Butler scores another knockout
For the first time in his short mixed martial arts career, Rochester’s Raphael Butler was put on his back Saturday night at Treasure Island Resort and Casino.
Butler’s opponent, Jeremy Beck, quickly pushed him up against the cage after eating a stiff left jab in the night’s co-main event.
Beck, who is ranked No. 8 among Minnesota’s heavyweights, clinched with Butler and was able to secure a takedown. But when the fight hit the ground, Butler remained calm and was able to work back to his feet.
And just like that, Butler had the second knockout of his MMA career during Brutaal’s "The Rapture."
Butler landed a left-right combination, and the right knocked out Beck at the 3:36 mark of the opening round.
"It feels real good to get the win," Butler said. "That’s what I came here to do, and it’s what we’ve been training at Compound MMA for."
This fight lasted much longer than Butler’s MMA debut. In that fight, he knocked out Gabe Hobbs in just 11 seconds (it was incorrectly reported to mixedmartialarts.com as a 36-second knockout).
Butler said he has no specific plans for his next fight. But he knows he must continue to work on his ground game.
"I’ve been working hard with a lot of wrestlers and submission people," Butler said. "They’re teaching me how to compose myself when I’m down in those positions. Obviously, I don’t plan on getting in those positions, but when I’m there, I know what to do. ... I’m not looking for anything right now (fight wise). Right now, I’m just going to get right back in the gym, working on my ground game, and we’ll see what happens after that."
Millville’s Bruce Johnson pulled off the upset of the night. Johnson, who trains with Team Crazy, scored a shocking knockout victory over prospect Pat Schilling.
Schilling entered the fight unbeaten and ranked No. 9 among Minnesota’s 145-pounders.
Johnson landed a big right hand that dropped Schilling. Johnson followed him to the ground, and the referee quickly jumped in to stop the fight 21 seconds into the opening round.
Red Wing’s Clay Tix also scored a speedy victory Saturday. He took down Iowa’s Ron Imhoff seconds into their 185-pound clash. Tix landed in half-guard, and he started raining down punches to Imhoff’s ribcage. Imhoff submitted due to strikes 49 seconds into the opening round.
The outcome wasn’t as positive for Tix’s teammate, Drew Wells of Red Wing.
Wells entered the fight undefeated, but Iowa’s Justin Morrison handed Wells his first loss as a professional. Morrison dominated the fight with his wrestling, and on the ground he was able to work submissions and strikes to damage Wells.
Morrison controlled most of the fight, but Wells had a triangle choke locked up with just a few seconds remaining. Wells wasn’t able to finish the submission, though, and Morrison earned the unanimous-decision win.
There were two amateur title fights on the card. Minnesota’s Jovon Myles earned a submission victory over Adam Packer for the 135-pound title, while Chris Hansmann scored a submission win over Luke Warndahl for the 145-pound belt.
In the main event, WEC veteran Courtney Buck made quick work of Frank Johnson. Buck locked in the rear-naked choke just 53 seconds into the opening round.