Strikeforce Results Recap: Cormier and Melendez victorious in San JosePosted on May 19, 2012, 11:24 PM by Mike Drahota
Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier is in the books, and we saw some great action tonight, especially in the two main bouts. In the World Heavyweight Grand Prix Final, Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier spent the first round in striking exchanges with Cormier coming out on top. Barnett hurt Cormier with a knee towards the end of the first. In the second, Cormier landed some good strikes before scoring a single leg takedown on Barnett. He followed with some ground-and-pound and Barnett was unsuccessful with a few submission attempts. Cormier scored a huge slam in the third, landing in side control. He rocked Barnett with a head kick and followed with more strikes, opening up a cut on Barnett. Cormier used more headkicks, and Barnett went for some leglocks in the fourth but was unsuccessful. Cormier secured another takedown in the fifth to lock up the unanimous decision victory and the Grand Prix belt.
Gilbert Melendez and Josh Thomson came out kickboxing, and Melendez scored a nice double-leg. The first round ended with Melendez grounding Thomson once again and scoring a good punch, but it was close overall. The two fighters traded strikes in the second, and Thomson got poked in the eye with around two minutes left in the round. Melendez got another couple of takedowns, and secured the round with some late strikes against the cage. The two opened up in the third with some heating boxing exchanges. The champ landed some elbows and uppercuts and sprawled a takedown effectively as the round came to a close. The fourth was action-packed as Melendez scored an early takedown, but was later felled by a Thomson trip and spent the rest of the round defending rear-naked choke atttempts. Thomson won the round convincingly. We saw a back-and-forth final round, with Thomson gaining momentum, both in the striking department and with another trip. In the end, Gilbert Melendez won a close split decision in one of the best fights of the year.
Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante came out smoking in a rematch with AKA fighter Mike Kyle, catching him with a vicious knee of his own. From there, he smelled blood in the water, choking Kyle out with a guillotine in only 33 seconds. For Feijao, it is an emphatic victory that avenges a previous loss, and should gain him a shot at the Light Heavyweight title he once held.
Chris Spang looked sharp in a Welterweight bout against Nah-Shon Burrell, landing some very effective Muay Thai knees. He scored with them over and over, and referee Josh Rosenthal had seen enough in the first round. Burrell had a six-fight win streak snapped with the knockout. Spang improves to 5-1 overall, having landed 79 percent of his strikes during this bout.
Isaac Vallie Flagg edged out Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante in a split decision. Vallie-Flagg stuffed Cavalcante's takedown attempts and held a slight advantage in the striking department to come out on top.
Overall, a great night of fights with an unbelievable war to end the trilogy of Gilbert Melendez-Josh Thomson, and an impressive effort put forth by rising Heavyweight contender Daniel Cormier. Cormier showed he is a force in the Heavyweight division with excellent wrestling and striking.
Main Card Results:
Chris Spang def. Nah-Shon Burrell via Knockout – R1
Preliminary Card Results:
Isaac Vallie Flagg def. Gesias Cavalcante via Split Decision
Guto Inocente def. Virgil Zwicker via Unanimous Decision
Gian Villante def. Derrick Mehmen via Unanimous Decision
Quinn Mulhern def. Yuri Villefort via Split Decision