It wasn’t just the “superstar broadcast team” that is being spoken of so highly by most Northwest MMA sites like Sherdog, and Northwest Fight Scene, that made Brian Halquist’s Cage Sport XXI at Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, such an excellent show on the evening of this past September 29th, 2012.
Certainly it was worth a hoot to see KZOK’s Danny Bonaduce exchange a few colorful words with the winners of several of the evening’s bouts. It was also above satisfactory to see a beautiful Miesha Tate, decorated Strikeforce female bantamweight champion, in elegant attire, speaking to winners on a level of superb technical knowledge of the sport. It will be notably significant as well, to see the highly skilled and knowledgeable Jeff Osborne this Friday evening on Root Sports, speaking directly about the event. Osborne has held multiple job titles within the realm of MMA promotions, not to exclude his previous status as a competitor. He even held a job title within the UFC at one point in time. They all deserve kudos, and especially for the swift delivery of a well played promotion to the public of the Northwest.
All flattery aside, the real credit for the outstanding charisma of last Saturday’s Cage Sport Promotion, goes entirely to our local Northwest cage fighting talent. It was their remarkable demonstration of skill and perseverance which kept a billowing audience captivated to the point of speechlessness, and glued to their seats for the remainder of the entire show. The audience could be caught getting up occasionally to relish in the many memorable outcomes of each bout. The card was simply superior to most amateur and professional mixed-cards in Washington of the past year, insofar as it held only professionaly ranking MMA fighters (a status presently distinguishing only Cage Sport on the Washington MMA Circuit), and six of those professional fighters were undefeated.
Halquist Productions personnel kept the format of the show simple and straight to the point, aside from an occasionally boisterous Bonaduce. The controversial and energetic morning radio “Life-Coach” who shared a few rowdy (albeit entertaining) choice words with the audience, was obviously just as thrilled by the action as the crowd. There wasn’t really any room for the show to fail, so there should be no surprise at any of the highly positive reviews flooding the Northwest sites. It was not Brian Halquist’s first show, and his experience in the sports entertainment industry rang out loud and clear at Emerald Queen, soon enough to be televised for anyone else who may have missed it live.
Halquist has worked directly with the likes of George Chung (Four Time World PTA Champion), and Scott Coker (CEO of Strikeforce). In fact, it was this very brain trust which started Halquist on his momentum toward Cage Sport, now one of the most, if not “the” most successful cage fighting promotions in the Northwest.
“In 2008, George (Chung) and I met through boxing,” explains Halquist. “He was a promoter, I was a promoter… and he had obtained the rights to do Fight Night at The Playboy Mansion.”
Chung asked Halquist if he wanted to be a part of the popular promotion, and like a fish in water, Halquist accepted immediately.
“I said, sure , ” Halquist continued.
Through professional involvement with Chung, Halquist became aquainted with Scott Coker, and ended up watching one of Coker’s shows in Vegas. It was at this show that Halquist began to solidify his intrigue with the sport of MMA.
“I just felt like I belonged,” recalls Halquist, “and so we decided to do our own brand of it out here at Emerald Queen. Originally we were calling it Freedom Fighters, but we found out that was actually the name of the Taliban. We decided it would be better to call it Cage Sport.”
At last Saturday’s event, what will perhaps stand out as particularly momentous, was that the card became saturated with almost other-worldly outcomes, ranging from a string of rear naked chokes, a heavy handful of technical knockouts, and a featured fight split-decision victory for undefeated Emmanuel Sanchez against undefeated Brandon Dudley. The split decision significantly set the tone for undefeated middleweight Brent “Man-Kill” Knopp’s victory over Brandon Pitts by way of TKO.
Of worthy mention, undefeated Cage Sport Lightweight Title-Holder Julian Erosa, in a shot heard around the world knockout at 4 minutes 36 seconds of round two in the evenings fourth bout, performed a sick victory back-flip off the cage to shake the earth beneath the audience.
Stay tuned for it all again on Root Sports.