The World Series of Fighting Makes a Huge Splash at the Hard Rock

wsof9 1By Tony Gaglione

The World Series of Fighting 9 was held at the Hard Rock and Casino on March 29.

Josh Burkman VS Tyler Stinson

After a lackluster performance in his last fight against Steve Carl, Josh Burkman took on a favored striker in Tyler Stinson in the second fight on the main card of WSOF9 in the welterweight division. Even though Burkman is known mostly for his wrestling skills Burkman took down Stinson with a surprising first round knockout making quick work of the 28 year old. “The one thing I didn’t want to do was stand in front of him,” Burkman said after the win. “I knew he had enough respect for my hands, and if he hurt me, I was going to take it to wrestling.”

Marlon Moraes VS Josh Rettinghouse – Bantamweight Title

The Inaugural bantamweight title fight between Muay Thai fighter Marlon Moraes and ground and pound expert Josh Rettinghouse didn’t end in knockout fashion as did the Burkman fight as the bout went the distance of all five rounds. In the first round Rettinghouse was knocked to the ground with a hard hook to the head only ten seconds into the fight but quickly recovered. Rettinghouse looked to be the aggressor after he recovered but Moraes’ wrestling defense shut down multiple attempts to bring the fight to the ground.  In the second round, Rettinghouse looked to abandon his bread and butter takedowns and decided to go toe to toe with Moraes which turned out to be a bad decision as Moraes won the round easily with world class counter punching and quick leg kicks slowing down Rettinghouse’s stand up game. Rettinghouse lasted into round three which no fighter has done against Moraes in his last six fights, however every attack by Rettinghouse was countered by Moraes with heavy kicks which changed Rettinghouse’s stance completely as his left leg welted up from the quick counter leg kick punishment. Switching to south paw didn’t help Rettinghouse’s attacking as he continued to take punishment and barley survived the third round being saved by the bell. In the fourth and fifth rounds, Rettinghouse was unable to put any pressure on his left leg but fought on trying to get the fight to the ground with no such luck. Moraes easily won the Bantamweight title by decision. Even though Moraes dominated the fight Rettinghouse showed an immense amount of heart and will be featured in future World Series of Fighting events.

Steve Carl VS Rousimar Palhares – Welterweight Title

It didn’t take long for the Welterweight title fight to end between Steve Carl and Rousimar Palhares. Making his World Series of Fighting debut, Palhares took down the champion Carl who was on a seven fight win streak with a heel hook submission victory early in the first round.  The fight only lasted one minute and ten seconds. In the pre-fight interviews Carl stated that he wanted to keep the fight upright and strike his way to victory but it only took Palhares a total of five seconds into the fight to take the fight to the ground.  Palhares was recently banned from the UFC by President Dan White for being a dirty fighter. Dana stated he held on to holds long after the referee had stopped the fights and the WSOF stated it would have zero tolerance for such action from Palhares but Rousimar let go of his heel hook quickly when referee Ives Levine stopped this bout. After the fight the Brazilian said “I’m so happy I won this title I have to thank all my friends, all my training partners, the WSOF very much for having me here” It’s hard to see a fighter that can stop the takedowns of Palhares and challenge for the Welterweight title in the future so we might be hearing his name as the champion for a long time in the World Series of Fighting.

Tony GaglioneTony Gaglione was raised on the south side of Chicago and as he said, “I got into sports at a very early age with playing little league baseball and the spirit of competition grew into all sports. I became an avid fan of all sports and played baseball through high school and Amateur Independent leagues. After relocating to Las Vegas I quickly became hooked on the Rebels, Wranglers and 51s. I host an internet sports talk radio show called Smacktalk with my co-host and friend Shawn Adams And one day hope to work for ESPN as a columnist, analyst, or radio show host.”

Tony can be contacted directly at tony.gaglione@yahoo.com.

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