To commemorate Cage Warriors' upcoming 20th year anniversary, I'll be highlighting five of my favourite fights in the organisation's history, throughout the week, leading up to Cage Warriors 141.
In 2017, Nathaniel Wood and Josh Reed turned in the round of the year in a high-octane slugfest for the Cage Warriors Bantamweight belt. Reed entered the fight a perfect 7-0 while Wood was evolving into the promotion's biggest star after becoming the first London-born fighter to claim Cage Warriors gold.
The fight started slow enough for the first few seconds as both men landed clean on multiple leg kick exchanges.
Reed managed to land cleanly on Wood and that's when the fight devolved into a real slobber knocker. Reed rocked the champion and who lost balance and fell into the cage. The follow-up flurry of strikes continued to wobble and hurt Wood who hung on by a thread as referee Marc Goddard looked on the verge of stopping the fight.
Reed continued to let his hands go until Wood, who was beginning to regain his defensive awareness, clipped Reed with a right hook that swung the momentum in his favour. Reversing position against the cage, Wood welcomed his turn to unload on Reed with short shots in the clinch, a couple of knees and successive uppercuts.
Wood's pressure melted Reed who, unlike Wood, was unable to intelligently defend himself from the onslaught of strikes and so Goddard was forced to step in and call the fight.
In less than two and half minutes, Wood and Reed had put on a classic that will be replayed at Cage Warriors events until the end of time.
UFC Fight Pass subscribers can watch the fight here: https://ufcfightpass.com/video/59834/nathaniel-wood-vs-josh-reed-cage-warriors-fc-86
The fight is also available on YouTube here: https://youtu.be/4XbxyRQHk6s?t=373