No doubt calls for Mulheron to join the big leagues of the UFC will now return, and after that performance in front of 1500 passionate MMA fans, it certainly seems like “The Juggernaut” is ready.
The South Shields man didn’t have it all his way though, as he was forced to fight off a game Lake, who came close to sinking in a rear naked choke in the first round.
Mulheron however seemed to relish the opportunity to show off his grappling skills, going toe to toe with Lake in exchanges on the mat.
The second round saw Lake tire as the “Juggernaut” sensed a chance to close the show. Landing several uppercuts up against the fense he dropped Lake, but was unable to finish him before the bell for the end of the round. Lake showed incredible fighting spirit to withstand that assault.
Going into the third it looked like Lake may be too tough to put away, but then Mulheron pulled off the spectacular backfist, dropping Lake to a thunderous ovation, as he proceeded to finish the fight retain his title.
In the Co-Main Event of the evening 20 year old Arnold Allen claimed the vacant Pro British Lightweight Title in a fantastic fight with South Shields’ Paul “Cookie” Cook.
The result came after Cook did not come out for the third round following a Ground and Pound onslaught from BKK’s Allen, which opened up a cut above his eye. It was announced that Cook suffered a serious injury following the round and could not go on.
After some exciting grappling and great displays of BJJ in the first round, the fight turned into a stand up war.
At one point it looked like Allen landed an illegal knee to a downed opponent late in the first round. He was warned by the official but no point was taken.
Allen took the incentive in the second, landing several shots from the half guard and mount position. Cook showed incredible fighting spirit, and several times he reversed his young opponent, but was unable to mount a damaging attack from the bottom.
For Allen, the only way is up after this performance, which he took on just a few days notice, but credit must also be given to Paul Cook for playing his part in a quality co-main event.
British MMA superstar and former UFC fighter Phil De Fries had a triumphant return to fighting in his native North East, finishing Polish fighter Lukasz Parobiec with a first round rear naked choke.
De Fries, who had massive support from the fans in attendance, dominated the fight from start to finish, landing an early slam before sinking in the submission, ending Parobiec’s 9 fight winning streak.
The win will shoot De Fries back up the British rankings, and possibly mean a potential return to the bright lights of the Ultimate Fighting Championship when the company returns to these shores.
Sunderland and Unify Gym fighter Steve Watson made quick work of Roger Griffin (stepping in on 3 weeks notice) in a middleweight bout, submitting the South African in just 86 seconds with a rear naked choke.
It was an impressive performance from Watson after coming off a lengthy lay-off, and with the middleweight title currently vacant, he’s stuck his name into the list of potential contenders for the belt.
Tim Close improved his record to 8-4-0 following a first round submission stoppage of Phil Flynn, 7- 13-0, with a rear naked choke. The bout started off with both men trading shots on the feet, Close landing several leg kicks. Flynn forced Close against the cage in an effort to take things to the mat.
He managed to get Close down but was quickly sweeped and found himself mounted. Close started landing brutal ground and pound forcing Flynn to turn over and give up his back.
Close quickly sunk in the reer naked choke for the submission victory.
This will set up bigger fights for the Kirkmerrington fighter in the future.
In the first fight on the Main Card two undefeated welterweight fighters Chris Thirkell of ‘Spartans’, and Independent fighter Graham Langley did battle in what was expected to be a close, back and forth potential fight of the night. Thirkell however didn’t give Langley a chance, immediately landing a takedown before slowly grinding out the TKO stoppage following ground and pound in the first round. It was an impressive performance from Thrikwell who’ll no doubt move on to even bigger fights in the division.
Moving on to the undercard fights, ‘Sixth Sense MMA’s’ Adam Proctor got his professional fighting life off to a fantastic start with a 1st round arm triangle over Staffordshire’s David Stone.
‘Fish Tank’ Welterweight Galip Koch managed to get back in the win column following back to back defeats, finishing Andy Cona in the first round by TKO following several unanswered shots on the ground.
Newcastle Lightweight Jamie Jones of the ‘Bad Boy Gym’ picked up a big win after flooring Micky Hogwarth with a massive overhand right. He closed the show with ground and pound prompting the stoppage.
Local Heavyweight and Fish Tank Fighter Tony Mustard continued his dominant start to his MMA career, progressing to 3-0 with a brutal TKO (Knee) of Ryan Hewston after just 50 seconds. Mustard has yet to see the second round, and hasn’t even surpassed two minutes of ring time inside the Octagon. It’s likely he’ll see bigger fights and pay days following this win.
In the opening Pro bout Unity Gym’s Ian Ord showed off his grappling skills submitting Impacted MMA’s Ian Jordan with an armbar in the second round.
The amateur bouts from the evening saw Middlesbrough Fighting Academy’s Harry Hardwick win the Amateur Featherweight title after unanimous decision victory over Spartans Gyms’ Lewis Garside. Hardwick showed expert control in the Muy Thai Clinch, bombarding a durable Garside with relentless knees on his way to victory.
In a 177ilb catchweight bout Ross Hughes earned a unanimous decision victory over Grant Gaunt utilising sound kicking technique on the feet.
And finally in a battle of the débutantes James Hendin got his amateur career off to a great start with an armbar victory over Nathan Haywwod.
The show cemented made4thecage as the premier MMA promotion in the North of England, and one of the best places to watch MMA in the UK.
The next event is set for February 2015.