The Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada was home to a decent night of fights. The card saw three(T)KOs, one submission, one no contest and seven decisions, including three split-decisions.
Performances of the Night: Misha Cirkunov, Justin Gaethje
Misha Cirkunov scored a first-round submission over Jim Crute after a few tense moments. The two came out kicking, taking the action from 0-100 in about three seconds. Cirkunov used Crute’s kicks against him, taking him down and getting side control with relative ease. The two scramble and Crute ends up in top position, blasting Misha, bloodying him in the process. Cirkunov sweeps, ends up in mount and starts cranking a guillotine which morphs into a Peruvian necktie.
Misha Cirkunov gets the W and a $50K bonus.
Justin Gaethje scored another big first-round TKO when he stopped “Cowboy” Cerrone at the 4:18 mark. Cerrone started slow, as he normally does when facing a dynamic striker and his hesitance ended up costing him dearly. Gaethje scored with kicks after whiffing on a few strikes in the first minute. Cerrone landed a few punches, but by this time, Justin has his timing down and is landing uppercuts and leg kicks as if on cue. Cerrone is moving in but Gaethje has him in the crosshairs and lands a huge right that puts Donald on a knee. “Highlight” cracks him a few more times before looking to the ref for a stoppage. The ref waits a little longer while Gaethje continues throwing heat, and then finally steps in to wave it off.
Justin Gaethje gets the victory and a $50K bonus.
Fight of the Night: Tristan Connelly vs. Michel Pereira
Tristan Connelly came into his fight with Michel Pereira looking like David facing off against Goliath. The Canadian lightweight made the jump up to welterweight on just five days’ notice when Pereira’s original opponent fell out. The fight had a wild start with Michel launching flying knees, front flips, back flips, rolling thunder and all manner of acrobatics that ended up taking a toll on his gas tank.
Connelly was a very game opponent, though, fearing nothing on the ground and actually doing very well for himself there. His iron chin not only survived the knees and punches Pereira was throwing, he was landing some great shots of his own. Michel ended up using a couple minutes of round two to catch his breath by taking “Boondock” down and resting atop him.
Round three was all Connelly, who spent almost the entire round in Pereira’s guard where he was incredibly active, seeking submissions and landing some hard shots. In the end, the judges scored it unanimously for Connelly to the delight of the fans in attendance and around the world.
Fun Fact: This is the second time Connelly has fought an opponent named Pereira. The first time was against Mario Pereira in 2015.
Tristan Connelly takes home $100K since Michel Pereira missed weight and forfeited the opportunity to grab a bonus.
GATE: CAD $1,774,585.00 USD $1,334,931.56