Continuing his quest to make up for lost time, highly touted Tristar/Zahabi welterweight Nordine Taleb (5-1) put in a dominant performance at UGC 28 against Polish fighter Szymon Boniecki (2-2). Despite being ready to go, Taleb, now 30, sat on the shelf for two years from March 2008 to 2010, unable to get a fight. With his win Saturday, he scored a fourth straight victory since his return. (story continues below)
In all, approximately 680 fans were treated to nine fights at the Centre Pierre Charbonneau sports arena in Montreal East. All six MMA match-ups ended via TKO, with only a single fight making it out of the 1st round. Because of the three boxing bouts on the card, fights took place in a ring instead of a cage.
Fighting in the evening’s MMA main event, Taleb made short work of the overmatched Boniecki, pounding out a TKO 1:52 into the fight. Attacking early with powerful leg kicks, and a half- landed head kick, Taleb sent Boniecki to the ground soon after, connecting with a solid punch to the ribs that had him visibly hurt. Entering Boniecki’s guard, Taleb began throwing punches, almost finishing the fight right there. Moving to side-control next, Taleb began hammering down on Baniecki, who eventually turned over to his stomach. Face down, and absorbing a stream of punches to the side of his head, the fight was stopped at 1:52 as Boniecki appeared to briefly go out.
Of Algerian descent, Taleb relocated to Montreal from France six years ago. He’s next set to fight November 18th at Ring of Combat 38 in New Jersey. Speaking after the fight, he expressed optimism at reaching the UFC within the next year. (Listen to a post-fight interview with Taleb here)
Galindo-Spisak deliver Fight of the Night
Breaking the night’s mould of one sided fights, Loyd Galindo (2-2) and Matthew Spisak (4-4) delivered an absolute war over three rounds, battling for the vacant UGC lightweight title. Sporting aggressive fighting styles, both fighters came into the bout with their share of hardship.
As another Frenchman who’d transplanted himself to Montreal, Galindo, 31, was last seen losing in controversial fashion to Daylin Logan (5-0) in 2010. After having been hit with illegal knees on the ground, he’d tapped out to a rear-naked choke at Ringside 7.
On a three fight win streak coming in, the 29 year-old Spisak had a titanium plate surgically inserted into his face last year after a Joey Gambino (7-0) elbow shattered his left orbital bone. An earlier procedure following a cancer bout at 23 also left him with four titanium vertebrae.
With little time to spare in their efforts to make a name for themselves, both fighters showed up hungry and ready for war.
Trading from the starting bell, Spisak opened with leg kicks as Galindo worked his jab. Early on, Galindo appeared in a taunting mood, leaving himself open with his hands alternately down or held out in an inviting gesture. The move appeared to confuse Spisak, who moved into the clinch soon after. After the fighters traded short knee attacks, Galindo landed the first significant offense of the fight with a left-right combo followed by a pair of knees to the head. Battling back, Spisak nearly connected with a spinning back kick. Re-entering the clinch, Spisak managed to land some more short knees before Galindo fired back with some solid punches. Spisak reacted by successfully going in for the takedown, but was quickly swept by Galindo, who soon found himself caught in an arm-bar attempt. Slamming his way out of the submission, Galindo attacked a risen Spisak with another flying knee. Moving back to the clinch, Spisak was again able to take the fight to the ground. After escaping a Galindo guillotine attempt, Spisak rose up, before jumping back down into Galindo’s guard. The fighters furiously exchanged punches as the 1st round ended. A close round, but likely 10-9 in favour of Galindo for landing more significant strikes, and for the most part neutralizing Spisak’s takedowns.
Picking up where the action left off, the 2nd round opened with striking, Galindo landing a looping left hook, Spisak a right one. As Galindo hammered away with punches and a kick, Spisak again shot in for a takedown. On the ground, Spisak achieved side-control, before moving to the North-South position as Galindo worked to escape. Spisak attacked with body punches, moving to full mount before being swept by Galindo. Locking in a triangle-arm-bar combination from his back, Spisak eventually lost the submission as Galindo regained control of his limb, and used it to hammer down fists and loosen the hold. Continuing to strike once he got back into guard, Galindo eventually lost control of Spisak, who fought his way up to his feet. Following up with a single-leg takedown, Spisak returned to full mount before again losing control as he unsuccessfully attempted to step over the turning Galindo for an arm-bar. The round ended with Galindo back in Spisak’s guard, landing a few elbows as time ran out. Another very close round, this one likely 10-9 for Spisak based on his takedowns, submission attempt, and superior ground position.
After Galindo attacked with a half-blocked head kick and a knee to open the 3rd round, Spisak again opted to bring the fight to the floor via another takedown. After Spisak achieved full mount while on the edge of the ring, Galindo got lucky. Referee Philippe Chartier, who’d previously blundered his way through the UGC 26 and Rising Star 3 main events, not to mention Galindo’s loss to Daylin Logan, incorrectly stood the fighters up after moving the action back to the centre of the ring. Ultimately, it made little difference. After connecting with a right hook, Spisak landed yet another takedown on Galindo. After getting to half-guard, Spisak was once more swept by Galindo. After escaping a triangle attempt, Galindo punched Spisak as he got back to his feet, and followed up with his first takedown of the night. Spisak quickly escaped from underneath, and stepped over to take Galindo’s back.
After setting in his hooks, Spisak instead moved to full mount, before transitioning into an arm-bar. Fully extended, Spisak cranked the submission hard for a full 20-30 seconds. Despite being in visible pain, Galindo repeatedly signalled to the referee that he was not tapping out. Finally rolling out to break the submission, Galindo ended up in half-guard, from which he hammered down. An elbow strike opened a gash on the left side of Spisak’s forehead, prompting the referee to call a time out, and call in the doctor. After inspecting the wound, the physician called for a stoppage, likely due to the emerging blood’s trajectory towards Spisak’s eye. Galindo thus earned a wild TKO at 3:59 of the 3rd round.
Having earned the UGC lightweight title in what was easily one of 2011’s best Montreal fights, Galindo was overcome by raw emotion post-bout. Shouting loudly from his knees, he repeatedly pounded his fists down to the mat, before having his hand raised in victory. Asked about getting through the long submission attempt during his in-ring interview, “Simply put, I’m a survivor,” was his only answer. (Listen to a post-fight interview with Galindo here)
Early TKOs set tone for the evening
Coming off a 24 second KO three weeks earlier, OAMA’s Christopher St. Jean (5-2) extended his winning streak to five, showing a solid ground game against fellow welterweight Anthony Doolittle (0-2). After trading early, St. Jean landed a takedown from the clinch, escaped a Doolittle guillotine, and moved to half-guard. As he threw punches, Doolittle turned to protect himself, giving up his back. St. Jean controlled with a body triangle then leg hooks, and appeared to be working towards a rear-naked choke with head punches. Eventually, after flattening Doolitle out, St. Jean landed enough undefended head shots for the referee to stop the fight at 92 seconds in. Rising to his feet shortly after, Doolittle was visibly angered by the call. Though he appeared not to have been knocked out by the offense, the TKO stoppage was justified.
Looking to snap a three fight skid, Benoit Guionnet (1-5) again came up short facing MTC Windsor lightweight Kyle Prepolec (2-0). After repeatedly landing leg kicks to open the bout, Prepolec began throwing his hands after eating a couple of right hooks. Shortly after, he knocked the wind out of Guionnet with a solid liver punch, sending him reeling into the corner. Without wasting a second, Prepolec swarmed in on the crumpled Guionnet and pounded away with his right hand, landing every shot until the referee intervened to stop the fight at 2:19. The loss, Guionnet’s fourth straight, was compounded by the fact that he was fined 20% of his purse Friday for missing weight.
In a bantamweight match-up, OAMA bantamweight Randy Turner (3-2) made quick work of hometown favourite Jonathan Belair (1-2), bouncing back from a recent September loss. After landing a second trip takedown early in the opening round, Turner began raining down punches from guard. Landing repeatedly, he added an elbow shot, then finished with more bombs from his feet, capturing an 85 second ground-and-pound TKO.
In the evening’s opening bout, Franco Behring featherweight Seiji Sugiman-Marangos (5-1) put his experience to work, picking Alex Jeffrey (1-1) apart on way to a doctor’s stoppage TKO. After opening with jabs, Marangos tenderized Jeffrey’s lead leg with kicks, hobbling him by round’s end. While Jeffrey landed occasionally, Marangos was in control throughout most of the fight. Even when Jeffrey managed to take the action to the ground, Marangos landed more of the damage, hammering away from his back.
As time ran down, a Marangos head kick cut a battered Jeffrey above his left eye, complimenting a cut below it and an already bloodied nose. The referee stepped in at 4:56, referring Jeffrey to the ringside doctor, who called for a stoppage based on the damage. The win, Marangos’s fourth straight, follows a 3rd round TKO in May at Rising Star 3.
Quick Results (weight divisions in bold, records include Saturday’s fights)
175 – Nordine Taleb (5-1) def. Szymon Boniecki (2-2) by TKO (ground-and-pound) at 1:52 of Round 1.
155 – Loyd Galindo (2-2) def. Matthew Spisak (4-4) by TKO (doctor’s stoppage) at 3:59 of Round 3.
170 – Christopher St-Jean (5-2) def. Anthony Doolitle (0-2) by TKO (ground-and-pound) at 1:32 of Round 1.
155 – Kyle Prepolec (2-0) def. Benoit Guionnet (1-5) by TKO (punches) at 2:19 of Round 1.
135 – Randy Turner (3-2) def. Jonathan Belair (1-2) by TKO (ground-and-pound) at 1:25 of Round 1.
145 – Seiji Sugiman-Marangos (5-1) def. Alex Jeffrey (1-1) by TKO (doctor’s stoppage) at 4:56 of Round 1.
Boxing Quick Results
140 – Tony Luis (13-0) def. Alejandro Barrera (21-9) by TKO at 3:00 of Round 1.
164 – Ali Nestor Charles (12-5-2) def. Bladimir Hernandez (18-7) by decision (79-73, 79-73, 78-74)
136 – Roody Pierre-Paul (4-0) def. Isaac Bejarano (9-11) by decision (60-54 x3)