|John Kavanagh and Gunnar Nelson pre-fight.|
Anybody who attended Cage Contender XII already knows this - but for those less fortunate (or waiting for the canned televised event) let me tell you; Gunnar Nelson is a supremely talented individual. The humble, unassuming man from the Northern countries carries himself with all the solemnity of a cloistered monk but once that cage door closes, you are in his world and you lose.
At roughly 10.30 PM last night the door closed and Nelson faced off against Ukrainian Alexander Butenko. What followed was 4 minutes of surgical MMA. Gunnar answered the bell on his hunkers and methodically began feeling out his opponent, some jabs were exchanged before uchi mata lead to Nelson landing in Butenko's guard. The Icelandic native who carried the banners of SBGi, Renzo Gracie NYC and Molljner Iceland into the cage slid cleanly into half guard with real class. From half guard Gunnar paused controlling his opponent with ease before transitioning to full mount with complete liberty. Straight heavy punches soon followed which immediately opened a small wound between the eyes of Butenko, the force of the blows and accuracy left his opponent prone and with nothing else to prove - Nelson clinically secured a fore-arm to finish by arm-bar. Deadly.
The audience reaction was almost of disbelief, there was a standing ovation with most people close to cage-side raising their eye brows at the cold-blooded dissection they had witnessed.