Mangat match saves rocky Battlefield event 0
Gary Magnat (COURTESY OF NELSON YEO/ MMA SUCKA)
Last Saturday night, Battlefield Fight League put on the first professional show to hit the Vancouver area since UFC 131 back in 2011. Sitting cageside at the River Rock Casino in Richmond was new B.C. Athletic Commissioner Dave Maedel, who kept a watchful eye on the night’s proceedings.
There are reasons why a lot of MMA promoters seem to be bald, and BFL president Jay Golshani was probably wishing he had hair to pull out. Originally, Vancouver’s Leo Xavier was scheduled to fight in the evening’s main event, but that fight was shelved due to an injury a week before the festivities. Local favourite Jeremy Kennedy, who was scheduled to fight American Jordan Mackin in the co-main event, was told after he had weighed in his opponent couldn’t get across the border — so that fight was also taken off the card.
The fights started at 7:30 p.m., with some great amateur bouts. River Rock security slowly patted each person down as if they were looking for al-Qaida members — all that was missing were the rubber gloves.
Fight fans were on their feet for an amateur featherweight title fight on the undercard between Andre Da Silva and Oren Hanscomb. In the end, Da Silva was able to grab the belt via unanimous decision. After the fight, Da Silva returned to the cage, this time to embrace his son Radley Da Silva, who won his first professional fight via unanimous decision against Kelowna’s Joe Pirrotta.
Main card highlights included middleweight Micah Brakefield (3-1) submitting Jake Asher (3-1) via a triangle choke. It was an impressive performance by Brakefield, who rebounded after his first pro loss.
The best was saved for last, as the main event between Surrey’s Gary “Saint Lion” Mangat (4-1) and Spokane, Wash. fighter Josh Gow (3-0) was the fight of the night. Mangat blasted Gow with some vicious leg kicks and actually dominated him with takedowns in the first round. The American was able to land some vicious overhand rights that, at times, rocked Mangat in round two. Heading into the third, I had the fight at one round apiece. Mangat started the third with some well-timed takedowns, but with 30 seconds remaining in the fight, Gow fought back with vicious standing elbows and punches against the cage. After a few unanswered shots to a bloodied Mangat, the referee felt the need to stop the fight, and Gow won via TKO. The stoppage may have been early, but you can understand that with the new commissioner watching, the theme of the night was caution.