While it was a busy weekend for big MMA, with WSOF, Bellator, and of course the UFC all running shows, it was relatively quiet on the regional circuit. Nevertheless, a pair of mainstay organizations played host to some familiar names...
At Friday's Legacy FC 38 out of Texas, Anthony Njokuani (17-10, 3-5 UFC, 4-3 WEC), fighting outside the Zuffa umbrella for the first time in nearly seven years, looked to rebound from the two-fight slump that saw him released from the UFC last October. Standing in his way was Dave Burrow (13-5-0), a product of the lower-midwest scene who was riding a four-fight winning streak into Friday's bout.
Njokuani's striking prowess was on full display as he repeatedly stunned and floored Burrow, reportedly to the point of being up on the cards 20-16 heading into the third. Burrow's tenacity and knack for the submission would see him to a significant comeback victory, though, with Njokuani having to tap to an armbar early in the third. Burrow has won five straight, all by armbar, while Njokuani finds himself on the worst losing streak of his career.
UFC vets fared no better further down the card when Joseph Sandoval (7-5, 0-2 UFC) took on Jason Sampson (12-1, 3-0 Bellator). A long straight right floored Sandoval early, and Sampson followed him to the mat where he took Sandoval's back, flattened him out, and bombed away for the TKO victory. Sampson is 4-0 since 2012. Sandoval is 1-3 during that same time, being unable to replicate the success that earned him a spot in the UFC back in 2011.
Highlights from Legacy FC 38 can be seen here. Sampson vs. Sandoval is at 1:15, Burrow vs. Njokuani at 1:40.
And lastly, at King of the Cage: Short Fuse in Idaho, Mike Hayes (19-10-1, 2-1 Bellator, 1-0 Strikeforce) dropped a unanimous decision to local product Josh Queen (6-2-0). The fight was a rematch of a 2009 bout that Queen lost by knockout. Queen, who happens to be the last man to fight TUF 2 finalist Brad Imes (a bout which he won by TKO), has won three in a row. Hayes, who's faced the likes of Andrei Arlovski and Oleksiy Oliynyk and who owns victories over Jeff Monson and Neil Grove, is 2-6 in the last three years.