clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Highlights! Gleison Tibau splits Rory MacDonald, still doesn’t make PFL playoffs

New, comments

Bringing you the weird and wild from the world of MMA each and every weeknight!

Gleison Tibau v Efrain Escudero Photo by Tom Hogan/Golden Boy/Getty Images

Welcome to Midnight Mania!

Professional Fighter’s League (PFL) returned tonight (Thurs. June 17, 2021) for the fifth event of their 2021 season. In the main event, former UFC title challenger and ex-Bellator Welterweight champion Rory MacDonald dueled opposite longtime veteran Gleison Tibau.

MacDonald was a huge favorite in this match up, and after a slow start, the Canadian really started looking the part. Sticking his opponent with front kicks up the middle, McDonald also scored a well-timed leg pickup to back take. It was a solid first round for “The Red King.”

After a very brief takedown opened the second, MacDonald went to his distance strikes, sticking Tibau with clean jabs and crosses. In addition, MacDonald stung his foe with a clean high kick, but Tibau — look more muscular than ever — somehow ate the shot. Tibau did score some decent shots, but without a stoppage inside 10 minutes, Tibau was eliminated from the PFL playoffs.

MacDonald was pretty much in cruise control for round three. Firing lots of kicks at range, MacDonald mixed jabs and takedown attempts into his attack to keep Tibau at bay. The Brazilian did up his aggression in the final frame, but MacDonald remained pretty committed to avoiding dangerous exchanges.

Despite largely controlling the flow of the fight and landing more shots, MacDonald’s relaxed pace in the final five minutes seemingly came back to haunt him. The judges awarded Tibau’s aggression (and, in fairness, some solid power shots across 15 minutes), and he won a split-decision!

Still, Tibau is not in the playoffs, and MacDonald is so ... it could be worse? Ultimately, the MMA world at large is unimpressed with the decision, and they’ve made it known online.

Insomnia

Devastating news: Fight Circus 3 has been delayed again due to COVID-19.

Is Max Holloway’s loss an opening for Giga Chikadze to jump the ladder?

Zhang Weili is intent on putting in the work to regain her title.

I have a buddy or two who fights Bare Knuckle, and I don’t mean to offend, but if the shoe fits ...

Angela Hill knows how to capitalize on a meme.

Jorge Masvidal vs. Leon Edwards is the fight to make.

Crushing the wind pipe is great, but a major aspect of what makes Aleksei Oleinik’s Ezekiel choke game so nasty is long arms and gorilla strength.

Slips, rips, and KO clips

Here’s hoping for some classic Matt Brown violence this weekend.

This is a great knockout, but I cannot look past the hair.

A couple additional clips from tonight’s PFL event, including REF CAM!

Random Land

Are you struggling financially? Allow Midnight Mania to help.

Midnight Music: “Cause Summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the street, boy!”

Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.