Hard Knocks 9 Play by Play
Hard Knocks Fighting Championship 9 went off without a hitch in the newly renovated Century Casino in Calgary last night. MMA fans came from as far away as Toronto to watch the action, and even though there were only five fights on the card due to medical and travel issues they got their money’s worth.
FIGHT 1: Keegan Cassell vs Walton Chung
The first fight of the night was the 150lb match between Keegan Cassell and Walton Chung, it was a reminder that the toughest looking dude isn’t always the toughest dude. Cassell had his war face on and doing his best to intimidate Chung with scary looks and aggressive posturing, but Chung didn’t even seem to notice him. He was relaxed and confident. As soon as the ref cut them loose Cassell charged across the cage and tried to exert his will over Chung. Chung wrapped him up and fell back with Cassell in
his guard. Cassell threw some well placed body shots, but couldn’t rock and sock Chung enough to loosen his guard or make a slip. Chung was patient and started working for the triangle. In as long as it takes to write it, it was all over.
Chung defeats Cassell with a Triangle Choke at 1:18 of the first round.
FIGHT 2: Jesse Dayrider vs Virgil Robertson
Some lessons bear repeating. The second fight of the night and Virgil Robertson had Jesse Dayrider in his sights. Robertson looked like a machine built for Dayrider’s destruction; Dayrider on the other hand was relaxed and smiling, joking with the fans in the VIP section and genuinely having a good time. Once the referee called it on Robertson came flying out of his corner and started launching some really good leg kicks, but each kick was met with Jesse’s fast hands. A big 185, Jesse’s hands must have felt like being hit
with lunch boxes. It didn’t take long until Robertson was seeing birds and stars. At 0:56 of the first round the referee called a stop to the fight as Roberston walked away from the blows, dazed and collapsed against the cage.
Dayrider defeats Robertson by TKO (strikes) in Round 1, 0:56
FIGHT 3: Wolfgang Jansen vs Keith MacDuff
Three rounds and runner up for Fight of the Night. Both Wolfgang Jansen and Keith MacDuff are as exciting to watch as any in the bigger shows. At 140, they’re fast, smart, well coached and responsive to their corners. This fight got to see two and a half rounds of everything from knee-bars, armbars, muay thai, takedowns, smashing leg kicks and epic submission attempts and defenses. At one point in Round Two, Jansen had MacDuff in a straight armbar; it was locked in and wasn’t going anywhere, but Jansen couldn’t lift
his hips enough to finish it, and MacDuff never once looked like he was going to tap. If I was scoring this fight, it would have been in favour of Jansen which is not to say MacDuff wasn’t fantastic, just not as poised, accurate and controlling in the cage as Jansen was. It would have been close, but it was Jansen all the way. Halfway through Round Three, Jansen was in MacDuff’s guard and rained down blows with impunity. Posturing up high and smashing down. Big hands coming up and punching through MacDuff into the mat. They were huge, bold punches and they were hurting MacDuff. Jansen rose up even higher for a bigger blow and out of nowhere MacDuff slapped a Triangle Choke on him and finished the fight at 2:08 of Round Three. That’s what I call poise under pressure.
Credit to both fighters, it could have been fight of the night if it wasn’t for Jarod Milko.
Keith MacDuff submits Wolfgang Jansen in Round 3, 2:08
FIGHT 4: Jarod Milko vs John Guitar
Back to the early lessons of this fight.
Jarod Milko meets John Guitar at 170lbs. Milko enters the cage with quiet confidence, John Guitar with hints of bravado. Guitar looks much larger than Milko and is cold-eyeing him across the cage. As soon as the referee said “ … FIGHT!” Guitar came at Milko and launched a violent combination, if any of them would have landed they might have sent Milko to the mat in a heap. Milko was completely calm and stepped outside the blows, scooped Guitar, and as if he was flipping a pizza, repositioned him and
slammed him into the mat.From there it was ground and pound of the highest order until the referee stopped it early in the first round.
This was definitely Fight of the Night material.
Jarod Milko defeats John Guitar by TKO(GNP) in Round 1
FIGHT 5: Jeff Doyle vs Sam Osman
Jeff “The Angel of Death” Doyle opposed Sam Osman in the last fight of the night. Doyle was giving Osman the crazy eyes and looked like a vicious dog on a chain. The bell rang and Doyle charged Osman. I thought for sure Doyle was going to run right through Osman and leave nothing behind but a fine pink mist and horrified fans in his wake, but that didn’t happen. Doyle charged to the centre of the cage and then just stood there and tried to turn this into a boxing match. It was really anticlimactic. Both Osman and Doyle shuffled and threw some good strikes, both were talented, but Osman was still looser and used that patience that’s so endemic of
Jiu-Jitsu fighters to figure out Doyle’s game, take him to the ground and punch him until the referee said stop.
Sam Osman defats Jeff Doyle by TKO (GNP) in Round 1