The Mid TN Expo in Murfreesboro, TN was rocking Saturday night as Johnathan Ivey’s Cage Fighting Championships 3 came to town. The event featured four title fights and was headlined by CFC middleweight champ Kyle Lee vs Caleb Ragsdale in the main event.
In addition to the fight for the middleweight belt the Johnathan Ivey’s Cage Fighting Championships 3 will feature three other title bouts to crown new champions in the their heavyweight, welterweight and featherweight divisions.
Weigh ins for the event were held earlier today at the Mid TN Expo by ISKA officials. Here are the official results.
Nick Stiles (Warrior’s Den) vs Tyler Brown (Brazilian Legacy)
Stiles vs Brown was a great way to kick off the show. If you squinted your eyes Tyler Brown looked like Dominick Cruz but Stiles was not going to lie down for anyone.
When the fight began Brown rocked Stiles with a big right but Stiles weathered the storm and managed to get a takedown. The two men managed to get to their feet and opened up. As the first round ended Brown landed a vicious right hook that I believe stole the round for him.
In the opening moments of round two Brown landed a spinning backfist but Stiles managed to work through it and wound up with a takedown. Brown eventually got to his feet but was taken down again. With the second takedown Stiles sealed round two.
In round three Brown went to the well one more time, going for a spinning backfist. To my surprise he landed it again but Stiles refused to go down. Brown seemed to get the better of the exchanges and at one point stuck out his chin and smiled at his opponent, practically begging Stiles to throw down with him. Ultimately Stiles got a late takedown and went on to win the third round.
Nick Stiles win a unanimous decision 29-28, 29-28, 29-28
Clint Bell (Planet Fitness) vs Dustin Johnson (Death Row MMA)
Johnson is a rough and tough country boy from Grundy County, Tennessee. As soon as the fight started he charged Bell and the two men clinched up by the cage by Bell’s corner. Somehow Bell locked Johnson in a headlock/neck choke and forced Johnson to submit early in the first round.
After the fight Bell informed the crowd that he was coming and to let Dana White and the UFC know. Duly noted.
Clint Bell wins by submission Round 1
Jeremy Scott vs Michael Bolton (Team Infamous)
The most disappointing part of the show was not hearing “When A Man Loves A Woman” when Michael Bolton walked to the cage. Instead he opted for the standard rap song you hear at every amateur show.
Bolton started out the fight with a big kick that buckled Scott early. He kept up the pace throwing several kicks keeping Scott at bay. Eventually Bolton wound up on top in a scramble and finished the round with the position.
In the second round Bolton got a takedown and started working ground and pound until the ref stopped it.
Michael Bolton wins by TKO Round 2
Najee Blackwell (Harris Holt Combat Sports) vs Ryan Driskel
Driskel was a late addition to the card but was very game early. Blackwell bombarded Driskel with punches and kicks but it was Driskel with a takedown. Blackwell managed to wind up on top but Driskel was working for a triangle and almost got it as the round came to an end. It was a close round but I believe it went to Blackwell.
As round two began Blackwell landed a big right but followed it up with a kick to the groin that stopped the action as Driskel was given time to recover. When the round resumed the two men stood and it was Driskel getting the best of Blackwell with a late flurry that I believe gave him the round. So heading into the third round I had it scored one round a piece.
In the third round both men came out swinging but it was Blackwell who landed a big kick to the liver that ended the fight. It was an exciting bout with a lot of action.
Najee Blackwell wins by KO Round 3
Tommy Scrivner 6-6 (Independent) vs Alex Traughber 0-0 (Joey Brassell’s Family Martial Arts)
Scrivner had the most creative walkout of the night, coming to the cage in a gorilla costume. Unfortunately he ran into a buzzsaw from Joey Brassell’s gym who was more than eager to throwdown. Scrivner didn’t seem to want to engage early on and laid on the mat trying to bait Traughber into a grappling contest. Scrivner had some fun and spun around on the mat inviting Traughber to join him. Traughber was having nothing of it. When Scrivner stood up he was eventually dropped by a leg kick which was followed up by a flurry of punches.
Alex Traughber wins by TKO Round 1
Paul Faye (Harris Holt Combat Sports) vs Tim Johnson 1-6 (Death Row MMA)
It’s hard to root against a guy who has “Fat Boy” on his shorts so deep down I was hoping for a good showing from Tim Johnson. He didn’t disappoint early as he got a takedown early in round one. However Faye wound up on top and stayed in that position as the round ended.
In round two it was all Faye. He got a takedown and moved into side control. Faye put Johnson in a keylock which lead to the submission.
Paul Faye wins by submission Round 1
Aaron Kim 4-9 (Nashville MMA) vs Logan Nash 0-0 (UFC Gym Hendersonville)
Aaron Kim walked around the venue with his headphones all day and had a stone face like cold blooded killer. I was really eager to see what he was going to do when the fight started. When the fight started Nash shot in for a takedown but it was Kim who wound up on top. Nash worked for a triangle and eventually sank it in resulting in the submission.
After the win Nash ran to the other side of the cage and hung upside down like a bat as the crowd went wild. It was a very creative postfight celebration.
Logan Nash wins by submission Round 1
Nolan Thomas 1-2 (Warriors Den) vs Jaysen Baker 1-0 (UFC Gym Hendersonville)
After Logan Nash won his fight the UFC Gym was 1-0 and Baker was hoping to keep the momentum going. When the fight started Baker got the takedown and was peppering him with punches. Thomas got up but Baker would get a second takedown and easily won the first round.
In round two it was all Baker. He got a takedown and took Thomas’ back. Baker sunk in a rear naked choke forcing his opponent to tap.
Jaysen Baker wins by submission Round 2
Kyle Tetley 6-5 (Harris Holt Combat Sports) vs Jamie Vasquez
Jamie Vasquez came after Tetley like he owed him some money. Vasquez used his speed to get the better of some early exchanges and secure and takedown. Tetley managed to get up but Vasquez got another takedown and secured the rear naked choke to get the win to the CFC Featherweight Title.
Jamie Vasquez wins by submission Round 1
Steve Stover 6-3 vs Donovan Salvato 1-0 (UFC Gym Hendersonville)
The UFC Gym was 2-0 and the pressure was now on Donovan Salvato to get the win. Salvato did have the best walkout song of the night with Motley Crue’s “Kickstart My Heart”.
When the fight started Stover got an early takedown and landed a few shots before Salvato was able to grab ahold of his opponent’s leg and sink in a calf slicer for the win. UFC Gym goes 3-0 with three submissions and Salvato is the new CFC welterweight champ.
Donovan Salvato wins by submission Round 1
Sammy Walker vs Chase McCullen
McCullen got a takedown early and went for a rear naked choke but was unable to sink it in. Eventually the two men got to their feet and Walker landed a big shot that dropped McCullen and ended the fight. Walker wins the CFC Heavyweight Title.
Sammy Walker wins by KO Round 1
Caleb Ragsdale 5-0 (Harris Holt Combat Sports) vs Kyle Lee (Title Boxing)
Lee came out and landed some big kicks early. Eventually he secured a takedown in a scramble and took Ragsdale’s back. Lee secured the rear naked choke and get the tap to compete his first CFC welterweight title defense.
My takeaways from the show are:
1. The UFC Gym in Hendersonville is on to something. Their guys went 3-0 and pretty much had their way with their opponents. Donovan Salvato is working with local jiu jitsu ace Cory Robison and I’m excited to see what his future holds. Salvato is a genuinely nice guy who greeted everyone who came over to talk to him and congratulate him on the win. His teammate, Logan Nash had one of the most creative post-fight celebration’s I’ve ever seen and I can’t wait to see how he tops it when he fights again.
2. Jamie Vasquez looked like a killer in the cage. He is tall with a stringy build and doesn’t necessarily look like a fighter. But don’t let that fool you. Vasquez was the most ferocious competitor on the card and you could tell he wasn’t going to be denied.
3. Kyle Lee was a pro out there. During the fight Lee had Ragsdale’s back right in front of Ragsdale’s corner. His coaches were shouting things about Lee being tired and other things which Lee had to hear. After the fight Lee walked over and congratulated Ragsdale on a good fight and walked over to his coaches and said, “God Bless You. I Love You.” I thought that was really nice and showed Lee was above all a gracious winner.
4. Alex Traughber is an exciting young prospect. His coach told me at the weigh ins that he has the drive and skills to be successful and hoped that would translate into a solid showing in his debut. Well, it did. Traughber was a killer in the cage and was very explosive when he opened up in the exchanges.
5. Traughber’s opponent Tommy Scrivner was my favorite fighter on the show. He didn’t have a very good showing but I enjoyed seeing a guy taking a chance by walking out in a gorilla suit. It’s refreshing to see guys embrace their role as an entertainer at MMA events. Every fighter wants to be badass. So when someone is a little goofy it adds something different to the show.
Even though Scrivner was stalling while he laid on the mat while trying to bait Traughber into a grappling contest I enjoyed his silly antics as he spun around on the mat and waved his hands at his opponent. Ultimately it didn’t work out for him but it takes guts for a guy to put himself in that position just to get some laughs. Traughber could’ve jumped on his head when he was trying to be entertaining and done some serious damage.
6. Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog”? Nick Stiles is living proof that’s true. Stiles is very unassuming and looks like he should be home doing his homework but don’t let him fool you he is a killer.
Johnathan Ivey’s Cage Fighting Championships 3 was sponsored by SingleNashville.com . A fourth event will likely be held later this year.