MIAMI – The long-awaited American debut of SFT MMA & Xtreme (Standout Fighting Tournament), delayed several months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, finally happened this past Thursday night with a “closed show” at Wynwood Studios in Miami, Florida.
“SFT 23 VR: Jeffrey vs. Assis” was streamed live and exclusively worldwide on pay per view via the FITE app and website (www.FITE.tv), as well as taped live to air at future dates on regional television throughout the U.S. on United Fight Alliance (UFA), as well as on Brazilian television.
“Putting this event together was the most difficult thing I’ve done in SFT,” SFT president David Hudson said. “The fight card feels like it changed daily. At some point we had 12 fights with a very international main card, made up of highly ranked athletes. We probably signed around 20 matches and ended up with five. It was also our first time promoting in the U.S. and without everybody at full force made things very difficult, as well as the production side. We ended up with a much inferior show, as far as production goes, compared to what SFT always puts out. However, the fights where really good, and at the end of the day, it’s all about the fight. I’m glad we did it. It’s not the start I had hoped for, but now we are ready to return in full force. We are looking at end of November, early December, for the next USA show.
We want to bring back Jeffrey and Jornel as soon as possible. With flight restriction to and from Brazil, along with restrictions to promoting an open-door event, I’m not exactly sure about getting them on our cards but, hopefully, we can still get it done still this year in Brazil.”
Canadian middleweight Aaron Jeffrey (8-2-0) took a step closer to reaching his dream of fighting in the UFC, registering a sensational knockout on punches of his Brazilian opponent, Bruno “Brunao” Assis (9-5-0) in the opening round. The 27-year-old Jeffrey, of Niagara Falls, Ontario, unleashed a barrage of lethal punches to end the fight for his sixth victory in his last seven fights. This was the SFT debut for both of these main event fighters. Jeffrey vs. Assis was selected as Fight of the Night and each fighter was awarded a $1000 bonus.
In the co-featured event, Luiz “Buscape” Firmino won a 3-round decision over fellow Brazilian Markus “Maluco” Perez in a grappling match contested at a 198-pound catchweight.
Undefeated Floridian lightweights Jornel “Ai” Lugo (4-0-0), representing West Palm Beach, and Missouri’s Cortavious Romiuous (4-1-0) put on an entertaining show in their SFT debuts and Lugo emerged with a tough victory by way of a 3-round split decision.
In a battle of Puerto Rican lightweights, James Hay (3-1-0) locked in a Rear Naked Choke to submit Orlando Santana (2-2-0) in the second round.
Miami light heavyweight Joshua Da Silveira (2-0-0) remained unbeaten in spectacular fashion, knocking out pro-debuting Cody Rolling, fighting out of Banner Elk, North Carolina, with a perfectly placed kicked to the head in the opening round. Da Silveira received a $1000 bonus because his was selected as Knockout of the Night. The official weights are below.
“SFT 23” OFFICIAL RESULTS
MAIN EVENT – SFT MMA – MIDDLEWEIGHTS
Aaron Jeffrey (8-2-0, SFT: 1-0-0), Canada
WTKO3 (Punches – 1:26
Bruno Assis (9-5-0, SFT: 0-1-0), Brazil
CO-FEATURE — GRAPPLING – CATCHWEIGHT (198 lbs.)
Markus Perez, Brazil
Luiz Firmino, Brazil
SFT MMA — LIGHTWEIGHTS
Jornel Lugo (4-0-0, SFT: 1-0-0), USA
WDEC3 (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)
Cortavious Romiuous (4-1-0, SFT: 0-1-0), USA
SFT MMA — LIGHTWEIGHTS
James Hay (3-1-0, SFT: 1-0-0), Puerto Rico
WSUB2 (Rear Naked Chole -3:16)
Orlando Santana (2-2-0, SFT: 0-1-0), USA by way of Puerto Rico
SFT MMA – LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHTS
Joshua DaSilveira (2-0-0, SFT: 1-0-0), USA
WKO1 (Kick to head)
Cody Rolling (0-1-0, SFT: 0-1-0), USA