Curtis Millender and Kevin Holland on Friday electrified a capacity crowd inside the Marriott Convention Center in Burbank, California, as they went to war for three rounds in the Legacy Fighting Alliance 13 main event.
Holland had his adversary rocked on multiple occasions with scattered punches and kicks in the first round, but the Fort Worth, Texas, native could not seal the deal. Millender rallied in the second and nearly took out the “Trailblazer” when he connected with a knee and left hook to the face. Like Holland, he could not close the show. With both men gassed in Round 3, it turned into a war of wills to see who would have his hand raised. Millender had a little more in the tank and pounded on Holland from top position to sway the judges in the closing moments.
Millender was awarded 29-28 scores across the board.
Meanwhile, Karen Darabedyan looked sensational in the welterweight co-feature, as he pummeled Sam Liera from start to finish. He mounted Liera late in the first round and might have put him away with punches had he not misfired on an armbar. Moments later, Darabedyan took down his overmatched opponent, slinked around to the back and cinched a rear-naked choke, forcing the tapout at the 1:46 mark of Round 2.
Dominick Reyes was even more impressive. One of the sport’s hottest prospects, Reyes ignited the crowd with a spectacular head kick knockout on Jordan Powell in the first round of their light heavyweight battle. The two men wasted no time getting to know each other, as they traded punches in the center of the cage. After Powell ate a punch and shook his head in defiance, Reyes unfurled a thunderous left high kick to the jaw. An unconscious Powell collapsed face first on the canvas, the bout reaching its conclusion just 53 seconds into Round 1.
Elsewhere, Alonzo Menifield outslugged Khadzhimurat Bestaev and struck the Russian light heavyweight into first-round submission. Both fighters landed hard punches to the head, but Menifield kept his composure and capitalized on an errant spinning hook kick from his counterpart. He pounced on Bestaev, who fell to his back, and rained down punches and elbows from the top. A final right hand to the eye prompted Bestaev to verbally submit at the 4:01 mark of the first round.
In other action, Maikel Perez Gonzalez submitted Trent Meaux with a rear-naked choke 4:00 into the first round of their catchweight clash at 130 pounds; Herdem Alacabek remained undefeated, as he tapped Antonio Arroyo with a rear-naked choke at the 3:51 mark of their light heavyweight affair; and Kyler Phillips took a unanimous decision from Jonathan Quiroz in a three-round bantamweight tilt, earning tallies of 29-28, 29-26 and 29-26.