Twitter reacts: UFC, MMA fighters and personalities celebrate Christmas on social media

See how fighters and other personalities from the MMA industry celebrated Christmas and the holiday season to close out 2021.

The holiday season is here, and with no major events scheduled until New Year’s Eve, the MMA community had the rare opportunity to sit back, relax and celebrate with their loved ones.

Check below to see how fighters and other personalities from the industry celebrated Christmas and the holiday season to close out 2021.

Cage Warriors 131: Joe McColgan vacates, Mehdi Ben Lakhdhar vs. George Hardwick set for title

Lightweight champion Joe McColgan has vacated his Cage Warriors title, setting up a new championship bout next month.

Lightweight champion [autotag]Joe McColgan[/autotag] has vacated his Cage Warriors title, setting up a new championship bout next month.

McColgan (8-3-1) vacated the belt “due to personal matters affecting his ability to train,” according to an announcement from Cage Warriors. So a vacant lightweight title bout between [autotag]George Hardwick[/autotag] (8-1) and [autotag]Mehdi Ben Lakhdhar[/autotag] (5-0-1) will take place at Cage Warriors 131.

The promotion announced the new title fight Tuesday for the event, which is set for Dec. 10 at York Hall in London. The card is the first of back-to-back Cage Warriors events for its end-of-year “Double Trouble” doubleheader. The events will stream on UFC Fight Pass.

“Life has Joe McColgan busy and he’s just about got enough time to get into the gym to help his training partners get ready for their fights,” Cage Warriors president Graham Boylan said in a release from the promotion. “Joe doesn’t want to hold the division up and has decided to vacate the belt providing he can fight the new champ on his return, which he expects to be around April or May next year. I have the utmost respect for the champ for allowing the division to move on in his absence.

“Contender wise, we have two excellent fighters. George Hardwick is on a four-fight win streak with his last two fights ending within the distance. Mehdi Ben Lakhdhar is undefeated in Cage Warriors, winning three fights and drawing a fourth. That draw just happened to be a ‘Fight of the Year’ with Joe McColgan back in 2019.”

Hardwick has four straight wins on the heels of the lone loss of his career, which came by decision at Cage Warriors 109 to Madars Fleminas. Since then, he has a pair of Bellator wins over Richard Kiely and Nicolo Solli in 2020 and a pair of second-round finishes for Cage Warriors this year. He stopped Dean Trueman with a TKO at Cage Warriors 124 in June, then submitted Jakub Dohnal at Cage Warriors 129 in October.

Lakhdhar is 3-0-1 under the Cage Warriors banner. He’ll fight Hardwick a year to the date since his most recent fight, which was a first-round knockout of Stevie McIntosh at Cage Warriors 117. After a perfect 4-0 start to his career, including a pair of 2018 Cage Warriors wins, he fought to a majority draw with McColgan in September 2019.

McColgan won the lightweight title in June with a third-roundn guillotine choke finish of champion Agy Sardari after more than four years of up, down and up again results for Cage Warriors.

MMA celebrates Halloween: Amanda Nunes as Aladdin, Max Holloway as Demon Slayer, more

Check out the best social media posts from fighters and other members of the MMA community on Halloween 2021.

Today is Halloween, and plenty of fighters and other MMA notables are embracing the opportunity to dress up and celebrate the holiday.

Costumes from the past five years set the bar quite high, but the challenge was certainly met with all kinds of creative costumes.

Check below for the top Halloween costumes shared on social media.

 

‘Inside crescent kick to the face!’ This Cage Warriors 130 knockout is simply mesmerizing

Justin Barry delivered an absolutely stunning knockout that can best be described as “some Bruce Lee sh*t.”

The tweet from the official UFC Fight Pass account said it all: “WHAT JUST HAPPENED?!?!”

When you see [autotag]Justin Barry[/autotag]’s second-round knockout of Alan Benson on Sunday night at Cage Warriors 130 in San Diego, you will wonder the same thing. So here you go.

Check out this awesomeness:

A crescent kick to the face for the win, something you don’t see every day in MMA. That’s what you call some Bruce Lee sh*t.

Want a better angle? Here you go:

What a mesmerizing move. Thank you, Justin Barry. Thank you.

The Blue Corner is MMA Junkie’s blog space. We don’t take it overly serious, and neither should you. If you come complaining to us that something you read here is not hard-hitting news, expect to have the previous sentence repeated in ALL CAPS.

Cage Warriors 129 video: Sam Creasey locks in slick high-elbow guillotine to win flyweight title

Sam Creasey left no doubt about who’s the best flyweight in Cage Warriors.

[autotag]Sam Creasey[/autotag] left no doubt about who’s the best flyweight in Cage Warriors.

In the promotion’s tournament final, Creasey and Luke Shanks were involved in an entertaining scrap Saturday at Cage Warriors 129 from York Hall in London. Both men found success landing shots through two rounds and into the third.

Then Shanks decided to shoot for a takedown, which turned out to be his downfall as Creasey immediately transitioned into a guillotine choke. But it wasn’t a normal guillotine, with Creasey leaving his left elbow high to prevent Shanks from escaping.

Creasey’s slick move worked to perfection and left Shanks no choice but to tap out at the 3:38 mark of Round 3. Take a look at the finish below:

For Creasey, 33, the title win comes in his 13th fight with Cage Warriors. He debuted with the promotion in June 2016 and is now 10-3 (15-3 overall).

Cage Warriors 128 results: Paul Hughes claims interim belt in classic with Morgan Charriere

Paul Hughes’ superior grappling was the difference in claiming interim featherweight gold against Morgan Charriere at Cage Warriors 128.

[autotag]Paul Hughes[/autotag]’ superior grappling was the difference in claiming interim featherweight gold against [autotag]Morgan Charriere[/autotag] in Friday’s Cage Warriors 128 main event.

The second headliner of Cage Warriors’ three-event weekend saw Hughes (8-1) put his pressure fighting and grappling to work to rack up points over the course of five rounds and net a majority decision over Charriere (17-9-1) by scores of 48-46, 47-47 and 49-45

Cage Warriors 128 took place at York Hall in London. The entire event streamed on UFC Fight Pass.

The first round was high intensity as both men came out throwing big strikes and exchanging grappling positions against the clinch and briefly on the ground.

Things picked up right where they left off in the second frame, with Charriere charging after Hughes and looking to take the fight to the ground. Hw ent for a submission attempt that left him in bottom position, but found his way up and fought from there.

The momentum started to swing significantly in the favor of Hughes in the third round. He landed a hard punch and subsequently found massive success in the grappling department, establishing top position and working to finish Charriere from the mount and back control. Charriere hung tough, though, and avoided a stoppage.

As the fight spilled over into the championship rounds, Charriere had bad swelling around his right eye. Hughes went hunting for it with head shots, but wasted no time trying to take the fight back to the ground, too. He spent the majority of the frame controlling from on top, securing another round in his favor.

With the fight seemingly in the bag for Hughes going into the final frame, Charriere showed some desperation in the form of some heavy strikes. He tagged Hughes with some of his best punches of the fight, but the pressure of Hughes caused him some issues until the final belt.

With the win, Hughes claimed interim 145-pound gold and put himself in position for a title unification contest with Jordan Vucenic (8-1).

Complete Cage Warriors 128 results include:

  • Paul Hughe def. Morgan Charriere via majority decision (48-46, 47-47, 49-45) – for interim featherweight title
  • [autotag]Jesse Urholin[/autotag] def. [autotag]Ioannis Palaiologos[/autotag] via TKO (strikes – Round 2, 3:36
  • [autotag]Michele Martignoni[/autotag] vs. [autotag]Adam Amarasinghe[/autotag] ruled a no contest (eye poke) – Round 2, 1:48
  • [autotag]Gerardo Fanny[/autotag] def. [autotag]Liam Gittins[/autotag] via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, 4:32
  • [autotag]James Sheehan[/autotag] def. [autotag]Omeil Brown[/autotag] via split decision (29-28, 29-27, 28-29)
  • [autotag]Aidan James[/autotag] def. [autotag]Philippe Rouch[/autotag] via TKO (elbows) – Round 2, 1:06
  • [autotag]Luke Riley[/autotag] def. [autotag]Kamil Wincenciak[/autotag] via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 3:39

Cage Warriors 127 results: Dominique Wooding claims vacant bantamweight title with TKO of Nathan Fletcher

Cage Warriors has crowned a new bantamweight champion on the first night of a trio of events in London.

The Cage Warriors’ bantamweight division has a new champion.

In the main event of Cage Warriors 127, [autotag]Dominique Wooding[/autotag] picked up a huge victory over Nathan Fletcher, by finishing the fight in the third round via knockout to claim the vacated title. The fight came together after former champion Jack Cartwright vacated his title and left the promotion.

Cage Warriors 127 took place Sept. 30 at York Hall in London. It was the first of three straight events in the promotion’s latest “trilogy” format. The card streamed on UFC Fight Pass.

Wooding (8-4) entered Thursday’s contest fresh off a first-round finish of Cameron Hardy by head kick followed up by punches. Against Fletcher (6-1), he used his legs again to lead to the finish, although he faced much more adversity before securing the finish.

Fletcher had success early in the fight, controlling Wooding in the clinch. Leaning on his grappling, Fletcher neutralized Wooding’s striking by bringing him to the canvas in the first round, where he would look to land strikes and hunt for submissions.

Fletcher continued the same gameplan in the second round as well, but Wooding maintained his composure throughout the tough situations with his opponent dominating the grappling aspect of the fight.

In the third round, Wooding was able to stuff takedowns early. Fletcher eventually got him down, but he was able to work back to his feet and keep space long enough to land a well-timed knee as Fletcher shot for another takedown. From that moment, Wooding knew a finish was near and poured on the strikes until the fight was stopped.

In his second stoppage victory in a row, Wooding became the new Cage Warriors bantamweight champion on night one of three events for the promotion.

The full results of Cage Warriors 127 include:

  • Dominique Wooding def. Nathan Fletcher via knockout (punches) – Round 3, 4:21
  • Josh Reed def. Kurban Khizriev via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 3:23
  • Rory Evans def. Weslley Maia via unanimous decision
  • Oban Elliott def. George McManus via knockout (punches) – Round 1, 2:14
  • Kingsley Crawford def. Adam Wilson via submission (Brabo choke) – Round 3, 2:43
  • Bakhtyaar Oryakhail def. Jack Clarke via submission (triangle choke) – Round 1, 2:39
  • Ryan Shelley def. Liam Molloy via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 3:23

[listicle id=1188208]

[listicle id=1171222]

Morgan Charriere vs. Paul Hughes interim featherweight title fight headlines Cage Warriors 128

An interim Cage Warriors title will be on the line this fall.

An interim Cage Warriors title will be on the line this fall.

With champion Jordan Vucenic still sidelined with an injury, [autotag]Paul Hughes[/autotag] (7-1) will take on former champ [autotag]Morgan Charriere[/autotag] (16-8-1) for the interim featherweight belt in the Cage Warriors 128 main event, the promotion announced Monday.

Cage Warriors 128 takes place Oct. 1 at York Hall in London. The card streams on UFC Fight Pass and will be the second night of the promotion’s latest “trilogy” series, in which it puts on cards on three straight nights.

“It’s a shame that Jordan Vucenic is still injured, but the division must move forward,” Cage Warriors president Graham Boylan stated. “Hughes vs Charriere will decide our interim champion, which works out perfectly, seeing as both men want to avenge losses to Vucenic in the future.”

The only loss of Hughes’ career came against Vucenic in December 2020 by split decision. Hughes had a perfect 6-0 start to his career with six finishes before the setback at Cage Warriors 119. Vucenic got a title shot against Charriere after the win and took the belt.

“I wasn’t impressed by (Charriere’s) performance against Jordan,” Hughes stated. “I called him boring for a reason. He was stalling a lot, and I wasn’t impressed by him at all. When it comes to our fight, there’ll be no stalling at all. I’ll be putting a pace on him and getting a finish in the fourth or fifth round.”

Charriere stopped Perry Andre Goodwin with a third-round TKO at Cage Warriors 119 to win the vacant featherweight belt. It gave him a three-fight winning streak. But against Vucenic in his first title defense at Cage Warriors 122 in March, he dropped a split call – and the belt along with it.

A rematch between Charriere and Vucenic for Cage Warriors 124 before Vucenic’s injury shut the fight down.

“This fight is the road back to my title,” Charriere stated. “I don’t care about the interim title, the opponent or anything. I’m just focusing on winning and putting on a performance.”

Max Rohskopf returns to stop Jeff Creighton in first round at Cage Warriors 126

Max Rohskopf still has plenty of fight left in him, picking up a first-round TKO in his return at Cage Warriors 126.

It appears [autotag]Max Rohskopf[/autotag] still has plenty of fight left in him.

Rohskopf (6-1) returned for the first time since getting released by the UFC in August 2020 to score a first-round TKO of Jeff Creighton in a dominant performance at Cage Warriors 126 on Sunday.

Rohskopf, who infamously called off his own UFC debut, had to endure plenty of criticism in the past year. The formerly unbeaten prospect elected to retire on the stool after enduring a beating from Austin Hubbard at UFC on ESPN 11 in June 2020, despite his coach Robert Drysdale’s greatest efforts to get him to continue. After Rohskopf refused to get off the stool at the end of Round 2, referee Mark Smith waved the fight off, prompting the UFC to cut Rohskopf after just one fight.

But after some time to reflect, during which he deleted his social media accounts, Rohskopf’s flame was reignited, and just over a year later, he finds himself back in the win column in a big way. The 26-year-old has finished all six of his pro wins.

Cage Warriors 126 results include:

MAIN CARD

  • Kyle Stewart def. John Poppie via TKO (punch) – Round 1, 4:10
  • Joseph Morales def. Kevin Wirth via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Zac Pauga def. Terrance Jean-Jacques via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Brandon Laroco def. Alex Trinidad via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 3:13
  • Max Rohskopf def. Jeff Creighton via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 2:21

PRELIMINARY CARD

  • Jamie Lynch def. Josh Nakagawa via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
  • Damon Wilson def. John Buttner via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 0:15
  • Cody Davis def. Enrique Marte via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) – Round 3, 5:00

MMA Junkie Radio #3179: Bellator and UFC previews, plus Dave Feldman and Graham Boylan

Thursday’s edition of MMA Junkie Radio with hosts “Gorgeous” George and “Goze” is here and will be live at noon ET.

Thursday’s edition of MMA Junkie Radio with hosts “Gorgeous” George and “Goze” is here.

On Episode 3,179, the fellas will bring on guests Dave Feldman and Graham Boylan. BKFC president Feldman will talk about this past Friday’s BKFC 19. Boylan will discuss Cage Warriors 126, which takes place in San Diego. Plus, the guys will preview Saturday’s Bellator 263 and UFC on ESPN 28 cards.

Stream or download this and all episodes of MMA Junkie Radio over at OmnyStudio. You can also catch it on Apple PodcastsSpotifyStitcher, and more. A new episode of the podcast is released every Monday and Thursday.