(Video courtesy of Tachi Palace Fights. Part 1 includes da Silva’s entrance and the first round of the fight. Watch part 2 below for rounds two and three, as well as the official decision. The fight originally aired on MMAjunkie and featured commentary by radio DJ Andre Covington, TPF Flyweight Champion Ulysses Gomez, and reporter John Morgan.)
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Tachi Palace Fights 7: Deck the Halls went down in Lemoore, Calif. on Dec. 2 and featured a slew of UFC and WEC veterans. The birthplace of the WEC, Lemoore has long been ground zero for the development of sub-155 weight classes in America. With the growth in the popularity of the feather- and bantamweight divisions, TPF has turned its eye toward developing the flyweight division. To that end, the promotion signed the man regarded to be the world’s top 125er, Jussier da Silva. Da Silva made his U.S. debut at TPF 7, wining a decision against one-time WEC veteran Danny Martinez. “Formiga” will return to Lemoore in February to face WEC vet Ian McCall. TPF Flyweight Champion Ulysses Gomez will defend his belt against Darrell Montague on the same card. In other flyweight action, Tommy Vargas defeated Martin Sandoval. Da Silva, Martinez, Vargas, and Sandoval are all currently unranked; FIGHT! will unveil its Flyweight Rankings in 2011.
In the main event, WEC and UFC vet James Irvin stepped into the square cage in an effort to win his way back into the Octagon but was stopped short by Jorge Oliveira. Irvin falls from #69 to #85 if FIGHT!’s Light Heavyweight Rankings. After two years of inactivity in qualifying organizations, Oliveira returns to our rankings at #46.
TPF 7 featured a welterweight championship bout between UFC veteran John Alessio and Lemoore regular Phil Collins. Alessio finished Collins and took the vacant championship, creeping up from #29 to #26 in our Welterweight Rankings with the win. Collins stayed put at #88. A featherweight bout between Micah Miller and Isaac DeJesus was intended to be for the TPF Featherweight strap but Miller came in 1.5 pounds over the championship allowance and the fight was reduced to a three-round non-title affair. Miller won, sliding up four spots, from #33 to #29 in the Featherweight Rankings. Formerly unranked DeJesus enters the poll at #78. In other featherweight action, unranked Tony Llamas beat Sergio Quinones, who falls from #81 to #89.
In undercard middleweight action, UFC veterans Seth Baczynski and Tim McKenzie tangled, with the “Polish Pistola” taking the win and moving from #136 to #119 in the Middleweight Rankings for his trouble. McKenzie dropped from #117 to #136 with the loss. Also at 185 pounds, UFC and Bellator vet Jay Silva finished California MMA stalwart Jaime Jara, jumping from #93 to #69, while Jara enters the rankings at #123.
At heavyweight, journeyman Jimmy Ambriz moved from #91 to #68 with a win over unranked Mike Guidry. Unranked but well-regarded light heavyweight prospect Nik Fekete opened the show, defeating unranked Chris Bostick.