Hawaii Fight News: Ray Cooper III dominated Rory MacDonalds in the PFL Season 2021.
August 13, 2021 – Rory MacDonald vs. Ray Cooper III 2021 PFL Playoffs
Ray Cooper III utterly dominates Rory MacDonald to make third consecutive PFL final
It may be time to start calling him “Mr. Consistent,” because all Ray Cooper III does is win fights and bulldoze his way into PFL championship bouts.
Cooper (23-7-1) utterly had his way with former Bellator welterweight champion Rory MacDonald (22-8-1) en route to a surprisingly one-sided decision win in Friday’s PFL playoffs main event, which took place at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla. With his victory, Cooper punched a ticket to his third consecutive PFL season final — and ensured himself a shot to defend the title he won in season two’s PFL welterweight tourney.
“I’m not surprised one bit,” said Cooper. “I knew the whole thing, the whole part of his gameplan. But nothing but respect for Rory. I watched him when I was young, he’s an awesome fighter. And yeah, I told you guys. You guys gotta start listening.”
Cooper’s wrestling was the story of the fight from pillar to post. The 28-year-old Hawaiian scored takedowns in every round and smothered any hint of offense from MacDonald. Aside from two questionable standups by referee Gary Copeland, MacDonald was totally unable to get back to his feet. Cooper’s best moment came in the opening seconds of the final round when he landed a heavy combination that forced a desperation takedown attempt from MacDonald, which Cooper ultimately reversed to retake his top position.
The judges awarded Ray Cooper a sweep on the scorecards: 30-27, 30-27, and 30-27.
Awaiting him in the welterweight finals with $1 million on the line will be a familiar foe, the same man who defeated Cooper in 2018’s season one finals, No. 4-seeded Magomed Magomedkerimov (29-5).
“I knew this was going to happen,” Cooper said. “This was my plan. I’m going to run through everybody and I get him next. You’re not going to be able to get away this time.”
Magomedkerimov steamrolled over injury replacement Sadibou Sy (9-6-2) in the night’s co-main event to win a unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) and advance to his second welterweight final of PFL’s three seasons. In a grinding and sluggish fight, Sy had no answer for Magomedkerimov’s takedown acumen, and though neither man scored much — if any — substantial offense, Magomedkerimov was in complete control throughout the bout.
The 31-year-old Russian now holds an undefeated 10-0 record inside the PFL cage and very well could’ve been fighting for his third consecutive championship had he not been forced to withdraw from season two’s tournament due to an injury he suffered in the quarterfinals.
Ray Cooper upcoming bout against Magomed Magomedkerimov
MMK vs. Cooper 2 Sounds Good: After the dust settled, the finals for welterweight and lightweight came together at this event. On Oct. 27, Ray Cooper III will rematch Magomed Magomedkerimov in the 170-pound finals – the two met for the million-dollar prize in 2018.