|On paper, ICE 12 looked to be a very solid line-up. With ICE veterans Mojo Horn, Rod Housley, and Ron Fields scheduled for action, along with the return of young guns Greg Franklin ( brother of UFC fighter Rich Franklin) and Maurice Walker...
On paper, ICE 12 looked to be a very solid line-up. With ICE veterans Mojo Horn, Rod Housley, and Ron Fields scheduled for action, along with the return of young guns Greg Franklin ( brother of UFC fighter Rich Franklin) and Maurice Walker, Promoters Kerry Meat Truck Schall and Monte Cox had put together what looked to be another action packed card. Little did anyone know, that the pull outs hours before the show were reminiscent of this past UFC. Six, count them six, fighters out of New York completely backed out at the last second, forcing the two promoters to scramble to piece together a fight card. With no one to fight, the main fighters had to be scratched from the card altogether. Some young guns stepped up to the aide of the event and the show went on as planned, but no one, including myself, would know how this card was going to turn out considering the unfortunate turn of events. As the event started, I crossed my fingers, focused my lens, and held my breath like the packed house in attendance. Let the fights begin
Jason Bryant vs. Kyle Cramer
The first fight of the evening pitted Louisville Fight Club member Jason Bryant against a young Kyle Cramer out of Team Wolfpack in Muncie, IN. The first round started with Bryant and Cramer tying up and Bryant locking in a very tight guillotine choke. Cramer remained calm and was able to pick up Bryant and pushed him up against the fence. Bryant refused to let go however, and still focused on finishing the fight with the choke. Cramer eventually worked his way out of the hold and began to give some payback by dropping some punches from the guard. Bryant defended well and both fighters traded reversals, jocking for position as the round came to a close.
Round 2 started with Cramer looking very tired and Bryant, smelling blood, looked to throw and land the fight ending shot. As Bryant threw his right hand, Cramer was able to duck and get the takedown. From there, Cramer could not initiate any attack and Bryant just held on. Referee Rich Franklin noticed there was not action and stood both fighters up. Bryant jumped up, but Cramer, who looked completely exhausted at this time, could not get up. Complaining of difficulty breathing, it was decided to stop the fight and Bryant was the winner by verbal submission midway into round 2.
Nathan Haller vs. Travis Taylor
Making his MMA debut, KillingFields Team member Nathan Haller took on Meat Truck Inc. and SACAN martial arts team member Travis Taylor in the second fight of the evening. Taylor came out landing a swift kick to the abdomen of Haller, but lost his footing and fell to the floor. Seeing his opportunity, Haller gets on top of the downed Taylor and begins to drop down some solid punches from the guard. The action was not enough for referee Franklin and both fighters were stood back up. Circling each other, both fighters began to exchange with Haller going in for another takedown and getting it. From the guard, Haller landed some solid elbows to the side of Taylors head, but Taylor held on as the bell sounded ending the round.
The second round began with Haller locking in a body lock and slamming Taylor viciously onto the floor of the cage. Seeing a quick opportunity, Taylor locked in a guillotine choke, but Haller powered his way out. Haller, stood up, then began to drop some bombs on the downed Taylor, with some solid shots landing flush on the face. Haller eventually positioned himself into the full mount and unloaded 7 to 10 straight punches with Taylor covering up. Referee Franklin had seem enough and called a stop to the contest at 2:18 of round 2 and declared Haller as the winner. A very impressive first victory for the young fighter representing the Killingfields.
Rich Thurston vs. Josh Blanchard
The ending of the 3rd fight of the night had a huge surprise for the fans in the front row as 245 pound Cincinnati fighter Rich Thurston took on 222 pound Josh Blanchard out of Louisville, KY. The fight started with Thurston looking to land some strikes, but Blanchard was ready and pushed him up against the fence. Thurston held on and executed a perfect hip toss off of the fence and took Blanchard down. Receiving directions from his corner men, Thurston performed some ground and pound with Blanchard defending well but suddenly, Blanchard reversed and nearly took the back of Thurston. With both men scrambling, Blanchard attempted to stand up and somehow Thurston rolled and took his arm and elbow pressed up against the floor. With his body weight landing onto his left arm, his elbow literally snapped. Thurston tapped and screamed in agony as Referee Franklin came to his aide. The fans in the front row winced in disbelief, while waiting for the paramedics to come to his aide. Luckily, Thurston was immediately rushed to the hospital where the fans later learned that his elbow had to be put back into place. We at MMAringreport.com wish him a speedy recovery from this untimely injury.
Jess Couch vs. Billy Kidd
As the bell rang, Couch immediately shot in for the takedown. Kidd tried to fight off the attempt, but succumbed and was finally taken down to the mat. Couch worked the ground and pound and almost took Kidds back at one point but Kidd remained clam and eventually reversed and landed in the guard of Couch and rained down punches. Couch did a good job of looking for submissions and came dangerously close to locking in a triangle choke that Kidd was able to escape. Both fighters looked to just ride it out to the end of the round but with no action, but Referee Franklin stood up both fighters with little time remaining. Both fighters circled the ring looking to land a blow. Suddenly, with Couchs defenses a little too low, Kidd landed a huge right hand and knocked out Couch at 2:35 of round 1.
Tyler Combs vs. Vito Woods
Tyrant Tyler Combs out of the Killingfields took on Michigan fighter Vito The Bulldog Woods in the 5th fight of the evening. The fight started fast as each fighter looked to take the other to the ground. Woods was successful at taking down Combs and immediately went for the back. Remaining calm, Combs held onto the hands of Woods knowing if he let them go, a possible rear naked choke could be coming. Staying clam was the key, and Combs was able to twist around and land in the guard of Woods. But before Combs could mount any attack, Woods locked in a front choke and forced disgusted Combs to tap at 1:26 of round 1.
Johnny Hughes vs. Alex Rosario
Johnny The Hitman Hughes faced very tough Michigan fighter Wolverine Alex Rosario in the 6th fight of the evening. The fight began with Rosario bull rushing Hughes against the fence and taking down the Indiana fighter. Rosario began dropping down a mixture of elbows and punches to the head of Hughes, working effectively from the top. Rosario maneuvered his way onto the full mount and really began blasting away, after eating a few solid shots, Hughes turned and gave up his back to Rosario. It was then just a matter of time before Rosario locked in the rear naked choke and forced Hughes to tap at 2:33 of round 1.
Matt Williams vs. Ashe Bowman
Louisville Fight Club member Ashe Bowman faced Matt Williams in a battle of 185 pounders. Bowman dictated the fight by pressing Williams against the fence. Williams did well in fighting back and was throwing punches effectively with his back against the fence. Eventually, Bowman was successful at taking down Williams. From there, Bowman worked the side choke and forced his opponent to tap at :46 seconds of round 1.
Adam Bass vs. Dave Hayes
Baby boy Adam Bass looked very determined entering the cage to face Dave The Monster Hayes from Team Shoot out of Michigan. As the fight began, both fighters looked to throw down. Although both fighters were landing good shots, the more significant ones were landed by Bass. One punch rocked Hayes as he stumbled back against the cage. Smelling blood, Bass went in and was immediately grabbed by Hayes who hung on. Hayes then tried to pick up Bass and throw him into the cage, but Bass was aware and quickly made his way off and put Hayes against the fence. With his adrenaline pumping, Bass landed some big punches and Hayes fell to all fours. In the heat of battle, Bass threw an illegal knee to the face of Bass and the fight had to be stopped. After the confusion was cleared, the decision was that this fight was a no contest since Hayes could no longer continue. Some crowd members felt that Hayes was able to continue, but chose not to considering Bass was dominating the fight. Whether Hayes was truly hurt or not, lets just hope these two can someday have a rematch to figure out who the real victor will be.
Mark Bruno vs. Greg Franklin
The main event headliner Greg Franklin, who is Rich Franklins brother, made his return back into the ICE cage, his first since his loss to Leo Sylvest back in ICE 7. His opponent would be Mark Bruno out of Team Shoot in Michigan, who unfortunately took the fight on 4 minutes notice. As the fight started, Franklin immediately threw a vicious right hand completely knocking out Bruno in the first round. As Bruno was falling to the floor, Franklin followed to ensure he would not be getting up. Noticing that Bruno was out, Referee Rich Franklin immediately stopped the fight and his brother Greg Franklin was victorious in a flash with a 5.6 second KO of Mark Bruno.
Overall, the ICE show was about the best that it could have been under the circumstances that they had to face. Luckily for the fans who were in attendance, ICE veterans Neil Rowe, Trevor Garrett, Fields, Housley and Walker did participate in multiple submission tag team matches which provided not only something that the fans have never seen before, but also added some laughter and excitement to the night. To their credit, Kerry and Monte salvaged a decimated lineup and did the best they could with what they had. This is a show of dedication to the fans, as they could have easily canceled the show, and to them I say thanks for another great show. To the 6 fighters from New York that single handily almost ended the show, dont count on being booked for another ICE event any time soon