Lemoore, CA - Tachi Palace Fights 5 crowned two new TPF Champions on Friday night. It was a very, very warm day but the fans
still showed up to the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino to support the 9 scheduled bouts. 135 lb Champ Cole Escovedo fighting
Michael McDonald in a rematch of Cole's win over McDonald last year. The 145 lb Champ Isaac De Jesus in a catch weight fight against
veteran Razor Rob McCullough. And Silver Medalist Stephen Abbas took on his second opponent.
Drew Bittner vs Francisco Laredo
Both fights that I have seen of "Lil Bitt" have been the same. He is a strong wrestler but still has not developed his
finishing power. Laredo was able to avoid any major damage in this three round fight working most of it from his back. Drew
was able take Cisco down at will but could not capitalize on any of his multiple takedowns. Bittner wins by Decision to
keep his undefeated record at 3-0.
David Bollea vs Cody Gibson
In the first round Gibson wins the stand-up game and Bollea wins from the ground. Each had a good opportunities to finish
but both survived the first round.
In the second round David got the early takedown and got an early submission by what he called "The Bollea Arm Bar". I don't
know what it was but it looked like it hurt. The ref stopped the bout at 31 seconds into the round.
Stephen Abbas vs Joey De La Cruz
Opening the fight Olympic Silver Medalist Stephen Abbas gives us a bit from his last fight, a lighting quick takedown. De La Cruz had no chance in preventing
himself from going to the canvas. sthepen controlled the rest of the round but very little damage was exchanged. Abbas wins
the round by his first takedown.
Round 2 is much of the same, Abbas with a super quick takedown and controls the round mounted on De La Cruz' back.
Just repeat round 1 three times and you will get the result from this fight. Stephen wins a Unanimous Decision 30-27. Abbas
improves to 2-0.
Dominique Robinson vs David Kaplan
David Kaplan aka Tito Ortiz Syndrome. The guy has a a big melon that prevents him from being knocked out. The first round
is split pretty even with Fallen Angle landing few more strikes. In the second round, Kaplan was visibly tired and Dominique
caplitalized by landing some heavy hands towards the end of the round.
In the third Robinson looked to finish the exhausted Kaplan landing some monstrous right elbows. Kaplan looked knocked out
while standing in the corner following Robinsons strikes. The ref jumped in at 57 seconds of the round to give Dominique
the TKO victory in the third and final round.
Gabe Reudiger vs Lenny Lovato
In the first big fight of the night, Gabe Reudiger squared off against New Mexico's undefeated Lenny Lovato for the Tachi
Palace Fights 155 World Championship Belt. Reudiger came out strong and made Lovato look like a beginner, easily landing the
bigger shots and getting the takedown that eventually led to a TKO victory. With Gabe fully taking Lenny's back, he unleashed
ground and pound that sent Lovato covering up for protection. Following a succession of punches the ref jumped in to stop the
bout at 3:25 of the opening round.
Gabe Reudiger gets crowned the first TPF 155 lb champ.
Cole Escovedo vs Michael McDonald
Now the first of two fights that I wanted to see tonight. Cole Escovedo and Michael McDonald meet again after the first fight
left a young McDonald banged up and with his first loss. This time around Cole Escovedo has the bout and a couple more wins
under his belt since the last meeting.
At first sight, Cole Escovedo does not look the same. Its a reminder of the Dream fight he recently had, sluggish with his
head held too high. Although Cole won that Dream fight he did not look good doing it.
In the first round, Mikey begins to assert his presence landing looping over-hand rights and looking more calm and collect from
a year ago. Cole looks slow to start landing a few punches of his own and cutting McDonald in the first round just between
both eyes. To end the round "Mayday" McDonald gets three easy takedowns on Cole to score points.
The second round begins with Mikey throwing the heavy over-hand right but misses. Cole still waits to make his move. McDonald
does not hesitate and pushes with a few more big shots that stun "The Apache Kid" and send him to the cage. One big punch
after another and Cole Escovedo loses consciousness, while still standing the Jason, the ref, jumps in to stop the fight at
1:12 into the second round.
Congratulations to Michael "Mayday" McDonald as he is the better man this time around and is now the New Tachi Palace Fights
135 lb World Champion.
John Alessio vs War Machine
John Alessio lands most of the punches in the first round as War Machine tried to return some offense but was unable to produce
much in the first. War Machine is gets a small cut on the bridge of the nose. Alessio wins the first.
Taking the fight at the last minute is starting to show on War Machine. It seems nothing he does is working and Alessio continues
to push the pace standing or on the mat. Alessio wins the second dictating where the fight went.
Alessio controls the third and final round like the previous two rounds. Following a double leg takedown and a full mount
John sinks in a rear naked choke and War Machine passes out for more than a few seconds and begins to foam from his mouth before
the ref steps in to call the fight. Alessio gets the win at 2:24 in the round.
David Mitchell vs Poppies Martinez
The reigning TPF 170 lb Champ David Mitchell did as most expected, he made quick work of Poppies Martinez. The Tachi Kid got the first takedown but it was
all Mitchell from there on out. Attempting the gogo and the omoplata was Mitchell until he finally secured a triangle choke.
At 1:32 of the opening round, Martinez passed out and the ref stopped the bout.
Isaac De Jesus vs Rob McCullough
The second of the two fights I came to see feature the current 145 lbs Tachi Palace Champ Isaac De Jesus and Razor Rob McCullough.
The fight is at a catch weight of 160 lbs and was not for the TPF belt.
Both fighters with a Muay Thai background let their legs go. De Jesus had the edge early landing more strikes. Rob shook his
his arms a few times during the round which is a first sign of tightening up. Isaac seemed to have the fight in control late in
the first round but McCullough stepped it up and took De Jesus to the ground. Dropping big hands from the top, Rob stunned
Isaac and De Jesus never looked like he recovered. Razor Rob continued to poor it on and De Jesus turned over and covered up to
avoid as much damage as he could. The ref stopped the bout at 4:31 in the first round and declared Razor Rob McCullough the winner
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