Contender Series Week 9 Breakdown and Review

Another week, another episode of DWCS. We had all sorts of fighters on this card, from Strawweights to Light Heavyweights, making this one a catch all of promising talent.

Contract winner(s) highlighted in gold.

Phil Rowe def. Leon Shahbazyan by Round 3 Knockout (WW)

Image result for dwcs phil rowe

This was an incredible fight. If I’ve ever seen a match on this show where both fighters deserved a contract, this was it.

Shahbazyan dominated the first round, having a similar style to his UFC brother Edmen. We saw that the hype behind that name wasn’t just waste, as Leon dropped his opponent early. Rowe overcame that and took over in the second round. When he was pressuring, he threw a number of brutal strikes and some serious firepower behind them.

Rowe will be incredible at Welterweight. He is another slugger with a well-checked ground game as well as a massive 6’3 frame, along with 80″ of reach. That alone may be enough to seperate him from the competition, but he also has some wrestling and power to show for all those strikes. The fight IQ is what makes the difference between a good and great fighter and Rowe certainly has that.

Jamal Pogues def. Marcos Brigagao by Unanimous Decision (LHW)

This was an elite, if somewhat slow-paced grappling exchange. Pogues was the one who found himself in top position most often, and for that, he came away with the win. He had no shortage of kicks and was not at all afraid of going to the ground, although clearly most comfortable in a dominant position.

While Pogues showed real strength in there, LHW is a division known for its power strikers. Fighters like Moreira and Paul Craig have really suffered with their lack of striking. However, the 23-year-old has incredible power as well and the overall game that might set him up for a more successful future if he finds that advantage in any area.

Steve Garcia def. Desmond Torres by Round 1 Knockout (BW)

Image result for dwcs steve garcia

Desmond Torres was actually pushing the pace and trying to get to the ground for as long as the fight lasted. However, Garcia was pretty sound defensively, using submission threats and good scrambling to avoid finding himself on his back. Garcia doesn’t have the most one-punch power, as few Bantamweights do, but he made up for it in his reach and range utilization.

I think Garcia will remain a huge threat whenever he ends up in the UFC, but he did miss weight. At 6 foot even, he’s a mammoth with some real power and the cardio available if he needs to rely on it. He does need some more development, but the young fighter has the right camp and skillset to become a massive threat at the big show.

Mallory Martin def. Micol di Segni by Unanimous Decision (SW)

Mallory Martin handled herself well on the feet, utilizing great head movement and some sweeping strikes to avoid the attacks of di Segni. She really came into her own when she got to the ground, complete with both high and low amplitude takedowns. With a division at Strawweight complete with so many volume strikers, Martin’s control of range and ground and pound efficiency will make her a serious killer.

Ricky Steele def. Phil Caracappa by Split Decision (BW)

Steele came in heavy with the kicks and Caracappa did an incredible job pressuring him to get there. Steele struggled in terms of the ground game and although he found dominant positions at times, he really wasn’t able to secure a solid spot. This became a good scrap, but Steele’s defense rightfully got him to the win. I don’t think he mounts enough offense among the killers of the UFC, especially off hios back foot, so I can’t say much for him going forward.


This episode saw a only one contract handed out. Next week will be our last episode of DWCS Season 3, but make sure to check out last week’s fights until then.

Until next time, Freaks.

Categories: Contender Series

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