The Professional Fighters League (PFL) finished up their inaugural playoff event with a 14-bout card from Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Finalists from both featherweight and heavyweight divisions have locked their spot for the 2018 Championship at the Hulu Theatre at Madison Square Garden on New Year’s Eve.
“We couldn’t have asked for better matchups at this historic fight,” said PFL League President Carlos Silva. “With the chance to win a share of $10M and stakes at an all-time high, these incredible fighters left it all in the cage. I’m looking forward to the rest of the playoffs and to see these finalists compete in the 2018 Championship.”
American Lance Palmer persevered through both bouts, with the quarterfinal ending via unanimous decision over German Max Coga and finishing with another unanimous decision against the previously undefeated Andre Harrison after dominating all three rounds.
Heavyweight Philipe Lins controlled his destiny with two early finishes. In the quarterfinal bout, he defeated fellow countryman Caio Alencar by submission in the first round. Lins then went on to dominate his semifinal round against Jared Rosholt, ending the fight via TKO in the second round.
Top-seed Steven Siler continued his impressive run, going the distance with Nazareno Malegarie and advancing with a majority draw. He got the nod into the semis after getting the tiebreaker by winning the first round. He then advanced over Alexandre Almeida after an illegal kick led to a disqualification.
In the final bout of the night, eighth seed Josh Copeland shocked the crowd after winning the quarterfinal round against Francimar Barroso via tiebreaker. He then recorded a high-light reel knockout, after a perfectly landed counterpunch to finish Alex Nicholson in the first round.
“I’m so proud of these fighters,” said Ray Sefo, PFL President of Fighting Operations. “It has been a long road to get to this point and I can’t wait to get to Long Beach next week to see even more of these guys fight their way into our Championship in December.”
The 2018 PFL Championship will be held December 31 at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden and will feature six title fights, each with a PFL title and $1 million on the line.
PFL 8 results:
MAIN CARD (NBCSN, 10 p.m. ET)
No. 8 Josh Copeland def. No. 5 Alex Nicholson via knockout (punch) – Round 1, 1:27 – heavyweight semifinal
No. 1 Steven Siler def. No. 5 Alexandre Almeida via disqualification (illegal upkick) – Round 2, 0:52 – featherweight semifinal
No. 3 Philipe Lins def. No. 7 Jared Rosholt via TKO (strikes) – Round 2, 0:45 – heavyweight semifinal
No. 2 Lance Palmer def. No. 3 Andre Harrison via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) – featherweight semifinal
No. 8 Josh Copeland def. No. 1 Francimar Barroso via draw (19-19, 19-19, 19-19)* – heavyweight quarterfinal
No. 1 Steven Siler def. No. 8 Nazareno Malegarie via majority draw (20-18, 19-19, 19-19)** – featherweight quarterfinal
PRELIMINARY CARD (Facebook, 7:30 p.m. ET)
No. 5 Alex Nicholson def. No. 4 Jack May via TKO (strikes) – Round 1, 2:03 – heavyweight quarterfinal
No. 5 Alexandre Almeida def. No. 4 Jumabieke Tuerxun via majority decision (20-18, 20-18, 19-19) – featherweight quarterfinal
No. 3 Philipe Lins def. No. 6 Caio Alencar via submission (guillotine choke) – Round 1, 0:58 – heavyweight quarterfinal
No. 3 Andre Harrison def. No. 6 Alexandre Bezerra via majority decision (20-18, 20-18, 19-19) – featherweight quarterfinal
No. 7 Jared Rosholt def. No. 2 Kelvin Tiller via unanimous decision (20-18, 20-18, 20-18) – heavyweight quarterfinal
No. 2 Lance Palmer def. No. 7 Max Coga via unanimous decision (20-18, 20-18, 20-18) – featherweight quarterfinal
Muhammed DeReese def. Mike Kyle via verbal submission (strikes) – Round 1, 2:38 – heavyweight playoff alternate fight
*Copeland advanced via tie-breaker by winning first round.
**Siler advanced via tie-breaker by winning first round.
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