When really big guys meet in the cage, the biggest does not necessarily win. Sometimes huge weight is a disservice, making a fighter devastatingly strong but somewhat sloppy and clumsy. That’s true but only in case you don’t speak of Charles Williams from Nevada’s Team Unforgiven. This man weighs more than 300 lbs. and often participates in Tuff-n-Uff MMA shows.
In 2012 Williams had a record of 5-0 and a Tuff-n-Uff superheavyweight title. On August 18th he was going to face Minnesota’s STOMP MMA Jeremy Umland in a title challenge bout at Tuff-n-Uff Mayhem in Mesquite.
The fighters were a great matchup as Umland was not much lighter than Williams (290 lbs. vs 310 lbs.) and boasted an encouraging two-win streak. Everything suggested it’s going to be an exciting fight very likely to end with a single punch.
The Minnesota challenger rushed at Williams like a wounded rhino, aiming at a quick finish with a head punch. Williams’s reaction was that of a perfect assassin – he stepped a little back first, then landed a solid counterpunch from the right which was just a sign of the coming storm.
But Umland already had no time to find a shelter from the hail of punches that followed the first one. He bended, bowed, kneeled, stood on all fours and the painful shower just kept on pouring until the ref stopped the bout ruling it a TKO.
Look at 7:36:
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Freakshow Fight: Don Frye vs. Akebono
The one part of MMA we truly miss in its modern form is the “Freakshow Fight”. For those of you who don’t know, a “Freakshow Fight” is a fight that pits two fighters against each other that have no business fighting; generally there is a crazy size difference between the fighters.
So in honor of our love for “Freakshow Fights”, we at The MMA Corner will share our favorite videos of our favorite fights that had no business ever taking place.
This week we travel back to Hero’s 5 on May 3, 2006 where MMA pioneer Don Frye took on former sumo champion Akebono Taro.
Standing 6’8” tall, Akebono towered over the 6’1” tall Frye. But in his traditional fashion, Frye took the center of the ring and began to throw heavy leather.
Akebono ate some shots, but he closed the distance and pushed Frye into the corner. Frye continued to land short shots even though he was carrying Akebono’s massive frame. After a lull in action, the referee broke them up and restarted the action.
On the restart, Akebono again pressed forward forcing Frye into the corner. With his back to the corner, Frye still managed to land the majority of the strikes; including some body strikes where Frye’s hand literally disappeared into Akebono’s body. As the first round came to an end both men were visibly tired; Akebono because of his massive size and Frye because he had to carry Akebono’s weight for the majority of the bout.
The second round was very similar to the first, but Frye was landing bigger shots with more frequency eventually dropping Akebono. As soon as Akebono hit the ground, Frye pounced; landing some furious ground-and-pound before ultimately locking in a guillotine choke.
Furious and scary – Romanian superheavyweight Alexandru Lungu
Alexandru Lungu started his pro MMA career relatively late – he was already 30 when he faced James “The Colossus” Thompson at Pride 30 in Saitama, Japan. This fight ended with Lungu’s loss via TKO (punches), though the Romanian superheavyweight dropped Thompson with a vicious punch in the opening seconds. Fortunately for combat sports, Lungu didn’t give up and scored his first win almost a year later, in September 2006 at Cage Rage 18 in London over Mark Buchanan via kimura submission.
Today Alexandru Lungu’s record consists of eleven wins and only three losses. He mostly fights in Romania where he’s a real national celebrity. Despite the fact Lungu’s name mostly known in his native country, he’s probably one of the most remarkable superheavyweight fighters. Lungu is not just a huge guy who overwhelms with his weight – he has a strong judo and kickboxing pedigree and is capable of winning a fight by a devastating punch or a sneaky submission.
But when it’s a superheavyweight battle, the crowd still wants to see a hail of shots more than the demonstration of grappling skills. And Lungu is not going to frustrate his Romanian fans – his two latest wins, over Siala-Mou “Mighty Mo” Siliga and Andrzej Kulik consequently, ended with punch technical knockouts, both in the first rounds. Besides, Lungu finished ten of his eleven opponents in the opening round.
Bigger does not always combine with better
If Tyler Reece (285 lbs./129 kilos) tried his luck in sumo, fans would probably call him Tyler “Skinny” Reece or something. But in MMA such guys get in the super heavyweight category and their fights always draw much attention. However, Reece was not the biggest fighter for the super heavyweight title bout at XFO X-Treme Fight Night at Hoffman Estates (IL, USA) on Feb.9, 2013. His rival, Wesley Wilson, tipped the scales at the weight-ins at 377 pounds!
When you face a hostile object which weighs that much, the key to survival is not to let it fall on you. And when a hostile object is an MMA fighter, be sure he’ll try his best to get you down to the canvas. Wilson broke through Reece’s numerous punches and… well, let’s say that he broke through and hung on his opponent. Shockingly enough it was not Wilson but Reece who was actively looking for a takedown.
When more than 660 lbs. crashed to the ground, Wesley Wilson mounted Reece and I thought that was the end – the poor guy was doomed to be buried alive under the unbearable burden. But Wilson was so passive that the ref stopped the fighters and brought them back on their feet. The huge guy then landed a terrible low kick which made Reece turn counterclockwise. Reece surely didn’t want to have his leg operated on after the fight and attacked ferociously. It did work – Wilson was simply not agile enough to block or dodge shots landing all over his head, not to speak of counterpunching. He was so upset he couldn’t even endure the final ceremony, but, honestly, if you have only one weapon armed, and the weapon is just your weight – you have to blame yourself for the defeat.
Superheavyweight fighter put to sleep in 8 seconds
Naki Havili is the unfortunate fighter that finds himself on the receiving end of a powerful overhand right from Joe Muir. The two squared off at Underground MMA Cage Fighting Series 1 in Australia and the entire fight lasted all of 8 seconds.
Havili throws exactly one punch and one kick before Muir lands a huge looping overhand right to his temple. Havili immediately crashes to the canvas and it is apparent that he has suffered some neurological trauma. His entire body seizes up and his arms shoot out into the air.
The ref does his best to quickly stop the fight but Muir gets in two more strikes on the defenseless Havili. The ringside medical staff rush to Havili and roll him on his side and stabilize his head. They work on him for a long time before he can even sit up.
Thankfully, Havili is able to get to his feet and stand for the official decision with a little help. While the KO itself is amazing, it is the final two strikes to Havili while he is clearly unable to defend himself, that overshadow it a little. Fighters are taught to fight till the bell or until the ref steps in but they should also be aware of the state of their opponent.