August 25, 2018—Panda Cup’s latest attraction, Panda Cup 5, slowly grew to a crescendo that, unfortunately, crashed far too early in the evening and completely out of tune from the harmony being orchestrated by those—USFL fighters, grapplers, and amateur mixed martial artists—who had an opportunity to compete inside Sacramento’s Jackson Sports Academy.
Panda Cup 5’s Cancellation
Incidents amongst patrons at local MMA events have drained the patience of the state’s Commission. Earlier this year, at the exact same location, The Titans Cage, at TTC 19, experienced a melee that forced C.A.M.O (California Amateur Mixed Martial Arts Organization) to pull the plug on the remainder of that production.
At Panda Cup 5, the energy reached a new level following a first-round TKO delivered by Tyler Strobaugh, which all started with a beautifully timed head kick and finished with a killer’s instinct.
The next contest, featuring Gary Helm and Obadiah Johnson, was action-packed, though laced with controversy. Between rounds, the officials determined Helm couldn’t continue due to a cut under his eye. Helm pleaded his case in puffs of rage to anyone who would listen as a means to move forward into the next round, yet, regardless of his salient points, it was ended.
As Helm made his way backstage, never turning his vocal deluge of displeasure to a drizzle, the highs and lows of back-to-back mind-benders seemed to meet like pressure systems, converging to form a dangerous storm. Pockets of wannabe prizefighters popped up all around the venue like small wildfires. Although everything was contained rather quickly—and the decision-makers of C.A.M.O wanted everyone scheduled on the card to duke it out—the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department decided it would be best to call Panda Cup 5 a done deal at that point.
Another Tale of the Tape
Sadly, the behind-the-scenes legwork of Panda Cup’s promoters, the willingness of several athletes to accept last-second switches, the UFC being on hand to record footage for their upcoming documentary: UFC 25 Years in Short, and many other aspects that are easy for true fans of the sport to appreciate will go largely unnoticed.
NorCal MMA’s Performances of the Night
Fight of the Night: Jose Blancas and Nicholas Galvan
Submission of the Night #1: Keno Grigsby
Submission of the Night #2: Michael Humphrey
TKO of the Night: Tyler Strobaugh
Panda Cup 5’s Complete Results
Jesse Rosas defeated Jacob Martinez by way of unanimous decision
Kevin Rosas defeated Johnny Garcia by way of unanimous decision
Alexis Hazelton defeated Kylee Donaldson by way of unanimous decision
David Kellogg defeated Phoenix Lopez by way of split-decision
Ashkon Fathi defeated Ramzes Castillas by way of unanimous decision
Jose Blancas defeated Nicholas Galvan by way of unanimous decision
Alyssa Sanchez defeated Allison Chang by way of split-decision
Shaniya Carlson defeated Lea Bivins by way of arm bar in round 2 (:52)
Johan Alamilla defeated Israel Perez by way of arm bar in round 1 (1:56)
Zaki Cruz defeated Kaiden Devoto by way of arm bar in round 1 (:59)
Leo Alamilla defeated Mason Kutilowski by way of unanimous decision
Isabel Garcia defeated Alexis Hazelton by way of unanimous decision
Uriel Cruz defeated David Kellogg by way of arm bar in round 1 (1:20)
Yeppie Tomasian defeated Bryce Sexton by way of heel hook
Brady Wicklund defeated Skyler Souza by way of Kimura at 5:58
Courtney Dubois defeated Tati Alvarez by way of unanimous decision
Ahmed Jawid defeated James Cook by way of ankle lock at 1:47
Colin Melvin defeated Noah Freeman by way of overtime
Spencer Jeha defeated Christian Rabago by way of ankle lock at :32
Michael Humphrey defeated Cody Walsh by way of calf-slicer at 5:46
Rase Peters defeated Zack Felkins by way of rear-naked choke at 6:53
Tina La Noy defeated Amy Brundage by way of overtime
Kacey Sanders defeated Matthew Sherman by way of Kimura at 2:03
Keno Grigsby defeated Sam Tanner by way of triangle in round 2 (1:21)
Chris Mitchell defeated Isaiah Perales by way of unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 30-27)
Obadiah Johnson defeated Gary Helm by way of TKO (referee stoppage) in round 1 (2:00)