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Relatives of top UFC fighters record wins in amateur event

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Allison Duck

Larry Mir poses after his victory over Anastacio Cruz at Tuff-N-Uff.

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Randy Couture shares a laugh with his son Ryan before he takes on Joe Tussing at Tuff-N-Uff.

Tuff-N-Uff at The Riviera

Jimmy Jones celebrates his win over Maurice Senters at Tuff-N-Uff. Launch slideshow »

Fight results

155lbs Ryan Couture (Xtreme Couture) def. Joe Tussing (Warrior Training Center) via technical submission (rare naked choke) 1:07, Round One.

150 Larry Mir (Vadnais Fight Team) def. Anastacio Cruz (Team Aftershock) via TKO 0:35, Round One.

135 Jimmy Jones (Xtreme Couture) def. Maurice Senters (Striking Unlimited) via. TKO 2:43, Round One.

145 Alex Brooks (Hawaiian Fighting Arts) def. Justin Vadnais (Vadnais Fight Team) via TKO 0:44, Round Three.

155 Gil Guardado (Xtreme Couture) def. Jon Gorton (Team Quest) via unanimous decision.

125 Richard Junio (Striking Unlimited) def. Junior Gomez (Hawaiian Fighting Arts) via submission (armbar) 1:35, Round One.

145 Roman Isbell (Striking Unlimited) def. Scott Kelsey (Xtreme Couture) via unanimous decision.

155 Jake Swinney (Xtreme Couture) def. Tommy Gavin (Legends MMA) via submission (armbar) 1:31, Round One.

185 Tim Bowman (Striking Unlimited) def. Brandon Donnelly (Warrior Training Center) via TKO 0:32, Round One.

135 Jesse Romero (Xtreme Couture) def. Colton Bowler (Filipino MMA) via unanimous decision.

170 Charles Lee (Xtreme Couture) def. Paul Garcia (MTX) via TKO 0:58, Round One.

145 Shane Larsen (Culture of Intensity) def. Eric Center (Xtreme Couture) via split decision.

170 Dustin Chevelier (Striking Unlimited) def. Jesse Bowler (Filipino MMA) via KO 0:16, Round One.

155 John Hahn (Xtreme Couture) def. Jovon Lorenzo (n/a) via TKO 1:28, Round One.

Friday night’s Tuff-n-Uff’s Fight Night III at the Riviera featured some of the top names in mixed martial arts.

Last names, that is.

Amateur fighter Larry Mir (2-1), who is the cousin of former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir, scored a TKO victory against Anastacio Cruz (0-2) just 35 seconds into the first-round.

“I started doing MMA because I wanted to be closer to my cousin and my family. They’re always hanging out at the gym,” Larry Mir said. “Win or lose, my cousin would be proud and I have my family here behind me.”

It is a bonding exercise Ryan Couture, son of UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture, can relate to. Ryan Couture was also on the card at the Riviera.

“It [MMA] has definitely provided an easy avenue and an easy excuse for us to spend more time together,” Ryan Couture said. “With the nature of his [Randy’s] lifestyle, he’s on the go so much that about the only time you can see him is at the gym. Fortunately, training there I get to see him on a daily basis. That’s really helped us stay close and stay in touch and it’s given us one more big thing to have in common, to bond over.”

The benefits of that quality time spent with his dad were evident in Ryan Couture’s submission victory against Joe Tussing (2-3) in the evening’s main event.

The fight was quickly taken to the ground in the opening moments of the first round, where Couture took Tussing’s back and set up a rear-naked choke.

However, Tussing managed to stand up with Couture clinging to his back and, in a last ditch attempt to buck Couture off, he fell straight back with all of his weight.

“I’ve seen in other fights people have had him in that same choke and he’s fought his way out of it, so he wasn’t going to tap unless it was really in,” Ryan Couture said.

Despite being slammed to the canvas, Couture would not let go of the chokehold and Tussing, just as stubbornly, would not submit.

“I heard my corner start to yell ‘he’s going to sleep, he’s going to sleep,’” he said. “I just gave it everything I had until I saw the ref test his arm and he was out.”

With his amateur record now at 5-1, Couture said he wants to make his pro debut later on this year.

“If I keep progressing at the rate I have been, I want to be fighting my first pro fight in the summer,” he said. “I’m thinking one more amateur in between there, just to make sure, but I’m getting comfortable dealing with the nerves, and dealing with the crowds and the attention.”

However, for Tuff-N-Uff 135 pound champion Jimmy Jones going pro is not as big of a priority. “I still have a lot of kinks to work out,” he said.

The only kink Jones (5-3) displayed in his first round TKO over Maurice Senters was a failed triangle chokehold he attempted after he used his legs to isolate one of Senters’ arms.

“I tried to finish that triangle,” Jones said. “I knew if I didn’t finish it right there my legs would be tired in the next round so I had to end it.”

But instead of choking Senters out, Jones used the position he had on Senters to pin him down and Jones punched his way to a TKO victory.

“I thought this would probably be a good way to end my career at 135,” Jones said after the fight. “I walk around at 156 so this is a little bit too much weight for me to cut, so I think I’ll go to 145.”

Despite the majority of the fights being limited to three two-minute rounds (the championship fight being the exception at three, three-minute rounds) nine of the 14 fights ended in the very first round.

TUF finalist Brendan Schaub was impressed.

“You’ve got to go for the kill because one takedown can change or dictate the entire fight,” he said. “You can tell Vegas is the hotbed of MMA because even these amateur guys, they have skills.”

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