Professional Fighters League Welterweight and Women’s Lightweight fighters competed in the highly anticipated 2019 season opener at NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, on Long Island, N.Y.
Thursday night’s PFL 1 began at 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+, with the action continuing on ESPN2 and the ESPN App in Spanish at 9:00 p.m. ET.
PFL 1 was highlighted by the debut of the Women’s Lightweight Division, headlined by two-time U.S. Olympic Judo gold medalist Kayla Harrison taking on Brazil native, and jiu jitsu specialist, Larissa Pacheco, who entered the season with 11 career wins, all by stoppage.
Former Strikeforce and Invicta FC Bantamweight champion, Sarah Kaufman, squared off against Morgan Frier, who entered the PFL season on a four-fight win streak. It didn’t take long for the more experienced Kaufman to finish the fight with a choke and earn 6-points to carry on in the tournament.
2018 PFL Welterweight champion Magomed Magomedkerimov began his title defense against Boston-native John Howard, who moved down in weight to compete in a stacked division. The champion finished the fight by submission in the first round.
Additionally, a Hawaiian rivalry was settled as 2018 PFL breakout star Ray Cooper III took on his cousin, and fellow Hawaiian, Zane Kamaka. Kamaka came in 1.8 pounds over the weight limit and was ineligible to earn any points toward making the playoffs, regardless of the fight outcome. Cooper III will be awarded three points for his opponent missing weight and earned another two for the finish.
“The journey to a championship and million-dollar prize for our world-class Welterweight and Women’s Lightweight division fighters begins now,” said Ray Sefo, President of Fighter Operations of the PFL. “With our sports-season format, every fight counts, and tomorrow’s tone-setting matches are an opportunity for these fighters to get off to a strong start and position themselves atop the PFL standings heading into the second half of the season. There is a lot on the line and these fighters are ready and eager to step in `that cage.”
1. Roberta Samad defeated Moriel Charneski via unanimous decision (earning 3 points)
2. Chris Curtis defeated Andre Fialho via TKO – Round 3 (earning 4 points)
3. Glaico Franca defeated Gamzat Khiramagomedov via submission – Round 1 (earning 6 points)
4. Bobbi Jo Dalziel defeated Genah Fabian via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) (earning 3 points)
5. Handesson Ferreira defeated Bojan Velickovic via unanimous decision (earning 3 points)
6. Sadibou Sy defeated David Michaud via KO – Round 1, 0:17 (earning 6 points)
7. Sarah Kaufman defeated Morgan Frier via submission (arm-triangle choke) – Round 1, 2:22 (earning 6 points)
8. Ray Cooper defeated Zane Kamaka via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 4:29 (earning 5 points – 3 for opponent missing weight, 2 for finish)
9. Magomed Magomedkerimov defeated John Howard via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 1, 4:54 (earning 6 points)
10. Kayla Harrison defeated Larissa Pacheco via unanimous decision (30-25, 30-27, 30-27) (earning 3 points)
Photo gallery below by MyMMANews photographer Tim Stype:
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