Missed Fists: Fighter eats head kick after failing to exploit grounded fighter rule

Welcome to the latest edition of Missed Fists where we shine a light on fights from across the globe that may have been overlooked in these hectic times where it seems like there’s an MMA show every other day.

Somehow, despite the all-encompassing black hole that was UFC 300 absorbing everything in its path last weekend, there were other promotions capitalizing on fight fever. Then again, several of those events took place on UFC Fight Pass, so it really is just Dana White and company’s world, isn’t it?

This week, we feature several adventures in MMA defense (or lack thereof), starting with the kind of gamesmanship that one can only shake their head at.

(Big thanks as always to @Barrelelapierna for their weekly lists of the best KOs and submissions, and to @Grabaka_Hitman for uploading many of the clips you see here. Give them a follow and chip in on Patreon if you can.)

Virgil Augen vs. Vlad Gutu
Alioune Nahaye vs. Luis Miguel Aular

Fans pretty much unanimously hate the grounded fighter rules that are meant to protect fighters in overly vulnerable positions from getting kicked or kneed in the head, but often are abused to prevent otherwise effective offense.

Case in point:

From the main event of Ares FC 20 that went down last night in Paris, Vlad Gutu thought he was being clever directing his fingertips to the mat to prevent Virgil Augen from kicking him. Fortunately for all of us, two things happened: 1) Augen timed a head kick perfectly so that it landed just as Gutu attempted to touch the mat and 2) referee Mark Goddard was on the ball and didn’t fall for that nonsense.

The kick didn’t put Gutu’s lights out, but it left him open to more damaging shots from Augen as he fruitlessly complained to Goddard instead of, you know, actually defending himself against Augen’s strikes. Augen went on to win via rear-naked choke in Round 3 to claim a vacant middleweight title.

I’m not going to be too hard on Gutu, a 23-year-old in just his third pro fight who clearly has a knack for entertaining antics. But maybe he can worry a little less about the fans and the referee next time out.

No notes needed for veteran featherweight Alioune Nahaye, who earned a highlight-reel knockout with some relentless pressure.

Luis Miguel Aular never found his footing as he backed up to the cage, bouncing off of the fence right into the path of a jumping double knee that immediately shut him down.

Gennier Rojas vs. Diego Espinoza

Zipping over from Paris to Lima, Peru, we check in on an amateur bout at Fusion FC 74 that had an absolutely brutal ending.

Barely a minute into their flyweight bout, Gennier Rojas caught Diego Espinoza’s foot and blasted him with a right hand. Where this moment really went wrong for Espinoza is that Rojas didn’t release the foot, which created a swinging effect, causing the back of Espinoza’s head to splatter against the canvas.

That thud is horrific. Let’s hope Espinoza was transported to the hospital ASAP.

Jimuwasha vs. Xiaoyu Liu

I was critical of Gutu’s defense earlier, but this legitimately may have been even worse.

From Jue Cheng King Fight Night 82 in Shanxi, China:

Admittedly, that’s some impressive speed by Jimuwasha, but I can’t remember the last time a fighter threw out a naked spin kick like that so early in a fight and landed it flush. The official time of the stoppage was 10 seconds, but this could have been called in half that time.

Devin Williams vs. Pierce Atchison

Nothing will top the entire MMA world freaking out when Max Holloway dropped Justin Gaethje with one second left in their fight, but bless the folks at this recent Fury Amateur Series event for trying.

Devin Williams caught all of this head kick as Pierce Atchison lunged forward, sending fans into hysterics. Give me unholy screaming over those canned commentary team reactions any day, please.

You can watch Williams vs. Atchison in its entirety and more free fights from Fury Amateur Series 52 on YouTube.

Tomas Mudroch vs. Marian Jakubik

Over at Real Fight Arena 16 in Opava, Czech Republic, lightweight Tomas Mudroch did what Jalin Turner failed to do, pulling off a flawless walk-off knockout after hitting this flying knee.

Looks like he went for the sword slash celebration after, too. I guess Jiri Prochazka isn’t the only Czech samurai out there.

Si Won Park vs. Yota Hayashi

Mudroch wasn’t the only one walking it off, as Si Won Park matched that feat at a Road FC show in Seoul.

Anytime you punch someone so hard that you cause them to do a full 180, you’re going to win our Humpty Dumpty Fall of the Week award. This was also Park’s second defense of his lightweight title as the 22-year-old improved to 6-0 as a pro.

Free fights from Road FC 68 are available to watch on YouTube.

Daro Lew vs. Bagieta

What’s that? How is the quasi-combat sports/influencer kickboxing scene going over in Poland? Funny you mention it.

It’s going just fine.

That’s “Daro Lew” a.k.a. Dariusz Kazmierczuk landing a beautiful backfist on “Bagieta” a.k.a. Michal Gorzelanczyk at a Prime MMA Show in Warsaw. Across their socials, Daro Lew and Bagieta are both in the low six figures when it comes to social media following, with Daro Lew making his bones primarily on Tik Tok and Bagieta on that Twitch gring.

Both men are veterans of the Polish influencer fight scene, so it’s not like this was two newbies throwing hands. Still, there’s got to be an easier way to earn a click, fellas.


What was the most memorable Missed Fists moment this week?

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    Virgil Augen makes Vlad Gutu pay

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    Gennier Rojas sends Diego Espinoza’s head to the canvas

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    Jimuwasha’s 10-second spin kick

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    Tomas Mudroch’s walk-off knee

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    Other (leave comment below)

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0 votes total

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If you know of a recent fight or event that you think may have been overlooked, or a promotion that could use some attention, please let us know on X — @AlexanderKLee — using the hashtag #MissedFists.

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