RFC 2: Jun Yong Park outduels Glenn Sparv, Will Chope decisions Bilal Williams in Taiwan
Taipei, Taiwan – The second professional MMA event from Taiwanese promotion RFC included a variety of entertaining bouts streaming free for the enjoyment of fight fans worldwide. Read on for fight recaps and clips (many thanks to @JHKMMA) from the action, including talented middleweight Glenn Sparv versus Jun Yong Park in the main event plus appearances from AXS fights stalwart Bilal Williams and UFC veterans Will Chope & Rocky Lee.
RFC 2 Main Event @ 185 lb:
Jun Yong Park (9-3, #269 World WW)
Glenn Sparv (18-5, #121 World)
RFC 2’s headlining attraction was a spirited middleweight clash that saw a determined Glenn Sparv (18-5, #121 World) throw down with South Korea’s Jun Yong Park (9-3, #269 World WW) over three intense rounds. Park drew first blood, figuratively speaking, halfway through round 1 with a right hand that momentarily turned Sparv’s legs into rubber. The hide-tough Finn responded by charging into the pocket and eating a three-piece combo. Park’s sharp jab was featured whenever the fight was at distance, and he nearly finished with an uppercut and hooks but Sparv was saved by the round 1 bell. Sparv plowed straight forward in round 2 and against tasted canvas in the opening moments as Park found the mark with another uppercut. But this time Sparv was intent on getting into grappling range and managed to do so, consciousness intact. Sparv earned about a minute of control off his first takedown; once Park broke free he managed to land about a half-dozen strong punches before Glenn could force the fight back to the mat. Sparv used his grappling and gas tank to score multiple takedowns in round 3 as well, but Park’s scrambling was on point and he consistently made the Norwegian pay with damaging punches an elbows at every opportunity. After 15 solid minutes of action, the judges rewarded Jun Yong Park with a unanimous decision for his efforts. Huge win for the 27 year old Korean Top Team rep, whose six fight win streak includes a first round submission of current PFL star Ray Cooper III. Meanwhile Sparv saw his own six fight win streak crumble to dust, though there were plenty of positives for both young middleweights to take away from this solid bout.
The main event at #RFC2 from Taiwan saw emerging Korean Top Team talent Jun Yong Park (9-3) use sharp striking and good scrambling to beat out @Fight_Matrix #121 middleweight Glenn Sparv (18-5) by decision.— DC Howard (@FightFan_DC) July 9, 2018
A huge late flurry helped Park take round 1:@MMATodayNews @JHKMMA pic.twitter.com/cI0WZ4DJKE
Well that sucked pic.twitter.com/ci7d93mndu— Glenn Sparv (@GlennSparv) July 7, 2018
170: Yuta Nakamura (19-24-3, #632 World) Sub2-Triangle Jeff Huang (6-4)
RFC promoter Jeff Huang could’ve booked himself into a gimme fight but instead he chose to take on a legit competitor in singleminded Japanese grinder Yuta Nakamura. Nakamura, who has been in a lot of tough fights in Pancrase and competes beyond his win-loss record, put Huang against the cage within seconds and dumped him to the ground inside the first two minutes. From there Nakamura made Huang miserable with persistent ground striking and positional advancement. Although Huang made it to the round 1 bell, he ended up right back in a grappling battle in round 2. Following a brief struggle against the cage, the veteran scored a trip takedown straight into mount. When Huang tried to scramble, Nakamura latched on a triangle choke that forced his boss to tapout! That’s two submissions in two 2018 bouts for the suddenly resurgent 36 year old Yuta Nakamura, who never let this fight out of his comfort zone and ended things in style.
165: Will Chope (35-14, #639 World) Dec Bilal Williams (8-7, #588 World)
Former Max Holloway opponent Will Chope was a ridiculously enormous featherweight back in his brief UFC stint, and the 6’4″ expat still owns a serious reach advantage now that he’s fighting up at welterweight. Chope’s march-forward Muay Thai style doesn’t always take advantage of his length gifts, and he allowed Bilal Williams into the pocket to do damage several times in round 1. But Chope was able to spend the second half of round 1 in back mount after a well-timed takedown and instant transition into a body triangle – check out Chope’s work in the clip below. The 11 time LFA/LFC vet Williams came out with a vengeance in round 2 as he bloodied Chope with hooks against the cage. But Chope stayed patient and started to unload with offense of his own late in round 2, including nice headkicks and clinch knees in the final seconds. Williams found himself in need of a finish heading into round 3, but he had no chance as Chope took the back early and stayed there for almost the whole final frame. Solid all-around performance from Will Chope, who snapped a three fight losing streak with the decision win over the respective AXS Fights stalwart.
At #RFC2 from Taiwan, former UFC 145er Will Chope (@AsiaWillTheKill) still looked pretty huge at welterweight!— DC Howard (@FightFan_DC) July 9, 2018
On the feet it was close, but Chope outclassed 11 time @LegacyFighting vet Bilal Williams on the ground to score his 35th pro win by decision.@MMATodayNews @JHKMMA pic.twitter.com/b4laOs3DVl
145: Rex de Lara (8-6, #440 World BW) KO1 Rocky Lee (4-4)
After an extended feeling out process in round 1, Rex de Lara scored a knockdown seconds into round 2 via crisp right hand. De Lara waved onetime UFC vet Rocky Lee right back to his feet, and that proved to be the perfect tactic as he put Lee down for good with another left-right combo moments later! Rex de Lara has really turned it on in the last three years, including wins in the PXC promotion over top Pacific bantamweights Darwin Sagurit and Stephen Loman. Now the Filipino talent owns a highlight reel win over a UFC veteran – great stuff from a fighter who started out with a 4-5 record over the first 5 years of his pro career.
155: Kyohei Wakimoto (3-1) TKO2-GNP John Zhang (4-5-1)
After a two year layoff, ring rust could have been a factor for former ONE competitor John Zhang as he found himself planted on the mat by a power double leg just moments into his fight with Kyohei Wakimoto. Wakimoto landed increasingly violent strikes from top position until Chang finally after about 3 minutes on bottom. Zhang didn’t have much more luck as Wakimoto showed off unorthodox but accurate hands near the end of the first stanza. Wakimoto returned things to the mat with an emphatic slam at the start of the second and never let his opponent back into the fight. After Wakimoto’s armbar and triangle choke tries came up short, the Japanese fighter finished things the ol’ fashioned way by smashing his foe in the face from a comfortably seated mount. Composed work from Kyohei Wakimoto here, as he rebounded nicely from his first career loss lat time out, a Pancrase 293 split decision loss to Pride legend Akihiro Gono.
205: Hannibal Wu (2-0) Dec Dixin Xiong (0-3)
Hannibal Wu did a good job of keeping Dixin Xiong underneath him during round 1 of this regional scrap, but once the home fighter wore down it gave Xiong a chance to fire back and turn the final two rounds into a wild brawl. Surprisingly neither of these big guys hit the canvas, and Wu had enough in the tank at the end of rounds 2 and 3 to finish both frames on top. That was good enough for Hannibal Wu to take the decision win to end a sloppy, if spirited, 15 minute contest.
170: John Brewin (3-0) KO1-Punch Emmanuel Binyet (2-1)
The great MMA weekend for New Zealanders continued with this wicked standing KO courtesy of John Brewin, who picked up a second straight finish after taking out former UK ammy star Hardeep Rai at Brave CF 12 in May. Brewin backed Binyet into a corner early before stuffing a pair of takedown tries. With the fight firmly in his world on the feet, Brewin stayed patient before picking his spot and knocking Binyet out cold.
John Brewin wins by knockout in Taiwan! Great display of control and distance, John picked up his third professional win inside of three months! Just the beginning for this guy 💯👊🥝 #Balimma pic.twitter.com/mHceeq8Q7r— Bali Muay Thai & MMA (@Balimma) July 8, 2018
135: Khai Wu (2-1) Sub1-Bulldog Choke Yusei Tashiro (0-4)
It doesn’t happen often, but every once in a while straight-up schoolyard tactics are good enough to get you a win inside the cage. Just ask Khai Wu, who made a bulldog choke work for him shortly after he brought his fight with Yusei Tashiro to the mat with a double leg takedown. That’s two wins in three fights for Wu since he turned pro back in February, with the sole loss coming on the Bellator 199 prelims.
W115: Chiao-Chen Wu (1-0) Dec Yeon Hwa Park (1-3)
After edging out the first two rounds of fairly even kickboxing exchanges, debuting Taiwanese strawweight Chiao-Chen Wu ended up pinned to the mat for much of round 3. But Yeon Hwa Park’s superior grappling was too little, too late as Wu snagged the decision.
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