Bongfeldt, Cronkite, Grande Among Big Winners at Rumble in the Cage 61

It was a wild night at Rumble in the Cage 61 in Lethbridge, Alta.

In the main event, UFC-vet Jesse Bongfeldt (now 23-7-1) returned to the cage after over seven years away to knockout Micah Brakefield (now 7-8) in the first round.

Bongfeldt said it felt great to be back in the cage and was happy with his performance overall.

Jesse Bongfeldt
Jesse Bongfeldt in action against Micah Brakefield at Rumble in the Cage 61. (Photo by Joel Griffith)

“It felt a little velocitized. I felt maybe I could’ve sped things up a little bit,” said Bongfeldt.

“But in that first round I wanted to stick to that jab, I wanted to work the thai clinch, I wanted to stay back. Because of consistently training, I didn’t feel too rusty. It felt pretty damn good.”

Bongfeldt said this fight wasn’t a one-and-done type deal. He said he’s looking to remain active and continue racking up the wins.

“I’m looking to keep some momentum here. I was stoked to have Lee Mein, Jordan Mein and Mason Griffiths in my corner. Just keep having those boys in my corner, setting me up, and knocking them down.”

Colton Cronkite (now 3-0) continued his impressive streak of first round finishes, submitting Taylor Bull (now 2-9) via arm bar in their middleweight bout, extending the streak to seven dating back to his amateur career.

This finish came with a little extra, however, as the arm bar Cronkite locked in was so strong he broke Bull’s arm and popped his elbow out.

But despite the first round finish, Cronkite said Bull was one of the toughest guys he’s faced to finish and had nothing but respect for him.

Colton Cronkite
Colton Cronkite looks for a submission finish of Taylor Bull at Rumble in the Cage 61. (Photo by Joel Griffith)

“He’s a super tough guy; he was super hard to finish,” said Cronkite.

“Even after the arm bar when I broke his arm, he was laughing. He’s probably the physically toughest guy I’ve ever faced. He was very durable.”

Having taken no damage in this bout, Cronkite said he’s looking to get back in the cage as soon as possible.

He said he has no preference or choice of where or who he wants to fight, but just wants to keep the ball rolling.

“Anywhere, anytime, anyone. It doesn’t matter to me. Sign the contract.”

Joel Odorski also improved his professional record to 3-0, but in unusual circumstances.

Facing Gage Saunders (now 3-2), Odorski left with the victory due to Saunders being disqualified for illegal elbows less than one minute into the contest.

Although the win will still show on his record, Odorski said he’s disappointed in the way it unfolded and wasn’t ecstatic to earn the win in that fashion.

“It’s disappointing. I didn’t want to win that way, but it’s part of the sport,” said Odorski.

“A lot of people came out to watch me and we didn’t get a chance to put on much of a show, so that’s disappointing.”

In one of 10 gold medal matches for the 2019 Canadian National Amateur Championships, Jett Grande (13-0) showed why he’s the current world champion once again, defeating a tough Ramil Kamilov (now 4-2) to become the welterweight amateur national champion.

Grande said Kamilov was every bit as tough as he was expecting coming in and was just happy to leave with the victory.

Jett Grande
Jett Grande in action against Ramil Kamilov in their 2019 Nationals gold medal match at Rumble in the Cage 61. (Photo by Joel Griffith)

“I knew Ramil was the toughest guy out of that whole division,” said Grande.

“It didn’t surprise me at all how tough he was. It was a good fight and I’m glad it happened.”

Although he didn’t lose in this same tournament last year, Grande suffered a broken nose in the semi-final, which forced him out of the gold medal match, and the chance to become national champion.

This time around, Grande was able to add the title of national champion to go along with his world champion tag, which he said he’s excited about.

“It’s another title and another accomplishment in my book,” said Grande.

“I’m just looking to get as many titles as I can and then make my pro debut.”

Visit the link at the top to view the full results from Rumble in the Cage 61.

Fight recap brought to you by Peppermint Hippo Tattoo.