The 12th of March saw a sold out venue at Helsingin Urheilutalo where the second edition of “The Cage” was arranged.The 12th of March saw a sold out venue at Helsingin Urheilutalo where the second edition of “The Cage” was arranged.
The first fight of the evening presented local up and comer Jasse Junkkari against Polish Maciej Luczak. After a brief exchange Jasse took Maciej down with a clean double leg and defended Luczak`s attempt at a guillotine.
Shortly afterwards, Maciej had a Junkkari in trouble with a tight triangle but to his credit, Jasse fought himself out of the choke and continued to successfully defend a transition to the armbar. Luczak followed up with a takedown and secured a rear naked choke on his exhausted opponent to win the fight by tapout.
The second bout between middleweights Jani JÃ¤rvenpÃ¤Ã¤ and Orestas Pokvytis turned out to be a frightful boar with neither fighter taking the initiative. After the ref appropriately lectured the fighters, Orestas went for the takedown and in the ensuing scramble, JÃ¤rvenpÃ¤Ã¤ managed to dislocate his shoulder. Moments later, the fight was stopped and Orestas was proclaimed the winner by tko.
Vesa Vuori from Finnfighter`s Gym, Turku and Andrzej Kulik from Mighty Bulls, Poland gave a nice display of technique in their heavyweight bout. The first round saw a lot of stand-up action with Vuori attacking with well-timed knees and Kulik countering with his boxing. Vuori controlled the first round and punished his opponent especially against the cage. In the second round Vuori attempted a takedown but ended up taking guard after Kulik sprawled. Vuori wasted little time in working in his triangle choke for a submission win at 2:04 of the second round.
The fourth bout of the evening saw a classic striker vs. grappler matchup when 18-year old Finnish BJJ-stylist Hannu Mikkola took on Lithuanian kickboxer Eugenius Konkovas. The first round went to the Lithuanian striker who displayed his excellent stand-up skills in dominating fashion. Eugenius used his excellent boxing and lateral movement to completely outwork Mikkola in such a manner that a knockout win might have seemed imminent. Mikkola however refused to give up and stubbornly worked to get the fight to ground, displaying a solid chin in the process. In the second round Mikkola came out rejuvenated and got the takedown early only to end up on the bottom. Konkovas attempted standing up immediately but was caught in a triangle choke and had to tap out in one of the greatest upsets of the evening.
The next bout featured the MMA debut of former Swedish thaiboxing champion Markus Jakobsen who has been training in Norway with former Shooto champion Joachim Hansen and ADCC wold champion John-Olav Einemo. Markus` German opponent Ferenc Stolzenburg represented OC-fight Team. The fight went quickly to the ground where the fighters simultaneously worked for leglocks. Jakobsen showed that his grappling has developed to solid level when he got the submission win via heel-hook just two minutes into the first round.
In the welterweights, Finnish fighter Janne Tulirinta met Mighty Bulls representative Lukasz Janas from Poland. The first round saw a dominating display from Janne, who methodically worked for the takedown, passed the guard and mounted his opponent midway through the round. A barrage of unanswered punches from Janne left everybody waiting for the referee stoppage when Lukasz was literally saved by the bell. The second round saw more dominating ground work from Janne but this time Lukasz was able to defend more effectively. In the end of the third round the fight changed direction after the referee stepped in to separate the fighters and restart the action in the centre of the cage. Lukasz won the ensuing exchange, connecting with a couple of good punches and knees that downed Janne. Lukasz quickly established the backmount and worked the rear naked choke to win the fight just 2 seconds before the end of the final round.
Next up were welterweights Anssi Riittinen and OC-fight Team representative Marc Wisniewski. Riittinen was a late replacement for Joni KyllÃ¶nen who was unable to compete due to elbow injury. Riittinen exploded in the first round in crowd-pleasing fashion, connecting with a couple of haymakers and also dominating on the ground where he managed to achieve the mount position late into the round. Riittinen`s short preparation however started to show in the second round where he gassed rather quickly and Wisniewski was able to secure the armbar midway through the round.
The light heavyweight bout between Markus Halkosaari and Vidmantas Tatarunas was short and brutal. Markus went in early for the takedown but ended up on his back after Vidmantas sprawled effectively. From inside the guard, Vidmantas opened opened up with terrific punches reminiscent of Russian Fedor Emelianenko. Virtually every punch connected and Markus was completely out before the referee had time to stop the bout. A convincing KO win for Lithuanian Vidmantas Tatarunas in just under two minutes into the first round.
Lightweight Jarkko LatomÃ¤ki from Shootfighting Lappeenranta added one more victory to his five fight winning streak as he decisioned Polish Slawomir Szamota in a three round battle. In the first two rounds Jarkko dominated in convincing fashion, taking down his opponent and punishing him against the cage. To his credit, Slawomir stayed active on his back, continuously working for submissions which were technically defended by Jarkko. LatomÃ¤ki also managed to pass Szamota`s guard in the second round for a short period of time. In the last round Szamota ended up on top but was unable to mount any offense. LatomÃ¤ki also worked the fight`s best submission attempt when he caught Szamota in an armbar which Slawomir was just able to escape.
The co-main event of the evening was pure violence. After an intensive staredown hometown favourite Miika Mehmet attacked his opponent in go for broke fashion, giving Egidijus PetruÅ¡keviÄius no chance to retaliate. After three minutes of relentless punishment the Lithuanian corner had seen enough and threw in the towel to seal the tko victory for Mehmet.
In the main event Brazilan jiu-jitsu black belt Lucio Linhares met top European light heavyweight fighter Grzergorz Jakubowski. Linhares fought a smart fight, working the fight on the ground where he dominated with his sweeps and solid positioning. Grzegorz showed good grappling skills as he was able to defend Linhares` submission attempts. Linhares was closest to a submission victory in the third round where he managed to establish backmount and work for the rear naked choke. Jakubowski, however was able to escape out the back door and resume the fight standing up where he tagged Linhares with a couple of punches and kicks which weren`t enough to win him the fight. A well-earned split decision went to Linhares as two judges saw the fight 29-28 for Lucio and one judge scored the bout 28-29 for Jakubowski.
1. -77 kgJasse Junkkari GB-Gym FinlandvsMaciej LuczakMighty Bulls Poland
Winner: Luczak, rear naked choke, 2:28 round 1.
2.-84 kgJani JÃ¤rvenpÃ¤Ã¤ Rauman Samurai Finlandvs
Winner: Pokvytis, TKO (injury), round 1.
3.+93 kgVesa Vuori FFG / Team Scandinavia FinlandvsAndrzej Kulik Mighty Bulls Poland
Winner: Vuori, triangle choke, 2:04 round 2.
-64 kgHannu Mikkola Alliance Porvoo FinlandvsEugenijus KonkovasLithuaniaWinner: Mikkola, triangle choke, 2:44 round 2.
5.-84 kgMarkus Jakobsen
NorwayvsFerenc “Raptor” Stolzenburg OC-fight Team GermanyWinner: Jakobsen, heel hook, 2:06 round 1.
6.-77 kgJanne Tulirinta RiihimÃ¤en Heracles FinlandvsLukasz Janas Mighty Bulls PolandWinner: Janas, rear naked choke, 4:48 round 3.
7.-77 kgAnssi Riiittinen Utti FinlandvsMarc “The Cat” Wisniewski OC-fight Team GermanyWinner: Wisniewski, armbar, 2:44 round 2.
8.-93 kg Markus Halkosaari GB-Gym FinlandvsVidmantas Tatarunas
LithuaniaWinner: Tatarunas, KO, 1:56 round 1.
9.-70 kgJarkko LatomÃ¤ki Shootfighting Lappeenranta FinlandvsSlawomir Szamota Mighty Bulls PolandWinner: Jarkko LatomÃ¤ki, decision (unanimous)
+93 kgMiika Mehmet GB-Gym FinlandvsEgidijus PetruÅ¡keviÄiusLithuaniaWinner: Mehmet, TKO (corner stoppage), 3:15 round 1.
-93 kgLucio Linhares Alliance Brazil vsGrzegorz JakubowskiMighty Bulls Poland
Winner: Linhares, decision (split)