Rough night for the winners of WSOF 31
By Edward Carbajal
If anyone had anything resembling an easy night at WSOF 31 it would be hard to find anyone that could make that claim. Phil Hawes maybe had the best stake to that claim keeping his undefeated record and submitting his opponent in the first round. Everyone else had their work cut out for them and the fights that went to decision probably gave the judges headaches when they went home that night, especially the slug-fest that was the main event.
Blagoy Ivanov and Josh Copeland hit each other with everything they had in the main event. While they did a lot of visual damage, the blows exchanged seemed to do little to take either of them out of their fight. By the time the championship rounds came, a take-down from either fighter could sway the decision in their favor. Ivanov seemed to know this and hit one that would allow him to rain some more damage on Copeland and earn the victory.
Jason High earned a second round victory over Mike Ricci but the first round saw him struggle to figure out Ricci’s game. In round one where some of the strikes he was not able to avoid would cause some swelling over his eye. That was all he was going to allow and he finished Ricci in round two and turn around what looked like to be a hard fight at first. High called out Justin Gaethje in his post-fight interview and the fans in the arena seemed to like the idea of that fight.
John Howard had a hard fought victory against late replacement Mike Arrant. It would seem “Doomsday” might have thought he would have an easy fight but Arrant let it be known quickly, there is no easy win with him. Howard was gracious in victory and commended Arrant’s skill and thanked him for coming in on short notice. While the victory went to Howard, Arrant earned a lot of respect from fight fans that night for going the distance.
See the complete results for WSOF 31 below:
Blagoy Ivanov def. Josh Copeland via unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 48-47)
Jason High def. Mike Ricci via technical knockout (Round 2, 4:08)
John Howard def. Mike Arrant via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Sheymon Moraes def. Luis Palomino via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Phil Hawes def. Josh Key via technical knockout (Round 1, 2:52)
Devin Powell def. Tom Marcellino via split decision (29-28, 27-30, 29-28)
Justin Willis def. Juliano Coutinho via technical knockout (Round 2, 2:30)
Tyler King def. Lorenzo Hood via submission (guillotine) (Round 2, 4:20)
Bruce Boyington def. Saul Almeida via split decision (27-30, 29-28, 29-28)
Marcus Surin def. Christian Torres via technical knockout (Round 2, 2:51)
Edward Carbajal is a contributing writer for MMA at Page2sports.com and Frontproof Media. You can follow Edward on Twitter @Carbazel or at his website TheBlogBoardJungle.com. Check out his podcast on Spreaker.