This morning (March 3, 2012), India's brand-new "Super Fight League" kicked off its inaugural event from Mumbai, a card filled with Indian talent and a few recognizable names. In the main event, PRIDE veterans Bob Sapp and James Thompson collided in one of the beefiest battles in recent memory.
Well, maybe "battle" is the wrong word.
Right off the bat, Thompson bullied Sapp to the mat and unloaded with ground-and-pound. Surprisingly, Sapp did not take the opportunity to tap out at that point, instead reversing Thompson and ending up in top position, unleashing some offense of his own.
Unfortunately, things went right back on script, as a Thompson takedown apparently injured Sapp's quad, forcing "The Beast" to tap. Sapp is now 1-9 in his last ten fights, although the legitimacy of many of those losses are in question.
Disappointing from a man who knocked out Ernesto Hoost.
In slightly more relevant matters, previously-unbeaten Lena Ovchynnikova was upset by Sanja Sucevic in an entertaining WMMA affair. After a hectic first round that saw several submission attempts from both women, Ovchynnikova secured full mount in the second but made a costly error when she attempted an armbar, which allowed Sucevic to escape, take her back, and force a tap with a rear-naked choke.
Score one for Serbia.
India went 3-0 against Sri Lanka, with lightweight Lakwinder Sekhon securing the most impressive victory of the lot, an 89 second annihilation of Madura Rathnayake. Unfortunately for the local boys, America proved a tougher nut to crack, as veterans Jimmy Ambriz and Travis Bell crushed their respective opponents. Ambriz scored a knockout just fourteen seconds into the fight, while Bell dominated Nail Natasuda with ground-and-pound before mercifully applying a forearm choke and eliciting a tap.
UFC veteran Xavier Foupa-Pokam kicked off the show with an impressive defeat of Joey Guel, hurting him in the early going with a body kick before opening a cut sufficiently large for referee Herb Dean to call off the fight between rounds. He improves to 2-8 in his last ten, snapping a five-fight losing streak.
It had all the glitz you'd expect from a show like this and some decent scraps; the SFL has picked up veterans like Paul Kelly and Trevor Prangley, and it'll be interesting to see where they go from here. In any case, not a bad debut, ignoring the main event.
For quick results and play-by-play click here.