Strikeforce Challengers 15, the first of the series to debut under the Zuffa umbrella, brought "Wilcox vs. Damm" to the Showtime network last night (April 1, 2011) live from the Stockton Arena in Stockton, CA.
In the night's co-main event, Cesar Gracie fighter and knockout artist David "Tarzan" Douglas (10-2), squared off against crafty Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu ace Caros "The Future" Fodor (7-2) in a battle of rising lightweight prospects.
How did everyone fare?
Complete Strikeforce Challengers 15 results and play-by-play after the jump.
STRIKEFORCE CHALLENGERS 15 WILCOX VS. DAMM QUICK RESULTS:
155 lbs.: Justin Wilcox def. Rodrigo Damm via TKO (doctor stoppage) at 5:00 Round 1
155 lbs.: Caros Fodor def. David Douglas via TKO at 2:12 Round 3
205 lbs.: Lorenz Larkin def. Scott Lighty via knockout at 3:15 Round 2
170 lbs.: James Terry def. Josh Thornburg via knockout at 4:38 Round 1
170 lbs.: Damion Douglas def. Wayne Phillips via split decision
155 lbs.: Anthony Avila def. Rafael Rios via unanimous decision
135 lbs.: Robert Escalante def. Raul Sandoval via submission (armbar) at 4:10 Round 1
155 lbs.: Tristan Arenal def. Tom Peterson via submission (armbar) at 1:58 Round 1
125 lbs.: Ronald Carillo def. Adam Antolin via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:48 Round 1
STRIKEFORCE CHALLENGERS 15 WILCOX VS. DAMM PLAY-BY-PLAY AND COMMENTARY:
155 lbs.: Justin Wilcox (10-3) vs. Rodrigo Damm (9-4)
Round one: Some members of the California State Athletic Commission aren't cageside and both fighters have to stare at each other for a couple minutes after being announced. Miletich calls it "the longest staredown in history." The fight begins and Wilcox throws a high right head kick and slips. Damm responds with a big leg kick and Wilcox stuns Damm with a head kick, right hand combo. Wilcox pushes forward and pressures Damm and Damm shoots forward with a takedown attempt to clear the cobwebs. Wilcox pressing Damm now heavily, constantly pushing forward as Damm circles to his left. Big right hand from Wilcox drops Damm and Wilcox throws an elbow on the ground. Damm lunges forward with a takedown attempt but Wilcox stuffs easily and drops him again. Damm is inches away from being stopped and Wilcox starts landing big shots as Damm turtles up. Damm's forehead is opened up and he's bleeding all over the canvas as Wilcox throws some big knees to the body. Big right hands from Wilcox and Damm attempts an armbar but Wilcox rolls out of it. Wilcox swarming Damm now but he can't finish the fight as the horn sounds. 10-8 Wilcox and that could even be scored 10-7.
There is no second round, the fight is stopped in between rounds by the doctors.
Final Result: Justin Wilcox defeats Rodrigo Damm via TKO (doctor stoppage) at 5:00 Round 1
Round one: Fodor smartly initiates a clinch to get things started. He wants nothing to do with Douglas' power. Big knees and uppercuts from Douglas to the body. Fodor attempts a takedown but Douglas lands on top. Douglas attempts to take Fodor's back but Fodor slips out the back door and they get back to their feet. Both men clinch up again and they trade knees. Douglas drops down for a double leg takedown but Fodor stuffs him. Douglas shoots forward and Fodor drops for a guillotine but Douglas slips out. Fodor slips out from underneath and takes top position along the cage, dropping big elbows on Douglas' head. Fodor passes to half guard and he's searching for a kimura. Douglas grabs his own shorts to defend and Fodor gives up on the submission, finishing the round in side control. Douglas is slow to get up as the horn sounds. 10-9 Fodor.
Round two: Fodor immediately clinches and works for a guillotine to start the round. Douglas escapes to his feet but Fodor stays tight in the clinch, pushing Douglas into the cage. Fodor throws some knees to the body and drops down for a guillotine choke. Fodor rolls into mount but Douglas again slips out and shoots forward with a takedown. Fodor reverses him and now he's in mount! Slick transition from Fodor and he's dropping big elbows from full mount. Fodor is postured up now and he's dropping strong punches on Douglas from above. Douglas turns sideways away from the punches and he hip escapes back to half guard. Fodor passes to side control and drops some big right elbows. More elbows from Fodor and he completely dominated that round. 10-9 Fodor, possibly 10-8.
Round three: Fodor pressures Douglas early and Douglas is fading. Nice inside strikes from Fodor and he catches Douglas with some big knees to the head in the clinch. Left knees to the leg from Fodor and he lands a right knee to Douglas' head followed by a shoulder strike. Big knees to the body and legs from Fodor here and now Fodor is landing big uppercuts from the clinch. Fodor really turning it on with knees to the body and face and Douglas has no answer as the referee stops the fight. Dominant performance for twelve straight minutes by Caros Fodor.
Final Result: Caros Fodor defeats David Douglas via TKO at 2:12 Round 3
Round one: Both men trade head and body kicks to get things started but nothing connects cleanly. Larkin is bouncing around the cage and he knocks Lighty down when he's off balance. Lighty gets back to his feet and eats some big strikes against the cage. Larkin is really hunting for a fight-ending strike and he's got Lighty on the defensive. Lighty lands a solid right hand but Larkin keeps the pressure on. Big leg kick lands for Larkin. Right head kick from Lighty is blocked and Larkin lands a huge push kick that knocks Lighty into the fense. Larkin pushes forward and he lands some big strikes! Larkin really opening up here and Lighty goes down! Lighty weathers "The Monsoon's" storm and somehow gets back to his feet and both men trade until the round concludes. 10-9 Larkin
Round two: Lighty throws a front kick and Larkin responds with what appears to be a Capoeira kick. Both men trade kicks and Lighty shoots for a takedown but is denied by Lighty. Larkin opens up with a flurry and he lands a big right hand that drops Lighty along the fence! Larkin tries to swarm him but Lighty again keeps his wits and defends well enough for Larkin to let him back to his feet. Larkin throws a big right uppercut and a roundhouse kick but they miss. Larkin's hands are dropping and he's slowing a bit. Solid leg kick lands by Larkin and Lighty pushes forward with a combination. Larkin responds with a huge right hand that stuns Lighty and then drops Lighty with another monstrous left hand! Two punches from Larkin on the ground and the ref stops the fight! Larkin looks legit.
Final Result: Lorenz Larkin defeats Scott Lighty via knockout at 3:15 Round 2
Round one: Thornburg eats a few punches and kicks early from the much faster Terry. Huge right hook misses from Thornburg. Terry closes the distance and lands a combination and finishes it off with two leg kicks. Thornburg looks like he's moving in slow motion compared to Terry. Terry lands another combination and throws a right head kick that nails Thornburg in the jaw. Big right hook from Terry connects and Thornburg responds with a body kick. Thornburg throws a 1-2 combination that cuts Terry and Terry retaliates with some big leg kicks that bury into Thornburg's lead leg. Nice overhand right from Terry and he follows it up with a HUGE overhand right that knocks Thornburg out cold! Beautiful knockout by James Terry! Terry calls out Ronnie from Jersey Shore in his post-fight speech.
Final Result: James Terry defeats Josh Thornburg via knockout at 4:38 Round 1
170 lbs.: Damion Douglas (3-1) vs. Wayne Phillips (5-3)
Round one: Phillips initiates a clinch and attempts a takedown but Douglas lands on top. Phillips walks his legs up searching for a submission and Douglas takes his back. Phillips escapes a rear naked choke attempt and both men throw hard inside strikes in the center of the cage. Douglas takes Phillips down and takes his back again but gives Phillips too much space and he gets back to his feet. Phillips lands a left high kick and Douglas responds with some lunging hooks. Douglas lands a big right hand and Phillips counters with a left kick to the body. Douglas' pace has slowed drastically, and Phillips takes him down. Phillips jumps on Douglas' back and locks in a rear naked choke but Douglas is saved by the horn at the end of the round. That stole the round for Phillips. 10-9 Phillips.
Round two: Phillips shoots for a takedown and Douglas pulls guard with a guillotine choke attempt. Douglas is squeezing really hard but Phillips slips his head out and passes to half guard. Douglas turns into Phillips and he's looking for a kimura but Phillips defends. The referee stands both men up and Phillips throws a flurry of punches followed by a knee. Douglas is exhausted. Big knee up the middle from Phillips out of the Thais Plum. Douglas throws some hooks to the body but Phillips tags him on the chin and knocks his mouthpiece out right before the round ends. 10-9 Phillips.
Round three: Phillips stalking Douglas to get things started and he snaps Douglas' head back with a left jab. Right high kick from Phillips misses and Douglas is on his bicycle. Douglas lunges forward with a combination but Phillips avoids most of it. Both men exchange and Phillips lands a nice left hand. Body shot from Douglas lands and he throws a desperation hook but it only hits air. Phillips is fighting very cautiously this round. Nice left hook connects from Douglas and he follows it up with a right hand. Douglas explodes forward with a combination but it's too little too late. Douglas taunts Phillips but I'm pretty sure he lost the fight. 10-9 Douglas. The judges score it a split decision for Douglas, I'm surprised.
Final Result: Damion Douglas defeats Wayne Phillips via split decision..