Posts Tagged ‘Conor Heun’

Strikeforce Tate vs. Rousey Prelims

Columbus, Ohio-

Ryan Couture vs. Conor Heun

Ryan Couture started off tonights card with a bang earning his 4th career victory via TKO at 2:53 of the 3rd round over Conor Heun.  The son of the natural absorbed a couple takedowns and submission attempts early, and show cased a highly improved ju-jitsu game throughout the contest.

Pat Healy vs. Caros Fodor

Pat Healy defeated Caror Fodor in impressive fashion locking in a side triangle submission at 3:35 of the 3rd round, his 4th straight victory.  Bam Bam and Fodor were having a fairly even contest, until Healy achieved full mount.  From there he worked vigourously for the submission, forcing the tap, giving Fodor his first loss in 2 years.

Brandon Saling vs. Roger Bowling

Roger Bowling improves to 11-2 finishing Brandon Saling via TKO at 1:15 of the 2nd round.  Bowling landed a few solid takedowns in the contest, and after securing one in the 2nd, he caught Saling in a crucifix, and began to rain down strikes til the referee stopped it.

Alexis Davis vs. Sarah Kaufman

A back and forth bloody battle that set the bar high for tonights main event went to the judges for a decision.  Sarah Kaufman was awarded with a majority decision.  Boos could be heard through out Nationwide Arena after the announcement, both fighters looked like were in a war.  Kaufman  improves her record to 14-1 and is obviously the next the line for the winner of Tate vs Rousey later this evening.

Strikeforce: “Tate vs. Rousey” weigh-in results

Strikeforce: Five years later, Ryan Couture to bring family name another victory in Nation Wide Arena

Ryan (R) and Randy Couture (L). (Photo courtesy of Cage Today)

The spirit of Couture is in the building.

Ryan Couture (Twitter: @RyanDCouture), son of UFC hall of famer Randy Couture, takes on Conor Heun at Strikeforce: “Tate vs. Rousey”, Saturday at the Nation Wide Arena in Columbus, Ohio.  It marks a return to the cage following a fairly lengthy layoff for each combatant.

Couture has been out of the competition since he defeated Maka Watson in September 2011, and Heun has been missing in action since he conquered Mango Almeida last June.  Couture did not want a hiatus to this extent, but it did allow him to fine tune his game.

Training out of Xreme Couture in Las Vegas, Couture said he utilizes the teachings Neil Melanson for grappling and Tim Lane for striking.  The world-class training facility is home to a number of top tier mixed martial artists, and has been for quite some time.  Between the established fighters, experienced coaches and up and coming prospects, there is definitely no shortage of people to help Couture prepare for battle.

However, for this camp in particular, Couture was blessed with the wisdom of a legend.

“I was fortunate enough that my dad was around for most of my camp,” Couture told  “I spent a lot of time training with him.  We worked on some of the things he specializes in and added some more tools to the bag.”

One may assume that the former UFC heavyweight champion would help Couture with every training camp, but that is not the case.

Couture’s father competed regularly when he was an active fighter, and since retiring from MMA he has taken roles in movies and continued to promote the UFC.  Their schedules never lined up, but for Couture’s bout against Heun, they got the opportunity to work together and the Strikeforce lightweight couldn’t be more content.

“For most of my career it’s been me and some other coaches,” Couture explained.  “I worked with some of the coaches I mentioned, along with some other ones in the past.  That’s because (my dad) has had such a hectic schedule over the past few years.  I was really happy when I found out he would be more involved this time.  It’s great that I get to work with him because I’m not always able to.”

Couture said he is expecting a tough battle on the ground against Heun, but he is prepared for the unsuspected.  He has observed that Heun will throw caution to wind and turn the bout into a brawl.  Couture does not want to fall into that style of match, so he plans to follow the game plan composed to defeat a combatant he studied.

“He’s more of a toughness and durability guy,” Couture explained.  “He’s willing to take a punch to give a punch, and gut it out.  He’s damn near impossible to tap, from what I’ve seen.  I’m just going to make sure I pace myself and don’t gas out in the first round.  I have to use my technique and beat him to the punch.”

To ensure Couture sticks to the game plan, he has the master of all time at implementing strategies in his corner: His dad.

Having a solid training camp and knowledgeable corner will be vital in Couture being victorious over Heun, but he said there is also some nostalgia with the venue his bout takes place at.

“Five years ago almost to the day, I watched my dad beat Tim Sylvia for the belt in Nation Wide Arena,” Couture said.  “Now I get to go fight there myself, so I’m stoked about that.”

Conor Heun vs. Ryan Couture added to ‘Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey’

Josh Thornburg Steps In For Injured Conor Heun

Two Fights Added to Strikeforce Challengers 15

Babalu, Cyborg win at Strikeforce: Los Angeles to earn possible title shots

Babalu was battered, but Big John McCarthy raised his hand (Esther Lin/Strikeforce)

Renato “Babalu” Sobral looked the worse for wear, but he got the best of Robbie Lawler on Thursday at Strikeforce: Los Angeles.

Sobral won via unanimous decision in the 195-pound catch-weight match.  In the other main-card matches, Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos won via first-round TKO against Marius Zaromskis, Tim Kennedy submitted Trevor Prangley with a first-round rear naked choke, and K.J. Noons edged Conor Heun via split decision.

Sobral could be in line for a shot at the 205-pound title against good friend Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal.

“This is something I will have to think about,’’ said Sobral (36-8).  “Yes, of course, I want to be a champion again but I’m old school and he is my friend and friends last longer than title belts.  But we’ll see.’’

After the fight, Sobral’s left eye was swollen and badly cut, leaving him looking much worse than the man who he had just beaten.  Lawler, who looked relatively unscathed, attempted a risky tactic in the second round, when he tried to draw in Sobral by pretending he was hurt.

“I wasn’t hurt, I just wanted to make him think I was,’’ said Lawler (17-6). “It was a ploy, a decoy, for him to fight me so I could knock him out.

But the knockout never came.

“I’m disappointed with the result, but I have no complaints,” Lawler said.  “The two takedowns in the first round may have been the difference.  I know that I could have done much more.  I should have done more.’’

Santos might now be less famous than his champion wife, Cris, who took her husband’s last name and nickname, then rose to become the Strikeforce 145-pound champion and perhaps the top female fighter in the world.

But Evangelista Santos put on another performance that earned him new fans and reminded his long-time admirers why they liked him in the first place.  He took the fight to Zaromskis, whose run in Japan’s Dream promotion earned him an unsuccessful title shot against Nick Diaz, from the opening bell after the Lithuanian landed the first blow.

Santos (18-13) stunned Zaromskis (13-5), who was trying to hit him with a flying knee, with a big left hand, then pounced on him to force the finish 2:38 into the fight.

“I am very happy with my performance and this fight,’’ Santos said. “I’ve had so many first-round knockouts. I can’t say if this was the best, but it was definitely one of the best.”

His sights immediately went to the welterweight champion.

“I want to fight Nick Diaz,” he said.  “He’s the fighter I want more than anybody right now.’’

Cris Cyborg defends her title June 26 against Jan Finney on the Fedor-Werdum card in San Jose, Calif.

The colorful Kennedy (12-2) is known for his service as U.S. Army Special Forces sniper with the 19th Special Forces outfit based in San Antonio, Texas.  Kennedy was awarded the Army’s Bronze Medal Star medal for valor under fire, but he was not threatened by the veteran Prangley, who was game early on with a couple of takedowns that he could not turn into an advantage.  Kennedy took down Prangley (22-6-1) into half guard, mounted him, then took the back and sunk in the fight-ending choke at 3:35.

“I don’t go the distance,” Kennedy said.  “In fact, I’m totally against going the distance.  I’m happy with the end result.  He hit me with a good uppercut; that stuff’s not supposed to happen.  I have some of the greatest hands in the sport.  I just want to start fighting the kinds of opponents I can knock out and start a highlight reel on.  I’m tired of fighting wrestlers.’’

Noons and Heun staged an up-tempo war.  The fight was up for grabs in the third round, when Heun seemed to tire a bit from all his takedown attempts against the crisp pro boxer.

“He’s a very game guy who brought it the whole fight,’’ said Noons.  “I definitely feel I won the fight and I really wanted to please the fans, but I had to work for it.”

Noons (9-2) is the last fighter to beat Diaz, and had not MMA once since in two years.

“I haven’t used my legs in a while so if felt good to get in some leg kicks.’’

Heun (8-4) was cut up, and the visible damage might have been the difference.

“I wanted to fight one of the top guys to prove to everybody that I could compete with the top ones, and I think I did that tonight,” Heun said.  “But I’m very disappointed with the decision.  Only one judge scored the fight.  I feel I did more than enough to win, although the cuts were definitely a factor.  By the third round, I was aiming my punches at the guy in the middle.’’

On the undercard, Hugo Sandoval won via TKO against Marcus Kowal 43 seconds into the second round, and Jeremy Umphries beat R.J. Clifford on a technical submission (rear naked choke) at 2:27 of the second round.  Clifford is the host of MMA Worldwide Live on ESPN Radio 710 in Los Angeles, and also is the editor in chief of TapouT Magazine.