Cagesport MMA: Kirkland's Brooklyn Knight is still the crowd favorite

Chanti 'Brooklyn Knight' Johnson delivers the KO blow to Roy Bradshaw on July 24 at Cagesport XI in Emerald Queen Casino.
— image credit: Todd Dearinger, For The Mirror

Local mixed martial arts fighter Chanti "Brooklyn Knight" Johnson won by TKO over Roy Bradshaw at Cagesport XI, held July 24 in Tacoma.

As the main event, Johnson (7-2) and Bradshaw (4-3) took the fight into the second round at Emerald Queen Casino. After an even first round, Johnson quickly gained the upper hand, trapping Bradshaw and delivering a blitzkrieg of punches to the head.

Johnson leaped around the ring in victory before hugging a fan and making an "exit." He returned to the ring upon the announcer's call.

"I really respect Roy Bradshaw. I took him very seriously," said Johnson, 35, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y. "I want to thank all my past opponents for pushing me in the right direction."

Johnson trains with the White Buffalo Warriors in Kirkland. He came to the Northwest about a year ago to pursue MMA, which not legal in New York state. Johnson has established himself as a local crowd favorite with his focused energy and celebrations.

"This is my dream, and you can control your dreams," he said.

Cagesport XI marked Johnson's eighth pro fight and first main event.

"I'll be back, hopefully for the title," he told a few hungry fans on his way out.

Fight card

Joel Pettit (2-1) def. Jesse Brown (0-3): Triangle arm bar submission, first round

Damon Wood (4-0) def. Butch McGavran (2-5): Guillotine choke submission, second round

Chris Ensley (6-9) def. Brad Norquist (2-9): Win by submission, first round

Kyle Keeney (8-8) def. Jesus Rivera (3-2): Rivera tapped out after being pummeled in the head by Keeney, who made good use of foot stomps, with a pedicure to boot.

Charon Spain (3-1) def. Jeff Bailey (3-3): Won by rear-naked choke submission in the first round scrapfest.

Sterling Ford (11-4) def. Carmen Casella (6-8): Ford won with a quick and smooth rear-naked choke submission in the first round.

Ryan Healy (7-6-1) vs. Dave Courchaine (4-4): Healy scored a first-round KO that left Courchaine smiling around the ring after the fight was called.

Sarah D’Alelio (2-0) vs. Melissa Steele (0-2): In the co-main event, D'Alelio scored a quick KO. Steele was taken from the ring in a stretcher, but was OK.

Chanti Johnson (7-2) vs. Roy Bradshaw (4-3): Johnson scored a KO in the second round of the main event, which was the second fight of the night to go past the first round. Those gorgeous ring girls must have been bored.

For local fighters

Cagesport MMA is held every other month. Tickets are available at the Emerald Queen Casino box office at (888) 831-7655 or at Get up to date information at

Cagesport was organized by Brian Halquist Productions, which brings four MMA events and five boxing events each year to the casino. Nearly all bouts involve local fighters, said owner Brian Halquist.

"We're not the UFC or Strikeforce," Halquist said in May. "We want to be used by (local fighters) as a springboard. We want to get as many local kids as we can and develop their following locally. Those kids that do well will be able to go on to bigger and better things."

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