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King Of The Cage 24: Mayhem review
by Scott Newman (MMA)
Posted on January 25, 2010, 10:51 AM

King Of The Cage 24: Mayhem

Albuquerque, New Mexico

-No introduction segment as per usual on these DVDs, so Iíll make an educated guess that the main commentator is Chris Cordero, and Iíll point out if heís randomly joined by anyone else later on in the show.

Middleweight Fight: Tyrell McElroy vs Fletcher Sievers

No clue on either of these two, but McElroy is a local Albuquerque guy.

Takedown from Sievers and he gets full mount as Cordero even gets the two mixed up. Punches from the mount follow with little defense from McElroy. Sievers has Alberto Crane in his corner which has to be good. McElroy looks cut open and Sievers continues to hammer him before McElroy uses the fence to roll over into the guard. Sievers immediately gets a triangle choke from the bottom and synches it in though, and thatís all she wrote as McElroy collapses in the choke.

Looked like something from a very early UFC show. One-sided squash.

Lightweight Fight: Mike Mendoza vs Victor Hernandez

Iím sure Iíve heard of Mendoza from somewhere, but a check of his record tells me otherwise. Who knows really?

They trade kicks to begin and Hernandez gets a takedown from a single leg, but Mendoza right away looks to lock up a triangle choke. A quick switch to a straight armbar follows and Hernandez ends up mounted in a triangle position. Hernandez is in trouble and as he rolls out Mendoza catches him in an armbar for the tapout.

Didnít last long, but it was fun for what it was as Mendoza looked pretty slick on the ground, transitioning from submission to submission nicely.

Light-Heavyweight Fight: jimmy Westfall vs Eric McElroy

Iím throwing out a guess now and saying McElroy is Tyrellís brother from the opening bout as theyíre both from Albuquerque and look alike. Wonder if heíll do any better?

McElroy comes out like a karate guy and throws a kick from a side stance, but Westfall grabs him and a quick slam to the ground follows, with Westfall landing in side mount. Westfall steps to full mount and he has McElroy pinned against the cage for good measure. Ref calls the break for no good reason and they exchange crude shots before Westfall gets another takedown. Literally seconds later the ref stands them up, is this guy totally clueless or what? At least give them a chance to do something. McElroy comes in swinging and tries to land some knees, but gets dropped by a right and then Westfall takes the back, flattens him out, and a couple of punches cause McElroy to tap.

Well, that was pretty shitty. Sloppy fight and one of the worst refereeing performances ever.

Lightweight Fight: Santino Defranco vs Josh Pacheco

Defranco was the guy who tried out for TUF 2, got rejected when they found a brain aneurysm, and then managed to make a comeback and got onto TUF 9 where he lost to Andre Winner. Heís always seemed like a solid fighter to me. Never heard of Pacheco.

We begin and Defranco throws a kick and gets taken down to guard. Defranco immediately works his hips up and locks up a triangle choke though, and despite throwing some wild punches, thatís all she wrote as Pacheco goes limp and the ref has to rescue him.

Not much of a fight as it was takedown, right into the triangle choke, bam, over.

Welterweight Fight: Diego Sanchez vs Rene Kronvold

DIEGO!~! Need I say any more? Nope, thought not. Kronvold is getting squashed. Diego is bald here which is just wrong, dude.

Diego pushes forward, but telegraphs a shot and Kronvold defends by grabbing a front headlock. Knee to the head lands but Diego breaks off. Diego is just charging in with wild punches here and it isnít really working for him as Kronvoldís landing some half-decent counters. Finally though Diego closes the distance and works for the takedown, and he gets a double leg to a big crowd pop. Sick guard pass follows as he gets to half-guard. Kronvold is holding the shorts to block a full mount attempt. Diego begins to land with some shots and then unloads with some vicious elbows. Kronvold looks active from the bottom, but Diego slides through to full mount. Big punches follow as Kronvold covers up, then Diego goes for an armbar. It looks for a second like Kronvold might escape, but Diego rolls through onto his stomach and extends the arm for the tapout.

Really fun fight as Kronvold put up a far better fight than I was expecting, but in the end he still got finished on the ground by Diego. Itís pretty wild to see how far Diegoís striking has come from here, as he looked pretty bad standing in this one if Iím totally honest, just rushing in with wild punches and leaving his chin out.

Light-Heavyweight Fight: Keith Jardine vs George Allen

This was Jardineís seventh career fight and his fourth for KOTC. Opponent Allen has been fighting since the Dark Ages of 1998, a real veteran then.

Stiff right from Jardine leads into a clinch and Allen looks for a takedown. They exchange knees to the midsection and Jardine manages to avoid a slam, then breaks off. High kick from Jardine is blocked by Allenís arm. Combo from Jardine into another clinch and he works a plum to land with some knees. Right hand from Allen but Jardine continues to land with knees to the midsection. Jardine drops for a takedown but Allen defends it, and they break off. Good combo from Keith. They taunt one another a little before Jardine shoots on a single leg and gets Allen down, hopping into side mount. He goes for an armbar, but Allen manages to defend it and works free to his feet. Allen stands over the guard and drops some punches down, but the ref calls Jardine to his feet. Straight right snaps Allenís head back but he shrugs it off. Kick to the body from Allen. Jardine comes forward swinging into the clinch, and lands more knees to finish the round off.

2nd round and they circle before Jardine shoots on a single leg. Allen blocks it and winds up eating some shots in the clinch, and then Keith switches to a double and gets him down into half-guard. Some good punches from Jardine from the top, but Allen escapes back to full guard. Referee stands them up and Allen looks exhausted. Wild spinning backfist from Keith misses. Allen lands a glancing high kick and swings some punches into the clinch, but Jardine gets the plum and works with some knees again before they break. Allen is GASSED here, leaning over with his hands on his knees. Allen continues to swing, but canít land as heís telegraphing everything, and a counter right puts him firmly on the retreat. Single leg from Jardine follows and he passes to side mount. Allen gives his back and Keith sinks both hooks in, but he canít finish things before the fight ends.

Got to be Jardineís decision and sure enough the judges have it 60-54, 60-55, 60-54 for Keith Jardine. I have NO IDEA what scoring they were using there. No idea at all. Decent fight I guess if a little slow in places, as Allen proved to be a tough opponent and hung in there for the full ten minutes.

Lightweight Fight: Paul Rodriguez vs Adam Durant

Rodriguez fights out of the American Top Team Orlando offshoot, which is the same camp as Ben Saunders if I recall correctly. Heís a PRIDE and UFC veteran, although he did lose both of his fights in those organizations. Still a solid BJJ guy though.

They circle off and Rodriguez looks for a takedown, but Durant shows some strong defense and manages to stay on his feet. Paul keeps trying for it, but canít get Durant down, and Durant ends up opening up with some heavy knees that stun Rodriguez. Paul survives that barrage and tries a takedown, but Durant reverses and lands on top in the guard. Rodriguez turns his hips and looks for a possible armbar, but Durantís base is decent and he avoids it. Durant manages to pass into side mount, but Rodriguez rolls and risks it, giving his back to escape to his feet. Durant scrambles and almost gets slammed, but avoids that only for Rodriguez to get him down with a double leg. Instant pass to side mount follows and then he goes to a knee-on-belly position. Full mount and Rodriguez takes the back, landing punches to the head, and it looks like the ref is going to stop it, but then he sinks the rear naked choke for the tapout anyway.

Decent, competitive fight as Durant looked good until he got put on his back, and from there he was a fish out of water and it was all downhill. Rodriguez did a good job to weather the early storm, however.

Middleweight Fight: Joey Villasenor vs Joe Merit

Merit bears a resemblance to Vernon ĎTigerí White I think. And thatís not me being a bit of a closet racist who thinks all black dudes look the same, either. Villasenor, we all know about.

Merit wants to touch gloves but Joeyís having none of that, and he throws a head kick that Merit ducks away from. Big left hook from Joey stuns him though and he follows with a flying knee and a takedown to side mount. Oddly Villasenor puts himself into half-guard and then full guard, no idea why heíd do that. He works right back into half-guard with little problem though and then back into side mount. Merit manages to turn into guard, but Joey avoids a sweep and gets to half-guard before the ref calls a stand-up. Fair decision there. Leaping left hook lands for Villasenor and he tries to follow with knees, but Merit breaks off. Merit ducks a right hand, but Villasenor grabs hold of him in a bodylock and DROPS HIM WITH A JUMPING GERMAN SUPLEX!~! Whoa. That was almost Randleman-esque although Merit didnít land headfirst like Fedor. Side mount for Joey and he goes for a kimura before looking to jump over for an arm triangle. Merit avoids and gets full guard, but Joey pins him into the cage, postures up and opens up with a flurry of strikes for the ref stoppage.

Fun fight as is the norm with Joey Villasenor on these KOTC shows. The suplex he hit here was particularly highlight-reel worthy, just a great showing of power and athleticism.

KOTC Lightweight Title: Thomas Schulte vs John Mahlow

I saw Mahlow on an earlier KOTC show basically clowning an unskilled guy. Schulte though is not unskilled, heís a really solid submission-based fighter from what Iíve seen of him, so I suspect Mahlow is screwed. This is also a Lightweight Title fight, but no word on who was holding the belt coming in.

Clinch to begin and they muscle for a takedown and both men tumble down, but Mahlow winds up on top in Schulteís guard. Schulte keeps his hips high despite being pinned into the fence, but Mahlow postures up and goes for some ground-and-pound. Mahlow botches a heel hook attempt and winds up on his back in guard, where he attempts to tie Schulte up. Schulte works a guard pass though and has to free his arm in order to get to side mount, and from there Schulte goes for a triangle. Mahlow manages to sort-of slam his way out, then stands over Schulteís guard, but Schulte gets his hips up again and locks up an armbar, catching Mahlow sleeping. This looks deep but Mahlow looks pretty patient. Schulte isnít letting go though and he manages to get the leverage and straightens it for the tapout.

Nice submission for Schulte in what was a fun, energetic if a little short fight.

Heavyweight Fight: Dan Severn vs Dan Christison

This was a rematch from a fight in 2002 that saw Severn decision Christison in Danís second pro fight. At this stage Severn hadnít quite descended into the realm of self-parody as he has now, as he was still winning the great majority of his fights while only losing to top-level guys like Pedro Rizzo in the UFC. Here he wouldíve been just 49 years old. Of course today heís still fighting at the age of 56. And people call Randy Couture an old man? Christison is HUGE here, coming in at nearly 280lbs.

We begin and Christison stalks forward into a clinch and forces Severn into the fence. Knees to the body from Christison but Severn works for a body throw and gets it, putting the big man on his back in half-guard. Hip escape puts Christison back in full guard and little happens from there as Severnís never really been a devastating ground-and-pound guy. Christison tries an armbar but Severn manages to avoid it, and then works to pass, but Christison hits a reversal and almost takes his back. Severn turns into him and looks for the takedown, but Christison sprawls out and punches at the head. Single leg from Severn gets Christison down again, but the big man works to his feet using a grab of Severnís trunks. Ugh. Severn collapses down randomly with a cut on his head and the ref calls time, announcer thinks his head hit the cage post. They check the cut and decide heís fine to continue...and they restart and the lights go down in the building. Urgh! Christison decides now is the time to swing for the fences and rushes forward, and a couple of big kicks land before the lights come back on. Single leg attempt from Severn but Christison stuffs it and they end up on the mat with Severn holding him in a headlock. Christison decides to fall to his back and takes some elbows from half-guard, but Christison reverses to his feet in a clinch. Round ends there.

2nd round and they swing some punches before Severn gets a low single to half-guard. Severn grinds away from the top but does very little damage and Herb Dean calls the stand-up. Kick from Christison allows Severn an easy takedown again, and the crowd begin to boo as they land in Christisonís guard. Nothing happens and so Herb stands them back up, and good lord is Christison exhausted. They circle and throw some atrocious punches, exchanging wildly like two drunks in a bar fight. Christison closes the distance into a clinch, but Severn shoves him away and the round ends shortly after.

Oh God, weíre getting a third round. More bar fight style punches before Severn hits a double leg. Christison manages to scramble back up though and they continue to throw blows. Good high kick from Christison and Severn tries to shoot and winds up on his back in guard. Pass to half-guard follows and Christison lands some good punches before Severn tries for an ankle pick. Christison retains top position for a moment and then looks to take the back, but botches it badly and Severn winds up on top in half-guard. Christison gets to full guard and Severn looks in full lay-and-pray mode now. Herb stands them again and now both men can barely get up. Sloppy combo from Christison but Severn clinches and shoves him into the cage again. Severn drags him down onto the mat, where Christison gets to guard, and the fight ends shortly thereafter.

Boy, that was a horrid, sloppy little fight. Judges have it 89-88 Severn, 90-86 Christison, and 89-84 for Dan Severn to take the split decision. Well, weird scoring aside I think the right guy won, simply because to see a guy as gassed as Christison having his hand raised wouldíve looked terrible. Overall a bad main event with tons of sloppy brawling, slow spots and sheer exhaustion.

-And the credits roll there.

Final Thoughts....

There were some decent fights on here for a KOTC show, namely Sanchez-Kronvold, Villasenor-Merit and Rodriguez-Durant. Outside of those even the squashes were largely fun. But a main event as bad as Severn-Christison drags a card down horribly, particularly when it goes as long as like, the whole of the undercard save for the Keith Jardine fight. Still, not a truly bad effort from KOTC overall.

Best Fight: Rodriguez-Durant
Worst Fight: Severn-Christison

Overall Rating: **3/4

Coming Soon....

UFC: 103-107, Fight Night 20
Bitetti Combat 4
King of the Cage: Various shows

Until next time,

Scott Newman:

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