LAS VEGAS – On Friday, February 26, 2010 at the Orleans Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, Chris Holdsworth collected his fifth straight victory in under 3 minutes in amateur mixed martial arts. In the process he earned his second title inside the Las Vegas based TUFF-N-UFF Amateur Fighting Championships. The 22-year-old Holdsworth, who holds the rank of black belt in jiu-jitsu under Marc Laimon, earned his first TUFF-N-UFF title in the featherweight (145-pound) division last August with a first round submission of Justin Linn.
After defending that title a month later, the Cobra Kai instructor Holdsworth returned to the ring on Friday night for a bantamweight (135-pound) title fight showdown with fellow unbeaten fighter Gor Mnatsakanyan. The Armenian fighter Mnatsakanyan, who fights out of Filipino MMA in Las Vegas, brought with him an impressive 5-0 amateur MMA record. Mnatsakanyan is known for his explosive striking ability and solid ground game, but the latter of the two was badly exposed once the fight began.
At the sound of the bell, the significantly taller Holdsworth took the center of the ring and traded some strikes, before quickly dragging Mnatsakanyan to the mat. Once in his element, on the mat, Holdsworth controlled his opponent with ease. After passing Mnatsakanyan’s guard to side control, he secured a full mount, and decided to "make it rain" with his fists in a manner that would make rapper Fat Joe proud. The TKO victory added yet another piece of hardware to Holdsworth’s young career and has many now eagerly awaiting his next move in the sport.
The co-main event on Friday night was a featherweight (145-pound) bout pitting former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir’s cousin Larry Mir against California native Garrett Day. Mir and Day engaged in an up-tempo affair, which saw both fighter’s throw caution to the wind and slug it out throughout the majority of their bout. In the end, the deciding factor in the bout would come down to Day’s ability to plant Mir on his back with takedowns, which turned the scorecards in his favor after the end of the three scheduled, three-minute rounds. The hard-fought split decision victory gave Day his first victory in the sport over a very game opponent in Mir.
Also on the main card, in a bout that won’t soon be forgotten, William Kowalski Jr. from Wand Fight Team squared off with John Gettle of Hybrid MMA in a light-heavyweight tilt. The bout was a classic striker vs. grappler confrontation. Kowalski exploded with an impressive display of Muay Thai as the fight began that rocked Gettle out of the gates. Once Gettle collected his thoughts, he quickly took it to the ground where he began looking for submissions. After nearly sinking a triangle choke, it appeared he had locked on a fight ending kneebar. However, Gettle was forced to let go of the hold due to a twisting motion that he had apparently applied that was not allowed in amateur MMA.
After being forced to stand with Kowalski and endure some more punishment from the far superior striker, Gettle managed to get the fight back to the ground towards the end of the explosive opening round. As Kowalski was now on his back trying to ride out the remaining seconds of the 3-minute round, Gettle had other ideas. After moving to mount, he locked in a keylock and snapped Kowalski’s arm in half, after Kowalski refused to tap out. The brutal snap of the arm, literally echoed through the ballroom, and earned Gettle the victory via technical submission.
TUFF-N-UFF Amateur Fighting Championships (February 26, 2010)
1 James Lanham over Joel Black – Decision (Unanimous) Round 3, 3:00
2 John Hahn over Ernesto Martinez – TKO (Cut) Round 1, 0:37
3 Colton Bowler over James Rogers – Submission (Rear Naked Choke) Round 1, 0:31
4 Jake Swinney over John Robinson – Submission (Armbar) Round 1, 1:29
5 Vince Norcia over Roman Isbell – Submission (Armbar) Round 3, 1:37
6 Andrew Alirez over Jace Crawford – Decision (Unanimous) Round 3, 3:00
7 Jamie Hernandez over Cory Jeffers – Decision (Unanimous) Round 3, 3:00
8 John Gettle over William Kowalski Jr. – Technical Submission (Keylock) Round 2, 1:59
9 Kimo Yadao over Bobby Emmons – Submission (Triangle Choke) Round 2, 1:40
10 Garret Day over Larry Mir Decision – (Split) Round 3, 3:00
11 Chris Holdsworth over Gor Mnatsakanyan – TKO (Strikes) Round 1, 2:10