Create a free account to unlock this article!
Already a subscriber? Log In
FloGrappling ranked no.5 middleweight, Michael Liera Jr. (Atos) settles the score against no.4 ranked, Jaime Canuto (GF Team).
Liera would win via split decision in the main event at Fight 2 Win 110 in Cleveland. After 40 matches– including an appearance by former UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic– two of the sport’s best middleweights took the stage.
The match began with Liera Jr. searching for the perfect grip to make a clean guard pull. Off of one of Liera’s attempts Canuto tried to snatch a flying armbar, but Liera retaliated immediately engaging in pass attempts.
Over the ten-minute match the pair exchanged positional dominance. Canuto never missed an opportunity to attack Liera’s legs, but Liera was able to tame any potential threat quickly.
Though Canuto racked up submission attempts, none seemed to put Liera in legitimate danger of tapping. The most threatening submission attempt of the night occurred near the end of the match when Liera Jr. cranked the foot of Canuto in a relentless toe-hold attempt, refusing to relinquish the submission until the bell rang.
The match ended in a split decision giving Michael Liera Jr. the victory in his Fight 2 Win debut.
The nonstop, tit for tat match rightfully earned the black belt Fight of the Night. It was close even Canuto was left visibly confused with the result. Liera, one of the most humble and respectful competitors, admits he could see the match going either way.
Having previously lost to Canuto under the IBJJF ruleset Liera says he studied their first match to adjust his strategy and mindset to come to this match with new confidence, prepared to use the F2W rules to his advantage.
New weight class, new strategy, it all paid off for the Atos black belt, but he still says this match will help him learn and progress for future opportunities. Hopefully we will see him sooner than later on the stage as Fight 2 Win is heading to his stomping grounds in San Diego this summer.
Aaron Howard defeats Stipe Miocic in charity match
In the highly anticipated purple belt co-main event Aaron Howard (Carlson Gracie) came out victorious over UFC Heavyweight legend, Stipe Miocic (Brasa).
Miocic took on a new challenge for charity: competing in the gi for the first time in support of the National Fallen Fire Fighters Association.
Regarded as one the best heavyweights that the UFC has ever seen, anyone who has seen Miocic fight in the octagon knows his success is due largely to his boxing and wrestling skills.
Howard, an Ohio police officer and F2W vet, did not seem intimidated at all. After faring well on his feet with the MMA champ, Howard pulled guard and made smart use of the lapel, using it to trap and attack the straight armlock and transition to brabo chokes, tools which someone who is more accustomed to no gi might not be as familiar.
Coming from MMA with an affinity for wrestling, I was honestly surprised we didn’t see any slams from Miocic, but we did see an excellent display of positional dominance. Miocic was able to escape Howard’s guard (sans slams), and pass to side control.
The match was a back and forth display of Howard’s submission attempts, and Miocic’s positional dominance. Miocic did not seem afraid of any of Howard’s attempts and was more intent on searching for the chin strap, which Howard was able to successfully evade every time.
The match ended with Miocic having passed Howard’s guard twice, and Howard scoring multiple submission attempts. The judges unanimously gave the decision victory to Aaron Howard.
Other notable results:
- FloGrappling no.6-ranked ultra heavyweight Max Gimenes (GF Team) is a regular on the Fight 2 Win stage. He took home another victory in Cleveland by winning his match via unanimous decision against Alex Huddleston.
- Pedro Zapata Jr. became the Brown Belt super heavy weight gi champ by defeating Chris Roberson.
- Dan Dykeman won the brown belt SOTN with a heel hook victory over Chris Collins.