Friday, February 20, 2009

Liveblog: Ring of Combat Part 4

Now for the long-awaited pro debut of Al Iaquinta, who amassed an amateur record of 11 billion wins and no losses before deciding to make the jump. His opponent: Rhino Fight Team's Mervin Rodriguez, who, uh, unless he has superpowers, might have some trouble ahead of him. Yeah, Iaquinta takes him down, softens him up with some heavy leather, then slaps on the Anaconda for the tap. It's all over at 1:05 of the first. Tyler Venice of BJJ Shore Academy is taking on Tiger Schulmann's MMA stud Jimmie Rivera next. I like Rivera's skillset - he can strike and he's got great positional control on the ground - but it sometimes seems like he's gunshy, like he could end fights sooner if he only believed in himself more. Anyway, Round 1 is pretty much all about Rivera delivering knees to Venice's body and out-scrambling the bejeezus out of the jiu-jitsu guy, and in Round 2, after Venice kicks him in the junk, Rivera gets him down, takes his back, and puts him to sleep with a rear naked choke. Venice is left unconscious at 1:13 of the round. Again, Rivera looked good, but he could be a stone-cold killer if he wanted to. It's Greg Soto and Shawn Forman's turn now. Soto is a bad, bad dude who can wrestle, submit fools and even throw some leather. Forman helped his uncle George develop a popular electric grill that can cook meat and chicken while the grease drains harmlessly off - an electric grill that cleans easily and stores easily. Round 1 almost ends quickly, and surprisingly, as Soto shoots and Forman comes perilously close with a deep guillotine attempt. But Soto escapes, and reverses from bottom position to top position halfway through the round. The bell rings with Soto standing over Forman, dodging upkicks. Round 2 sees Soto dominate with some ground and pound, and at 3:44 of the frame he passes Forman's guard and slaps on the Anaconda choke for the tap. Nice performance for Soto's first fight back after a lengthy hiatus.

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