By: Travis Brown
Friday night brought the final contest of the year for the World Series of Fighting Promotion. WSOF 26 featured a title fight in the featherweight division between Lance Palmer(10-2) and Alexandre de Almeida(18-5). In a night that mostly went the distance the final fight was a five round grinder between Alexander de Almeida and Lance Palmer. The young Brazilian used his braggadocio style and dangerous guard to pull off the upset victory over the former champion. Ducking, dodging and not allowing Palmer any offense on the ground proved to be the difference for this title fight. On the feet the longer Almeida kept the wrestler at bay landing various combinations and kicks to Alpha Male fighter. Alexandre tried to wrench the arm of Palmer on the mat consistently but also did an amazing job of returning to his feet promptly after Lance completed one of his many takedowns. During the course of the night Almeida stalked Palmer cutting the cage and confusing the plan of attack for the current champion. The highly confident Brazilian pulls off the win even though the final round belonged to Lance. The judges saw the fight in favor of Almeida 49-47.
Nic Herron-Webb(18-7) showed a steady chin against the hard hitting Ozzy Dugulubgov (8-2) but his takedown defense could not measure up. Since Ozzy was unable to stop Nic with the increasingly powerful first shots he was content with landing explosive takedowns. Unfortunately not much action was performed by him afterwards which caused multiple stand ups. There were a few exciting moments for Nic but nothing that bothered Ozzy enough from working his gameplan. Dugulubgov takes the unanimous decision in all three rounds by out working the gritty Alaskan and landing the exciting takedowns. A battle between either Justin Gaethje vs Brian Foster could go either way for Ozzy. He has the all the tools to be a champion but similar to Herron-Webb neither of those fighters will go down easy as well.
The only stoppage of the night belonged to Sheymon Moraes(8-1) who dropped Robbie Peralta (18-7) with a devastating counter to the chin in the second round. There was no way this fight was going the distance as each fighter came out throwing heat with their flashy leg kicks and overhand combos. Sheymon set the pace first landing a deadly left kick that caused Peralta to change his guard. The fighters stood in the pocket with Sheymon gaining advantage using an awkward head and body shot to find his range against Peralta. The second round started similar with Moraes improving his timing to land some real hard shots on the former UFC fighter. Peralta started to come on but missed a huge left which Shayman countered to the chin to place him on the mat. Referee Kim Winslow wanted to see no more in a fight that excited and woke up the lull WSOF crowd. Sheymon could actually still be the best option against Marlon in the 135 division but there is no reason for him not to seek gold where he currently resides againsts the featherweights.
The second fight of the night between Josh Hill(13-1) and Bekbulat Magomedov(6-1) didn’t provide the expected fireworks from two possible contenders in the WSOF bantamweight division. All three rounds were a respect given affair with stuffed takedown and missed overhand rights populating each segment. The fight would end in the second split of the night with Hill gaining the edge based off of the takedowns he did land. The announcers seemed to feel that this fight was a possible answer to the next fighter to challenge for the 135 title but more than likely the promotion has some other plans in mind. Those plans should include another Dagestan fighter in the division, Timur Valiev who is the clear cut favorite to challenge current champion Marlon Moraes.
The opening bout for the main card of WSOF was a very athletic affair between Jake Heun(9-4) and Clint Williams (7-3). The battle between these enormous fighters was quite the spectacle as you would think men of this size would fade a lot faster than they did. Jake Heun set the pace with a few well timed body kicks early that stunned Williams and even sent him to the canvas. In the second Williams was knocked down by a push from Jake’s left hand even though Clint had no issue of returning the damage. Heun was clearly up in the second round but the match was still close. On the third Williams scored a huge third round including a slam across the cage. It was almost enough for the last minute replacement as Jake wins the fight pulling off the split decision.
The full results from WSOF 26 are listed below.
Alexandre Almeida def. Lance Palmer via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-47) – for featherweight title
Ozzy Dugulubgov def. Nic Herron-Webb via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Sheymon Moraes def. Robbie Peralta via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 3:21
Josh Hill def. Bekbulat Magomedov via split decision (28-29, 30-27, 30-27)
Jake Heun def. Clinton Williams via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Abubakar Nurmagomedov def. Danny Davis Jr. via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Jonathan Nunez def. David Jordan via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)
Hakeem Dawodu vs. Marat Magomedov declared a majority draw (29-28, 28-28, 28-28)
Gil Guardado def. Giga Chikadze via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)