The tenth installment of Strikeforce Challengers is set for tonight (August 13) at the Dodge Theater in Phoenix, Arizona. "Riggs vs. Taylor" will air live on the premium cable channel Showtime beginning at 11 p.m. ET.
MMAmania.com will provide LIVE blow-by-blow, round-by-round coverage of the Showtime televised event, beginning with the main card telecast at 11 p.m. ET.
Joe "Diesel" Riggs and Louis "Handgunz" Taylor will meet in a 182-pound catchweight bout in the night's main event.
Miesha "Takedown" Tate, Carina "Beauty But The Beast" Damm, Hitomi "Girlfight Monster" Akano, and Maiju "Maki" Kujala will also collide in a one-night, four-women welterweight tournament to decide the promotion's next number one contender.
Also on the card will be the professional debut of Ryan Couture, son of UFC hall of famer Randy "The Natural" Couture. He'll square off against Lucas Stark in a lightweight contest.
Many of our readers check-in before, during and after the Showtime telecast to share their thoughts on the action. Therefore, feel free to leave a comment (or 10) before you leave and chat with all the other Maniacs during the show -- it always turns out to be a great discussion.
Keep in mind that we will also be the spot for the latest news, recaps and post-fight analysis after the show.
STRIKEFORCE CHALLENGERS X QUICK RESULTS:
Joe "Diesel" Riggs defeats Louis "Handgunz" Taylor via submission (strikes) at 2:07 of round three
Miesha "Takedown" Tate defeats Hitomi "Girlfight Monster" Akano via unanimous decision
Ryan Couture defeats Lucas Stark via submission (triangle choke) at 1:15 of round one
Miesha "Takedown" Tate defeats Maiju "Maki" Kujala via unanimous decision
Hitomi "Girlfight Monster" Akano defeats Carina "Beauty But The Beast" Damm via submission (triangle choke) at 1:48 of round two
STRIKEFORCE CHALLENGERS X PLAY-BY-PLAY LIVE MAIN CARD COMMENTARY:
182 lbs.: Joe "Diesel" Riggs vs. Louis "Handgunz" Taylor
Round one: After a feeling out process Taylor walks Riggs down and lands a body kick. Riggs tries to answer with a high kick but misses. Leg kick misses from Taylor. Riggs catches a kick now and he's looking for the takedown. Taylor does well to avoid it and pins Riggs against the fence. Knees from Riggs and now it's Taylor with a takedown. Riggs has full guard and he's doing a nice job controlling Taylor's hands. Taylor has had enough of that and he stands up and tells Riggs to follow him. Riggs misses on a superman punch then a body kick. Left hand lands fro Riggs as Taylor fires a leg kick. Taylor lands a right hand and Riggs just misses on the counter. Leg kick from Riggs. Spinning back elbow misses from Taylor. Riggs ties him up and delivers a nice knee to the body. The round ends shortly thereafter. Not a ton of action, but Taylor might have stole it with the takedown. The standup was basically a wash, even though Riggs seemed to get more comfortable and Taylor seemed to get less comfortable as the round went on.
Round two: Riggs goes to touch gloves but Taylor doesn't oblige. The referee calls for a stop as Taylor forgot his mouthpiece. Back underway and both guys are still tentative to exchange. Shot to the body from Taylor. Riggs misses with a body kick. Leg kick lands for him, though. Another. Superman punch lands for Riggs. Taylor shakes it off and fires a right hand of his own that gets blocked. Nice counter left lands for Taylor. Now a nice uppercut from Taylor after a brief clinch. Taylor shoots for a takedown and Riggs stuffs it easily. Nice left hand from Riggs lands. Taylor fakes a spinning backfist and misses with a body kick. Taylor charges forward with a flurry of wild punches now, but Riggs does a nice job to avoid them with his head movement. Taylor looking for another takedown, but Riggs isn't having it. Taylor tries for another takedown. Riggs trying to defend it, but Taylor works hard and finally gets it. Into half guard and he works some elbows to the body. Punches to the head now from Taylor. Riggs trying to power out from the bottom, but Taylor is doing a nice job of controlling him here from the top. The round ends in that position. 10-9 Taylor.
Round three: Taylor firing with leg kicks, but not connecting. Now Riggs lands one. Taylor is walking him down but not throwing much. Riggs misses with a leg kick. Sidekick to the body lands from Taylor. Riggs now connects with a big left hand that sends Taylor stumbling backwards. Taylor tries to clinch up and Riggs gets him to the mat. Ground and pound now from Riggs. Riggs traps his arm now in a crucifix and he begins to rain down the punches. Taylor has no defense for the punishment and taps out to avoid anymore. Excellent finish from Joe Riggs after a slow start.
Final Result: Joe "Diesel" Riggs defeats Louis "Handgunz" Taylor via submission (strikes) at 2:07 of round three
135 lbs.: Miesha Tate vs. Hitomi Akano
Round one: Gloves touch and we're underway with the championship fight of this one-night tournament. Akano gets a body kick blocked. She's walking Miesha down here. Now Miesha lands a left hand. Push kick from Tate lands. Now she's flashing her jab. High kick misses from Miesha. Akano with a body kick. She closes the distance and they clinch. Miesha looking for the takedown right away, but Akano is defending it well. Tate takes her back and finally scores the takedown from there. Akano is trying to get out of the bad position on the ground, but Tate is glued onto her back. Akano grabs a leg and is looking for the submission. It looks pretty bad here for Tate, but she escapes and unloads with some ground strikes before the round ends. Close round. Tate with the takedown and control and Akano with the submission attempt.
Round two: Akano coming forward right away to start the second. Miesha with a leg kick then a high kick. Nice body kick from Akano now. Miesha with another hard leg kick. Nice right hand now from Miesha. Into the clinch and Miesha takes Akano's back again and again uses that position to score a takedown. She still has Akano's back on the ground here, but Akano has her wrists and arms controlled nicely from there. Tate is trying to free her arm and get her hooks in. She gets her hooks finally, but still can't free her hands up. The referee strangely looks like he wants to step in for another stand up. He balks at it, but does nothing. Miesha finally gets her hands free and unloads some punches to Akano's head. She's looking for the rear naked choke now, but Akano is defending well and there is only 15 seconds remaining. Akano with a nice reversal here, but the round ends before she can capitalize. Tate's round 10-9.
Round three: Hard body kick lands for Akano, who looks lively to start round three. High kick now from Akano. Tate answers with a body kick and then another takedown. She has Akano's back again in an identical position to where they were in round two. Akano has Miesha's right arm trapped to avoid the choke, but Miesha has both hooks in and a lot of time to work. Punches now from Tate with her free hand. Akano trying to roll out here and she rolls right into a keylock from Tate. Tate lets go and goes to work with punches to Akano's head. Big flurry from Tate as the bell sounds and she is going to win this fight.
Final result: Miesha Tate defeats Hitomi Akano via unanimous decision
155 lbs.: Ryan Couture vs. Lucas Stark
Round one: Stark takes the center as Couture circles him. Leg kick from Stark misses. Now a high kick. Jabs from both fighters. Stark misses with a wild right. Now he connects on one as Couture tries a leg kick. Couture clinches up and works some knees before scoring a nice takedown. Couture looking for a submission right away from the north-south position, but Stark stands, escapes and scores on a very nice takedown of his own. Couture immediately looking for a triangle and he has it sunk in deep. Stark has no choice but to tapout. Very impressive performance from Ryan Couture.
Final result: Ryan Couture defeats Lucas Stark via submission (triangle choke) at 1:15 of round one
135 lbs.: Miesha "Takedown" Tate vs. Maiju "Maki" Kujala
Round one: Gloves touch and we're underway with the first semifinal bout of the night. Tate opens up the action with a left hook. Right into the clinch now and Miesha pins Kujala against the cage. Knees from Tate. Nice maneuvering from Kujala and she turns and puts Miesha's back into the fence. Tate reverses again and goes back to working the knees. Now Miesha is looking for the takedown and Kujala is looking for a guillotine. Miesha makes her pay and gets the takedown. Right into side control but Kujala refuses to let go of the headlock. She gets half guard back as the referee warms both women to get busy. Now he calls for the standup. Tate unloads with a few punches as the bell rings. 10-9 Tate.
Round two: Kujala lands a nice jab. Miesha responds with a hard push kick to the gut. Kujala comes forward with punches and Miesha makes her pay with some nice counter striking. Into the clinch and Kujala lands some nice dirty boxing. Tate with some knees as she pins Kujala against the fence looking for the takedown. Knee from Kujala now. Tate fires back with one of her own just as they separate. High kick from Miesha just skims her opponent's head. Kujala stuffs a takedown and goes back to work with her boxing. Tate with another lazy takedown attempt that gets nowhere. Kujala with punches from the clinch while Miesha throws more knees. They separate again and now Miesha scores on a huge takedown with just over 30 seconds remaining. That may end up being the difference in this fight. Miesha is firing ground strikes in Kujala's half guard as the bell rings. Tate is going to win this fight.
Final result: Miesha "Takedown" Tate defeats Maiju "Maki" Kujala via unanimous decision
135 lbs.: Carina "Beauty But The Beast" Damm vs. Hitomi "Girlfight Monster" Akano
Round one: Both women exchange straight kicks to start the first round. Damm comes right back with a high kick that just misses. Body kick lands now for Damm as Akano comes forward with punches. Akano loses her balance and Damm slams her to the mat. She pops right back up but Damm is latched onto her back. Damm takes it back to the floor. Akano with a beautiful transition, and she gets full guard. Ground strikes from Damm. Akano with some of her own from the bottom. Damm isn't doing much from the top and the referee calls for a stand up. Body kick from Damm on the restart. Now a spinning backfist lands! Very nice. Akano eats it and gets a nice takedown after a brief clinch. Akano is on top, but she has her back turned to Damm. She can't do much and the round ends there. Damm takes the early lead.
Round two: Jabs from Damm. Now a leg kick. Spinning backfist again from Damm, but she misses this time. Into the clinch and Akano is looking for another hiptoss. She gets it and has the top position in half guard. Ground strikes from Akano as she works to pass to side control. Nice sweep from Damm and she takes the top position now. Akano is looking to take advantage with an umaplata, but Damm defends it easily and is now in Akano's full guard with about a minute and a half remaining. Akano now with a reversal and she sweeps right into a triangle. It's deep and Damm taps right away! Wow! Beautiful ground work from the Japanese fighter. She'll face off against Miesha Tate in the final.
Final result: Hitomi "Girlfight Monster" Akano defeats Carina "Beauty But The Beast" Damm via submission (triangle choke) at 1:48 of round two