Ernie Bizzarro of Bizzarro Promotions did something that you rarely see, read, or even hear about these days; he hosted an inaugural MMA Cage Fighting event this past Saturday May 7th at the Bayfront Convention Center in Erie, Pa that drew some two thousand fans that showed up within minutes after the doors opened. And if the way everything turned out for this event is any indication, you’ll be seeing, reading and hearing a whole lot more about Bizzarro Promotions “Bayfront Brawl” MMA events in the future.
There were definitely a few things about “Bayfront Brawl” that puts this event in a pretty special class. It was a new MMA promotion, hosted by someone who had never promoted a MMA event before. Prior to putting this event together the promoter could count the number of MMA fighters that he knew personally on one hand. He invested more money into this event than most established MMA promoters throughout the region invest in 2 or 3 of theirs, and he did it even after a few big named MMA fighters from around the region had already turned down his invitation to come and fight in his event.
Prior to the Bayfront Brawl MMA Cage Fighting event, the name Bizzarro was synonymous only with boxing. Over the past couple of years Ernie Bizzarro promoted some of the biggest and most successful boxing events in the region. But you can be sure that he wasn’t naive enough to think that he was ready to promote a MMA Cage Fighting event without teaming up with a good MMA matchmaker. And for that Bizzarro teamed up with none other than Nichole Castillo who not only knows more MMA fighters than any other MMA Matchmaker in the region, but who also knows how to put together exactly the type of MMA fight card that helped Bayfront Brawl to turn out as big and successful as it did.
No one ever knows what a first time MMA event will be like until it’s over. But now that Bizzarro Promotion “Bayfront Brawl” is over, you can be sure that it has been placed in the history books of MMA Cage Fighting with a few headliners that will be remember for a long time. Some of the things that this inaugural MMA event will be remembered for; sell-out crowd, hometown favorite flyweight MMA fighter fought his first main event and won, fighter who was undefeated as an amateur fought his professional MMA debut and won, first 155 lbs Amateur MMA title was won, and first ever 40 year old female MMA fighter in the state stepped into the cage and won her first fight via unanimous decision.
Pro Bouts: Results & Analysis
13th BOUT: 130 lbs Main Event – Branden “Soku” Seyler (6-3-1) representing 3 Eliments BJJ and MMA out of Erie, Pa -DEFEATS- Dillard “Joe” Pegg (6-4) representing G-Force MMA out of Columbus, Ohio. When Branden Seyler stepped into the cage to take on Dillard Pegg, you could tell from the ear-popping noise coming from the huge crowd that it wasn’t just because it was the main event of the night. It was because Seyler is one of Erie, Pa’s hometown favorite MMA fighters. Seyler was stepping into the cage with a record of 5 wins, 3 losses and 1 draw. He won his last 2 fights in a row. His last win was just over a month ago when he took on and won a split decision over a very tough Cory Alexander. Pegg was stepping into the cage with a record of 6 wins and 3 losses. He was looking to end a streak of 2 losses in a row. But this was a match that proved to be another tough uphill battle for him, beginning with the loud cheering coming from the huge crowd for his opponent. The loud cheering seemed to have helped pump a lot extra adrenalin into Seyler. He wasted no time attacking and counter-attacking Pegg with a combination of very quick and powerful kicks and punches. Pegg fought back hard for a little over a minute. But Seyler kept firing off a combination of hard leg kicks, left jabs, left and right hook punches. As soon as he got Pegg backed up against the cage, he tied him up, tagged him with a few knee strikes to the ribs, took him down, pinned him, got himself in position and forced Pegg to tap-out at 1:46 of the 1st round via Rear Naked Choke.
12th BOUT: 155 lbs Co-Main Event – Damonte Robinson (1-0) representing Mayanz MMA out of Massillon, Oh -DEFEATS- Mike Wiseman (1-3) representing Cambell Martial Arts out of Youngstown, Oh. 20 year old Damonte Robinson was given a chance to do something that few MMA fighters ever get the chance to do – make his professional MMA debut in the co-main event. Robinson began his MMA career exactly 14 months prior to this event. He fought 5 times and won each time. His amateur victories included 1 win by KO, 1 by submission, and 3 by Unanimous Decision. This 20 year fighter was on a roll coming into the fight looking to prove that he was ready for the pros. Mike Wiseman finished his amateur MMA career back in March of 2012 with a streak of 4 wins in a row. He got his pro MMA career off to a good start a year later with an impressive 1st round victory. But he lost his second pro fight 3 months later of that same year. This past January, he stepped back into the cage looking to end a streak of 2 losses in a row, but came up short for the third time. This time it looked like the odds were in his favor. He was taking on an opponent who was making his pro debut after only 5 fights to his combined pro/am record of 13 fights. But for Robinson this was no ordinary match. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity. He was coming into this fight undefeated. He was making his pro MMA debut in the co-main event in front of a sold-out crowd and it was at the Beautiful Bayfront Convention Center in Erie , Pa – a MMA event that was receiving national coverage. With all these special opportunities on the line it wasn’t hard to understand why Damonte Robinson looked as good as he did once the match got underway. It probably wouldn’t have mattered who his opponent was, he was ready. He and Wiseman came out tagging each other with punishing kicks and punches. Wiseman managed to close in and tie Robinson up and scored a takedown on him. He pinned Robinson down then managed to get behind him and attempted a rear naked choke. But Robinson managed to escape, fought his way back to his feet, tied Wiseman up and took him down. They grappled, Robinson got himself into a full mount position and tried to finish Wiseman off by ground and pound. But the bell rang to end the 1st round. The second round started again with both fighters tagging each other with a combination of kicks and punches. But by this time Robinson was ready to show the huge crowd why he was chosen for the co-main event. As soon as he got Wiseman tied up against the cage, he lifted him up and body-slammed him. As Wiseman fought to keep Robinson from pinning him down, he made the mistake of turning his back for just a split second. But it was all the time Robinson needed to get his arms around Wiseman’s neck and force him to Tap-Out at 1:56 of the 2nd via Rear Naked Choke.
For complete results & analysis or Amateur Bouts 1 – 11 go to: Gateway MMA Facebook page.