The lineup for Tachi Palace Fights 10: "Let the Chips Fall" is punctuated by three championship matches and four of the world's top 125-pounders. The event kicks off on the 5th of August from the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore, California.
Though the WEC assisted in injecting the featherweights and bantamweights into the mainstream spotlight, the 125-pound class is still lurking on the outskirts. For stateside featherweights, Tachi Palace Fights is the place to be, and no less than four top-ranked fighters in the weight class -- and one honorable mention -- will see action on this card.
The flyweight strap will be at stake in the centerpiece of the event, as Darrell Montague (9-1) will defend his title against Ian McCall (10-2). Both men rocketed forward in the featherweight standings with career-defining victories at Tachi Palace Fights 8 in February: Montague clobbered Ulysses Gomez to become champion, and McCall dealt the highly acclaimed Jussier Da Silva his first loss. Each victory was facilitated by forcing their grappling-oriented opponents to fight standing, so this collision will likely be decided amidst a hail of fists.
Riding a flawless nine-fight roll into his clash with Joe Warren at Bellator 27, Joe Soto (9-1) dominated the first frame of the contest, battering Warren relentlessly with strikes. The cast iron chin of Warren carried him through the first five minutes, and he turned the tables with a comeback knockout early in the second. Now, returning to battle for the first time since that bout in September of last year, Soto will face Eddie Yagin (13-3-1) for the recently vacated TPF featherweight championship.
The four blemishes on Yagin's record were all delivered by reputable lightweights: Strikeforce fighter Vitor Ribeiro, and former UFC fighters Joe Jordan, Rich Clementi, and Diego Saraiva. His last outing was the loss to Saraiva at TPF 2 in 2009, so not only has he been absent for some time, but his record stems back to the year 2000. Joe Soto holds wins over Saraiva and current Bellator fighter Wilson Reis.
The rest of the card is detailed in the full entry.
In the event's third title fight, newly crowned middleweight champion and UFC veteran David Loiseau (20-10) takes on voracious submissionist Givanildo Santana (15-1). Santana, a Team Oyama fighter, goes by "The Arm Collector" for racking up thirteen wins by submission, an astounding eleven of which come via armbar. Fresh off back-to-back defeats in the UFC to Ed Herman and Mario Miranda, "The Crow" stopped Leopoldo Serao with strikes in the fifth round at TPF 8 to adorn his waist with championship gold.
Two other main card contests will showcase the promotion's featherweight depth: afro-poppin' Shooto star Mamoru Yamaguchi (26-5-3) vs. Jussier "Formiga" Da Silva (9-1) and former TPF champ Ulysses Gomez (7-2) vs. undefeated Drew Bittner (4-0).
Yamaguchi was successful in his promotional debut with a second round KO of Kevin Dunsmoor at TPF 9, while Nova Uniao affiliate Da Silva will look to re-establish himself after losing to McCall at TPF 8. Both fighters have been perennial top-five flyweights and this will be an epic confrontation to define the stacked 125-pound hierarchy. Also returning from a loss at TPF 8, Gomez will be back in the saddle after Montague stole his belt, while the relatively inexperienced Bittner will get his first taste of esteemed competition.
World champion BJJ player Andre Galvao (5-2) will make his TPF debut against Wand Fight Team's rising star Jorge Lopez (10-1). Galvao raised eyebrows after submitting the seasoned John Alessio in DREAM, but later incurred his first loss to Jason High, and most recently, Tyron Woodley snapped his two-fight streak in Strikeforce. Lopez is soaring after defeating the venerable Waachiim Spiritwolf at TPF 9; the impressive prospect's ninth-consecutive victory.
The complete lineup for Tachi Palace 10: "Let the Chips Fall" follows the event poster below.
Darrell Montague vs. Ian McCall (Flyweight Championship)
Joe Soto vs. Eddie Yagin (Featherweight Championship)
David Loiseau vs. Giva Santana (Middleweight Championship)