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PFL Playoffs San Antonio Main Card Recap (8-4-23)



By: Victor Herrera

Headline Photo Courtesy: PFLMMA.com

Elvin Espinoza v. Keoni Diggs – No touching of the gloves to get this fight started. Espinoza got things going with an early takedown. Espinoza maintained control of the fight while pressing Diggs into the cage. Espinoza continued to have success with ground control allowing for striking on Diggs. Diggs could not catch a break as Espinoza was on him the whole first round. Diggs was able to find a rhythm and began to attack Espinoza early. Halfway through the second round, Espinoza slows the tempo with a clinch against the cage. Espinoza landed flying knee to the midsection of Diggs. Espinoza closes round two with control on the ground and in the clinch. Diggs tried to start attacking but was shut down as Espinoza went for a takedown but kept him in the clinch. Diggs was able to counter and reverse the clinch placing Espinoza against the cage. After a brief exchange, Espinoza goes to the clinch again. Espinoza with a massive takedown towards the end of round three. Espinoza won by unanimous decision.

#2 Marthin Hamlet v. #3 Impa Kasanganay – Hamlet has shown his game plan early. While Kasanganay tried to attack early, Hamlet shut it down and took him to the ground. Kasanganaywas able to create space and get Hamlet to chase him. This opened Hamlet up and Kasanganay was able to get the first-round knockout. Impa moves on to the final in the Light Heavyweight class to face Josh Silveira for the championship and a chance at 1 million dollars.

#2 Gabriel Braga v. #5 Chris Wade – Wade came out very aggressive pressuring Braga across the cage. Although Braga was able to land a tough punch early. Wade continued to be the aggressor. Wade was able to get a takedown late in the first round to shift momentum. The first round ended in a stall. Round two starts with an eye poke from Braga on Wade. After a competitive back and forth Braga had more significant strikes in round two. The third round was productive for Wade until the last 2 minutes of the fight. The experience showed for Wade as in all three rounds he was able to continue with a fast-paced attack. After questionable scoring, the fight was called a split decision for Braga. Braga will face Pinedo for the Featherwightchampionship and a chance to win 1 million dollars.

#1 Joshua Silveira v. #4 Ty Flores – Silveira came out strong on the attack with significant punches and knees. Flores’s movement is slow in the ring making it hard for him to get the advantage. What looked to be a fight destined for round two finished shortly before the bell. Silveira was able to connect a knee to the face of Flores followed by punches ending this contest in TKO. Silveria moves on to fight Kasanganay for the final in the Light Heavyweight and a chance to win 1 million dollars.

#1 Bubba Jenkins v. #4 Jesus Pinedo – To start the main event it was obvious Jenkins wanted to go to the clinch and make their way to the ground. Pinedo did a good job of defending the takedown by creating distance. Pinedo started to strike and found a rhythm that led to a knockdown of Jenkins. The knees by Pinedo were effective. Pinedo was able to complete another knockdown and won the round by striking and knockdowns. The second round started with a slow play of chess and neither fighter wanted to make a mistake. Pinedo was able to stun Jenkins and create destruction to the were a timeout had to be taken and Jenkins was looked at by medical. Pinedo was too much for Jenkins as the boxing picked apart Jenkins and ended in the upset of the night by TKO. Jenkins was escorted to the locker room by medical before the call was made official. Pinedomoves on to fight Braga for the final in the Featherweights a chance to win 1 million dollars.