Bellator 159: "Caldwell vs. Taimanglo" takes place TONIGHT (Fri., July 22, 2016) from inside Kansas Star Arena in Mulvane, Kansas. The headlining fight tonight is a battle between "The Wolf" Darrion Caldwell and Joe Taimanglo in an important ranking bout for the Bantamweight division.
In addition, Kansas fan favorite "The Caveman" Dave Rickels will be in action against "Young Assassin" Melvin Guillard at Lightweight, and we may have a new contender at Featherweight after Emmanuel Sanchez and Daniel Weichel finish their bout.
Bellator 159 will start tonight on Spike TV at 9 p.m. ET. MMAmania.com will be here all night long to deliver LIVE results and play-by-play for the televised fights, along with the "Prelims" undercard action airing on Spike.com at 6:45 p.m. ET.
Many readers check in before, during and after the fights to share their thoughts on all of the action. Feel free to leave a comment (or 159) about the bouts before you leave and chat with all the other Maniacs during the show -- it's always a lot of fun!
BELLATOR 159 QUICK RESULTS:
Darrion Caldwell vs. Joe Taimanglo -- Taimanglo via sub (guillotine) 0:09 R3.
Dave Rickels vs. Melvin Guillard -- Guillard via KO 2:14 R1.
Daniel Weichel vs. Emmanuel Sanchez -- Weichel SD 30-27, 27-30, 29-28.
Emily Ducote vs. Bruna Vargas -- Ducote via sub (RNC) 0:29 R2.
Philipe Lins vs. Guilherme Viana -- Lins via KO 1:13 R2.
Bruna Ellen vs. Jessica Middleton -- Middleton UD 29-28 X3.
Gaston Reyno vs. L.J. Hermreck -- Reyno via TKO 3:57 R3.
Manny Meraz vs. Trey Ogden -- Ogden via sub (guillotine) 2:37 R2.
Chris Harris vs. Matt Foster -- Harris via sub (RNC) 1:23 R1.
Marcio Navarro vs. Fernando Martinez -- Martinez SD 28-29, 29-28 X2.
Johnny Marigo vs. Andy Riley -- Marigo via sub (verbal) 2:44 R1.
Chuka Willis vs. Brandon Phillips -- Phillips via UD 30-27 X3.
BELLATOR 159 PLAY-BY-PLAY:
Darrion Caldwell vs. Joe Taimanglo
Guam's own (fighting out of San Diego) "Baby Joe" the "Juggernaut" has on red trunks for this fight and sports a 22-6-1 record for tonight's fight. His opponent Caldwell sports a record of 9-0 and black trunks fighting out of Redlands, California by way of Rahway, New Jersey. Our referee in charge is John McCarthy.
Round 1: Both guys are cautious for the first minute of this round. Caldwell opens up with a couple of kicks and misses big on a takedown shoot. Taimanglo keeps dropping low trying to defend it but Caldwell catches him unprepared at 1:36 and powers through to the ground. Taimanglo tries to get up and gives up his back in the process. Caldwell transitions to full mount briefly off of but Taimanglo gets the right leg trapped in half guard. Caldwell ends up back in full guard at 3:18. Taimanglo gets up and out at 3:42. Taimanglo blocks another takedown but Caldwell goes for a kimura and Taimanglo takes his back as a result. Taimanglo tries to get under the neck with short time but Caldwell winds up back on top again before the bell. 10-9 Caldwell.
Round 2: Caldwell throws out a kick that grazes Taimanglo's chin 25 seconds into R2. A leg kick and body kick follow. Taimanglo misses with a kick and falls down and Caldwell catches him getting back up, then tries to put on a front headlock for the submission. Taimanglo gets free and Caldwell ducks the overhand right. Caldwell gets another takedown at 2:13 and quickly passes to half. At 2:55 the crowd is getting impatient with Caldwell inching his way forward on the ground, but McCarthy is content to let him stay there. He finally calls for work a minute later. He gets another call to improve position at 4:13. McCarthy stands them up with 30 seconds left. Taimanglo tries to cartwheel his way to a kick that doesn't work and shoots for a takedown that doesn't work either. 10-9 Caldwell.
Round 3: CALDWELL GETS STUFFED AS HE SHOOTS FOR A DOUBLE LEG TAKEDOWN GETS CAUGHT IN A GUILLOTINE AND TAPS OUT. That's his first loss as a pro. A STUNNING upset. Taimanglo is so happy he's dancing afterward. That's Taimanglo's fourth straight win and if he hadn't missed weight it'd be a title shot for sure.
Final result: Taimanglo defeats Caldwell via guillotine choke at 0:09 of the third round.
Dave Rickels vs. Melvin Guillard
Guillard is in the red trunks for tonight's fight, a career record of 32-16-2, 2 NC hailing from New Orleans, Louisiana fighting out of Denver, Colorado. Rickels comes out in a throne being pushed by several people, with a club in his hands, and he's jumping up and down for the crowd in the Kansas Star Arena. He's got on white trunks tonight and sports a career record of 17-4, 1 NC, also fighting out of Denver but hailing from Derby, Kansas. Rob Hinds will ref.
Round 1: Both men touch gloves to start and quickly trade shots. Rickels is being careful and keeping his hands up when he's not firing so he doesn't take a big power shot. Guillard catches a kick but doesn't get Rickels to the ground. Rickels lands a solid left. Rickels accidentally kicks Guillard in the cup and Hinds calls time. Guillard signals he's ready to go and we resume at 1:26. Rickels shoots in at 1:49 and has Guillard on the fence. He fires a knee but Guillard lands a right hand and gets on top blasting with elbows and gets the KO.
Final result: Melvin Guillard by technical knockout at 2:14 of the first round.
Daniel Weichel vs. Emmanuel Sanchez
Round 1: Blue gloves for Sanchez, 13-2, fighting out of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Red gloves for Weichel, 36-9, Frankfurt, Germany. Rob Hinds is our referee. A tap of the gloves and we're underway. Sanchez throws a head kick early that's checked, gets swept to the ground on a leg kick, and pops right back up. Weichel throws a right hand that's blocked. Sanchez throws a flurry and a body kick. Weichel catches another kick but Sanchez escapes the takedown.Sanchez ducks under a big right and throws a front kick. He ducks another and throws a body kick. Sanchez with a good flurry at 2:40. Weichel with a good left and a hard right. Sanchez misses with a spin kick and gets popped with a left. Weichel goes for a single leg at 3:34 and gets it. Sanchez tries to pop up again and Weichel momentarily has his back until Sanchez spins free. Kicks from Sanchez. Weichel's right hand is blocked but a foot to the face gets through. Sanchez misses with a roundhouse kick. Weichel gets another takedown but Sanchez is up quick. This is exactly the kind of close round that gets Sanchez his split decision wins.
Round 2: Sanchez lands the left hand 35 seconds into R2 and a good combo 10 seconds later. Weichel backpedals and throws a good right. Sanchez has a lot of good body movement. He bobs and waves with his shoulders and doesn't keep his head stationary for long. Weichel gets a takedown at 1:58 and Sanchez is up immediately. Sanchez comes in again and ducks under the response. He consistently dips below the power shots of Weichel and he's landing a lot of leg kicks this round. Weichel throws a kick to the face and he's nearly taken down on it. Right hand connects for Weichel. Weichel with a good combo at 3:49. Weichel goes for a head kick and Sanchez triples up on kicks in response. A clinch is broken at 4:45. Sanchez gets a spinning backfist before the bell but Weichel seems fine. The judges could see this round either way too.
Round 3: Weichel gets a takedown 18 seconds into R3 and this time Sanchez can't pop right back up as Weichel puts his weight on Sanchez in full guard. Jimmy Smith believes Weichel won both of the first two rounds but I'm nowhere near as convinced. Weichel gets to half guard and Hinds reminds Sanchez not to link his toes in the fence. Sanchez tries to get up at 1:44 but Weichel takes his back. Sanchez gets up at 2:14, gets taken down and this time pops right back up. He's finally free and clear at 2:38. Weichel lands the right hand a few times. Sean Grande thinks Weichel has this fight won too. Sanchez teases a jumping knee, throws a leg kick, lands a good hand, Weichel shoots in grabs blinch and throws a right elbow. Weichel steps forward to avoid a spinning backfist landing flush. They trade strikes at 4:30 and again 10 seconds later. Weichel goes for a single leg late and Sanchez backs away throwing his hands up looking to exchange. Weichel gets one more takedown at the end but Sanchez jumps on the fence after the bell and signals that he wants a belt around the waist.
Final result: The judges score this contest 30-27 Weichel, 30-27 Sanchez, 29-28 for Weichel by split decision.
Emily Ducote vs. Bruna Vargas
Round 1: Vargas is 2-0 and Ducote is 2-1. Vargas is in the green trunks out of Porto Alegre, Brazil and Ducote the gray trunks out of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. John McCarthy is our ref. Ducote throws the first leg kick and Vargas fires off a combo. Vargas is grunting with every shot she throws. Two leg kicks by Vargas connect. Good combo lands for Vargas at 49 seconds. It's Vargas who gets wobbled by Ducote's rights though and Ducote pushes to the fence while Vargas clinches trying to clear her head. Ducote lands an elbow over the top as they spin around trying to gain position. Ducote gets an inside trip but Vargas scrambles out of it and winds up on top on the ground. Vargas tries to inch her way up from half guard as we pass the halfway point of the round. Vargas can never quite get her left leg free but does land some good elbows and hammers on top -- enough to keep McCarthy from standing it up. Vargas probably won back the round in the second half 10-9 but you can argue Ducote landed better strikes in the first half.
Round 2: Ducote CREAMS VARGAS with a right hand 20 seconds in, land a brutal flurry of rights on the ground, and QUICKLY sinks an arm under the neck for the rear naked choke. Vargas is too rocked to defend and taps IMMEDIATELY. That was a BEAUTIFUL finish.
Final result: Ducote via submission (rear naked choke) at 0:29 of round two.
Philipe Lins vs. Guilherme Viana
Round 1: Viana hails from Porto Alegre, Brazil with a 7-2 record and green trunks. Lins hails from Natal, Brazil and he's 9-1 in the blue trunks. John McCarthy is our ref. Both men spend the first minute shadowboxing as "Big" John looks on. The crowd in Mulvane is being remarkably patient given how little either man has done halfway through this round. I'm surprised McCarthy hasn't called for more activity. Lins is the more active striker but only just barely. The boos finally start to rain down as we approach the end of the round. 10-9 Lins I suppose but that wasn't any good at all.
Round 2: Both men tap gloves to start the round and that's more striking than we saw in round one. I'm kidding, but I'm not kidding. Jimmy Smith is left scratching his head as to who won R1 and most viewers on Spike or the Bellator app probably are too. Lins lands a shot that rocks Viana, he starts backpedaling, and Lins smells blood in the water and gives chase, landing a HUGE right hand on the chin once he has Viana against the fence. McCarthy throws Lins off before he can even think about any sustained ground and pound - this one's OVER.
Final result: Philipe Lins wins by knockout at 1:13 of the second round.
Bruna Ellen vs. Jessica Middleton
Round 1: Middleton makes her pro debut tonight out of Wichita, Kansas in the purple trunks. Ellen's record is 2-0 and she fights out of Sao Paolo, Brazil in the black trunks. John McCarthy is our ref in charge. Middleton is quickly taken down and back mounted with one hook in. Ellen is trying to get the sub lightning fast. Middleton is on her knees defending but if she gets flattened out this looks like it would be over in a heartbeat. She tries to sit up and Ellen just goes for an arm in response. Middleton is warned to let go of the inside of Ellen's gloves. Ellen tries to pull Middleton away from the fence and loses top position in the process. Ellen gets back up and then pulls guard only to end up eating more right hands. Ellen is trying to move her head to avoid shots but some are landing clean. Middleton lands an elbow but Ellen goes for an armbar and can't quite cinch it up. Middleton is warned to let go of the cage. More big right hands and hammerfists as she turns away from the fence. She traps Ellen's left arm with a knee and hammers away for the final 10 seconds. 10-9 Middleton.
Round 2: Both women touch gloves to open R2. Middleton pours on strikes to an already bloody Ellen but that forward momentum gives Ellen an easy double leg takedown. Ellen looks to pass, Middleton tries to sweep, Ellen uses her weight to keep Middleton down. Middleton is doing her best to hold Ellen close with an arm around her neck, and McCarthy finally tires of the inactivity and calls for a stand-up. Middleton throws some knees but Ellen gets a single leg takedown as Middleton charges forward. Ellen jumps to the back against the fence and is searching for the submission at 3:15. She's got both hooks in. She might be riding a bit high though -- Middleton could sneak out the back door if she times it right. Ellen really wants an armbar with 20 seconds left but can't get it. 10-9 Ellen.
Round 3: Ellen has a quick takedown to open R3. Middleton wraps her legs around Ellen's back and just hangs on, then draws a warning from McCarthy for a 12-6 elbow. He calls for improvement. Middleton sweeps her way to the top and the crowd in Mulvane erupts.She starts landing some hard elbows. Ellen tries and fails to buck her off. Those left elbows from Middleton are nasty. Ellen kicks her away and Middleton jumps right back in with a right hand. Ellen throws her legs up for a triangle. Middleton pops her head out and tries to get up but Ellen winds up back on top at 4:40. I expect interesting scorecards for this one.
Final result: The judges score this contest 29-28 X3 for Middleton by unanimous decision.
Gaston Reyno vs. L.J. Hermreck
Round 1: Hermreck is 3-1 out of Kansas. Reyno is 5-1 out of Uruguay. Our referee is Rob Hinds. Reyno has the red gloves and Hemreck the blue. Reyno is out there throwing bombs trying to take Hemreck's head off. You can see it taking a toll on him as he's getting winded quickly. Reyno is finding a home for his overhand right though and he's got Hemreck backpedaling a lot. Knees to the body when he gets Hemreck against the fence. Reyno is landing some leg kicks now too and his corner loves it screaming "ALL DAY IT'S THERE ALL DAY." Reyno seems confused about where his corner is after the bell.
Round 2: Between rounds Hermreck's corner said to get it to the mat but didn't tell him how. He's like to but they end up clinched against the fence and Reyno just THROWS Hermreck to the ground then walks away. Reyno is still putting everything into each punch and his most effective is that looping overhand right. They clinch up on the fence again. Hinds gets tired of it and calls for them to improve. 15 seconds later he breaks them for the reset. Reyno immediately snaps off lefts and rights, then a head kick and a front kick. Hemreck feels the overhand right, and then Reyno lands a few more leg kicks. Hermreck goes for a single leg and can't get it. Reyno lands a nice combo to end R2 and is well ahead in the fight. Only his gas tank is a concern at this point.
Round 3: Hermreck fails another single leg attempt and gets blasted again. Reyno blocks a level change and puts Hermreck on the fence, and he's got a cut opened up on his face that's spraying blood onto Reyno. Hermreck pulls guard and just gets blasted in the face. As Reyno keeps landing big rights on the ground we could be getting close to a stoppage. Hinds is taking a good look. Hermreck keeps defending and hoping he can find a submission but he's getting overwhelmed and Reyno takes a full mount. Hermreck gives up his back and Reyno is looking for the RNC. Hemreck's face is a bloody mess. Reyno moves to side mount, pounds on Hermreck some more, Hinds waves it off.
Final result: Reyno wins by technical knockout at 3:57 of the third round.
Manny Meraz vs. Trey Ogden
Round 1: Not aired before Spike TV.
Final result: Ogden wins via submission (guillotine) at 2:37 of the second round.
Chris Harris vs. Matt Foster
Round 1: Not aired before Spike TV.
Final result: Harris wins via submission (rear naked choke) at 1:23 of the first round.
Marcio Navarro vs. Fernando Martinez
Round 1: Martinez is 14-10-1 and hails from Argentina wearing the red trunks. Navarro is 14-12 and hails from Brazil, fighting out of Mulvane in the white trunks. Our referee is Nick Berens. Navarro throws a body kick right away to start things off. Martinez comes back with a strong overhand right. Navarro has an obvious height advantage but Martinez is still reaching up there to touch that chin. Navarro lands a big right and throws out a front kick. Martinez circles outside and eats a leg kick. Martinez stops backing up and throws a four punch combo - Navarro avoids it well. Navarro lands another hard right hook. Martinez throws a high kick. Head kick by Navarro is checked. Left jab gets in. Martinez lands a combo and a big left hook that staggers Navarro for a second and the two clinch. Berens calls for a clean break at the bell and almost in response Navarro throws a knee to the cup. Berens says he'll take a point if it happens again. There's only a few seconds left after they restart. 10-9 Martinez.
Round 2: Martinez seems confident now that he has the timing on the range, but Navarro continues to press forward with jabs and kicks. Martinez lands a good flurry with a right hand at the end at 1:30. He lands it again but Navarro stays standing. Martinez tries a spinning back kick. Navarro is cracked again at 3:50 and Berens immediately warns Navarro to watch the knees as he pushes Martinez to the fence. Martinez turns him around at 4:39 and gets a takedown. 10-9 Martinez.
Round 3: Both men tap gloves to start the round. Martinez is aggressively coming forward with strikes and then drops levels for a takedown, but Navarro ties him up and puts his back on the cage. Martinez breaks free with a left hook at 40 seconds. Navarro tries a few leg kicks. Martinez snaps off a couple of hard kicks to the body then throws a 1-2 combo. Martinez with a three punch combo at 2:35. Navarro is relying heavily on leg kicks this round. Navarro has to quickly backpedal from punches at 3:13 and rebounds off the fence. Martinez throws a kick and backs away to avoid the response. Navarro waggles his right hand like he wants to throw it. Martinez goes for a late takedown that's stuffed.
Final result: The judges score this contest 29-28 Navarro, 29-28 Martinez, 29-28 for Martinez by split decision.
Johnny Marigo vs. Andy Riley
Round 1: Riley is 2-1 out of Kansas City, Missouri. Marigo is 1-0 from Brazil now fighting out of Derby, Kansas. The referee is Nick Berens. Both men are in black trunks but Riley a bright red mohawk and a takedown early in the fight. He's going for a choke on the ground but has to let it go and winds up in full guard. He tries to pass and then flops to his back. Marigo swarms him and Riley gives up his back on the ground as Marigo goes for an armbar. Marigo nails him with an elbow and then tries to cinch up a leg triangle. Riley keeps rolling trying to escape. Riley taps to a shoulder lock at 2:44 and Berens immediately admonishes Marigo for jumping on the fence to celebrate.
Final result: Marigo wins via verbal submission (shoulder lock) at 2:44 of round one.
Chuka Willis vs. Brandon Phillips
Round 1: Not aired before Spike TV.
Final result: Phillips wins via unanimous decision of 30-27 from all three judges.