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Ironheart Crown

    Tue, 2006-12-05 10:52 — Denis Martins

    Ironheart Crown XI Recap:
    Sweden's Jani Lax defeats top American Shooto
    By Dom Guzman
    CHICAGO, IL, USA - On November 18, 2006, for the first
    time in history, two European fighters were invited to
    cross the Atlantic to compete in the United States in
    an American Shooto competition. Sweden's Jani Lax and
    Finland's Tom Niinimaki were accompanied by Sauli
    Heilmo who would coach them through their matches in
    the Ironheart Crown, North America's largest and most
    prestigious venue for professional Shooto. Lax was
    featured in the main event and Niinimaki was one of
    four featured Class-A international bouts.

    In the main event, Jani Lax, European Welterweight
    Champion, faced off against John Mahlow, a top
    contender for the North American title. Both fighters
    demonstrated incredible agression, trading powerful
    blows while standing and exchanging multiple
    submission attempts on the ground. Despite the close
    battle, Lax was able to land more accurate and
    damaging blows up top, while outmaneuvering Mahlow on
    the ground. He also displayed excellent takedown
    defense, frustrating Mahlow throughout all three
    rounds. By the end of the fight, Lax had taken over
    and was sure to win when Mahlow scored points in the
    final seconds with an ankle lock. A "catch" was
    awarded and Jani appeared to be in danger, but
    Mahlow's last hope was stifled when the final bell
    rang out through the arena. Lax would win by a split
    decision, representing all of Europe well with an
    incredible victory over a highly respected American

    Tom Niinimaki did not fare as well against the
    powerful young American by the name of Tristan Yunker.
    He fought hard throughout the fight and appeared to
    be in control until Yunker was able to slip out and
    get to Tom's back where he applied a rear naked choke
    and stole the match by submission. Despite his loss,
    Niinimaki still demonstrated excellent skills,
    impressing the promoters enough that he has already
    been invited back to compete in the Ironheart Crown

    The show featured other international competitors as
    well. Brazilian representatives included Pedro Vianna
    and Rafael Rebello. Two other Brazilians, Joao Herdy
    and Lucas Lopes were unable to compete as their
    opponents fell off the card due to injury and illness.
    Canada's Shah Franco Team was also there with their
    newest fighter, Bill Boland who was victorious over
    Brazil's Rebello. Boland was cornered by two
    world-ranked Shooto competitors, Antonio Carvalho and
    Justin Bruckmann.

    From top to bottom, the show featured excellent
    matches and incredible talent. With fighters in
    attendance from across the United States and around
    the world, the Ironheart Crown demonstrated its wide
    reach and its commitment to finding quality athletes.
    Lax's victory over the local hero by a split decision
    also proved the Ironheart Crown's integrity.

    When asked about their experience here in Chicago, the
    European fighters commented that they have never been
    treated better; not even in Japan. The fighters were
    picked up at the airport in a limousine and taken to
    their hotel room where they were met by a liason who
    was assigned to accommodate all of their needs
    throughout their five day stay. In the days preceding
    the event, the fighters were given a tour of Chicago
    and treated to an American steak dinner in one of
    Chicago's finest restaurants. They were also given
    spending money and taken on a shopping excursion. And
    after the fights, the Europeans were exposed to the
    Chicago nightclub scene, transported again by
    limousine. Promoters Eric Moon and Braulio Corral
    remarked that they were honored to have Lax and
    Niinimaki featured in the Ironheart Crown, and they
    wanted to do everything possible to express their
    appreciation and gratitude.

    Full Results of the fight are listed below.
    For more information on the Ironheart Crown, visit the
    event website at

    Ironheart Crown XI: Apocalypse
    Saturday, November 18th, 2006
    Hammond, IN

    Class-B Professional Fights (2x5 minute rounds)
    Dan Hornbuckle def Wane Bogard by Submission (Arm
    Triangle) 0:36 Rd 1
    Jared McMahan draw Mike Bogner (19-19, 19-19)
    Kris Kanaley draw Johnny Bedford (19-19, 19-19)
    Pedro Vianna def Brad Fonck by Submission (Triangle
    Choke) 2:13 Rd 1
    Bill Boland def Rafael Rebello by Majority Decision
    (19-19, 19-18, 19-18)
    Aaron Kreke def Scott McGhee by TKO (strikes) 3:40 Rd
    Dave Kleczkowski def Thomas Russell by Submission
    (Rear Naked Choke) 3:37 Rd 1
    Don Richard def Allan Weichert by Submission (Kimura)
    1:56 Rd 2
    Luke Tesch def Wyatt Hickey by Submission (Guillotine
    Choke) 3:54 Rd 1

    Class-A Professional Fights (3x5 minute rounds)
    Kyle Watson def Dan Spychalski by Submission (Rear
    Naked Choke) 3:33 Rd 2
    Tristan Yunker def Tom Niinmaki by Submission (Rear
    Naked Choke) 1:34 Rd 1
    Michah Miller def Josh Lee by Submission (Triangle
    Choke) 1:29 Rd 1
    Jani Lax def Jon Mahlow by Majority Decision (29-27,
    29-27, 28-29)

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