The seventh and final week of PFL’s 2018 regular season just wrapped up with the postseason playoff brackets filled out and solidified. In the main event, both athletes needed to secure a second round stoppage, or better, to clinch a playoff spot. Just when it looked as if the headliner was going into a third round, the doctor deemed Jamie Abdallah unfit to continue, and Smealinho Rama was awarded the second round TKO. Rama makes the light heavyweight postseason by the narrowest of margins, but once you’re in, you’re in.
The co-main event witnessed Bazigit Atayev landing a brutal spinning back kick to the body of UFC veteran Sean O’Connell, which ultimately set up a first-round standing TKO. Atayev earned himself six points and a slot in the light heavyweight bracket. O’Connell is already in the playoffs from the five points he earned in his PFL debut. Before that, Alexandre Bezerra made good on his promotional debut, dusting Magomed Idrisov with a flying knee in the very first round. The first-round stoppage earned Bezerra six points on the board, which promises him a seat in the featherweight playoffs and a chance to win the grand prize.
In his PFL debut, Handesson Ferreira earned himself six points by stopping Paul Bradley with strikes just 20 seconds into the opening round. The six points guarantees Ferreira a spot in the playoffs and chance at the one-million dollars. Opening up the main card, both Caio Alencar and Mike Kyle needed a stoppage in their heavyweight bout in order to earn enough points to make into the playoffs. No such finish ever materialized for either man, but nonetheless, Alencar walked away with the unanimous decision.
Smealinho Rama def. Jamie Abdallah by TKO (Doctor) at 5:00 of round 2: Light Heavyweight
Rama caught Abdallah coming forward with a counter right hand before the light heavyweights clinched up against the cage. Abdallah landed a viscous knee to the face that opened up Rama, and then Rama landed some heavy punches of his own back in open space. The opening round was rather back and forth with each man wearing their lumps back to the corner.
Rama came out aggressive to open the second round, which prompted Abdallah to initiate a grappling exchange. Rama got the better of the grappling and took the back of Abdallah, followed by the full mount, and then again to the back. Abdallah kept moving and returned to his feet, and you could see the fighters slipping on the puddles of blood on the mat. The warriors kept trading blows back and forth until Rama dragged the fight back down to the ground. Rama frantically searched for an RNC, but Abdallah escaped back up to his feet and started unloading bombs until the bell.
The doctor deemed Abdallah unfit to continue due to severe swelling around his left eye, and Rama was awarded the TKO victory.
- Rama: 5 points
- Abdallah: 0 points
Bazigit Atayev def. Sean O’Connell by TKO at 3:30 of round 1: Light Heavyweight
Atayev clocked O’Connell with a punching combo early in the first round that sat him down. Despite a barrage of ground strikes, O’Connell was able to recover and make it back to his feet. The referee brought the doctor in to take a look at a cut that formed around the eye of O’Connell, but the doc deemed him suitable to continue. Upon the restart, Atayev cracked O’Connell with a spinning back kick to the body, which briefly dropped O’Connell. Atayev went in for the kill, landing a combo of punches and forcing the referee to step in and stop the fight.
- Atayev: 6 points
- O’Connell: 0 points/5 points
Alexandre Bezerra def. Magomed Idrisov by KO at 3:24 of round 1: Featherweight
The featherweights stood just outside of striking distance to start the bout, calculating their approach for the other man. Bezerra was the one pressing forward with Idrisov moving backwards, and the BOOM! Bezerra soared through the air with an explosive flying knee that dropped Idrisov like a sack of potatoes. Yikes!
- Bezerra: 6 points
- Idrisov: 0 points
Handesson Ferreira def. Paul Bradley by TKO at :20 of round 1: Welterweight
Ferreira stormed Bradley’s castle right out of the gate, hurting him with a liver kick to right hand up against the cage. Bradley tried to recover, but the follow-up onslaught proved to be too much and he was forced to hit the deck. Punch after punch landed for Ferreira before the referee stepped in and rescued Bradley.
- Ferreira: 6 points
- Bradley: 0 points
Caio Alencar def. Mike Kyle by unanimous decision (30-27 x2, 29-28): Heavyweight
Kyle clipped Alencar early with a left hand that sat him down, and then wisely allowed Alencar to return to his feet. Despite getting rocked, Alencar was able to put Kyle on his back before quickly moving to full mount. Kyle worked to improve his position, but Alencar was all over him. Alencar went for an arm triangle, but that allowed Kyle to reverse into top position, where he landed a few blows before the round expired.
The heavyweights traded a few punches on the feet before Alencar shot in and put Kyle on his back again. In what appeared to be a mounted triangle attempt, Alencar gave up top position to Kyle, but the referee stood them up before any real damage could be done. Kyle attempted to strike before the referee restarted the bout, and was sternly warned for it. Upon the actual restart, Kyle initiated the clinch, but that only resulted in Kyle fully mounted as the round came to a close.
Alencar came out winging labored left hands and Kyle responded with labored punches of his own. Kyle gave up another takedown, and full mount for that matter, and Alencar searched for an arm triangle. Kyle did not improve his position, let alone return to his feet, until the bell sounded.
- Alencar: 3 points
- Kyle: 0 points
Sadibou Sy def. Caio Magalhaes by KO at 2:06 of round 1: Middleweight
- Sy: 6 points
- Magalhaes: 0 points
Emiliano Sordi def. Jason Butcher by KO at :16 of round 1: Light Heavyweight
- Sordi: 6 points
- Butcher: 0 points