquez back in March of last year.
Both Rory Markham and Drew McFedries were supposed to fight on this card, but late withdrawals caused TFC's Joe Kelly to find new fighters. Thus, the wrestling Rosholt brothers will fill-in on the main card. Three-time NCAA Division I wrestling champion and UFC veteran Jake Rosholt will battle Bobby Lashley's last opponent, John Ott, and Jake's brother, three-time NCAA Division I All-American wrestler Jared Rosholt, will take on Kirk Grinlinton in a heavyweight tilt. Jared was ranked at #6 on the 2011 World MMA Scouting Report in April.
As always, follow me on Twitter at @lelandroling for instant analysis of the evening's action, and join the discussion in the comments tonight at 10:00 PM ET.
Titan Fighting Championships 18
Memorial Hall, Kansas City, Kansas
Brian Davidson def. Jens Pulver via submission (RNC), R1, 4:04
John Ott def. Jake Rosholt via disqualification (knee to grounded opponent), R3, 4:23
Rudy Bears def. Darryl Cobb via submission (rear naked choke), R1, 3:30
Jared Rosholt def. Kirk Grinlinton via TKO, R1, 1:37
Bobby Cooper def. Nick Budig via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Joe Wilk def. Jesse Zeugin via submission (anaconda choke), R1, 3:36
Sean Wilson def. Deryck Ripley via submission (toe hold), R1, 2:00
Rest of the results and play-by-play after the fold...
Catchweight (140 lbs.): Jens Pulver vs. Brian Davidson
Round 1: Pulver attempts a takedown after a brief feeling out period. Davidson backs away quickly. Davidson lands a nice body kick, straight punch combination. Davidson looking very quick early. Davidson lands a knee in close range. This isn't looking good for Jens. Davidson is very fast. And as I say that, Pulver takes him down. Inside the closed guard of Davidson, Pulver trying to rip away from Davidson's attempts to control his posture. And Pulver gets hit with an upkick illegally from Davidson. Referee warns Davidson and Pulver is given some time to recover. A small cut underneath the right eye of Pulver. Back to center. Davidson wings a nice leg kick, and the speed difference is apparent here. Pulver avoids the stand-up as he takes down Davidson again against the fence. Pulver in Davidson's closed guard, posturing up and out. Back to center, Davidson getting the best of Jens on the feet. Jens ducks underneath a flurry of blows and gets the takedown. Davidson scrambles and evades, gaining the top position and delivering some ground strikes. Davidson on Pulver's back now, sinking in the rear naked choke. Jens taps. Brian Davidson def. Jens Pulver via submission (RNC), R1, 4:04
Catchweight (200 lbs.): Jake Rosholt vs. John Ott
Round 1: Ott comes out aggressive, throwing a flurry of strikes, a few kicks, and a spinning backfist. Rosholt weathers the storm and attempts to grasp onto Ott for a takedown. Ott gets free and backs up into the center of the cage. Rosholt gets tagged a few times in close range. Rosholt throws a kick and Ott catches it, driving Rosholt to the mat. Ott regains his feet, gets up from top control, and decides to keep it standing. Good idea. Ott comes forward, and Rosholt takes him down. Rosholt moves into mount within seconds, similarly to his brother earlier in the evening. Ott holding onto Jake's back, trying to keep him from posturing up. Rosholt lands a couple of blows, then a big elbow that has cut open Ott. More elbows getting through from Rosholt. Ott isn't making an effort to find a way to escape, and he's a sitting duck. Finally, Ott bucks, but Rosholt maintains the position. Short elbows from Rosholt, and another huge left elbow. Two cuts now on Ott's face. Hammer fists and elbows from Rosholt end the round. BloodyElbow.com scores the round 10-9 Jake Rosholt.
Round 2: Ott is being very cautious as he comes out to center cage in the second. Ott comes forward with some strikes, everything is blocked by Rosholt. Rosholt gains the takedown into side control after a brief exchange. And here come the elbows. Ott miraculously rolls Rosholt over and gets back to his feet, but Rosholt finds his way back into half guard from the top. Two minutes remaining in the round, Rosholt attempting to slip his leg out to side control. Rosholt finds his way to full mount with a minute left, walks him to the center of the cage, and then attempts to sink in D'Arce choke. Ott defends, and Rosholt finds himself in half guard. Round ends. BloodyElbow.com scores the round 10-9 Jake Rosholt.
Round 3: Ott gets taken down after flashing a spinning backfist and some weak striking. Rosholt attempts to slap on an arm triangle, but let's it go. Rosholt in side control, and Ott spins out from his back and gets back to his feet. Rosholt lands a head kick right as Ott gets to his feet, then chases Ott across the cage and lands a nice straight right. Ott is hurt, and Rosholt lands a few more choice shots. Ott falls to the ground and Rosholt is on top landing hammer fists. Ott is a horror movie. This is unbelievable. His face is wrecked. The doctor isn't stopping this, unreal. Fight restarts with 2:30 left. Rosholt glances a head kick off Ott's cheek, but Ott continues to move forward. Rosholt gaining confidence in his striking now as Ott has slowed down considerably. Ott attempts to take the NCAA champion down. Rosholt reverses position and gets on top. Oh wow... Rosholt knees Ott while he's on his knees, and Ott is completely out of it. There is no way this can continue.. Doctor calls it. Will this be a disqualification? John Ott def. Jake Rosholt via disqualification (knee to grounded opponent), R3, 4:23
Middleweight: Darryl Cobb vs. Rudy Bears
Round 1: Cobb starts his attack quickly, throwing front kicks to the body and mixing in leg kicks. Bears answers with his own leg kicks and head kicks. More solid kicks from Cobb, and Bears counters with a combination on the feet. Jumping back kick from Cobb, but he misses. Bears tries to take advantage but Cobb scrambles. And Bears lands a head kick as they reset. It wasn't flush, but it landed to the side of the head. Bears now trying to damage the legs of Cobb while Cobb comes forward with punches. The kickboxing battle ensues. Cobb rushes forward and has Bears on the run, missing a bevy of shots. Bears shoots to defend from getting knocked out, and Cobb sprawls nicely. WOW! Cobb comes forward, tags Bears on the chin, and then Cobb gets wrecked by a two punch combination, stumbling to the ground. Bears goes for the choke, but Cobb defends. Bears transitions and keeps it on the ground, gains full mount and starts raining down blows. Cobb turns his back, and Bears gets the choke this time... Cobb taps. Rudy Bears def. Darryl Cobb via submission (rear naked choke) at 3:30, Round 1.
Heavyweight: Jared Rosholt vs. Kirk Grinlinton
Round 1: Here we go. Kirk throws a leg kick early, then an overhand right. Rosholt tries to jab, but misses. Nothing lands for either fighter besides Kirk's leg kick. Rosholt's striking is obviously very low level. Rosholt blasts through Kirk, gets the takedown, and gains full mount in a matter of seconds. Kirk is done. It's over instantly. Wow. He needs to improve standing, but that ground and pound was brutal. Jared Rosholt def. Kirk Grinlinton via TKO, R1, 1:37.
Catchweight (176 lbs.): Bobby Cooper vs. Nick Budig
Round 1: Budig and Cooper go to battle immediately with Budig throwing the better punches in the initial exchange. Cooper having trouble keeping Budig at bay with his reach advantage as Cooper is the bigger and lankier fighter. Mouthpiece flies out and they stop to get it back in Cooper's mouth. We restart at center. Budig comes forward hard, and both men land significant strikes to each other's chins. Cooper is being overwhelmed by Budig's speedier delivery. They separate to center. Cooper trying to use his reach to jab at Budig's chin, also using some kicks. Budig landing more shots, straight two punch combinations. Cooper finding some success with a straight jab, right hook combination. Budig finally has enough of waiting out Cooper. He rushes forward, glances a few blows off Cooper's chin and retreats. Budig definitely swinging for the knockout. Budig presses to the cage, misses two shots, and Cooper counters with body shots. Cooper lands three beautiful body kicks and Budig looks unphased. Nice right hand to the chin of Cooper by Budig. Entertaining stand-up war here. Cooper turns it on at the end with a few overhands and kicks. BloodyElbow.com scores the round narrowly for Bobby Cooper, 10-9.
Round 2: More of the same to start the second round as Cooper backpedals and throws strikes from distance while Budig is throwing straight power over the top. Cooper's jab is landing consistently, and Budig is beginning to slow down. At the two and a half minute mark, Cooper has blocked most of Budig's blows or backed out and countered. Budig's eye is swollen badly from Cooper's jabbing game. Budig finally lands the right hand with a minute forty-five left, and Cooper falls to the ground, although completely aware. He offers the guard, but Budig won't have it. Back to the feet. Budig is visibly tired now with only one eye. Jabs are lighting up Budig like a Christmas tree. Budig presses the action at the end of the round, but misses nearly every punch thrown. BloodyElbow.com scores the round for Bobby Cooper, 10-9.
Round 3: Budig's eye is completely shut. But it doesn't stop him from going all out to start the round. Cooper gets tagged, but survives the storm. Budig resets on the feet, and we're back to the sparring match at center cage. Budig throwing the same tired combination over and over again, and Cooper simply backs out and counters with straight punches. More of the same as we hit the two minute mark. Budig is completely ineffective at this point, slowing to a crawl in his urgency. Budig is limping, has a swollen eye, and is completely gassed. Thirty seconds later, Budig tries to crash through Cooper's defenses. Nothing. Cooper lands a few jabs, some more jabs, and more jabs. Budig finds the urgency to move forward, and Cooper evades Budig till the end of the round. BloodyElbow.com scores the round for Bobby Cooper (10-9, 30-27 overall)
Round 1: Zeugin and Wilk open up with some slight sparring on the feet before Wilk comes forward and clinches. A position battle ensues with short shots from both fighters. Nice short punches to ribs by Zeugin, but Wilk is able to counter with a takedown into half guard. Wilk trying to damage Zeugin with short elbows. Zeugin's posture control is solid however, not allowing Wilk to rise up and drop elbows regularly. Wilk finally postures up to his feet and begins throwing punches. Zeugin kicks Wilk out of his guard, but pays for it with a huge right to the dome. Zeugin finds his way to his knees, but Wilk sinks in the D'Arce choke. Zeugin scrambles, circling to escape. Wilk maintains his position as Zeugin tries to wiggle free. It isn't enough. Zeugin taps. Joe Wilk def. Jesse Zeugin via submission (anaconda choke), 3:36 , R1
Lightweight: Sean Wilson vs. Deryck Ripley
Round 1: Ripley shoots in immediately, grabbing hold of Wilson and dumping him via a double leg, landing in top control. Ripley now moves to side control against the fence, then steps over to mount. Wilson turns to his back, and Ripley threatens with a rear naked choke while slipping the body triangle onto Wilson's torso. He slips off, and Wilson turns to try to attack from the top. Ripley throws up his legs, nearly catching Wilson in a triangle choke. Ripley grabs hold of the arm, but Wilson postures up and escapes. Wilson back in top control and grabs Ripley's leg, turning to the ground and forcing a toe hold in place. Ripley taps after a brief scramble. Sean Wilson def. Deryck Ripley via submission (toe hold), 2:00, R1