Shamrock Gets Hammered at the Hard Rock!
Report by Brady Crytzer
The most infamous feud in the sport of mixed martial arts came to a close tonight at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, FL when Tito Ortiz ended any discussion of an early stoppage by TKO’ing Ken Shamrock at 2:23 of the opening round.
If there has ever been a feud more real in the sport of MMA, it was between Shamrock and Ortiz. Seven years in the making, Ortiz wasted little time taking control of the fight as both men met face to face in the center of the Octagon. Known for his intensity before, during and after his fights, Shamrock was surprisingly relaxed as he squared off with Ortiz. Showing his strength, Ortiz secured double under hooks on his shorter and older opponent, which he used to lift him off of the ground. After driving his opponent into the fence, Ortiz unsuccessfully attempted to take his opponent down.
Showing shades of his better days when he was known as “The World’s Most Dangerous Man,” Shamrock attempted a kneebar on his younger opponent. Unfortunately, after missing the hold, Ortiz began to do what he does best, slamming several hard elbows and punches from inside of Shamrock’s guard. For nearly two minutes, “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” punished Shamrock with hard elbows and punches, each snapping his head back violently. Referee Big John McCarthy, aware of the early stoppage from the same position in July, was hesitant to halt the contest, but was left with no choice when Shamrock slipped into unconsciousness at 2:23 of the very first round.
“It was Shamrock tonight and it will be Liddell in December,” Ortiz said.
“It felt good to be fighting again. I have fought three times this year and I feel great. I may have won, but tonight was Ken’s night. He taught me a lot and he is a true champion.”
Shortly after the result was announced, Shamrock made his peace with his long time rival, revealing that this was his last fight and that he will, in fact, retire.
Grove Traps, Finishes Unbeaten Price
In his first appearance since winning The Ultimate Fighter 3, middleweight Kendall “Da Spyder” Grove stopped Marine Chris “The Exorcist” Price at 3:59 of the opening round.
Now training with Ortiz, Grove displayed some newfound striking ability when he landed two short hooks that were surprisingly accurate. After an overaggressive Price initiated the clinch with the 6’6 Grove, “Da Spyder” took his opponent down quickly and began to assert his ground superiority. Following a scramble, Grove began working a foot lock that excited many in the crowd. Though unable to secure the hold, Grove took advantage of a momentary rest to attack Price’s arm. Showing good submission defense, Price blocked the hold but allowed himself to be mounted by his much taller opponent.
Pinned against the fence, Price could do nothing but cover up as Grove rained down a melee of elbows and punches forcing the bout to be stopped at 3:59 of the opening round.
With this win, Grove improves to 9-3 while Price suffers the first loss of his career, falling to 8-1.
Macdonald Burns Out “Short Fuse”
In one of the biggest upsets of the night newcomer Jason Macdonald impressively submitted The Ultimate Fighter 3 runner up Ed “Short Fuse” Herman at 2:43 of the very first round.
Known as “The Athlete,” Jason Macdonald appeared outgunned in the opening moments of the fight when Herman unleashed two sharp kicks to the midsection of his opponent. After managing to close the distance, Macdonald clinched his opponent only to be taken down himself with a textbook whizzer. Ending up on the bottom, Macdonald quickly let his voice be heard as he swept Herman putting him in the top position.
After being swept onto his back, the very game Macdonald secured a triangle choke and elected to assume the top position with Herman still very much in the hold. Showing fantastic jiu jitsu, Macdonald secured a deep triangle choke and though his opponent showed great heart the hold was just too deep. Along with a visible cut opened on his forehead, Herman conceded defeat to Macdonald at 2:43 of the opening round. With this win, Macdonald improves to 18-7 while Herman falls to 13-4.
“If they brought me here to be a stepping stone for Ed Herman they were wrong,” Macdonald said.
“Ed is a tough fighter though, he is crafty. It took me a long time to get here but I am here to stay.”
Hammill Overcomes Veteran Petruzelli
Deaf since birth, Cincinnati native Matt Hamill would not allow his impairment to stop him from earning a dominant three-round unanimous decision over former heavyweight contender Seth “The Silvberback” Petruzelli.
As the fight began, Hamill used his world class wrestling abilities to rush his opponent into the fence in an attempt to control Petruzelli. After separating from the cage, Hamill took advantage of a gun happy Petruzelli and took his opponent to the mat. No surprise to anyone, “The Hammer” began pounding Petruzelli opening a small cut on the right eye. As the punishment continued, the small cut became a major issue as it greatly impeded the vision in “The Silverback’s” right eye.
The second round began where the first ended, as Hamill wasted no time getting his opponent to the mat. After some more brutal ground n’ pound, referee Big John McCarthy stood the men up to increase the action of the fight. Taking advantage of his stand-up edge, Petruzelli unleashed a series of low kicks and short punches only to be taken down yet again. Now with blood filling both eyes, Petruzelli rose to his feet only found to be cut on the bridge of his nose.
With ringside officials threatening to stop the contest, Petruzelli threw everything in the arsenal to try and stop Hamill, who was well ahead on the scorecards. The third and final round proved to be the most competitive of the night as Petruzelli nearly secured a guillotine choke after stuffing a Hamill takedown nicely. Gaining more confidence, Petruzelli unleashed a picture perfect spinning back kick that opening a nasty gash under the right eye of his opponent. Fearing weakness for the first time of the night, Hamill lifted his opponent skyward and delivered a ring rocking body slam, putting an exclamation point on a nearly perfect fight.
Hamill was awarded a unanimous decision with scores reading 30-27 twice and 29-28.