The UFC was off this weekend, but that did not stop the rest of the MMA world from turning.
From Bellator to Titan Fighting Championship to Shooto Brazil, it seemed many of the mid-tier promotions were putting on exciting cards. Even more than that, many UFC veterans found themselves working.
In an important bantamweight main event, Score Fighting Series 5 saw fellow Canadians fight for the No.1 ranking at 135 in the country. Josh Hill was able to earn the judges' nod by unanimous decision to beat John Fraser.
With that win, one has to think that the UFC will be giving Hill a look for a future card in Canada.
Moving on to Showdown Fights, several UFC veterans fought to make a pretty solid card. In the main event, Josh Burkman used his superior grappling to earn a rear-naked choke win over Jamie Yager.
Also, Team Alpha Male representative Justin Buchholz beat Clay Collard with the trademark guillotine choke to get into the win column. The former UFC fighter showed improved submission offense that will couple well with his dynamite striking.
In shocking news, Bellator champion Eduardo Dantas took a fight in the Shooto Brazil promotion and was promptly knocked out cold by Tyson Nam. The Team Quest member won in just over a minute, leaving Bellator with a defeated champion.
Also on that card, UFC vet Ronys Torres won a unanimous decision over Alejandro Solano Rodriguez. His win streak has now hit 11, which may prompt a return to the UFC given his level of competition.
Lastly on the Shooto card was a big win for bantamweight standout Rodolfo Marques, who beat a very game Pedro Nobre by majority decision. With the building of the UFC bantamweight division, Marques would be a great addition at 135.
At Cage Fury Fighting Championships 16, UFC veteran Dustin Jacoby earned his second victory since his release from the promotion. Jacoby beat Tim Williams by doctor stoppage in the first round.
Also on that card, flyweight stud Sean Santella won a close split decision against Evan Velez. Santella is a very talented fighter and would be a welcome addition to the small flyweight division.
Titan Fighting Championship played host to a main event featuring frequent overweight fighter Anthony Johnson. Johnson made his light heavyweight debut with a win over Esteves Jones. It looks like Johnson finally found a weight class he can make.
Also notably on that card, grappling ace Braulio Estima made a successful MMA debut with an arm-triangle choke victory over Chris Holland. Estima is notable of late, as he was supposed to have a grappling match with Nick Diaz before Diaz no-showed the event.
Lastly, on the Bellator card, two tournament champions were crowned on the main card. In the bantamweight division, Marcos Galvao battered Luis Nogueira with elbows to win by knockout and become the top contender to teammate Eduardo Dantas' title.
In the light heavyweight final, Attila Vegh made quick work of Travis Wiuff when he knocked him out cold with a vicious combination. With the win, Vegh earned a title shot against Christian M'Pumbu.
Also in action was UFC veteran Mike Wessel, who earned a split-decision win over Ryan Martinez in a heavyweight affair. Wessel is best remembered for his one fight in the UFC and his time on The Ultimate Fighter.
Here are the quick results from above.
Josh Hill def. John Fraser via unanimous decision
Josh Burkman def. Jamie Yager via submission (rear-naked choke)
Justin Buchholz def. Clay Collard via submission (guillotine choke)
Tyson Nam def. Eduardo Dantas via KO (punch)
Ronys Torres def. Alejandro Solano Rodriguez via unanimous decision
Rodolfo Marques def. Pedro Nobre via majority decision
Dustin Jacoby def. Tim Williams via TKO (doctor stoppage)
Sean Santella def. Evan Velez via split decision
Anthony Johnson def. Esteves Jones via TKO (punches)
Braulio Estima def. Chris Holland via submission (arm-triangle choke)
Marcos Galvao def. Luis Nogueira via TKO (elbows)
Attila Vegh def. Travis Wiuff via KO (punches)
Mike Wessel def. Ryan Martinez via split decision
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